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View Full Version : Woods I Use for Handle Work - Q&A / Information



Dave Martell
08-13-2011, 09:01 PM
Blocks or Scales
Blocks preferred for Rehandle work (1/2" thick minimum for scales)
Blocks mandatory for Martell Knives


Sizes
Gyuto - 5 x 1.5 x 1 (min)
Suji - 5.5 x 1.5 x 1 (min)


Stabilization Required?
Yes
*Exceptions - AZ Ironwood


Stabilization Accepted From
WSSI
K&G


Wood Dealers I Will Not Use
Woodstabilizer.com (Canada)
Ebay (anyone there)



Woods I Won't Work With
Cocobolo (poisonous)
Snakewood (cracklicious)
Ebony (cracklicious)
Palms - black & red (cracklicious)
Spalted anything (rotted wood) - Maybe OK if it's been stabilized by K&G
Walnut (dry dust like - always finishes crappy)
Mango (too porous)
Redwood (super soft)


Woods I'm Not In Love With (but will use for customers who prefer pretty over functional)
Buckeye Burl (punky wood soft)




Woods I Like to Work With
AZ Ironwood Burl or Straight Grain
Amboyna Burl
Maple Burl
Koa
Ash
African Blackwood
Birch Burl
Thuya Burl
Honduran Rosewood
Black Ash Burl
Box Elder



Optional Materials
Micarta




*Note - This list will be changed/updated as needed.

Marko Tsourkan
08-13-2011, 09:34 PM
...
Woods I Won't Work With
Cocobolo (poisonous)
...

I love cocobolo, particularly the smell of freshly resawed wood. :)
Hmm... maybe that is what makes me high?

steeley
08-13-2011, 09:52 PM
no snakewood
i love the smell of cocobolo also

Dave Martell
08-13-2011, 09:59 PM
no snakewood



Thanks - edited!

kalaeb
08-13-2011, 10:08 PM
Seriously? Cocobolo is poisonous? Just the dust, or bad as in don't use in conjunction with food?

Dave Martell
08-13-2011, 10:34 PM
It's the dust.

Vertigo
08-13-2011, 10:44 PM
Cocobolo dust and oils can cause severe allergic reactions in some people, and have no adverse effect on others. As with any other allergen, prolonged exposure to it may trigger an allergy in an otherwise healthy person.

It isn't poisonous, it's allergenic. And it is perfectly safe to work if you use a respirator and skin protection. Dave, I imagine, prefers to work au naturel. :D

PierreRodrigue
08-13-2011, 11:56 PM
I wear a respriator that protects against nuisance vapours and gasses. A little more than necessary, but hey, only got 1 good set of lungs left.

jmforge
08-14-2011, 01:08 AM
Add mango wood to that list. Mango trees contains the same allergen as poison ivy, albeit in much lower concentrations. I was never allergic to poison ivy as a young child but living in Miami, we had 20 mango trees in our yard and I had to clean up the mess. After a few years of that, I guess that I built up enough sensitivity to the chemical than one day I was allergic to poison ivy. Not the horrible month long experience like some get, but bad enough. I don't eat mango much and the concentration of the chemical is in the wood and sap. Just a warning. I forget what the allergen is in cocobolo, but it is also cumulative. Teak apparently does the same thing, but it takes much longer. I knew a guy who had a business called "The Teak Sheikh" in West Palm Beach. He did all of the teak work for boats companies like Viking in South Florida. One day after like 15 years, he woke up allergic to teak and had to sell his business.
Cocobolo dust and oils can cause severe allergic reactions in some people, and have no adverse effect on others. As with any other allergen, prolonged exposure to it may trigger an allergy in an otherwise healthy person.

It isn't poisonous, it's allergenic. And it is perfectly safe to work if you use a respirator and skin protection. Dave, I imagine, prefers to work au naturel. :D

jmforge
08-14-2011, 01:10 AM
no snakewood
i love the smell of cocobolo also
I hear that. If you think that palm and ebony are crackalicious, you obviously haven't worked with snakewood.

jmforge
08-14-2011, 01:11 AM
Dave, you won't work with redwood because of compacted dust and yet you like ironwood? LOL

Dave Martell
08-14-2011, 10:33 AM
Dave, you won't work with redwood because of compacted dust and yet you like ironwood? LOL

Yeah, they're completely different to me. I find ironwood to work easily because it's so hard and dense yet redwood just falls off the knife with a glance of sandpaper.

Rottman
08-14-2011, 10:58 AM
Here are some charts of irritants in wood dusts, not even maple is really safe to work with.
here (http://www.dave-wilcox.com/Woodturning/toxics.aspx) and here with potency ratings, scroll down (http://islandwoodturners.ca/documents/wooddust_toxicity.html)

Vertigo
08-14-2011, 04:37 PM
Moral of the story, wear a mask when working wood?

I got hit with a "cumulative" latex allergy. 15 years professional use and no problems, then one day I took my glove off and my hand was completely covered it a rash and swollen. Confirmed the latex allergy later that night when a different latex "glove" caused the same problem... elsewhere. Lol.

Rottman
08-14-2011, 06:36 PM
Moral of the story, wear a mask when working wood?

Seems like longsleeves and gloves too. In an ideal world of course.

apicius9
08-14-2011, 10:42 PM
Mmhh, I'm wearing a respirator (well, most of the time :scratchhead:) and glasses, but never thought about long sleeves. I don't think I even have anything with long sleeves anymore... As for the respirator, I used to just wear a simple msak, but with my beard that never did anything good. These days I think if I can smell it, I need to pull the mask tighter. But if I wantd to smell something, Honduran rosewood and thuya are nice...

Other than that, I basically agree with Dave, except for the spalted woods, of course. Ebony makes me cough and sneeze, so I am avoiding that. I just tried a piece of snakewood again, knowing all the issues. But K&G keeps claiming it can be stabilized and I picked up a stabilized piece, so we will see what happens.

Stefan

Dave Martell
09-25-2011, 10:50 PM
Stabilization Accepted From
WSSI
K&G


Woods I Won't Work With
Spalted anything (rotted wood) *some exceptions may apply




Got another spalted block in from an unknown stabilizer source and it buckled after being cut open. Garbage! :bashhead:

ecchef
09-26-2011, 12:38 AM
Confirmed the latex allergy later that night when a different latex "glove" caused the same problem... elsewhere. Lol.


http://www.simpsoncrazy.com/content/pictures/homer/homer-doh.png

Burl Source
09-26-2011, 08:49 PM
Got another spalted block in from an unknown stabilizer source and it buckled after being cut open. Garbage! :bashhead:

Do you still have the piece of wood?
I would be interested in seeing a photo if possible.

Dave Martell
09-26-2011, 09:22 PM
I got another one that buckled on me, one side only, this time spalted hackberry. I realized it as I was gluing up the scales....I'm not a happy camper. :bashhead:

Burl Source
09-27-2011, 05:22 PM
Where can we see photos of your recent projects?

Dave Martell
09-27-2011, 08:31 PM
Hi Mark, I don't have any pictures of the wonky woods to show.

Johnny.B.Good
01-24-2012, 01:20 AM
Hi Dave. I have been looking at some of Murray's IP series knives on his website, and am curious about his Corian handles. Have you ever (and/or would you ever) work with this material?

Dave Martell
01-24-2012, 01:46 AM
I haven't worked with Corian but I'd have no objections to trying it out. Jim actually gave me some pieces awhile back for this purpose, some scraps from his home remodeling.

Johnny.B.Good
01-24-2012, 01:57 AM
Thanks Dave, good to know. Will have to give this some thought... I am considering a Sabatier Nogent, but am already pretty sure I will hate the handle (though I could be wrong). How about a nice Dave Martell black Corian rehandle?

Dave Martell
01-24-2012, 01:58 AM
Thanks Dave, good to know. Will have to give this some thought... I am considering a Sabatier Nogent, but am already pretty sure I will hate the handle (though I could be wrong). How about a nice Dave Martell black Corian rehandle?


Sounds like fun. :)

apicius9
01-24-2012, 02:01 AM
I find it pretty easy to work with and would not expect major problems.

Stefan

Johnny.B.Good
01-24-2012, 02:01 AM
Sounds like fun. :)

Then how does three black Corian Dave Martell rehandles sound? (10" chef's, 6" slicer, 3" paring). ;)

Johnny.B.Good
01-24-2012, 02:02 AM
I find it pretty easy to work with and would not expect major problems.

Seems like it would be a nice smooth, polished surface. Easy to clean. Durable. Waterproof. Lots of pros. Not sure about feel...too plasticky?

sachem allison
01-24-2012, 02:06 AM
Thanks Dave, good to know. Will have to give this some thought... I am considering a Sabatier Nogent, but am already pretty sure I will hate the handle (though I could be wrong). How about a nice Dave Martell black Corian rehandle?

You may be surprised at how comfortable that handle is. been around for 140 years for a reason.lol

Johnny.B.Good
01-24-2012, 02:11 AM
You may be surprised at how comfortable that handle is. been around for 140 years for a reason.lol

I have read some reviews where people claim to like them. They sure don't photograph very well. Maybe Dave would mimic the shape for me in black Corian...

sachem allison
01-24-2012, 02:39 AM
my recommendation is to smooth all the edges, round them over and you will feel the difference. They are usually ebony handles also

Dave Martell
01-24-2012, 10:35 AM
Sounds like fun. :)


Then how does three black Corian Dave Martell rehandles sound? (10" chef's, 6" slicer, 3" paring). ;)


Sounds like triple the fun! :D

Eamon Burke
01-24-2012, 09:18 PM
1. A handle from Dave, for any knife, won't be uncomfortable. He wouldn't ship it out feeling crappy.
2. I don't like the Nogent handles either.

Dave Martell
05-20-2013, 02:34 PM
Just a reminder, something worth noting for my rehandle and Martell knife customers....

I love when a customer wants to shop for their own woods because this makes the results so much more individual and uniquely theirs, I have to still insist on some standards to be followed though. I listed these items at the beginning of this thread, here is a link to that post (http://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/showthread.php/2390-Woods-I-Use-for-Handle-Work-Q-amp-A-Information?p=36283&viewfull=1#post36283). Please read this and if you have any questions please ask before you purchase wood and send it here for use.

Recently I've had a lot of too thin scales, wood from unknown sources, and wood of questionable quality coming in. I have to refuse a lot of this wood and I hate doing this because it causes the customer a lot of grief. Again, please check with me or make sure it qualifies for my standards before purchasing.

Dave