Rons Primitive Skills

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Sunday, August 10, 2008

Getting a handle on the Lauri blade

Here's a project I did today. This is the Lauri from Finland blade I got from Bens Backwoods store. I used a piece of western red cedar I found last weekend in Sequoia National forest. The first photo shows the handle nearly finished. The other pieces of wood are from the same piece. As you can see I removed a lot of wood. I keep the shavings in a baggie for fire starting. They work great.



Here's a close up of the nearly finished handle. I only need to remove a bit of the butt end.



This is the finished handle. All it needs is drilled.


This is a close up of the end of the handle.


Here's a view of the end grain. Western red cedar is a very nice, fine grained wood.


These are the tools I used to make the handle. The "four-in-hand" rasp/file is one of the handiest tools for wood working and I carry it in my survival kit. The leather sheath protects the teeth as well as anything else in the kit.


Here's a test to see how the blade fits in the handle after drilling. I used an electric hand drill for this stage of the job. So far so good. IMPORTANT NOTE!!!!!! COVER THE BLADE WITH MASKING TAPE WHENEVER YOU WORK ON A KNIFE!!!!!! The masking tape has been removed ONLY during the photo shots!


Here's a shot of the finished knife. I used an old worn out silver quarter and a dime for the front and back of the handle. I drilled and filed the front piece till it fit the blade just perfect. I domed the dime on my anvil with a small ball peen hammer and drilled a hole in the middle. Then I used my Dremel tool with a cut off wheel to make several scores in the tail end of the tang. These would help the dime to get a good hold when I seat it. After everything was put together and nice and tight I set to work finishing the knife. I cut off the end of the tang with my Dremel and a cut off wheel, then filed the end smooth. I carefully filed the silver down to meet the wood on the handle. Then I gave the handle a smooth sanding with 300 grit silicon carbide paper. I love the way the handle is contoured.


Here's a shot of the knife where the blade fits in the handle. As you can see its slightly off center. Mistake #1. But, I can live with it.

Here's a shot of the butt end. Mistake #2. The dime is off center and once again, I can live with it. This is what happens sometimes when you drill by hand. It may seem like the hole is dead center but after all the filing and fitting the end result tells the truth. When I tightened everything up the tang and blade pulled to the left side of the handle. What the heck, it gives it a unique personality!


Here's another shot of the finished knife. What a beauty. It fits my hand perfectly and it looks very nice even with the goofs. Overall length: 8 1/8" handle length: 4 1/4" blade length: 3 3/4"
Next project: a sheath for Lauri.




Eventually I will  refinish this handle to be more ergonomic and fix the off center silver on the butt end. Fortunately I made the handle a bit big so there's room for improvement. Look for a future post.


Here are the specs for this blade from Bens Backwoods store.

NEW LAURI HIGH CARBON PROGRESSION TEMPERED 116P BLADE.
3.7" X 3/4" WIDE BLADE.

8 1/4" OVERALL WITH A 3MM THICK BLADE.

PROGRESSION TEMPERED BLADE WITH SPINE HARDENED TO RC 52 AND EDGE HARDENED TO RAZOR SHARP RC63.

UNPOLISHED BLADE WITH SCANDINAVIAN GRIND.

RAZOR SHARP MADE IN FINLAND
.

5 comments:

Matthew said...

Could you explain a little more about what you did to seat the tail end of the handle? Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Rather interesting site you've got here. Thanks for it. I like such themes and everything connected to this matter. BTW, why don't you change design :).

Ron Layton said...

Do you mean change the design of the knife handle or the blog? I have done some modifications to the handle which improved it very much for my use. I think I posted pictures but if not I will update the info. Thank you for your comment.

joliphoto said...

i have made a knife from LauriPT blade,veri strong blade.if you want to see the knife:http://photo-bushcraft.blogspot.com

Ron Layton said...

Hi joliphoto. Those are some very nice knives. I love the Lauri PT blade for fine carving and detail work. The very hard edge will get some micro chips but if you're careful you won't get big chips on it and a resharpening brings everything back.