This is a how-to guide that I made when constructing my own wooden bokken. I read a great how-to on this site, but it didnt show me how to make the Tsuba(or guard) So I had to make one up myself.
For the Sword how-to, the link is here:http://www.instructables.com/id/EMVOZXMBO2EP286GNG/
I will also make a sword guide similar to TTF's method in the future
Step 1: Making the Notch
For the tsuba to fit into the handle nicely, you must first construct a notch. This can be done with a dremel tool, or by had with a chisel.
The first step is to mark where the notch will be on the bokken. If the bokken is katana length, use 4 hand over hand measures. Wakizashi, 2 and a half. Tanto, one and a half. Judge the hand method to the length of the sword.
The second step is to take your handle material(any kind of wood is ok. But it must be 1/4" or larger. Anything thinner will break.) and trace the outline on the bokken.
Afterwards, take your chisel or dremel tool, and cut out between the markings. using a wood rasp also works.