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With or without a sheath?


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I’ll expand on what Alex said. I just got more serious about leatherwork myself. A 4 prong punch and a 1 prong punch are going to do better than a stitching wheel. I would put a 2 prong punch with that though. For curves and tight spots. Also a stitch groover is a must. Makes things look better as Alan said. As far as kits go, don’t buy one of the cheap ones off amazon or ebay. I fell into that trap myself. Buy your tooling tools individually. From tandy, springfield or weaver. They might be 7 to 10 dollars apiece but they are decent quality for the most part. Barry King is top of the line stuff. About $30 per tool or more. Old stuff from ebay will probably be good stuff. This is a rabbit hole to fall into just like forging. But it’s a lot of fun. I hope this helps!

 

Jon

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18 hours ago, Chris Christenberry said:

I kinda feel as if I've been "taken"! ;)  You guys are terrible.

 

Happy New Year to you too, Garry.  Don't hurt yourself or anyone else tonight! :lol:  (or whenever your New Years Eve is!)

I stopped seeing in the new year many years ago and was in bed by 10 as per normal. Ours day/date (and consequently the new year) is always a day ahead of most of the world east of New Zealand. Woke new years day to a very sepia toned morning with the smoke from the Australian bush fires streaming down across the Tasman sea and blanketing the South of the country. 

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I know what you mean, Garry.  We turned off the television by 10:00 New Years Eve.  Only thing on the schedule today is to go to David Mooneyham's place to get two blades heat treated. 

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As far as I know, Dave Lisch doesn't do leather work and he has no problems selling his knives.....:ph34r:

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Larry Harley didn't do sheaths either, he contracted them out with a saddler from Texas.  A lot of the bigger names do that, and it makes sense when you get to the point that your sheaths start dragging down your knives.  There are pro leatherworkers for good reason, but it's not my knives so far. :lol:

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37 minutes ago, Alan Longmire said:

Larry Harley didn't do sheaths either, he contracted them out with a saddler from Texas.  A lot of the bigger names do that, and it makes sense when you get to the point that your sheaths start dragging down your knives.  There are pro leatherworkers for good reason, but it's not my knives so far. :lol:

It is a matter of balancing the quality of the sheath to the quality of the knife and if one outshines the other then there is a loss of visual pleasure as well as the perceived value. 

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i use a compass to mark the grove and spacing 1/16 drill bit to make the holes go back with a v grover made from small diameter garage door spring then its waxed thread of choice and twin needles followed by some edge trim with the belt grinder or bandsaw if i left a lot on and then to the home made edger/beveler as i broke my moms old one and tandy doesn't make the same quality they used to just some round stock tweaked and hear treated to do the job then you can slick the edge or not to preference

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  • 8 months later...

I was recently "gifted" a Craftool Pro, 9-prong, Fine Diamond Chisel in 3mm, so today I bought a 1, 2 and 4 prong of the same brand.  So now I've got my chisel set taken care of.  (a "right nice" set, I think)  Also bought a Size #3 Tandy Edge Beveler.  (hope that was the right size for 6-7 oz shoulder)  Also picked up a Tandy Multi-size Wood Slicker.  With what I already have in the way of tools, I think I'm set to get started.   I kept drooling over their swivel knives, but since I'm not really going to be doing that kind of tooling, I'm pretty sure I can get by with the wood carving knives I already have.

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I do not do kitchen knives but if I had to say I might have to do a wooden sheath!  Having said that, "every knife deserves a sheath"! I mean hell what do you do with a knife without protection for the blade. A folder is safe inside of it's handle. A hunting knife or any carry style knife is worthless without a sheath to protect the knife and its owner! I figure its a  necessary evil when it comes to sheath making!! 

 

There is a good DVD by Chuck Burrows about sheath making and has a lot real good tips on how to get the professional look! https://www.amazon.com/Custom-Knife-Sheaths-Chuck-Burrows/dp/B001HWBVJY I have seen it cheaper but not lately. 

 

Start making them. You screw up a few before you get them like you want them. When I start a knife I have a vision from conception of the blade to sheath that it will wear! Sometimes it doesn't always look like the picture in my mind but that is supposed to be the mark of a good craftsman. To be able to think on your feet. Translation ~ "how am I going to salvage this"!! 

light bulb is lit.jpg

 

Or if you are one who truly hates making sheaths there are those who love it and will make a sheath for your knife. And you simply say knife by, Chris Christenberry and sheath by Joe Smith or who ever!!

 

 

I can name you at least one maker who became famous and he never did the sheaths on their knives!! Daniel Winkler is a MS and his wife Karen Shook does all the sheaths! 

https://www.artknives.com/knife-archives/daniel_winkler.html

There is another maker that makes the Levi Graham that makes similar knives to Winkler and Karen Shook does his sheaths. 

 http://www.levigrahamknives.com/

 

So making your own sheath is not mandatory but you have to have a meeting of the minds with whoever makes your sheaths. A stock sheath that is not made for the knife seems to stand out like a sore thumb!

 

 

I will see one every once in a while and think, "that is a stock sheath or he sucks at making the sheath match up with his knives"! Just my O2 on the subject!shrug-smiley.png

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Hey, Chris

 

 I just replied to your other thread. A #3 beveler will be ok for 6oz. A #2 would probably look good also. You’ll end up buying every size beveler. I did anyway. On the nine prong punch, that will be a bear to pull back out of two pieces of 6oz leather. I think those 9 prongs are more for wallet and bag makers. A 4 prong is mighty tough to pull back out sometimes. I’ve even broken the glue bond pulling one back out. When I hand sew now, I use just a 2 prong on most projects. I’m fairly new to leather work myself. But I am enjoying it. Trial and error with me. Hope this is of some help!

 

Jon

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Yeah, I thought of that too.  The chisels are for lacing thin leather, like those wallets with the bound edges.   I have a four-prong I used to use, but no more.  Now when I sew leather, unless it's 1oz calf, I cut a groove, roll it with the stitch wheel, and then either use a stitching awl (flattened diamond section) or a 1/16" drill to poke the holes.  It just looks better, and on thin stuff the holes won't tear like they did with the chisel.  But as I said, I'm not great with leatherwork.  I can make a serviceable sheath that fits well, but tooling and carving isn't my thing.  You may love the chisels, after all, and there's not a thing wrong with that.

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The slanted chisels make for a really nice look when you stitch with thread. You also do not have to go all the way through both pieces of leather. You can go through the top layer and simply mark the back side of the lower piece, then chisel the lower piece separately. It's a little risky, but t works. For a sheath, you would be punching through the top layr into the welt, then through the welt into the lower layer, and finish up the lower layer. A lot more work, yes, but the results can be pretty dramtic.

This guy is really good.

 

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Sorry it's taken me so long to respond.  We've been out of town.

 

Slowly gatherin' all the necessaries for this danged sheath makin' rabbit hole you danged-burn enablers sent me down.  ;)  Was tryin' out some of my tools on a piece of scrap leather today and hit a puzzlement.  When cutting the slot for the stitching.............does one wet the leather first?  I tried both before and after and couldn't make up my mind which produced the cleaner cut.  I could see the pricking irons seemed to work cleaner with the leather wet.

Edited by Chris Christenberry
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I prefer slightly damp.  The real leather folks call the condition "in case," which is just damp to the core, not wet enough to drip when squeezed. 

The guy who showed me would cut out the sheath blank, run it under the tap for a second or two, then put it in a plastic bag for a couple of hours prior to working on it. 

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