The attractiveness and fascination of a knife can increase by making it yourself. Both knives with rigid blades and pocket and folding knives can be customized with the right tools. If a prefabricated blade is not used, a forge fire and an oven are indispensable.
Set the scope of the self-made
Homemade has always enjoyed a very different status than simply acquiring things. There are three ways to make a knife.
1. complete self-making of all individual parts and, if necessary, mechanics, including forging.
2. using a preforged knife blade and building the handle or blade bed with a folding mechanism.
3. building the knife yourself with a prefabricated kit according to instructions, in which all the necessary components are prefabricated.
Of course, the choice depends largely on your own ambitions, craft experience and skill, and equipment and tools.
Recommended procedure for first attempts
In a first attempt at building a folding knife or pocket knife, a kit is recommended. By building it yourself, the hobbyist will learn in detail the internal structure and the locking and moving mechanism. For making a knife with a fixed blade yourself, the first attempt with a finished blade is the ideal start. To forge the knife blade yourself, steel must be sawn, heated and ground. Knowledge of steel types and machining methods is required.
How to build a knife with a standing finished blade yourself
There are many manufacturers and suppliers of pre-forged blades, especially in the Scandinavian region. The blanks are made of blade steel and are roughly pre-ground. The cutting edge and the blade face are connected to a shank, which is inserted into the handle.
The blade shank has two to three holes through which screws or rivets are later driven for fastening. When deciding what material to make the handle scales, you have several options:
- Synthetic resin
As a rule of thumb among professional knifemakers, always use only one type of material. However, as a bonding and storage compound, synthetic resin can work well for wood handles, too.
How to build a complete knife with a standing blade yourself
Carbonized steel is the most suitable type of steel. Stainless steel is unsuitable for making your own. The steel plate should be three to six millimeters thick.
Use a hacksaw to saw out the outline of the blade as closely as possible so that the least possible amount of material is removed during subsequent grinding.
After the outline has been ground out with a side grinder or flex, the two to three mounting holes are drilled in the shaft.
In the annealing furnace, the blade must be annealed through orange several times, depending on the type of steel. The blade must then be tempered in the oven by reheating it.