Jump to content
Kevin (The Professor)

general camp knife wip

Recommended Posts

IMG_1281.jpg

 

After the disc. Now you know how to do really good rivet/pins. Just remember, when you sand from here, always back the paper with a piece of steel.

 

Also, avoid too much sanding. If you are not careful, the wood will wear away faster than the pin, and/or the pin will create a halo effect. Less is more.

 

IMG_1282.jpg

The slot for the tang hole in the buttcap will have to be started with a 1/8" mill. You could drill a line of holes and file, too.

 

IMG_1284.jpg

 

Marking for buttcap. The second line from the far edge is where the cut will be made. The other line is the middle of that bit of stock.

 

IMG_1285.jpg

 

Maybe this makes more sense. The black part is cut away, the other part is going to be the buttcap. The line down the middle of the blue part is for reference. I will mill the slot on top of it. Well, through it and under it, really.

 

IMG_1286.jpg

 

Milling.

 

IMG_1287.jpg

 

Here is the piece, with most of the milling marks sanded off. I am about to file it to get it to fit just right.

 

I like to put these sort of things in the vise like this, because I can reach both ends of the slot, and I don't mar the face with the vise.

 

IMG_1288.jpg

 

Scribe around and grind to the line, once it fits.

 

IMG_1289.jpg

 

When it is the right size, I put a curve on each end of the top face. Then, I heat treat it. The customer wants to be able to pound with the butt of the knife in a pinch. So, the buttcaps all have little bevels filed inside the notch that goes over the tang. This means that the taper of the tang and the taper of the hole for the tang match just right. Hammering shouldn't force the cap up too much.

 

I have advised him not to hit anything harder than wood with the butt of the knife, unless it is a person's head. Still, heat treating the buttcap is a good touch.

 

IMG_1290.jpg

 

Just after quenching. You can see that the ends are rounded some.

 

IMG_1294.jpg

sanded and tempered to a peacock blue.

 

This is it for today. Thanks for looking. We are so very close now. I may epoxy the buttcap on tonight. I don't think there needs to be a pic of that.

 

thanks,

kc

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am enjoying this, and can only imagine how useful this will be for a beginner. As Geoff said, I may end up borrowing some of your methods myself....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks George. I have borrowed a few from you over the last several years.

 

Almost there.

 

IMG_1395.jpg

 

The butt cap is rough shaped and epoxied on. It is time to peen the tang button down over it. I have cut the tang off, and filed the button smooth.

 

IMG_1396.jpg

I use a crosspein and a ballpein, and the flat face of the crosspein, which is polished. Use the different hammers to push the metal in the directions you want it to go. I start with the crosspein, hitting across the short axis of the rectangle of the button. After a few hundred of these, I switch to the long axis. Then, I go around the edges and make sure everything is pushed down against the butt cap. I use the ballpein for this. Once the tang is mushroomed enough in all directions, I just keep working with the ballpein and the flat face until it is set very firmly. Then, smooth file away some of the excess of the tang button. You can countersink the top of the hole in the buttcap by filing around it with a needle file (or if it is round, use a countersink tool), and then mushroom to fill the countersink, and file the top smooth. This is sort of what you do with the pins that go through bolsters on full tang knives, and you can do it with a tang button, too.

 

In this case, remember, the customer asked for a substantial butt cap that he can use to help drive tent pegs in a pinch. I want a fairly large tang button, because I want him to try and hit his tent pegs with it when he drives them. The hole in the butt cap matches the shape of the tang closely, and so the butt cap can't move too much and crush the wood. Plus, the wood is rock maple, and not easily crushed. Still, for pounding, the best way is to hit with the tang button.

 

IMG_1398.jpg

the tang is peened, and the cap is shaped.

 

Time to cold blue.

 

IMG_1399.jpg

 

Here, I have put some aqua fortis (ferric nitrate) solution on the wood. It raised a few more whiskers, so I went over very lightly with 800 grit to just get those off. I have already whiskered this twice (wet a cloth and rubbed over the wood). Aqua fortis doesn't look like much at first.

 

IMG_1401.jpg

This is what it looks like with a little heat applied. See the striking difference. It is almost magic, later there will be more, when the oil is added.

 

I use a jeweler's mini butane burner for this heat source (now). I used to take a big piece of steel and put it in the forge for heat. But, I have wood glue and epoxy holding these handles together, and the high heat from all of the steel is not good for the joints. So, now I put just a little on, very carefully heat it, and stop as soon as the wood has turned brown.

 

IMG_1402.jpg

 

This is the oil I use with aqua fortis. I put on a coat per day for about 5 days, and then I wax a couple of coats.

 

IMG_1411.jpg

 

And... here it is! It is just a very useful design, meant to be useful for many things, but not to excel at much. The strengths are, well, strength, comfort of handle, durability, the ability to do many things fairly well, and the ability to pound with that killer butt cap.

 

 

cdb57237-e619-4885-9123-1aa5822fb855.jpg

 

ec1611e3-cdb0-44c4-973f-918c7640d2c6.jpg

 

26480493-7b5f-4b4d-887e-cd58f483fa91.jpg

 

330eeff8-83ac-402f-b181-e7d9ccaf315b.jpg

 

Thanks for looking.

 

This is not the best knife I can possibly make, but it is a CUSTOM knife. What I mean is, this knife was designed from the beginning, and carefully made at each step, with the specific needs of the client/customer/end user in mind. This knife has been made very carefully, and very deliberately, to be precisely what is required to perform the tasks anticipated by the client. Because of this, it is beautiful to me, and it will be beautiful to the client. It is a thing that we brought to life from our minds, and for our purposes. The only knives like this in the world are the other 8 I am making for this client (and they aren't exact copies).

 

take care,

 

Kevin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you so much for sharing all of this. Could you also show a detail shot of the spine of the handle? I would very much like to see what the 2 wood halves look like where they meet as well as the final profile.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

IMG_1418.jpg

 

Here you go. This was made with the last scraps of the board I ordered for this project, so the figure is not matched. But, the seam is barely visible. If you take the time to flatten everything, and then clamp well, the pieces fit together so well that the seem can't be felt. It is a good technique, in my book. Better for me than drilling and rasping long holes. I like drilling and rasping for hidden tangs.

Edited by Kevin (The Professor)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks very much for taking the time to document this entire process. As a newbie, this showed me a lot of steps I've been wondering about, and it really got me pumped for the New England ABS Hammerin that I'll be leaving for in a couple hours. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rich,

Great. The hammerin will be a good time.

I always go to Ashokan.

 

You live about an hour from me, if you ever get down this way.

 

thanks,

kc

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great tutorial Kevin. Definitely lots to take away from this, in fact it's made me question my approach in a good way.

Thanks for taking the time for all of this.

 

-Tim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

great work and tutorial Kevin!beautifull knife!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

thanks Krateros. I am officially, "mid-level," so I wanted to try and do something to give back. Most of what I have learned has come from this forum, or through interactions with people I met through this forum (and Ashokan).

 

The handle design of this knife is actually very comfortable in an array of grips. The way I showed to arrive at the final shape is pretty simple to do, and it feels good when you hold it. At least to me.

 

Tim - thanks. I promise you, if you were to watch me make the same type knife 2 or 3 years from now, I would likely do some of the things differently.

 

very glad that this seems useful to someone.

 

Edited to add: I hope everyone realizes that the pictures were taken immediately after the first coat of oil. The final finish will be a lot richer and deeper, but it takes days to build.

 

Each day for about 5, I buff hard with cloth, and then wipe a new coat of tung oil on. Then, buff hard with cloth again (sometimes for the first day or two, I sand lightly with 2500 grit).

After the oil, I put on 2 or 3 coats of Rex Wax.

 

The result is a very deep finish, that gives the appearance that the wood is covered with a glassy sheen.

 

kc

Edited by Kevin (The Professor)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It has been more than 5 days since the last picture, so where is the update with the final coat of wax? :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Jerrod - you are killing me! I will get some more pics soon. I am trying to finish knives 8 and 9 of this batch (that was knife 7 or 9 in the photo thread).

kc

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ok, here is the end of this project. You can see the handles and get an idea of their final finish.

 

IMG_1916.JPG

By the way, these are the first 9 sheaths I have ever made. So, now it really is a newbie post.

 

 

take care,

kc

Edited by Kevin (The Professor)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks so much for posting this Kevin. I'm a complete newbie at this point and learned an enormous amount from this post.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Kevin very nice WIP you started here, even for me being a hobby knife maker for a couple of years this taught me some new and interesting Tips and Tricks! Please do me a favour and show me the "trick" on the disc sander I have read that part over and over :unsure: and is not sure what it means, English is a second language for me and some stuff (glues and such stuff) you get there in the US have different names!!

 

Thank You Martin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Martin,

I will try to get some more pictures.

 

I am a professor, so I find it difficult to explain things (joke).

 

Here we go:

Most of the discs available in the US come with a very strong Pressure Sensitive Adhesive on them. When you put them on the sander, they are stuck too hard to pull off without heating them with a torch or heat gun to weaken the adhesive. This means that you mostly only can use one grit on your disc sander, and it stays on for days at a time.

 

Some people have gotten around this by getting smaller discs, and just gluing regular sandpaper to them. But, the smaller disc sanders cost a LOT more.

 

I have bought a cheap, but very good, 12" disc sander. I take the large discs, and I cover the Pressure Sensitive Adhesive on the back with regular notebook paper trimmed to fit the disk. Then, I put something from 3M called, "feathering adhesive," on the disc sander itself and on the paper. This is a weak contact adhesive, and it allows you to stick the disc on, and then peel it off.

 

Easy to change discs now, on an inexpensive sander.

 

This means that I can use 50 grit to shape, and follow it with 150 or 220 grit to sand/polish. Most people with disc sanders don't get full use because they only can find the PSA discs, and those are too hard to change. My, "trick," lets you use the PSA discs, but still switch them out easily.

 

Maybe that helps, until I can get better pics.

 

Kevin

Edited by Kevin (The Professor)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well it seems you guys get good stuff over there, we can only get normal sandpaper-paper backed at the hardware stores. It really does not matter what type abrasive on the paper, its to grind your slabs flat and I stick it with contact adhesive on my alluminum disk grinder so you trim it off yourself-DIY style and then to get it off is a %#$%^ SOB job. That`s why I asked to get a better or easier way to remove it. I can shop at Pferd for material backed disks but they are very expensive for a hobby maker like me!!

 

There are small disks with velcro that I can get but to small for the disk grinder and more for your`e air grinders

 

Thanks for the reply, maybe with the pics I can get a bit of "monkey see monkey do" !! Hehehe!!

 

Martin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Martin, Jim Batson once gave me a valuable hint about contact adhesives, at least the spray-on kind like 3M #77: Don't buy a name brand.

 

Buy the cheapest spray glue you can find, it peels off easier than the good stuff. If it won't let go immediately, put a cloth soaked in acetone on it for a minute or so and it should slide right off.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Alan Thanks thats good advice for sure, always out of the box thinking with you!!

 

Martin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Those are awesome knives Kevin. For a newb like me posts like this are very inspirational. I get just as excited as you making the knives watching them finish their transition from a hunk of metal to a beautiful work of art, and those are gorgeous. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×