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Composite scale idea

Discussion in 'How I Made It: Tutorials' started by dancom, Feb 6, 2015.

  1. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    I am working on a small hunter, 8" O.A.L. with some interesting scales. These are African Blackwood, Yellow Birch and a strip of 0.020" aluminum. Never done this before but I think the effect will be cool when it's all shaped down and polished.

    [​IMG]

    (BTW, these little vise-grips were an awesome Christmas present.) I scuffed the aluminum with 60 grit and drilled some 1/16" holes in the ends of the wood pieces. Have to keep the holes right in the middle so they won't be exposed when shaping the handle.

    [​IMG]
    I made a simple wooden clamping jig to hold things close when gluing the scale pieces.

    [​IMG]
    It kind of needs to be held in 3 dimensions and not crush everything so there's no epoxy left.
    I am sure there is a better way to do this. If you know jump right in!

    The real trick is to get the alum strips to line up.

    [​IMG]

    After tracing and cutting on the band saw, I clamped and drilled one scale, then pinned with 1/8" wooden dowel. I use these pins to hold the scale on the tang while aligning the second scale. Paying close attention to where the aluminum strips line up.

    [​IMG]
    Now I clamped again, this time with both scales in place. Remove the wooden pins and drill right through the first scale, the tang and through the second scale

    [​IMG]

    Once it's all drilled, I used the wooden pins to hold the two scales together and shape them as one block.

    [​IMG]

    I didn't want to get too close to the tang line, but I focused on the fronts. They are shaped and finally polished on the buffer with a dash of black compound.

    [​IMG]

    Cut the real pins and dry fit.
    [​IMG]

    It's sitting in my office at work now. All gooped up with Acraglas. I should be able to shape it down and polish it tomorrow. Hope this one works out!

    Dan
     
  2. Icho-

    Icho- Staff Member

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    Lookin good Dan . I've been making a slingshot but haven't worked on it for a while now that is the same idea. I have 3 different types of wood with brass separating them. I also used 1/16 pins to help keep it together like you did.
     
  3. BigUglyMan

    BigUglyMan Active Member

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    I like the way that is coming along.
     
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  4. Brad

    Brad Active Member

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    Cool idea, looking forward to seeing the finished knife
     
  5. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    OK, here we go. I have some pics of how I did the knife and how it came out. I'll apologise in advance as I missed some of the detail sanding photos, but I was busy mixing drinks and getting beers at that stage. Ya right!

    [​IMG]
    That's the Acraglas. It's good to see it filling in around the pins

    [​IMG]

    I have a chewy old 60 belt that works fine for woodwork. Don't tell the investors I reuse old belts. LOL
    What I am really trying to do is bring the wood pieces back to the steel. Matching the tang so to speak.



    Once the wood is pretty close to the tang, I start to "curve" the handle.

    [​IMG]

    Ya, just getting the curve in there to make it feel like a handle. I usually switch belts here to a 120 and keep fashioning the handle shape.

    It's back and forth, check, back and forth. Then I go over to the bench and start on some 220 grit with some lubricant,(Windex) to keep the dust down.

    [​IMG]

    After moving to 340 and 400 the handle should look something like this: This is 400 grit wet sand.
    [​IMG]

    If you have a buffer, grab some black compound and polish the handle. Hold on tight!
    [​IMG]

    Once the handle is buffed, I cleaned it with acetone as the black compound make the wood look dingy.
    To help the Blackwood, I put some Tung Oil on and dry it. Ya, I have to use the heater for it's something bloody cold in my shop.

    [​IMG]

    Next we're buffing the dried Tung Oil and getting the light box warmed up...
     
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2015
  6. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    Cont'd...

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    This was something different that I wanted to try. My customer had no problem with it, so there are two happy campers this morning.

    Never fear the unknown.
    LOL

    Cheers and happy knife making,

    Dan
     
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  7. FORGE

    FORGE Maker of the Year Best Knife

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    Dan it turned out GREAT........ everything flows together.
     
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  8. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    Thanks Cal. That means a lot coming from my hero! ;-)
     
  9. Jim T

    Jim T Active Member

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    Another beauty, Dan! Excellent photos, too. Thanks for the ride-along!
     
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  10. Muffalo

    Muffalo New Member

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    Absolutley love everything about this knife.
     
  11. krash-bang

    krash-bang Active Member

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    Beautiful work? I love the step by step pics. It really brings it home when you see the finished product. I seen the thread with the sheath as well. I love the sunburst effect, kind of like an old LesPaul.
     
  12. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    Thanks guys!
     
  13. Brad

    Brad Active Member

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    Came out great, looks awesome
     
  14. poppa bear

    poppa bear Member

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    I have to ask, where did you get that interesting large pin 3 down from the top? Did you make it or obtain it?
     
  15. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    Hi,

    That is a 1/4" mosaic pin I bought from Canadian Knifemaker Supply. They're about 5" long and I cut to size for the handle thickness.
    They can be made DIY as well, but it's so darn easy to buy them. ;)

    Google "mosaic pin" and lots of great images come up.

    Dan
     
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  16. poppa bear

    poppa bear Member

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    Thank you dan
     
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  17. Chris Roy

    Chris Roy Active Member

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    I made these a couple months ago with paper micarta. Pretty easy process but a bit of a mess and clamping can be a real pain in the neck as everything wants to slide with the epoxy. Very nice work Dan. That knife is a beauty.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  18. Grizz Axxemann

    Grizz Axxemann Active Member

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  19. John Noon

    John Noon Well-Known Member

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    For clamping check out a local pottery shop, they have huge elastic bands that would clamp from all sides.
    one company in Alberta is http://www.ceramicscanada.net/
     
  20. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    Really cool. Could make some killer scales from those blocks.
     

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