Finished a middle-eastern style knife with a highly curved blade, and a dagger with a needlepoint blade. Both have stained birch handles with brass pins.
Wednesday, August 28, 2013
Tuesday, August 27, 2013
Today's knife, in keeping with the recent (and necessary) quick and dirty blade construction, is styled after a prison-fashioned weapon, colloquially called a "shank" or "shiv." It is made from an old wood chisel, exactly the kind of object an inmate might have access to.
Monday, August 26, 2013
Sunday, August 25, 2013
Saturday, August 24, 2013
My previous every day knife was a Kershaw 1670TBLKST with SpeedsafeTM spring assist. I love having spring assist, unfortunately the blade was less than high quality, the tip bent and broke while folded in my pocket. So I used the same high carbon mystery steel from before to make myself a new blade.*
I started by covering the original blade with masking tape and outlining the space available inside the handle.
Then I drew the new blade shape on the tape, cut off the remainder, and traced it onto the steel and cut it out.
Next I had to make the new blade work with the old handle, this meant grinding and hand filing the two to be identical.
One problem I was having was in locating the detent on the new blade. I didn't want to drill through the hardened steel to transfer the mark through, and I don't have any precision measuring tools to aid me.
After some contemplation, I noticed that the detent had worn a line into the paint of the blade, and after repeatedly testing the swing of the new blade a similar line had been left on it. So I simply punched a deep divot at the end of that line and it seems to work perfectly.
You can see that I changed the blade length and profile, and added a flapper to help open it with a thumb-stud.
My grind is nowhere near as good as the original unfortunately, but once I get better I can make redo it or make another one. That's the beauty of having these kinds of skills: you're never stuck with something inferior if you're always improving your craft.
*Kershaw's warranty position is that if your blade breaks, you broke it, and it is not covered by warranty. They will replace and sharpen blades with new stock for a fee of $10. For them to be able to cover the blade and labor for only $10 there's nothing telling me that I'll get any better product than I had before, and another chipped blade will be only a matter of time.
Friday, August 23, 2013
I've recently become very interested in knife making. I've been collecting knives since I was a tween and now I want to make my own. Pursuant to this goal, and for a school project about ritual and artifact, I've decided to make one knife a day for one week. I will attempt different styles and techniques, and not work on them again once the day is up. This will be difficult not only because I've never made a knife but also because school is in session and I have plenty of homework already.
Regardless, here is my first knife build:
I wanted to start by setting up real quench tanks, no more plastic bottles of water. I've had this medical oxygen cylinder kicking around for years, so I cut it in half.
I wanted to use both halves but the top (valve) side didn't like to stand up, so I whipped up a quick and easy stand.
Starting with a piece of mystery steel from my pile (not the best way to start, but it was Friday afternoon and I wasn't going to go on a high-carbon hunt) I made the length about the same as my current pocket knife.
I sketched my first idea with soapstone onto the cleaned metal and rough-cut it with a cut-off wheel.
Then I smoothed the lines and started grinding the edge.This took a while.
When the edge was nearly done I heated the blade and quenched it in oil
|New quench tank.|
After finish-grinding the blade I used some wood I had lying around (pine? again, not the best start, oh well) to make the handle sides.
And used high-strength epoxy to attach them. Next time I will probably use brass pins as well.
Once the epoxy had set up I sanded the wood down into a nice grip-able handle.
Again, this was my very first try at making a knife, I have a long way to go still.
Another new thing I'm trying is time lapse photography of my work sessions, I cherry picked from the 400+ photos from today the ones that I thought were cool and in which I don't look too flabby.
|Hipster safety goggles.|
Saturday, August 10, 2013
After a nice vacation and plenty of video games I got back to work.
|Fetus animal totems, fertility totems, a fictional animal skull, and a skull based on Paranthropus aethiopicus.|
|New sugar skulls, made by me and glazed by my mother.|
A new style of mask I'm playing with is to boil vegetable tanned leather in water, and press it over a a plaster mold of my face with one of my bronze masks
I wasn't happy with the first try so I boiled the leather longer and did it again, with much better results,
|Isn't the color of my kitchen walls terrible?|
Four done so far: