40 Cent Razor Drawknife




About: I am an engineer focused on recycled batteries, electric vehicles and renewable energy. I am always working on engineering projects I can’t stop.

I will show you step by step how to build a razor draw-knife that costs only 40 cents.

I have been carving a lot of wooden wind turbine blade using a box cutter. I liked the thin razor blade for carving but it was hard on my arm. I needed a knife that I could use with both my arms and was easier to control. I wanted to buy a draw-knife but they are very expensive and have a thicker blade. So I used a box cutter blade and two pieces of pine 2x1 to make my own very cheap razor draw knife.

The video goes through all the steps to build this draw knife.

Step 1: Making the Wood Handles

In this step we are going to make two handles out of a piece of pine 2x1.

First grab the piece of 2x1 and mark how long you want the grip to be.

Mark off two pieces side by side. Before you cut the pieces you need to carve off the corners so the grips are comfortable for your hands. Keep shaping the grip until it is comfortable.

Then sand it with rough sand paper (like 80 grit) to get the bumps out. Then use fine sand paper (like 220 grit) to smooth the wood.

Now the two pieces of wood can be cut for make the two handles.

Step 2: Cut Slots for the Blade

First mark a line across the hand grips on one end.

Then use a very thin saw to cut a slot. I used a razor saw and cut .5 inches deep. It is important that the saw blade is not as thick and the razor blade you will use in the draw-blade.

Force the razor blade into the slot. Push it in (blade first). You might need to tap it in carefully with a small hammer but you need to made sure you do not split the wood handle.

Now pull the blade out and trial fit the blade into both grips. I pushed the ends of the blade about half an inch into each grip.

Step 3: Glue Blade Into Handle

First mark how far the blade ends go into the handles.

Sand the blade ends to get ready for sanding. I used 220 grit sand paper made for sanding metal.

Now apply glue on the blade ends and force some glue into the slot in the handles using a small piece of sheet metal. I used JB weld and it worked very well.

Force the blade ends covered in glue into the slots. Make use it goes in the right amount. Then position the handles so that they are straight and comfortable in your hands.

You can then clamp the handle slots to help press the glue together.

Step 4: Using the Blade

After you let the glue dry it is ready to use.

Grab both handles and pull it slowly towards you. It is important that you carve wood with the grain going up. This prevents the blade from grabbing more wood and diving into the wood.

This blade works really well for carving turbine blades.



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    7 Discussions


    3 years ago

    Perhaps use a straight razor blade? More difficult to mount to handles, but it won't snap as easily.


    3 years ago on Introduction

    WOW! Great idea. I have a question and a suggestion. How do you make the spot's for the blades to go in? Do you just cut in?

    The suggestion I have for the blade breaking, what if you stacked the blades? Put one in & then the 2nd blade is slightly behind. (Kinda like a razor) (staggered)? Just a thought....it would make them tough, and double cutting edge. :)


    4 years ago on Introduction

    Have you had the blade snap along the breakable sections? I would have thought that any twist of the blade would cause the blade to snap along one of the scored sections.


    4 years ago on Introduction

    Excellent idea for the knife! It helps to read the grain on the wood and shave with it instead of against it. Just rub your hand in both directions where you need to work and aim the smoother direction towards you.


    5 years ago on Introduction

    Maybe if you cut a slot length wise in a piece of dowel and glued it on the back it would strengthen the blade some so it wouldn't break at the snap off points.


    5 years ago

    Thanks. I will really test it out when I build my next turbine blade. If the blade is not long enough or strong enough I will use a different blade.