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Dave Brownson Jr.

Small Hunter

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I've finished up my 5th(ish) knife and I'm posting it up here for you guys to critique.  I'm pretty happy with how it came out overall but there are definitely places to make improvements.  Things that jump out at me. 

1. Plunge lines need to be sharper.

2. Better sanding on the tang before polishing.

3. I scratched the blade on the back side while sharpening but I've mostly sanded that out. 

4. The handle feels a little heavy.  I don't think it would have been a problem with just the wood but the layers of brass didn't do me any favors.  Next time I'd probably poke some holes in either the liners

5. Could probably use a better polish on the scales but now that it's sharp it isn't going anywhere near the buffer.  A few coats of paste wax and hand rubbing may help.

 

Knife specifications:

O/A length:  7 3/8"

Blade length (sharpened): 3 1/2"

Blade thickness: 0.106" at thickest part of spine

Blade height: 0.825"

Blade material: O1 Steel (probably 58-60 RC)

Handle length: 3 5/8"

Handle thickness: 0.640"

Handle height: 0.932"

Handle Material: 0.010 brass shim stock, .030 red micarta, Gaboon ebony, 0.125" brass pins

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Side question:  What do you all think something like this would sell for?  Not  that I want to sell it but if I were going to start making knives for other people.

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I think you did very well. I like the profile of the knife. Your sheath is way better than mines :lol:.

The things I see you could improve on are: 

- Thickness at edge: the wide secondary bevel rarely lies. Unless your sharpening angle was very low, this means that your edge was too thick prior sharpening. While I'm certain your knife cuts well, it could be better in this area without compromising the edge toughness. A thinner edge also makes sharpening easier/faster.

- Squareness of the scales: this means what it says...I like to do the reversed egg shape for my handles because it is very comfy and gives a strong grip. It can be done at various levels depending on the desired style. But take this with a pinch of salt as it is only a personal preference...

 

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Have to agree with everything Joel said, and also #1 on your own list, the plunges could be sharper. 

You could always "swiss cheese" the liners to save on weight. Drill a bunch of holes in them. I do the same thing to my tangs as well. The epoxy fills the holes anyway. 

Other than that, i like it overall. The sheath is awesome. 

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1 hour ago, Joël Mercier said:

I think you did very well. I like the profile of the knife. Your sheath is way better than mines :lol:.

The things I see you could improve on are: 

- Thickness at edge: the wide secondary bevel rarely lies. Unless your sharpening angle was very low, this means that your edge was too thick prior sharpening. While I'm certain your knife cuts well, it could be better in this area without compromising the edge toughness. A thinner edge also makes sharpening easier/faster.

- Squareness of the scales: this means what it says...I like to do the reversed egg shape for my handles because it is very comfy and gives a strong grip. It can be done at various levels depending on the desired style. But take this with a pinch of salt as it is only a personal preference...

 

I had about .030" at the edge before sharpening. How thin would you go?  This wasn't meant to be a heavy use chopper by any means. I realistically envisioned this for cleaning fish and game.  I too feel like it could be thinner.  

 

So you think round the scales more in the top to bottom direction?  I was a little afraid of getting it to feel too thin but I won't be afraid to give that a try on the next one.  By reverse egg shape you mean like an upside down egg profile with the fat part at the top?

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41 minutes ago, Will W. said:

Have to agree with everything Joel said, and also #1 on your own list, the plunges could be sharper. 

You could always "swiss cheese" the liners to save on weight. Drill a bunch of holes in them. I do the same thing to my tangs as well. The epoxy fills the holes anyway. 

Other than that, i like it overall. The sheath is awesome. 

I'm planning on getting a file guide to help with the plunge lines and I also need to work on my grinder a bit. A work rest and flatter platten would help tremendously I think. 

 

If I do liners like that again I'm definitely going to have to poke some holes in something. It's not terrible but it feels a little off. I doubt most people would notice but I do.

 Thanks. I got a little ahead of myself on the sheath and ran the tooling up where the belt loop goes and didn't leave as much space as I'd like and it also fits a little tight at the blade. Still figuring out how much extra room to leave without having the knife fit loose. I think I'm happy with how it fits around the handle though and it may fit a little better around the blade with some wet forming work. 

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37 minutes ago, Dave Brownson Jr. said:

I'm planning on getting a file guide to help with the plunge lines

You can make a file guide pretty easily. 2 pieces of thick flat stock, at least .375", but thicker is better, more thread length and resistance to bending, drill and tap holes, bolt together. Or weld nuts on one of the pieces. Harder to get them lined up perfectly that way though. 

That's what I did anyways. Lasted 4 or 5 years now, took maybe 30 minutes, and gets the job done. Though I use mine on my grinder, laying vertically against the edge of the platen, instead of with a file, but the principle is the same. 

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44 minutes ago, Will W. said:

You can make a file guide pretty easily. 2 pieces of thick flat stock, at least .375", but thicker is better, more thread length and resistance to bending, drill and tap holes, bolt together. Or weld nuts on one of the pieces. Harder to get them lined up perfectly that way though. 

That's what I did anyways. Lasted 4 or 5 years now, took maybe 30 minutes, and gets the job done. Though I use mine on my grinder, laying vertically against the edge of the platen, instead of with a file, but the principle is the same. 

That's why I was planning on buying one with carbide good to know yours has held up with the grinder. I just might make my own and then harden it. I have an extra length of O1 that's fairly thick. If not I could order something thicker. 

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9 hours ago, Dave Brownson Jr. said:

By reverse egg shape you mean like an upside down egg profile with the fat part at the top?

Yes, exactly. Of course, not as pronounced as an egg but you get the idea.

Edited by Joël Mercier
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9 hours ago, Dave Brownson Jr. said:

about .030" at the edge before sharpening

You can go 0.010" or even lower, depending on your primary bevel angle. 

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