I don't think I have learned anything without failing if not the first time, then definitely the second.
Nice looking handle otherwise.
I use a ShopSmith to bore the holes in my handles, as a horizontal boring machine. It is really easy to keep it aligned. I start with a true piece and lay out the bevels with a meat caliper. I rough in the bevels on the bandsaw with the table set at 45 degrees, then plane and sand to the lines. I've done six now with no failures, which means that the next one will blow up!
Great attempt Mark, Looks good. I still havent attempted it yet but im looking forward to doing it. Your post is inspiring!!!- I also have a great respect for the Wa handle makers. It just looks and feels right!!!!
Thanks--The Other Mark.lol
OK, full disclosure- my first WA I glued 2 pieces of wood together and then tried to make a slot for the tang. A 3/32 drill will not go straight into end grain. So I used a bandsaw to slice the blank into 2 pieces and cut a slot in each piece, so that when glued back together I would have a perfect hole for the tang, and in the process removed part of my middle finger in the tablesaw blade. The handle ended up fine, and most of e meat grew back on my finger.
Now I relieve the inside of the ferrule or bolster and make a tidy slot for the tang, then epoxy that onto the blade. The rest of the handle gets two parallel 1/4 inch holes bored into it and it is epoxyed onto the blade with a pin blind drilled into one side for suspenders. I got the idea from a WIP that Bill Burke did here.
I appreciate the input from you guys.
There have been a lot of great tips.
Tomorrow after shipping I will be back to my attempts.
Bummer about the finger. Glad to hear it healed up most of the way.
I have seen enough saw injuries that I am probably overly cautious anymore.
Big thing I have to remember is don't use the saws when I am tired.
Aside from the obvious, i think it turned out really nice. As good, if not better than mine lol. I did devise a cool jig to make the holes straight down in the wood, i will get pics up as soon as i find it lol
That's a damn nice first attempt Mark!
I think it comes down to how you secure the piece you drill. If you use a drill vise, those don't tend to be tall, and the upper half of the block might not be as rigid as the bottom. I had pretty good results with using a drill vise. Bear in mind that you might have to bolt it to a drill press table, otherwise you might setting yourself up for a failure.
Some people use pen vise. Those are designed for taller blocks.
Vertical or horizontal drilling? Both work well. You have to adapt to what you have. Sometimes you make some sort of jig to help you drill straight holes and minimize block wobble.
I often pre-drill with a smaller bit, and then follow up with a final size diameter bit.
I am using an old drill press.
Last attempt I just clamped a couple pieces of wood and held the block against them when I drilled.
This time I fabricated a piece that I can clamp to the table, and then clamp the block to it holding the block vertically square.
I think the pre drilling with the smaller bit is a real good idea.