Introduction: Convert a Fiskars Brush Knive Into a Survival Tool/platform

This Instructable will show you how to add a hatchet function to your Fiskars/Gerber brush knife making it a versatile tool for hiking and bushcraft.

The Fiskars brush knife is a high quality tool for a moderate price available pretty much everywhere.
While it does make up for a big knife it could also do a lot more.
I will try to add some funktions basically making a whole survival platform out of it.

This instructable is written under consideration that not everyone out there knows his tools and how to work them so if you already do... keep that in mind and please be patient.


What you will or might use:
- Protective gear... honestly... I'm not kidding... you're working with a sharp edge and powertools and learning to work with all that cost me dearly in the past because I didn't follow this advice.
Use eye protection, earplugs and gloves
furthermore make sure that your clothes aren't dangling about in a loose manner or they'll get caught in the machinery.

Tools:
-Beltgrinder with rough- to fine-grit paperbelts
-Anglegrinder with a sandpaper-disc
-Revolving wetstone (If available)
-Fine grit sandpaper (For the finishing touch)
-File (Needed to improve the sheath)

As I pointed out this is dangerous work and I will not take responsibility if you hurt yourself.
You have been warned.

So lets get going :)

P.S. English is not my native language so feel free to correct me if I'm wrong with any words or grammar.

Step 1: Grinding (if Your Its Edge Is Still Fine Proceed to Next Step)

My brush knife has seen some action and needs some work on its edge.
Some work with the anglegrinder and beltgrinder did the trick

Step 2: Rough Grinding and Shaping of Your Hatchet

So you have a tool with a sharp inner curve doing all the work and a blut outer curve just getting carried around for no reason other than being attatched to the inner curve.
Terrible sentence but room for improvement.
What you want to do is give the outer curve an edge that will work as a hatchet for you.

To do this you will of course have to grind it properly.

You will want (and this goes for every blade you will ever work on) to be going from rough grinding that takes away a lot of material down  to rough shaping of your edge to fine grinding your cutting edge.
Furthermore make sure to switch sides when grinding and take a look at your edge once in a while so you can make sure both sides are ground evenly and you're not taking away too much from one of the sides.
You want your cutting edge to be in the middle of your blade's profile.

Keep 3 things in mind:
1. You will always want to stick to the same angle while grinding.
2. You will NOT want your blade to go hotter than 200°C or it will lose quality.
3. It may happen that the Grinding stone forces your blade along its revolving direction.
You will NOT want your fingers to be near any cutting edge when that happens because your tool propably has way more torque than your hand could even slow down; especially when placed behind a razor sharp edge...
And we do not want to be called "8 fingers" by ghastly people in the future... do we my preciousss?

So you start with the revolving wetstone.

You grind down the basic shape of your hatchet  from somewhere around the middle of the blade up to someplace along the curved bit that suits you best.
Or you can do the whole circumference if you think you'll need that much blade.

Step 3: Shaping the Blade

Once you're done grinding your blade on your wetstone you use your anglegrinder to further define and shape the blade

Step 4: Grinding the Blade to a Cutting Edge

Let's assume you've defined the blade of your hatchet to your liking.
Next you're going to grind it to a cutting edge using a beltgrinder.

When you're using a beltgrinder for free hand grinding there are some tips to keep in mind.
-Always keep your fingers out of harms way.
-Avoid grinding a sharp edge against the direction of your belt or it will be cut sooner or later.
-Keep in mind that it may happen that the belt may force your blade along its grinding direction.
 So try to hold the blade in a way that doensn't involve your fingers being cut if that happens.
- You might find this a bit gross but it helps: keep a film of spit applied on the side of the blade thats not being ground.
This keeps temperature down and shows you when the steel is overheating by starting to boil.
And you don't want your steel overheating.
-Try keeping your desired angle while grinding.
(See pictures above for further details.)

When your blade shows a fine rigde of steel towards its edge your bladeprofile has narrowed down to 0 at that point.
Meaning: you've reached cutting edge when and where this happens... just so you know when you're done if you didn't know already.


Step 5: Final Steps

Ok so you're done grinding and you're pleased with your blade so far.

You now should have a blade with a little ridge of steel along its edge showing you its ground down properly everywhere.
To achieve sharpness get some fine grit sand paper and a round object of your choice to wrap it around and give it a final grind to break of the edge.

As an alternative you could also get a leather belt or some cloth.
If you've seen any cheesy movies with a barber in it you've propably seen what he does to his razor...
just do the same thing. (Actually a barber will want a ridge on its razor's edge because thats the sharpest state a blade can get into.
But you made a hatchet not a razor so lose that ridge.)
After some strokes your ridge will be gone and your egde will be sharp and ready to shave some hair off your arm (if you did your job right) or to cut down a small tree.

Step 6: The Sheath

If you tried to take your knife out of that sheath quickly you propably noticed how this one notch of plastic prevents you from doing so...
A picture says more than a thousand words. Especially mine.

Comments

author
MikeB364 made it! (author)2016-06-10

Your written English is good but you asked for corrections so...

Step 1: Grinding (if your edge is still fine proceed to next step)

I removed an unnecessary word from the sentence above.

Also the word is whetstone, not wetstone ;)
BTW I love my Fiskars brush axe.

author
tetra28 made it! (author)2014-08-20

I have an unaltered fiskars brush ax and it cut though an 8 inch log well enough.

author
jtpoutdoor made it! (author)2012-12-26

hmm- well written instructable but I'm not really sure why you feel the need to do this to the lovely gerber/fiskars brush knife! you already have a flat blade and you can cut down trees up to about 4 in diameter with an unaltered blade. And as the blade is fairly light trying to cut anything bigger is likely to damage this nice piece of kit. Also using power tools can be a recipe for ruining the blade- get it wrong and heat it up too much and it's buggered. If you want to cut down large stuff you'd be better off using a heavier blade which is designed for the job.

author
Ximmers made it! (author)Ximmers2012-12-27

Good point you got there.
Its not the best solution for a job an axe should do.
I did have situations however where the curved blade just got stuck or in the way
and a rounded blade would have performed better.
Since I carried way too much last time I wen't hiking I'm going to leave stuff behind I don't need. For this case the added edge will suit me fine I hope.
Maybe I can add some more functions to the brush knife an its handle and sheath.

Nontheless: You are right it is no total substitute for a hatchet or an axe in everyday work.

author
Ximmers made it! (author)2012-12-26

If you have ideas about possible further modifications let me know :)

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