Monday, February 1, 2010

Knife Building

This knife making thing has been interesting to watch develop. I first started making knives because I wanted a sort of specific knife (Damascus blade, mammoth tooth scales) and buying one for several hundred dollars was out of my reach at the time. Buying the parts, however, was not. And I figured since I taught myself guitar, and welding, and stained glass, and gardening, and (the list goes on and on) I could teach myself knife making as well.

Now, Dad had given us knife kits once upon a time, many (MANY) moons ago. They were pretty nice kits, with wood scales and a matching wooden sheath. We tried to assemble them at the Island. I was too young and impatient to do a really great job, but at least I got the basics. I wish I could find that knife. Anyway. I figured since I had learned once long ago, re-teaching myself shouldn't be too tough. And it wasn't!

Aided by a pretty well equipped hobby shop, and with the addition of a belt sander, knife making became a breeze. Well, not a breeze. But something that I do seem to have a little bit of a knack for. And I love to make them, so that helps.

So I made a bunch of Damscus bladed, mammoth toothed knives, and I feel pretty comfortable with those now. Recently however, I've been getting back into "plain" steel blades. 440C, AU-6 or AU-8, O1. And I've been playing around with wood handles more often. And you know what? I think I really like the looks of those as well!

Maybe it's just that I really like knives!

Anyway. My wonderful wife gave me a few hours to play in the shop today. This is the result.

The scales (handle) are purpleheart. A very dense, hard wood that will shine an irridescent purple after I finish it.

Again, needs a little more sanding, and I'd like to try and bring out the purple a bit more in the wood. But overall, I'm very pleased with this knife. The blade seems to be a good one. 440C steel. I might get a few more of this style and do one in Bloodwood, one in a nice Mexican Bocote. Maybe one in Cocobolo. There are just so many fun combinations!

I think for one of those future knives, I'll do a photo essay how-to. That would be fun to record for posterity!

Have I mentioned that I really like building knives?

More Later

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