Picture of My first knife
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I thoroughly enjoy building useful things and about 2 years ago I found myself determined to start making knives. After practicing some of the skills on full tang bottle openers and other various project, I finally finished my first blade. There are certainly many different methods to constructing such a useful tool, this is the route I took. I am by no means an expert on the subject, this is just what I have learned and the knowledge I aquired.

A book I found very useful was "step-by-step knife making; by David Boye"
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Step 1: Tools and materials

Picture of Tools and materials

drill press and various drill bits
belt sander
various files
band saw (for wood)
lansky sharpening kit
a sharpeneing steel/ strop
steel wool
masking tape
drum sander


high carbon steel
hard wood (oak, walnut, mahogany etc.)
1/8" brass pins
two part epoxy
sand paper
danish oil
polishing compound for steel

safety equipment

Step 2: Finding the proper steel and treating it.

Picture of Finding the proper steel and treating it.
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High carbon steel is the best stuff to use for making a quality blade. Used files, leaf spring or saw blades are a great place to start for your first blade. Most of these sources, however, are already tempered and very hard to work. Constructing a simple forge will take the temper out of the steel and make it workable. I used bricks, an old pipe, an old blow dryer, some metal tape and some char coal.
This got hot enough to heat the steel, and let cool properly.  The steel needs to get a dark red (before cherry red) and cool in the open air slowly.

The steel I used on this knife, was a old concrete cutting saw blade

I used a Template I made to out line on the saw blade, drilled the perimeter and hack sawed through the holes.

Then did the proper heating procedure.

took the newly softened steel to a bench grinder to refine its shape.

For a first knife that is great. personally though i prefer to use 1/4 brass...i mean it doesnt really matter i just think it gives it a warmer feel. Other than that i dont see anything really wrong.
On other projects I do use 1/4" pins and mosaic pins. For this one I wanted to wood to stand out more. Thanks for the complements though!
have you tried making mosaic pins?
@triumphman-The major difference between the two knives you describe is that one has a fantastic steel and heat-treat (1095 H/T-ed by Rowen) and has superb fit & finish, and the other is made in China of an unknown steel by child laborers.
triumphman2 years ago
Oops I meant "Tom" Brown! His knife "The Sweeper" from the movie is made by Tops and cost anywhere from $50.for the "Tracker model , to the T- 3 model for $260. There is also a "mini" for $109. A copy of the sweeper can be had on ebay for a mere $15. If I purchased one, I would get the Paratrax Bowie Knife from . It is ony $16.99 plus $7.99 shipping. Total of $24.98. A good deal! Its a copy but looks cool. Enjoy, be safe, as ever Triumphman
desertsniper (author)  triumphman2 years ago
thanks for the info, i'll check it out!
triumphman2 years ago
Nice job for a first knife! Now make a Bowie! Or a knife like the one used in the movie "The Hunted" with Tommy Lee Jones. Very cool!
desertsniper (author)  triumphman2 years ago
Alot of folks want a knife like in the movie "The hunted" I need to make a few. It is a pretty bad A$% knife.
Yes, the knife has some good applications, but it can never be used like the movie does! Being a Gil Hibben throwing knife and axe/hatchet thrower, I know the knife has a very limited throwing range. Look at the shape & weight. I have made a few of these to avoid paying the outrageous price that Joe Brown wants for his knives. The movie was a real promotional effort on his part and he sold quite a few knives because of it. But watch the movie and see some of the outrageous stunts with that knife. In the real world that knife can not be thrown like that. Through a tree, no way! Take a look. See what I mean.
desertsniper (author)  triumphman2 years ago
I will have to watch it again! have not seen it in years.
Would you mind adding some pictures of annealing the spine and handle? I'm having difficulty picturing it and that would really help me out.
desertsniper (author)  handful of dust3 years ago
yeah, i will get to that today!
l8nite3 years ago
Nice looking knife, thank you for sharing