I’ve been playing with my carbon fiber hockey stick, and it’s super annoying when I swing it to handle the puck, but there’s that rattling sound. The sound was caused by bits and pieces of carbon fiber that shook loose on the inside, thanks to my many games of rough-handling that stick.
I found a way to fix it by taking off the cap at the end of the hockey stick. Here’s how you do it.
Where’s That Rattling Sound Coming From?
I was playing hockey the other day with my buddies, you know, just a friendly pick-up game for those of us who haven’t played for years but still got some of the old hockey magic.
I knew my hockey stick hadn’t been used for about a year, but I was super annoyed when the darn thing kept rattling. Even my friends noticed, and they were on the ice too.
Anyway, after the game, I had a weekend to myself, so I went on the Internet and figured out how to get rid of it. I’m filling you in so you don’t have to spend so much time as I did.
Basically, the rattling sound means that loose glue, resin, or tiny strands of that carbon fiber have been shaken off from the lining of your stick. Fortunately, I found it pretty simple to fix!
Unfortunately, unless you want to buy a new hockey stick anyway, it means you’ll have to take off the butt end of your hockey stick, so you can shake out whatever’s inside.
How Do I Remove the Butt End of the Stick?
If you’re noticing a rattle inside the stick, it wouldn’t be a wooden stick. Mine was a carbon fiber stick, like most hockey sticks nowadays. My hockey stick was hollow inside, so that meant I had to open up the inside of the stick to remove that pesky object or whatever it was.
As you’d guess, the flat tip of the stick—the top—would be the best place to open up the stick.
If your stick has a seamless butt end, with nothing that seems to be separated from the shaft, then you’ll have to cut it off using a hacksaw. Before you decide where to cut, buy a butt end first so you can see how long the piece is.
So you can see what I mean by a butt end or a plug end, here’s a website. There are many different lengths, so find the one that best fits your needs.
Anyway, if my stick had a seamless butt end, I would have bought this end plug, measured the portion that sits on top of the stick (once fully inserted), and then measured and cut off the exact same length. That way my hockey stick stays the same overall length!
For myself, I already had a cap onto the end of my hockey stick, so I didn’t need to saw off any part of the upper stick. I was able to put the cap back on after, too, so it was really easy for me.
But sometimes the cap can be hard to remove. Sometimes you’ll need a heat gun and a flat screwdriver. My hockey stick already had hockey tape (I put it there myself years ago) at the butt end, so it was a bit of a pain to tear off the old tape, but I did it. You just need patience!
When I looked at the butt end, I didn’t see the rubber seal that enclosed the plug end at the tip, like you see here at the 2:56 mark of this helpful video, I just didn’t have one. But you can follow this video on how to remove this rubber seal, as unfortunately, it has to be cut off.
I did have the hard cap as shown on the 5:04 mark on the same video, but for me, it was more of a matter of using my flat screwdriver to “ease” it off so I could re-use it. (Better than having to go buy a new one!)
Some manufacturers will nail or screw in the hard cap onto the butt end of the hockey stick. In that can, you could use a tiny screwdriver to remove the screws, or pliers to remove the nails.
Other manufacturers may install (or maybe you replaced the hard cap a while ago with a similar item) a soft cap, in which case you just use a flat screwdriver to ease it out.
For the soft cap, insert the screwdriver under the edge, force the screwdriver into the hollow of the stick gently, and then scoop it out by doing a complete perimeter sweep. In this way, you would break the glue seal.
How to Shake Loose the Debris?
When I opened up one end of the hockey stick, all I had to do was bang the open end of the stick against the cement floor in my basement (or you could do it outside on a stone path or on your driveway).
I felt relieved when I saw the pesky objects spill out of the hollow of the stick—looking like smashed-up tiny balls of weaved plastic. It was hard to believe that such tiny objects could make so much noise!
Now that I had the problem resolved, I still had to replace the butt end on my hockey stick.
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This is pretty much the easy part. The two videos I’ve shown you above also cover capping the stick once again. If you want to re-use the butt end you had already, you can use carpet spray—which I did.
The key thing is not to use glue so strong that if you have to open up your hockey stick again, it’s much more difficult the next time. So, Gorilla Glue would be out. Super Glue, nope. Some hockey manufacturers make hockey glue sticks for sale.
If you bought a butt-end plug, usually it’s already coated with dried-up glue, ready to go when you use a hairdryer or heat gun (the hairdryer will be much slower, but will do the job). As the highlighted videos above show, the expert show how to use a heat gun to melt the glue coating.
I inserted the end plug back into the hockey stick, simply using carpet spray, and it did the trick. I re-taped the hockey stick back to the way I liked, and finally, I was done. I gave my refitted hockey stick several tests, hitting away at pucks on my driveway.
The result? No more annoying rattle. Hope my tips work for you, too!