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View Full Version : Who says you can't polish a turd



Jmadams13
04-08-2013, 10:23 PM
As most here know, the Tojiro ITK Shirogami series knives have awful F&F, even more awful KU finish, and grind issues. But many here also know that hiding behind all that is a White #2 blade that's screaming for a little TLC. I have three from this series (don't judge, lol). And have been playing around with them lately. I've done handle mods on two, a 210 gyuto, 240mm Kiritsuke tipped gyuto. Here is the 210 after some fun with sand paper tonight.

On all three, I removed the KU upon arival, the 210 was first, 240 a few months later, and was given a 120mm petty as a gift at Christmas. Again, don't judge my two purchases, lol, they were bought to mess around with, but actually love the Kiritsuke, once I got the thing sharp to my liking.


Anyways... The handle mod was done the same on the 210 and the 240. It's not quite done, but is usable till the F&F is dialed in.

My proccess:

Knock of handle
Cut off cheapo plastic furrell
Smooth Ho wood handle, and for me that means softening up the D, and rounding the butt end a little bit
Breaking out the torch and burning the crsp out of the wood, till practically black. Sand repeat
Take some pliable copper flashing, tightly wrap around where furrell was, solder the seam (seam is kept on the "inside" of the handle)
Sand copper smooth and polish up to 2500 grit, typical grit progression.
Sand and polish handle up to 2000 grit, apply tung oil, wait repeat a few times
Burn handle back on

I like how burning and sanding the wood gives it a stained look, without having to worry about that. After lightly sanding between burns, the burned wood smell goes away. I do this about three times to get it really "burned" in so polishing doesn't lighten it up that much, keeping the dark look, but letting some grain shine threw.

Handle on the Kiritsuke looks the same, been using it for about two months and its holding up great. Tonight I broke out the paper again to get the marks out after thinning last week, marked the edge with sharpie, and went to town. 230/300/400/600/800/1000/1500/2000/2500. I should have knocked the handle off again, but was lazy. Also put a fresh edge on. Cuts like a dream. Going to react like a mofo, but this was still fun. First time getting a finish this constant with only wet/dry paper.

Sorry for bad iPhone pics.




http://i.imgur.com/FFZ5jzE.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/DbwLTDI.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/oSg7T2u.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/SfwBbGL.jpg

heldentenor
04-08-2013, 10:40 PM
Looks awesome to me. How reactive is the copper?

knyfeknerd
04-08-2013, 10:45 PM
Looks good Joe. Where do you get the copper stuff? I'm assuming the hardware store, but what dept?
Before I started making handles, I had a similar idea for my Tojiro nakiri but was never able to make it a reality. Next time do a WIP!

Jmadams13
04-08-2013, 10:56 PM
I got the flashing from my parents basement, lol. Was there when we moved in when I was in high school, was there when I moved out in 2005, still there, figured I'd call dibs, lol. I can mail you some Chris when I mail the Old File back (btw, I will, I just love it, and keep "forgetting" to mail it back, lol.)

I'll do a WIP when I do the petty. Probably going to start next week. I need to get more tung oil, and find the time. I hate not being able to finish a project once I start.

mr drinky
04-08-2013, 10:57 PM
very nice turd ;)

k.

Zwiefel
04-08-2013, 11:13 PM
A bit off topic, but mythbusters did a more literal take on this ;)

Nice work on your part too!

schanop
04-08-2013, 11:14 PM
salute to you, sir.

chinacats
04-08-2013, 11:21 PM
Good job, a hell of an improvement!

Jmadams13
04-08-2013, 11:30 PM
Thanks all. It looks even better when it's not a crsppy iPhone picture, When I'm feeling less lazy and tired, I'll get a few real pics of the two together. The copper on the Kiritsuke came out better

Mrmnms
04-08-2013, 11:46 PM
Look great. Hard to believe it's the original handle it's so refined.

The Anti-Chrysler
04-08-2013, 11:47 PM
I will posit that "a turd" can not be polished. Poop can be compressed, dehyrated, and then polished. A turd, as found, is unpolishable. The axiom holds true.
That knife looks fantastic, by the way. :-)

knyfeknerd
04-09-2013, 12:00 AM
I will posit that "a turd" can not be polished. Poop can be compressed, dehyrated, and then polished. A turd, as found, is unpolishable. The axiom holds true.
That knife looks fantastic, by the way. :-)
What about coprolite?(fossilized turd)???
You can polish the hell outta it.

The Anti-Chrysler
04-09-2013, 12:04 AM
Coprolite qualifies as a stone.

Zwiefel
04-09-2013, 12:13 AM
I will posit that "a turd" can not be polished. Poop can be compressed, dehyrated, and then polished. A turd, as found, is unpolishable. The axiom holds true.
That knife looks fantastic, by the way. :-)

Dont want to threadjack here....but this is demonstrably counterfactual...check out the mythbusters episode.

Johnny.B.Good
04-09-2013, 12:15 AM
Impressive transformation!

The Anti-Chrysler
04-09-2013, 12:16 AM
I saw that episode. They polished compressed, dehydrated poop, not "turds".

Certain African tribes have been using compressed, dried, and polished poop for flooring for centuries. It's not new.

Jmadams13
04-09-2013, 12:21 AM
Impressive transformation!

Thank you. Idle hands....

labor of love
04-09-2013, 12:38 AM
what did you use exactly to sand the handle? its very nice.

sharkbite111
04-09-2013, 01:35 AM
Awesome! I thought I made a difference when I sanded off the KU finish on my petty....yours looks amazing!

Chris

Miles
04-09-2013, 02:55 AM
Wow! Who knew what lurked beneath...
Nice transformation!

Lefty
04-09-2013, 05:10 AM
Sexy!

don
04-09-2013, 11:01 AM
Very nicely done.

Jmadams13
04-09-2013, 11:08 AM
Thanks. Have to go to the auto parts store to get more sand paper, then I'll do a WIP on the petty.


As for sanding the handle: after each burn, I lightly sand with 300grit. When time comes to polish, I go 300/400/600/800/1000/2000. I then 2000 after each application of tung oil. I heat the wood up with a hair dryer before applying. Not sure if its true, but my wood working grandfather once told me it helps soak into the wood

I also went up to 2500 grit for polishing the copper

franzb69
04-09-2013, 11:37 AM
now it's a shiny turd? =D

labor of love
04-09-2013, 12:12 PM
Do you use auto sand paper in the handle?

Jmadams13
04-09-2013, 12:20 PM
Yeah. Wet/dry from autozone. I think it's a 3m brand

heirkb
04-09-2013, 05:10 PM
I really like what you did with the handle--looks awesome in terms of water resistance. Is that deep black handle color just from the burning or the tung oil? If I were to try this, would I just need to burn the handle as dark as I can and then just sand (that is what the post says but I'm wondering if there's any more to it)?

labor of love
04-09-2013, 05:20 PM
I really like what you did with the handle--looks awesome in terms of water resistance. Is that deep black handle color just from the burning or the tung oil? If I were to try this, would I just need to burn the handle as dark as I can and then just sand (that is what the post says but I'm wondering if there's any more to it)?

heirkb, he did mention that he was going to do some WIP photos of his ITK petty when he begins that project. i too would like to see how far you burn the handle, how long you oil the wood, dry the wood etc etc etc...
when i pull the trigger on that tanaka ginsanko gyuto, i may give it the same treatment if the handle is cheap.

Mike9
04-09-2013, 05:31 PM
That's a right fine lookin' turd there. I have a 210 gyuto and 150 petty from the ITK shirogami line and with a little work they are quite good working knives. I knock the kurouchi back with a 3m pad till it's smooth and it's fine. I removed it on the Petty and it's shiny, but lumpy looking from the hammer work. The Shirogami Yanagiba I have is polished like yours and takes a very keen edge and holds it. Pretty good bang for the buck for the motivated DIY'er.