Item Reviewed: 26” length, 1” thickness
Where to Buy: http://www.durattan.com/
Cost as Reviewed: $23 US + S/H
Durattan is a synthetic rattan substitute. Made from
a high tech plastic, the intent of it’s creators is to offer the
Filipino martial artist an affordable and durable training tool that
can take the abuse that we “stick jocks” inflict on our
gear, thereby saving our good rattan sticks for special occasions. I
received a pair of these stick replacements and put them through their
paces for 2 weeks.
The weight of each stick was a little heavier than my
regular sticks. After doing some informal weight checks (ie balancing
them in each hand) against both my own sticks and several different
hardwoods, I came to the conclusion that the Durattan stick is a comfortable
middleweight. A little heavier than the same size rattan, a little lighter
than the same size hard wood. Over all, the weight was comfortable.
Balance was excellent. The symmetry of the product allows
for a more consistent balance compared to similar rattan, and again
was on par with good hardwoods. Twirling and swinging felt comparable
to rattan. If anything, it felt a hair better, due to the symmetry in
weight and length of the Durattan unlike real rattan which has sometimes
noticeable variations between the 2 sticks being used.
The surface is a fairly smooth semi-gloss.
The feel was quite comfortable. Due to its plastic nature,
those with sweaty hands might want to wrap some athletic grip tape around
the end they will hold it by. Other than that, it felt quite proper
in my hand.
One of the big pluses of rattan is the good impact dampening
effect it has on strikes. Where as a hard wood can allow a lot of the
force of a strike to travel into the body, rattan absorbs it and softens
it. Durattan doesn’t quite have the impact absorption properties
of real rattan, but it does absorb better than hardwoods. I’d
qualify it as being about in the middle, maybe a little closer to rattan
than hardwood. I tested this by doing repeated strikes against a body
dummy and numerous striking drills against rattan, hardwood and another
Durattan stick. I compared my findings with my partner and we were in
agreement on how each felt compared to the others.
Overall Product Appearance:
Durattan currently only comes in white. The sticks are
reasonable smooth (semi gloss), and mostly straight. The pair I received
had some minor warping which I didn’t expect in a synthetic. It
didn’t affect their balance or functionality. On the pair that
I received, there was a minor angle on the end cuts (not perfectly square).
I notified the company about this and the distortion. They replied that
the off cuts were due to an earlier cutting process and had since been
solved. The warping/distortion is due to the nature of the material
they are made of. It allows a little flexibility in the material in
exchange for more durability and shock absorption qualities.
After 2 weeks of normal class use, as well as some side
drills on my own, I’ve noticed no damage to them. During heavy
hard use, the sticks tend to distort a little bit. They can easily be
straightened by hand with a little eyeballing. Having used real rattan
for the last few years, the amount of ‘warp’ experienced
by Durattan during use is minimal by comparison.
The delivery of my sticks was prompt. Emails about my
initial questions and concerns were answered promptly and positively.
offers an affordable and durable rattan substitute for every day training.
While some minor distortions occur during hard use, they are easily
fixed by the practitioner. While initially skeptical, I’ve come
to like the feel of the sticks, and will be using them regularly in
my future classes. If you are looking for a well balanced, durable and
affordable everyday workhorse stick, I recommend giving Durattan a shot.
Bob Hubbard is an administrator of the popular martial arts portal site
MartialTalk.com and president of
SilverStar WebDesigns inc.,
a web site design and hosting company specializing in affordable solutions
for martial artists. A student of all the arts, he is currently studying
Bob can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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