Instructables
Picture of How to make homemade micarta
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Here is a short video showing how I make my homemade micarta that I use in knife handles quite often. One tip I didn't mention in the video was to use superglue to finsih the micarta. Sand it to 320 grit, rub it really well with a green scotchbrite pad (hot tip- those with dremels, chuck the scotch brite in the dremel for fast polishing). coat the handle with 5-6 coats of thin superglue, sand it at least to 320, use green then white scotchbrite (in the dremel for speed). that should give you a nice finish. attached are some examples of my homemade micarta. First two pics are a girly knife handled with pink and purple denim micarta. Third and fourth is a kitchen knife I made with the micarta in the vid, and the fifth is some with bright orange cloth. sixth is blue jean and pink jean (this was my sisters christmas present) .


List of ingredients -

- the fiberglass resin
-the hardener that will come with the resin
-and the material used to make it


Note -  I want to add that since this video was made, I now use steel plates instead of wood boards. Doesn't break, bend (to an extent) and is much flatter.




Wulf1872 years ago
I also make knives and you realy taught me somethin new today.
Thanx man ! Great Idea !
mkeith542 years ago
A well written 'ible.

Have you thought about using a Vacuum food saver to make a vacuum press? It would provide a lot of clamping force without the need for clamps. The vacuum baggers can be gotten from goodwill/second hand shops very cheaply. Roll bags are available in the box stores as well as wally world.
hey this is some great stuff ! i do have some questions though i viewed this after looking at your instructable on making a knife. i was wondering when you rolled the pink/purple was it just like wringing out a cloth really tightly before you clamped ?
also did you just brush on the superglue ?
Well, I didn't try to wring it out, as I didn't want to lose my resin, I just rolled it up, and then clamped it. As to the superglue, I just wore some latex gloves and wiped it all over.
ahh ok then. thanks :)
triumphman2 years ago
Love that sheath. It looks rugged. Thick too! Is that leather about 1/4 inch thick. Nice job!
triumphman2 years ago
How did you get the orange color? Is it orange denim ? Please reply. Thanks
Wow, so you can make a handle any color depending on the cloth color? That is so cool! Do I need to layer about 14 pieces of Orange cloth like you video? I have some camo cloth I want to try. All I need is the resin stuff!
oldanvilyoungsmith (author)  triumphman2 years ago
It's not denim, just a hunter orange cloth I picked up at the local sewing supply place.
triumphman2 years ago
How did you get the orange color for the orange handled knife ? ?
Ray from RI2 years ago
Wow...! Very Cool and from the look of the handles a very effective use of cloth scraps and color!!! Very nice results!!!

How or where did you come up with this or learn about it...

Thanks for sharing!!!
jester_51233 years ago
you're an inspiration Mr. Oldanvil. i've been checking out your website and i truly admire you for getting into and learning such an awesome trade, which isnt all that common any more. ive wanted to get into forging/smithing for a long time but i havent been able to get together the tools and such, but its cool to see someone who has. you do really great work. :-) p.s. sorry that was off topic. i love this 'ible too. lol
hjjusa3 years ago
Just wax the boards with paraffin wax, wind won't whip that around.
oldanvilyoungsmith (author)  hjjusa3 years ago
Now theres an idear, thanks, that sounds a lot better.
lorenrad3 years ago
I like your classy work bench. If you span your two clamping boards across the gap in the pallet, you can apply the clamps more easily.
And thanks for the video. I have known about micarta for years, but never thought of making my own.
oldanvilyoungsmith (author)  lorenrad3 years ago
Thanks, I do have a little bit better (seriously, only a little bit) bench. But I use the pile of pallets for the messy things (like getting fiberglass resin everywhere). I like the clamping idea, it makes sense (which is why I didn't come up with it).


Stephen.
Mr.Sanchez3 years ago
Would you pls submit a list of chemichal stuff you used....?I want to try in my machete.
jdougherty23 years ago
Just a few questions that I'd like clarified.
What are you adding to the resin? Is it a curative/hardening agent?
Can you use different material than denim/cotton? (silk, nylon, etc.)
Once it's hardened and cured, can you just work with it like a block of wood, or do you need to take special precautions? I know a face mask or respirator would be needed, I'm just curious about any additional safety precautions.
oldanvilyoungsmith (author)  jdougherty23 years ago
sorry, missed your comment somehow. I'm adding the hardener to the resin, it comes with it when you purchase the resin.

I've used other cloths, if you think about it, the resin is soaking into the fibers and hardening, thus hardening the cloth. So anything that will soak up a thick liquid might work. I know that some people use white paper for making a bone substitute.

As for working it, i think it works easier than wood. There's no grain to worry about, it won't split, it's very durable, and it works easy under a rasp or sander. As for protection, you might ought to wear respirator, but I don't. I do wear goggles and a dust mask though. I think I'm fine as I typically work it with a rasp which doesn't raise dust like a sander
ive found that you can use cotton denim and felt felt comes in ALL colors thinkable!
PACW3 years ago
Yes, definitely want to see how you proceed from here!

Thank you for the great video and also for reinforcing my faith that there are young men growing up to be competent adults!
foobear3 years ago
That is so cool! It would be nice to see a video of how you do the finishing of the knife. Thank you!
oldanvilyoungsmith (author)  foobear3 years ago
I'm on it. I actually have to start making my sisters knife again (darn water quench) and I'll try to make it while taking pics so I can do an "ible" on it.

Oldanvil
great news :)
l8nite3 years ago
that was interesting, I hope you show the next steps of turning the block into a handle