Everyone knows the benefits to a wood shaft over a metal or carbon one. Wood shafts are way more durable, absorb checks, they give your stick a more balanced feel, have a small amount of flex and are more true to the roots of the game. But, the big disadvantage for most in using a wood stick is the weight. Until now, the options for wood shafts were pretty much limited to either heavy hickory or the slightly lighter, yet slightly less durable ash wood. Blackfeet Lacrosse recently introduced a new line of wood shafts that are definitely different than the rest.
The new shafts from Blackfeet Lacrosse are beautiful shafts made of ash wood but what really sets them apart is the different weight options. These shafts are bored out on the top and bottom of the shaft, making them a significant amount lighter than most other wood shafts on the market, while still being very strong especially in the middle of the shaft which gets the most checks and impacts on a regular basis. The shafts are available in a wide range of weight options spanning between their lightest shafts at 7.7 ounces, which is only a bit heavier than a metal or carbon shaft and their heaviest box shafts around 11.5 ounces, similar to most other ash shafts. All of these different weights give an option for everyone at all levels to use a wood shaft. The shaft that I tested was a MaxLight model that weighed in at only 7.7 (which is etched on the shaft) and I was amazed by how light, yet how sturdy it felt. The shafts feel very nice in hand with a standard octagonal shape and smooth finish.
The Blackfeet shafts look beautiful and are available in a range of different stained colors. The dark color of the shaft I tested matched great with the LaxRoom dark brown oil tanned leathers I had in the head I used with it. These shafts also all come with a really cool hand carved wooden butt end, in a different finish than the rest of the shaft (which matched great with the bootlace in the pocket).
I also got a few of the separate butt ends that Blackfeet Lacrosse sells and they look really cool. These could add a nice looking end to other metal shafts you might have.
The Blackfeet shafts, even at the lowest weight which I tried out, are quite durable. Blackfeet does give a decent six month warranty on these shafts so it will definitely last you for at least a season with no issues, although I’d suspect it will last much longer than that. The come in at a decent price point, much cheaper than lots of metal and composite shafts but a bit more than a standard wood shaft.
Overall, I really liked the shafts from Blackfeet Lacrosse. I love that a company took something seemingly as “simple” as a wood shaft and innovated it for today’s faster, modern game. I’d recommend these shafts to anyone looking for a lighter, more modern, wood shaft.