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Screwed this one up


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OK, we all fail from time to time, but I think I've found a good reason to document it for this once.

 

As you can see, the handle shifted on me when I clamped it together. Crap, a nice piece of ironwood in the trash :( . I don't have a pin in the handle (and I don't pin most of my handles) so there is no weep hole for the epoxy. The pressure made the handle shift, and because I had just a little bit of slop in the fit, it Murphyed on me (I just made that word up, maybe I should copyright it. Nah.).

 

So now I need to bust the handle off and try again. For all of the people who have questioned my lack of pins, this is for you. I'm going to wrap up the blade and guard and do a 4 foot drop test on the handle and I'm going to video it and mount it on my Youtube channel. I'll post the results here when I have them.

 

What I have always said is the the epoxy is stronger than the handle material and that a pin is not needed, because the epoxy is so strong. We'll see if my mouth has written a check I can't cash.

 

Wish me luck

 

Geoff

IMG_0664 (800x533).jpg

IMG_0669 (800x533).jpg

"The worst day smithing is better than the best day working for someone else."

 

I said that.

 

If a thing is worth doing, it is worth doing badly.

- - -G. K. Chesterton

 

So, just for the record: the fact that it does work still should not be taken as definitive proof that you are not crazy.

 

Grant Sarver

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I've tried it and it hasn't worked for me. By the time I get the center hot enough for the epoxy to degrade, the handle is charred.

 

Geoff

"The worst day smithing is better than the best day working for someone else."

 

I said that.

 

If a thing is worth doing, it is worth doing badly.

- - -G. K. Chesterton

 

So, just for the record: the fact that it does work still should not be taken as definitive proof that you are not crazy.

 

Grant Sarver

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Geoff,

About that pin idea thingy............

I totally agree with you that the epoxy is much stronger than the handle material and the pin is not needed as a mechanical connection to keep the handle on the tang. I already know that your video will prove you correct and you do not need to do the drop test, just whack it with a hammer. No chance of damaging that beautiful blade that way!

However, that is not the reason I choose to pin a handle on anyway.

I do it specifically to avoid the problem you are experiencing right now. If you had put a pin through the tang and handle material, it would have kept that handle from twisting or walking in the glue-up. Think of the pin as more of an alignment tool than a mechanical connector.

“So I'm lightin' out for the territory, ahead of the scared and the weak and the mean spirited, because Aunt Sally is fixin’ to adopt me and civilize me, and I can't stand it. I've been there before.”

The only bad experience is the one from which you learn nothing.  

 

Josh

http://www.dosgatosdesignsllc.com/#!

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCdJMFMqnbLYqv965xd64vYg

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Geoff,

 

Most epoxies will fail at a temperature far lower than what it would take to char the wood. you might try sticking it in an oven at 250 for 2 or 3 hours to get a good slow soak. Then acetone cold be used to clean out the handle for a second attempt.

 

Good luck either way :)

-Brian

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The idea of a pin as an alignment tool had not occurred to me, that is a good way to think about it. Pins fall into that one-more-thing-to-think-about area. You have to get the visual alignment right, plus you can spall out a handle when drilling it, and if you're not careful, there is the glue ring thing to deal with.

 

I don't do many full tang pieces, so I don't get as much practice as I might.

 

I could also do faux pins and use the hole for a weep hole, I just hate that kind of thing. If I'm going to all of that work, I might as well put a pin in.

 

OK, I'm going to try the 250 oven thing. If I can save the handle, that would be great, if I can't, then I'm no worse off. I can save the video idea for my next screwup.

 

Isn't this the best forum ever?!

 

Geoff

"The worst day smithing is better than the best day working for someone else."

 

I said that.

 

If a thing is worth doing, it is worth doing badly.

- - -G. K. Chesterton

 

So, just for the record: the fact that it does work still should not be taken as definitive proof that you are not crazy.

 

Grant Sarver

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Dude, If ya' don't screw one up once in a while yer' not doin' much........ ;):D

If ya can't be good don't git caught  !!                                        People who say stuff can't be done need to

                                                                                                        git the hell outta the way of people who do stuff   !!!

Show me a man who is called an expert by his peers         

And I will show you a good man to listen to ......

Show me a man who calls himself an expert

and I will show you an egotistical asshole...............!!

 

                             

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Then I must be doing a lot :lol: .

 

Well, three hours in the oven at 250 did not loosen the epoxy in any way I could tell. It's West Systems GFlex in case you want to know. It did, however. crack the ironwood all to hell. The block is split pretty much from one end to the other. On the plus side, the epoxy is still holding it all together.

 

Hammer Time

 

Geoff

"The worst day smithing is better than the best day working for someone else."

 

I said that.

 

If a thing is worth doing, it is worth doing badly.

- - -G. K. Chesterton

 

So, just for the record: the fact that it does work still should not be taken as definitive proof that you are not crazy.

 

Grant Sarver

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Grind away the pain brother.

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“So I'm lightin' out for the territory, ahead of the scared and the weak and the mean spirited, because Aunt Sally is fixin’ to adopt me and civilize me, and I can't stand it. I've been there before.”

The only bad experience is the one from which you learn nothing.  

 

Josh

http://www.dosgatosdesignsllc.com/#!

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCdJMFMqnbLYqv965xd64vYg

J.States Bladesmith | Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/dos.gatos.71

https://www.etsy.com/shop/JStatesBladesmith

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I've done the oven thing before. It worked with standard 5 minute epoxy.

 

I've also heard that you can put a heat shield on the blade (or suspend it in water) and use a heat gun on the bolster/handle. I haven't done that, but it seems to make sense. You might char the outside of the wood of the handle if you don't move the heat gun enough, but nothing that can't be sanded out.

 

Luck, Geoff!

-----------------------------------------------

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; because there is not effort without error and shortcomings; but who does actually strive to do the deed; who knows the great enthusiasm, the great devotion, who spends himself in a worthy cause, who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement and who at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly." -- Theodore Roosevelt

http://stephensforge.com

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I hate it when this happens. I made a clamping jig to hold blades and handles together for this situation. Just some all-thread and some wood, nuts, and washers. cut a slot in the wood so the blade slides through but the guard catches. then tighten together. Check about a dozen times. You can also clamp at angles with one of these, if the holes in one of the pieces of wood are oversized for the all-thread.

 

Just get big washers.

 

You probably already have made 10 of these, so I hope you don't mind me mentioning the idea.

 

What is the design element just before the ricasso? I can't tell exactly what I am looking at (and I don't have my glasses on, anyway).

 

If you never fail, you aren't trying hard enough.

please visit my website http://www.professorsforge.com/

 

“Years ago I recognized my kinship with all living things, and I made up my mind that I was not one bit better than the meanest on the earth. I said then and I say now, that while there is a lower class, I am in it; while there is a criminal element, I am of it; while there is a soul in prison, I am not free.” E. V. Debs

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Terrible loss on that ironwood handle! On the plus side I just bought some GFlex and I am happy to hear it performed so well.

Guy Thomas

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so it happens to everyone at least once?

 

Except the oven that did not work I also tried boiling the knife and...zero!

 

I had the idea of using a hammering drill with some kind of jig (no drill bit but a plain piece of iron) to drive the handle off but i got frustraded before trying that and i grinded that failure away. It was just red oak.. :rolleyes:

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Kevin, the design element in front of the guard is a sort of faux habaki. It's a piece of NS, drilled part way from the back (handle) side and milled out on the front (blade) side. It makes a collar, but without any fiddley fab work.

 

Geoff

"The worst day smithing is better than the best day working for someone else."

 

I said that.

 

If a thing is worth doing, it is worth doing badly.

- - -G. K. Chesterton

 

So, just for the record: the fact that it does work still should not be taken as definitive proof that you are not crazy.

 

Grant Sarver

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So I went and bashed the handle off. I didn't video the process, but I did take some pictures.

 

Hammer, Anvil, and victim

 

IMG_0673 (800x533).jpg

 

First hit

 

IMG_0675 (800x533).jpg

 

Second hit

 

IMG_0676 (800x533).jpg

 

Third hit

 

IMG_0680 (800x533).jpg

 

After that I cleaned things up with a chisel.

 

I'm pretty happy with what that tells me about the epoxy I'm using. Three good smacks with a 5lb hammer crushed the handle, after cracking it in the oven. You'd have to work pretty hard to break one of these, and that says nothing about my favorite Belt-N-Suspenders handle (through tang, threaded cap nut, butt cap, and epoxy). The weak spot on that one is the handle itself.

 

Geoff

"The worst day smithing is better than the best day working for someone else."

 

I said that.

 

If a thing is worth doing, it is worth doing badly.

- - -G. K. Chesterton

 

So, just for the record: the fact that it does work still should not be taken as definitive proof that you are not crazy.

 

Grant Sarver

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thanks for the explanation. I couldn't get my perceptions right without a little push. I get it, now. Good idea.

 

Yes, I have had the same results when I have chiseled and pounded mistake off. The wood lets go before the epoxy does.

 

I like a pin partially as a decorative element, and because it makes the strength of construction obvious to anyone who sees the knife. It doesn't add in most cases, but then the Indians and Arabs already knew that with their sword handles being held on with cutler's resin. Theirs may have been easier to take apart, since the handles were metal sheet and could be heated. I digress...

 

Hope you have another good block of handle material. This one is well worth saving.

please visit my website http://www.professorsforge.com/

 

“Years ago I recognized my kinship with all living things, and I made up my mind that I was not one bit better than the meanest on the earth. I said then and I say now, that while there is a lower class, I am in it; while there is a criminal element, I am of it; while there is a soul in prison, I am not free.” E. V. Debs

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Removing handles that have been epoxied onto knives is one of the many things an induction forge excels at. You run the handle through the induction coils a couple of times, and it heats up the tang and other metal parts without heating up the wood or other handle materials. Once the metal gets hot, the epoxy comes right off. It's almost like magic. (Sorry I was too late with this to help.)

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