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Thread: home knife building projects

  1. #1
    Senior Member Jay's Avatar
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    home knife building projects

    I was going to add on to my thread from last year, but photobucket is screwed up and I'm not going to try to mess with it. Photobucket can die a slow, painful death as far as I'm concerned.

    I've worked on several knives over the last couple of months. Honestly, I've been terrible at taking pics of my work along the way. Once I start working, I don't even think about stopping to take pics. So, here's a few pics of some that I have been working on. I can probably take a few more pics of another project when I get home.

    This is one of the guthook skinners I did for my cousin. I did two of these, but can't find a finished pic of the other one. The second one, I tried to polish the stainless to a mirror finish. That was a mistake. I don't have the stuff required to do that correctly. I was able to get it to look fairly decent, but it took a lot of time. So this one, I left satin finish. I wasn't really impressed with these blades overall. But my cousin was looking to keep cost down, so those are what I went with. They both had spalted pecan wood handles, finished with Danish oil and polished.

    IMG_3017.jpg

    IMG_3018.jpg

    My cousin also wanted a lockback folder. This is the same knife I built a little over a year ago for my first project. This one went a little smoother, as I had a little better idea of what I was doing. One thing I was disappointed in myself for was I didn't do a very good job peening the hinge pin in and it was still visible after I finished and polished it. Too late at that point. It's kinda difficult peening those pins as, if you peen too much, you can get the knife so tight it's a pain to open and close. But if you don't peen enough, it can be loose or not completely fill the holes and disappear when it's finished and polished. Note to self; do a better job peening next time. It came out good as far as function. Nice and snug, but smooth opening and closing.

    IMG_3020.jpg

    IMG_3024.jpg

    IMG_3025.jpg

  2. #2
    Senior Member Jay's Avatar
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    Re: home knife building projects

    And for some reason, I couldn't post any more pics in the original post, so here are the last few...

    IMG_4523.jpg

    IMG_4524.jpg

    The guthook and folder when completed.

    IMG_4528.jpg

  3. #3
    Senior Member Jay's Avatar
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    Re: home knife building projects

    I also posted a thread a while back asking for advice on heat treating a couple of Damascus blades that I was working on. I hardened and tempered both of them. So far so good. I've got one done, just needing the finished edge put on it. I'll take a pic of it when I get home. Here are the blades after I heat treated them. It did destroy the Damascus pattern. The one I'm finishing up on now is cleaned up some and is kinda "rustic" looking, with water buffalo horn scales. It looks fairly decent. Pics of that later. The second one, I don't really have plans for. So I might work on cleaning it up and try to etch it again, just to see what happens.

    IMG_3070.jpg

    ETA - here's the link to the thread on hardening them.

    http://forums.gunsandammo.com/showth...171#post707171
    Last edited by Jay; 01-24-2018 at 12:06 AM.

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    Re: home knife building projects

    You do nice work, personally i have never made or heat treated Damascus, I have a knifemaker friend who told me that he acid etches Damascus in Muriatic Acid, others use Feric Chloride, to bring out the pattern.

    JAY
    THE DEFINITION OF GUN CONTROL IS HITTING THE TARGET WITH YOUR FIRST SHOT

  5. #5
    Senior Member knitepoet's Avatar
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    Re: home knife building projects

    Looks good Jay!

    I still have 1 D2 blank with the scales glued and pinned on, but not the first speck of wood removed to shape them.

    The other 2 were finished and one was given to my dad, and the other to a dear friend in the southern hemisphere (who is a member here)


    edited to add: I had to re-etch one of the damascus blades I finished a few years ago. I don't remember what acid I used. It didn't take much. I mixed it in hot water, dipped the blade for 30 seconds then washed the blade thoroughly to remove the acid.
    Last edited by knitepoet; 01-24-2018 at 05:41 AM.
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  6. #6

    Re: home knife building projects

    I built my brother the non-gut hook version of that first knife. I have been very impressed with it's ability as a hunting knife. The blade is a little "deep" for some of the close work, but it works.
    To make something simple is a thousand times more difficult than to make something complex.
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  7. #7
    Senior Member tennmike's Avatar
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    Re: home knife building projects

    Quote Originally Posted by jaywapti View Post
    You do nice work, personally i have never made or heat treated Damascus, I have a knifemaker friend who told me that he acid etches Damascus in Muriatic Acid, others use Feric Chloride, to bring out the pattern.

    JAY
    Sounds like that should work. The Muriatic acid should stain the iron differently than the steel.
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  8. #8
    Senior Member cpj's Avatar
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    Re: home knife building projects

    Excellent looking knives!
    Quote Originally Posted by Zee View Post

    I'm here for the guns, hunting, and skirt wearing men.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Jay's Avatar
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    Re: home knife building projects

    Thanks guys. I didn't get a pic of the Damascus guthook with water buffalo scales last night as I mentioned. I got it out and was going to finish sharpening it and take some pics, but one of the handle edges had come loose and started to warp a little. And once I got it in brighter light than what I have in my little knife shop, I saw some sanding marks on the scales that I hadn't noticed before. So I got the scale a little wet and clamped it up in my vise and will leave it for a few days to see if it will set back down, then I'll try to peen the closest pin a little more to see if it will hold it better. One thing I have noticed with horn material, being the first time I've worked with it, it seems to want to warp pretty easy. The instructions said if they warp, soak them and put weight on them on a flat surface and let them dry to straighten them out. Once they are sanded kinda thin, it seems like they want to warp. We'll see how it works out. I'll have to do some more sanding on them and polish them again.

    I'll use the other identical Damascus blade as my test subject on the etching. I need to finish cleaning it up. I'm also thinking muriatic acid would be a good one to try. Easily available and I also use it from time to time to remove rust from parts. Horrible fumes, but I can do it outside. I've also heard of using boiling vinegar and salt. Not sure how well that would work. I might try that first, since I have vinegar and salt at home.

    Thanks for the compliments again guys. It's been a fun hobby so far. I have several other projects I plan to do in the future.
    Last edited by Jay; 01-24-2018 at 08:11 PM.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Jay's Avatar
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    Re: home knife building projects

    Quote Originally Posted by bullsi1911 View Post
    I built my brother the non-gut hook version of that first knife. I have been very impressed with it's ability as a hunting knife. The blade is a little "deep" for some of the close work, but it works.
    I hope the ones I did work well as you describe. I was able to get them pretty scary sharp. Not sure how well they'll hold that edge.

    One thing I will say, if I ever do another like those, I will NOT add that thonghole tube.... In the pics I posted, you can see how close to the edge that hole was. There is a tiny little bit of wood going around that outside edge of the thonghole. Trying to shape and finish those handles without blowing that little thread of wood out was a major PITA. One of them actually did splinter out a little. I epoxied it up good and was able to keep it from being visible in the end. Lots of pucker factor there.... I will not use that hole if I ever do another. Just the middle two holes will be pinned.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Jay's Avatar
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    Re: home knife building projects

    Supplies for the next couple of projects were ordered today. One is for a guy at work. Theme is what I dubbed "tacticlassy." He was joking saying he wanted a "tacticool" knife. Something with a compass, fishing line and a freaking laser, as he put it. Of course, this is all just joking around. But, I will incorporate a little compass into the handle, just as a "haha" to him. It's an inexpensive knife and inexpensive scales. Total cost about $30.
    This knife


    with these scales


    and this compass


    I plan to use some mosaic pins using some pin material I already have in the shop. The compass will be imbedded in the handle on one side, flush with the surface of the handle.

    ETA - And as I think about it more, I'm thinking about using loveless fasteners on the scales instead of mosaic. Mosaic pins can't be peened and would rely totally on the epoxy to hold everything together. Loveless pins would clamp the scales together on the tang.
    Last edited by Jay; 01-26-2018 at 10:48 PM.

  12. #12
    Senior Member Jay's Avatar
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    Re: home knife building projects

    The second project will be simply building the second Damascus blade that I heat treated and have sitting on the bench. I'm going to try cleaning it up, experiment with re-etching it and use these as scales on it.



    I thought the color and pattern would look cool on a Damascus blade, depending on what kind of etching pattern I can get on the Damascus.

    The handle scales on both of these are Acrylester. I've never worked with this stuff before. Here is what Texas Knifemaker's supply says about it.

    "Acrylester is a new product that looks great and drills, sands and polishes extremely well. It works down at the same rate as horn, bone and wood. It is available in scales that are mirror image pairs."

  13. #13
    Senior Member Jay's Avatar
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    Re: home knife building projects

    I got the Damascus guthook with water buffalo horn scales done and gave it to my dad. I forgot to get pics of it, so I asked him to send me a couple. Here’s what I got.

    47D9672E-89A3-40CE-A4CE-878433C403C8.jpg

    The dagger project I started under way and I did some experimenting etching the other Damascus blade. I’ll be getting to work on it soon as well. I’ll try to remember to get more pics of those as I work on them.

  14. #14
    Senior Member Diver43's Avatar
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    Re: home knife building projects

    Great work Jay
    anyone would be proud to have one of your knives
    Logistics cannot win a war, but its absence or inadequacy can cause defeat. FM100-5

  15. #15
    Senior Member knitepoet's Avatar
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    Re: home knife building projects



    I need to finish my last D2 blade
    Quote Originally Posted by Seven habits of highly effective pirates
    Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.

  16. #16
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    Re: home knife building projects

    Pretty
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  17. #17
    Senior Member Jay's Avatar
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    Re: home knife building projects

    Thanks guys. Definitely have been learning a lot. From different handle materials to heat treating and etching Damascus. I’m having a good time learning. One of these days I’ll get around to building a little forge to try my hand at forging my own blades. I’ve already started stockpiling metal. Coil springs, old lawn mower blades, concrete cutting blades etc. lots more to learn. But I’m getting some good education in making handles and finishing blades.

    ETA - I didn’t try to etch the blade I just posted pics of. Already had the handles on it and didn’t want to chance ruining them. Left it kind of “rustic” looking. The blade is definitely HARD. It took some work to get an edge on it. Got it sharp enough to shave hair off the back of my arm, then hacked a 2x4 a bit. Still sharp enough to shave.
    Last edited by Jay; 02-12-2018 at 02:34 AM.

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