A Tanto Knife From a File

this is how to make it!

Teacher Notes

Teachers! Did you use this instructable in your classroom?
Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson.

Step 1: What Kind of Steel.

I used a old Simonds file, but any file will do.

Step 2: Blade Dimensions

The main angle is 8 degrees, but the cutting edge is 35 degrees. As you can see it's 3.75 in long, and a little less than one inch high, and .128 or 1/8 in thick.

Step 3: Sheath

this is just some 1/8 in leather. than you'll need to take some thicker leather and put it around the outside border, (this is optional but will help to keep the knife from cutting the thread)

Step 4: Materials You Will Need:

one median sizes file.

a 3in by 2in square of leather.

thick thread:

and one heavy duty snap button


first you need to copy and past the pic that shows the sheath spread flat, and the one of the knife outline.put it on word and print it out. and then measure to make sure it's the right size. the sheath needs to be 3.5in long

Step 5: Slice and Dice

then put the template on the file and trace around it with a sharpie,now you need to clamp it down and cut it out with an angle grinder make sure to cool it regularly. when you come to the semi circle, cut from both corners to the center and the grind the rest out with a dremel, use a sanding cylinder.

Step 6: It's Time to File Down the Blade

the bevel is about 3/4in on a 8 degree angle. i used a disk sander but you can do the same with file.you will need a file for touch up work.

Metal Contest 2016

Participated in the
Metal Contest 2016



    • Indoor Lighting Contest

      Indoor Lighting Contest
    • Metal Contest

      Metal Contest
    • Make It Fly Challenge

      Make It Fly Challenge

    6 Discussions


    3 years ago

    Very cool looking knife!

    Will you be adding some info on how you made it? Any photos you have of the process would be awesome to see, or if not, at least some descriptions of what you did. I'd be interested to learn more :)

    3 replies

    Reply 2 years ago

    if you have more questions please contact me :)


    3 years ago

    Incredible! You're such a talanted artist!


    3 years ago

    This is very cool!

    Good job on the leather work too!

    I really like how you left the file marks showing. It gives it an authentic and rustic look. Hand made items are supposed to look like the maker is a human and not something mass produced; all "perfect", bright and shiny.

    Really good job.