Friday, February 11, 2011

Another Crooked Knife Project

Over the winter, I've been working on another smaller project...another attempt at a crooked knife from a file. My first attempt is still very functional, but prolonged use like in carving the bushcraft spruce paddle from the summer left my wrist quite sore. Many crooked knives I've seen have dramatically angled blades (nearly 45 degrees to the plane of the handle) and this seems to ease wrist strain while allowing for the skewing cut of the knife to delicately shave off wood. Below are some examples I had pulled from the net somewhere.

While back in Turkey visiting family in '09, I had stumbled across a perfect crook in an Olive Tree branch from my Great Uncle's abandoned property. It seemed to match my hand perfectly and even had an indent for the thumb-rest from a healed branch wound. The piece was cutoff and brought home and gradually shaped into a a leaner handle.

A broken branch crook; Fit my hand nicely

Shaping the handle

The blade was made from another old file (this time with an angle grinder and cutting disk) and after a little amateur blacksmithing, an offset tang was bent into shape. For this one, I decided not to bend the tip of the blade up as my intentions for this knife are for softwood shaving for paddle blades and cedar canoe ribs & sheathing.

The Blade

A slot was carved into the top of the handle to fit the tang. This was all trial and error until it sat nicely in the wood.

Tang slot carved

The handle was whipped tightly with waxed linen thread and everything is nice and secure. For the decoration, I wanted to leave as much of the handle bare as there were some nice grain patterns in the olive wood. Along the edges of the thumbrest, I burned a chip carved pattern.

Decoration Burned

Here is the completed knife all oiled up and ready to go...

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