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Thread: Wand Materials

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    Wand Materials

    Ollivander only makes wands with phoenix feathers, unicorn hair and dragon heartstring, even though it's possible to use different cores like Veela hair and it seems to be implied that anything string-like from any other magical animal or being could work.

    ... what about changing the wood? What other materials could be used in place of wood? Or could they? What would happen if you tried making a wand out of... metal? or stone? or glass? ... or shell?
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    Such things have been discussed in previous threads. You can find the links here:
    Wand Core Materials
    Wand Cores

    As far as cores, I believe they need to come from some sort of magical creature, otherwise, if any animal would do, than Muggles could make wands as well, and that would defeat the purpose of a magical artifact. I would take a peek at Fantasic Beasts and Where to Tind Them for ideas for magical creatures.

    As for woods, what I would suggest is going to wikipedia, where they have lists of different trees and shrubs native to various countries. From there, you can select a type of wood and see if it has an literary signifigance or signifigance to folk magic.

    And I would diffiently explore using other materials, but don't add them just because 'they're pretty'. Try and find a good reason for why they are there. For example, in some of my stories, American wands are bound with silk cords, because in its believed that silk in an excellent conductor for magical energy.

    This is going to be a fun topic I think.

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    Not much is explained about wand construction in HP (and let's not even get started on wandlore), but I personally believe you can make a wand out of anything as long as it is magical. So I don't see why you couldn't make a wand out of particularly magical stone. But just because you could do it doesn't mean it would be practical. A stone wand would be very hard to make, and could be inconveniently heavy and brittle, depending on the material. A metal wand would be easier to make than a stone one, but you run into the problem of your hand freezing to the handle in cold weather.

    So I'm sure people have experimented with alternatives to wood in wand-making, but that's all they'd be - experiments. Wood would be cheaper and easier to use, and hence the standard.

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    Wizengamot Ravenclaw
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    Not to mention that wood would (HA!) offer a lot more variety in usable materials in wandmaking. I feel like metals and stones would be more like 'additions' to the wand rather than the core.

    Not to mention how heavy a solid-stone wand would be for a little kid to hold.

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    Wizengamot Hufflepuff
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    I would also think that wood is used because it is from a living thing (unlike stone and metal), and also it can bend, so it's more malleable. Not sure that makes a great deal of sense, but wood is permeable, unlike metal, so the magic could flow through it. It's warmer (in a friendly sense) as well.

    Mind you, bone is also from a living thing, or ivory. What about a wizarding community who live where trees are a preecious commodity, like desert tribes, or antarctic communities? (Icicle wand -ha ha)

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    I don't think weight for a stone wand would be a big problem. You could probably enchant it somehow to make it lighter, unless that would somehow interfere with it's useability. I also think that Ollivander probably uses some other cores from other magical creatures that just aren't mentioned in the books. I agree with Carole that it makes sense for wood to be used because it's permeable. But it might also make sense for metal because it's an electricity conductor, and I think of magic as basically electricity.

    I like the ivory idea.
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    Quote Originally Posted by OliveOil_Med
    Not to mention that wood would (HA!) offer a lot more variety in usable materials in wandmaking.
    Not necessarily. There are just as many different kinds of rocks as there are types of woods. Of course, certain soft, flaky stones would be rather useless, but I could see some wands made out of harder stones like jade. And there are many possible metals (like iron or copper) and endless alloy combinations (like bronze, steel, and electrum). You have endless options for non-wood wand materials.

    But as has already been stated, just because you could make a wand out of metal or stone doesn't mean you should. It would be heavier, sometimes weaker, harder to make in most cases, and not particularly comfortable to hold in your hand, I'd imagine.

    Quote Originally Posted by Equinox Chick
    Mind you, bone is also from a living thing, or ivory. What about a wizarding community who live where trees are a preecious commodity, like desert tribes, or antarctic communities? (Icicle wand -ha ha)

    ~Carole~
    There aren't any Antarctic communities, apart from a few researchers. Everyone else there are penguins and seals. But now that you mention it, Arctic peoples like the Inuit and the Yupik would be hard-pressed to find good wand wood. However, they seem to scrape up enough driftwood to make the frames of their kayaks, so they should scrounge enough of it for wands. Unfortunately, the kind of wood you get from driftwood is totally random (but probably some kind of pine, I imagine), so these wizards would have limited choices of wood.

    But there's no shortage of whale bones or walrus tusks. I see those as likely contenders for wand materials.

    Depending on the desert, you'll still find enough wood for wands. If the ancient Egyptians could make bows, the Navajo hogans, and the Australian Aborigines boomerangs, then they can make wands. And for those barren, almost-lifeless deserts like the Sahara and the Atacama, few people live there to begin with, and because wizards can travel so easily, I think they'd be able to go someplace else to find their wand wood.

    Tim the Enchanter

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    Seventh Year Hufflepuff
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    Quote Originally Posted by Molly
    And I would definitely explore using other materials, but don't add them just because 'they're pretty'. Try and find a good reason for why they are there.
    There is a reason and it is related to my conception of Chinese magic. I don't want to say exactly because I think that'll ruin the surprise, but it does have reason.

    Bone and ivory would be interesting, but it'd have to be bone from specific animals for it to make sense... hm...

    I personally really like the idea of an icicle wand, but it's so silly.
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  9. #9
    DeadManSeven
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    The Chinese do love their jade, if you're looking for a non-wood substance to work with.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by DeadManSeven
    The Chinese do love their jade, if you're looking for a non-wood substance to work with.
    Oh yes. We do Love our jade. Good jade is better than good gold.

    I'm looking for multiple substances though. And was checking on the plausibility of non-wood shells for wands.
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