View Full Version : Low Tech, Lam Wa-Handle
10-05-2012, 07:13 PM
I wanted a new handle for my Tanaka 240 blue #2 Gyuto, but didn't have time to jig up for a traditional re-handle job. Instead I did a laminated handle from nice curly maple and some type of rain forest wood I found in the road (no really).
First I drew the outline of the knife and handle. Then I chiseled off the Ho handle - it's epoxy all the way. Then sliced the wood core the width of the tang.
Then band sawed the tang's outline for a snug fit.
After that I epoxied slabs of wood for the "ferrule" and handle sides and when cured I rough shaped them on the sander. In this case a modified D with taper.
The dry fit was nice and tight
After I was satisfied I applied thinned tung oil mixed with a little spar for color and hardness. Can't show the finished product, but it has a nice bling factor and feels great to use.
10-05-2012, 08:22 PM
That's extremely slick.
10-05-2012, 08:51 PM
That is really smart. I'm pretty sure that's how Carter did them on the **** Anniversary knives, and others. I might steal this. :)
10-06-2012, 06:07 PM
I've done five so far and every tang is a different width with a different bit of wonkiness to it.
I was looking through a stack of woods I bought for guitar stock over the years and will be doing some in maple burl, sapele, curly redwood, spalted maple etc. This technique lends itself well to pieces of 1/2" thick stock.
10-07-2012, 04:55 PM
I've been planning on using pretty much this technique for a hidden tang western, since I can't figure out any good way to chisel out a tang hole. Great pictures too!
10-09-2012, 09:59 PM
Lefty made a comment about how Murray Carter had used this technique over a year ago, and Murray's just put up several using the technique.
10-14-2012, 07:48 PM
Nice work, buddy!
I have done one handle this way not long ago but it didnīt work well and seemed too prone to splitting at the joints so I added two pins to it to add strenght. Today I was working on the second one and will probably do the same. Of course, this is easier in my case as I leave the tangs soft..
11-04-2012, 05:36 PM
I put a slot in the bottom using a circular saw, and then use endcaps so it is somewhat hidden. Just another way to go.
You can see the parts in this picture. The black end caps fit onto tenons on the body of the handle and a spacer fills the slot from below. Everything is glued up at once which is a bit tricky, but very solid when done as all voids are filled with epoxy (e-120hp).
11-04-2012, 06:50 PM
My woodworker buddy told me that this way of making handles(similar overall, and functionally identical to how I do it) is how a woodworker would make a handle. I showed him some Wa handles and he said they were a joinery nightmare. I tend to agree.
Murray Carter did one that he called a cigarette handle, and I thought it looked awesome--might as well borrow design themes from things that got millions of dollars in research!
10-25-2013, 11:56 PM
pretty ingenious way of simplifying a wa handle
10-26-2013, 01:46 AM
great looking handle and something I can follow. I'll definitely have to try one of these while working up to a traditional.
10-27-2013, 12:33 AM
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