Ideas for knife handle

Discussion in 'Non-Firearm Weapons' started by jerman1964, Oct 9, 2013.

  1. jerman1964

    jerman1964 Member

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    I am fashioning some heavy duty knives out of farrier rasps. The steel is great, but my ideas about the handle are lacking. I dont want to go for plain wood, and mammoth ivory seems like my favorite choice now, but I am making these for using not for show, any ideas about how tough the mammoth ivory would be? Any other suggestions?
  2. 1stIDFMP

    1stIDFMP Active Member

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    Elk or deer antler?
  3. jerman1964

    jerman1964 Member

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    I like that, but seems like its done alot. Maybe i will try the first one using antler and see how it goes.
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  4. Mark W.

    Mark W. Well-Known Member

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    Any antler and especially any Ivory will be terrible on a using knife they expand and contract they shrink and crack.

    For a using knife go with a Linen Based Micarta.


    I spent 14 years as a Custom Knikemaker and 3 as a voting member of the Knifemakers Guild.
  5. jerman1964

    jerman1964 Member

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    Thanks mark, i have linen micarta on my skinning knife, i will look for that.
  6. WhyteCheddar

    WhyteCheddar Well-Known Member

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    Micarta and G10 are great products for knife handles. But be sure to do your research on the dangers of inhaling the dust created when sanding/grinding it. It can be very bad to get in your lungs and it will cling to your clothes and be a risk to everyone in your home. Not saying not to use them, just be sure to take the proper precautions.
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  7. jerman1964

    jerman1964 Member

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    wow, thanks whytecheddar, thats good info, i didnt know that.
  8. Rick4070

    Rick4070 Active Member

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    I'm glad you mentioned the hazards of working with Micarta.
    Also, sometimes old Phenolic resin canvas Micarta turns up, it makes good knife scales, but I'll bet it is even worse to get on/in you than some of the newer stuff.
    Bob Loveless always liked using green canvas Micarta for his knives.
    I can see why.
  9. 1990Turbo

    1990Turbo Active Member

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    I just might have some black and black and red laminated G10 that i could trade for something or sell out right. It is thick .250 if i remember right. the black and red looks kinda cool after its shaped almost like a wood grain. And really i have worked with a bunch of micarta and G10 its a bit like fiberglass it itches on the skin and just wear a dust mask. I worked a knife shop and they have to folow msds and osha regs and was never warned of them being totally toxic. Micarta does smell awful when sanding though. Pm me if you might wanna look at what i have.
  10. WhyteCheddar

    WhyteCheddar Well-Known Member

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    No problem.
    I was into knife making for a while and started reading about the hazards on one of the many great knife making forums. I did a little research and found out how dangerous some of the scale materials could be, that masks didn't necessarily make a big difference because the dust is so fine it can be blown/carried everywhere. After learning that I decided to clean my garage/shop which I normally kept pretty meticulous. I was stunned at how much of that stuff was everywhere, even though I thought my work space was spotless.
  11. Rick4070

    Rick4070 Active Member

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    I watched a video about Bob Loveless, and he said something like he was sure that he shortened his life by making knives.
    I'm sure that I've shortened MY life by making knives, blacksmithing, welding etc.
    Probably the worst thing I've done was to use some nitric acid/steel wool stock stain on a muzzleloader stock.
    It was factory produced, I applied it, hit it with a propane torch to "blacken" it, and then when I sanded it, I started to wheeze, cough, and mass quantities of fluid started to come up out of my lungs.
    It was several weeks before I could take a deep breath.
    I'm sure that I damaged my lungs, but there were no warning labels on the bottle...
    I should have given it a little more thought...
  12. Dunerunner

    Dunerunner Well-Known Member

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  13. Rick4070

    Rick4070 Active Member

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  14. saxon

    saxon Active Member

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    any one have any luck using high speed Planer knives, to make knives?
  15. Rick4070

    Rick4070 Active Member

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    From what I know, planer blades are made out of D2 steel, and will make great knives.
    Wayne Goddard and Bob Dozier both make knives out of D2 steel, Wayne sometimes makes them out of as is planer blades, taking care to grind them cool, as to not affect the hardening/tempering.
  16. Mark W.

    Mark W. Well-Known Member

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    I knew Bob personally and I would say the hard drinking and smoking had more to do with him only living to 81 then his knifemaking. And for the Concealled carry crowd. Bob never opened his gate without a handgun in his belt. Least not when I visited him.
  17. Mark W.

    Mark W. Well-Known Member

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    The temper that a planer blade is at is much to hard for a working knife. Would make the blade much to easy to chip. It would be much better to anneal the steel shape the blade then harden and temper and then finishing out the blade.

    And modern planer blades are made from D2 D7 M2 steels. And few would be so marked by the time they were salvage. Always best to start with something you know.
  18. coop44

    coop44 Well-Known Member

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    try this Ancientwood, Ltd

    or if that doesn't do it for you, I have a friend who works with real carbon fiber, I may be able to get some scrap "rounds".
  19. Taku

    Taku Life Member NRA, and Life Member OSSA Gold Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    Cocobolo or Ironwood. oil finished

    Or tough as hell Micarta.
  20. Taku

    Taku Life Member NRA, and Life Member OSSA Gold Supporter Bronze Supporter

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    D2 is tough, but somewhat edge brittle when at 62 or 63 Rc or so, and a real pain to resharpen with a stone.
    If you must, ........ draw it back to work on it and shape it then re heat treat and draw back to about 54 to 56. Still very wear resistant which makes it very hard to sharpen.
    If you don't want to draw it back, you need to grind slowly in a water stream or on a water wheel. Thin cross sections like an edge heat up very fast.