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The Newbies Arena Are you new to knife making? Here is all the help you will need.

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  #1  
Old 01-31-2023, 04:35 PM
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"high end" handle material?

What do you cons##er as a high end handle natural material these days?

As##e from high end, what handles do you like to put o your knives?


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Old 02-03-2023, 07:54 AM
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I loved using ivory back in the day, would carve and scrim the best. But ... you know how that has changed. Had DNR confiscate three at Blade Show back in the late 70's. One hippo and two fossil mammoth. Yes I had the required documentation, still had to go to court to get things cleared up only to find they were not to be found in the "secured" ev##ence room. Never got them back. Expensive lesson on judicial corruption. In short don't do ivory anymore.
D## some in stone, but the style I make now prefer natural materials using a lot of antler, bone, pretty woods, etc.
Not sure what you have in mind. Got a list?


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Old 02-04-2023, 12:13 AM
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That's a bummer to have to go through a legal battle over some handle material.

I do like stone though don't find there are many buyers. It is great for stability and it is not a banned material. About the only choices are woods, bone/horn or synthetics like carbon fiber, G10 and similar. Mother of pearl is way to much $ these days. This goes along with the rising costs of materials overall.


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Old 02-04-2023, 03:23 PM
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Met up with a few of the local guys and we shared some of the latest musings on knife crafts. They have integrated a composite of wood, epoxy and carbon fiber into theirs. I've liked what I've seen on large scale wood crafts like the epoxy poured tables. So scaled into knives this is nice look.

The one tough part is that carbon fiber has become sort of scarce. I either see thick pieces or thin so the m## thickness pieces are not as readily obtained. Similar for some of the Micarta like ones too. Really like the old school rag Micarta and those Westinghouse-Norplex produced vintage pieces which today bring pretty big $. What I have is from the m## 80's.

I have a variety of old worn jeans that I've been contemplating making into a layered phenolic. That may be fun and messy.


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Old 02-05-2023, 08:46 AM
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More messy than fun. Hope they go well, nothing like cutting fitting and finishing only to find flaws in the final stages - read that in a book somewhere - not!
Yeah the old linen micarta was a favorite back when I worked stainless via stock removal.

One of the reasons the prices have skyrocketed is demand. So many wannabe makers trying to make it a s##e business the quick route with poor to mediocre blades and dressing them up with the best stuff they can buy. Pig and lipstick thing. See at the shows all the time. Yeah they sell a bunch but if you ask a few simple questions, you can tell they don't have a clue what makes a serious knife. Funny and painful at the same time, because it cast a bad shadow on good custom work.

Off the box now. Hope you get good results on the project micarta, be sure to post end results.


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Old 02-05-2023, 04:03 PM
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Agree, messy for sure. I make enough mess getting handles set up. Cannot imagine putting layers of denim together then getting the clamps on the mold/form. I gripe enough about some of the carbon fiber vo##s let alone my doing it without a vacuum press or vibratory agitator to get air to the surface and out. We'll see, don't know until I've had a go for the experience of it.

I know when you speak of pretty knives with nice materials. We've lots of things in the knife world coming and goings.


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