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Fire Wand | The Digital Ambler

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Fire Wand
The wand is the elemental weapon of re in many ceremonial occult traditions, though some neopagan traditions associate the wand with air. Its one of the four suits of the Tarot and represents will, the active male principle, and struggle. Symbolically, the re wand represents a phallus and is the symbol of the magician, regardless of gender or sex. It is the lightest and brightest of the four elements, and is held to be holy or sacred in many cultures and places across the world. I already have another wand I use for conjuration rituals, but I needed something to use as a general ritual implement: a re wand. Unlike my earth pentacle project, I didnt want to use the Golden Dawn design for my re wand. Wood is often the material of choice when it comes to wands, but Im more a racted to metal for this kind of thing. Being a Hermetic magician, working with metals, especially blended metals, are favored by Mercury. The cool copper and crystal wands you see as homemade goods in some occult bookstores always caught my eye, but instead of buying one, I thought I should go ahead and make one on my own. So, after drawing up a plan (in this post (h p://digitalambler.wordpress.com/2011/07/03/odysseyof-the-re-wand/)) based on the simpler wand I started out with (in this post (h p://digitalambler.wordpress.com/2011/07/02/yet-another-wand-but-also-awesome/)), I went ahead and got a bunch of supplies from hardware stores and Amazon. I wanted something rm, something solid, and something awesome. Based on Frater Achers Sacred Wand (h p://www.myoccultcircle.com /opens/Sacred_Wand.html) and this absolutely spectacular wand from A Magicians Workings (h p://bryanashen.blogspot.com/2011/06/ignis-maxima.html), I wanted to have a lightweight core that would give the wand a heart and associate it with things ascribed with ery virtues. The design I was working on looks something like this:

(h p://digitalambler.les.wordpress.com/2011/07/wand_plan_inside_nal3.png)The plan was to use a copper tube with a brass end cap on one end and a brass connector bit on the other, all from the plumbing and tubing section of a hardware store. Gold and iron wires would be soldered into the bo om of the brass end cap, strung through the hollow of the copper tube, and tied onto the base of a quar crystal. The quar crystal, of an appropriate size from a rock shop or new age bookstore (mine used to be part of a keychain, and had a tiny metal ring screwed into its base) would be xed onto the brass connector using a bit of solder. Around the wires, in the inside of the copper tube, would be a
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Fire Wand | The Digital Ambler

http://digitalambler.wordpress.com/materia/2011-2/fire-wand/

cloth wrap containing a re powder, a mixture of substances and herbs associated with re, the Sun, and Mars (sulfur, volcanic ash, quar dust from a heat-sha ered crystal, rosemary, basil, cayenne, garlic, and cinnamon). The wires and re powder would form a core for the wand, which would help give it a solid ery kick to its working. The brass pieces would be screwed on tightly onto the copper tube. The brass pieces, being hexagons, would be inscribed with planetary or holy symbols (the brass end cap would have the seven planets in the order of the Planetary Hexagram, and the brass connector would have ADONAI, one le er for each side), and voil! the wand would be nished. Problems came up, though, as I tried pu ing the wand together from the original design (of course they would). I made the following changes: I decided against inscribing the brass bits; the fewer symbols, the be er. I can inscribe stu on it later if need be. Besides, in the future I should have a dremel tool to use instead of an electric engraver or burin, which makes for neater inscriptions. I rst tried wrapping the re powder in some cheesecloth, but the dust and nely powdered herbs kept leaking through the gaps in the cloth. Anything thicker or heavier would have made it too hard to t into the wand. I tried boiling the re powder with some holy water and puried water, then soaking the cloth in that to let it dry out in the sun, but it turned out slimy and revolting. I decided to forego the re powder entirely. I learned on a spare piece of quar that crystal sha ers under the heat of a blow torch, incidentally yielding the quar dust for the re powder. Because I didnt want the crystal point of the wand to sha er, I had a hard time guring out how to apply the solder to the area. It wouldnt stick and I couldnt make a workable wire harness for it to hold it into the wand, so I ended up just supergluing the crystal into the connector (quelle horreur!). The metal ring on the crystal bent out of shape and fell out when I was testing a knot with spare wire. It was poorly glued on, but left a small hole the same size as some copper wire I have on hand. I plugged in a short straight piece of copper wire into the crystal, which I inserted into a loop made from the gold/iron wire instead of having the gold/iron wires make a direct connection to the crystal. This solves the problem of having to deal with too much wire bending or warping inside the tube, and made assembly much easier. I originally gave up hope trying to solder the wires into the brass end cap at the base of the wand, since the solder didnt want to stick. I tried superglue, but that didnt work either, but after it dried, I tried the solder again. This time, I used enough solder to cover a few of the threads at the base of the cap, which would lock in the solder and keep the wires stuck to the cap. It worked, but it turns out superglue combusts before solder will melt, and yields a pre y sea-green ame and a nasty smell. (Ive inhaled so many bad fumes from this project, Ill probably be high for a week.) Due to how far the crystal is set inside the brass connector and the amount of solder at the bo om of the brass end bit, and because I would have a hard time anyway screwing on the brass pieces to the copper tube, I decided to solder them on in the end. Takes away from the look slightly, I think, but so it goes. At least now I have a tight seal that wont be coming o. After everything arrived in the mail and after some last-minute changes to the plan were made, the supplies I needed were: copper tubing and male adapters brass end cap and connector pieces quar crystal (sized so that it would t halfway into one end of the brass connector) gold wire iron wire

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Fire Wand | The Digital Ambler

http://digitalambler.wordpress.com/materia/2011-2/fire-wand/

copper wire superglue or household cement (in lieu of anything more natural or simpler to hold the crystal in place) sandpaper (emory cloth and 320 grit sandpaper) solder (lead-free) and ux lacquer (spray polyurethane nish) Not including the tools (propane torch, acid brush, etc.), the price for all this comes to around $100. All in all, assembling the wand would take an afternoon if all the supplies are all on hand. Just for the sake of detail, I assembled this on a day and hour of a planet relating to the element of re; for me, this was on a Sunday in the early afternoon (hours of Mars and the Sun). The nal steps that I went through to assemble the wand were: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Solder the copper adapters onto the ends of the copper wand. Twist the gold and iron wires together. Leave a loop at the top part of the wires. Solder one end of the gold and iron wires to the bo om of the inside of the brass end connector. Push the wires through the center of the copper tube. Screw on the brass end piece tightly. Connect the crystal to the copper wire. Superglue the crystal into the brass connector. Feed the wire from the crystal into the gap in the top of the wired wrap, then screw the connector on tightly. 7. Sand o the gunk and grime with emory cloth, then sand down with ne-grit sandpaper to achieve a pleasant sheen and grain to the wand, 8. Clean, polish, and lacquer.

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Fire Wand | The Digital Ambler

http://digitalambler.wordpress.com/materia/2011-2/fire-wand/

Im pleased with how the wand turned out, though there are a few things that irk me about it. Though the brass pieces are solidly and permanently sealed on, the wand itself has a slight opening between the crystal and the brass connector. This can be remedied by using a small amount of clear superglue or ne clay; I used superglue to seal this. The wires inside are somewhat loose, and ra le oh-so-softly when the wand is jerked about (I imagine that its the wand crackling in a way, just to make me happier). Drizzling superglue into the wand might x this, but I hate relying on superglue for this sort of stu; redoing the project, I might wrap a small amount of cheesecloth around the wires just to cushion them.
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2/7/2014 2:41 PM

Fire Wand | The Digital Ambler

http://digitalambler.wordpress.com/materia/2011-2/fire-wand/

Using the spray lacquer was easy, but it wasnt entirely even, and some spots of the wand feel slightly rough, and apparently I didnt completely polish the wand since there are a few ngerprints near the top of the wand under the lacquer. None of these are dealbreaking this-project-is-a-failure problems, though, and given that this is the most complex crafting project Ive undertaken yet, Im still very happy with the result.

(h p://digitalambler.les.wordpress.com/2011/07/img_01241.jpg) As for the feel of the wand, its amazing. Its light enough to swish and ick, but weighty enough to feel real. It just feels like a real magical instrument to me, and it kinda already has a slight buzz to it even before consecration.

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Fire Wand | The Digital Ambler

http://digitalambler.wordpress.com/materia/2011-2/fire-wand/

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