Thursday, November 11, 2010

Custom bushcraft knife work in progress

A while back I was contacted by a member of Zombie Squad to have a custom bushcraft/general utility knife made, using the puuko design as our starting point. He showed me some pictures he'd collected off the Interwebz with knife features he liked, I made some sketches, and we agreed on design and price. I started work on it this week. I asked if he would mind me documenting the process, and he said go for it.

This is the sketch that this is all based on. There may be a few changes as the actualy knife is being made (as you'll see), but this is our guide.

The blade began life as a piece of pickup leaf spring. It was actually a relatively small scrap from me cutting out a blade blank earlier. After cleaning up the torch marks with my angle grinder and cutting it to length, I put it in my coffee can forge and commenced to hammering it into shape. I consulted with the sketch and got it fairly close. After cleanup grinding, I found that the angle of the tang to the blade needed changed, I needed to draw the length of the tang out some, and the blade was a half inch longer than the sketch.

I checked with the customer, who said to go ahead with the length the blade had turned out to be. If he had wanted it shortened down to match the sketch, I would have taken some of the blade to forge the tang longer. After tweaking, this is what I ended up with:

The blade is soaking in vinegar to eat the scale off. Should be ready to file the edge tomorrow.

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