Quantcast
Natural Wood Handles - Koa and Layered Birch Bark
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 12

Thread: Natural Wood Handles - Koa and Layered Birch Bark

  1. #1

    Natural Wood Handles - Koa and Layered Birch Bark

    Every time I pick my wife's knife (my #2 knife that I put a generic ho wood handle on), I remind myself how light and nimble the knife feels. Granted, the knife is thin, but the lightness of the handle is partially responsible for the weight.

    This got me thinking about using some of my koa unstabilized on smaller knives like my 180mm gyuto. I am also in a process of making handles from layered birch bark, This one also should be pretty light. I will treat both with some sort of finish, but both will require minimal maintenance with some natural oil/wax mixture (I will come up with something).

    I have made a handle in unstabilized koa before, and it fared well in a home environment, besides, I am thinking about capping the ends of koa with blackwood (maybe even make slented D, with a blackwood endcap).

    Thoughts?


    "If there’s something worth doing, it’s worth overdoing.” - An US saying.

    If my KKF Inbox is full (or not), please contact me via Email: anvlts@gmail.com

  2. #2
    I have been making handles from Maple, Koa and redwood that was unstabilized, and to be hunest i think its better then stabilized, like you said wight and colors just more natural and i like it I did not see any difference in shrinking or movement compered to stabilized wood, but i might be just lucky

  3. #3
    If wood is seasoned (dried), and you don't soak it in water, it's pretty stable. It might not be as stable as stabilized, but colors are more natural and it is lighter. We care a lot about carbon steel already, so adding an extra step - periodic application of oil/wax for handles, should not be a problem.

    Maxim - good to hear that you had good experience with unstabilized wood. For now I am only considering koa and birch bark, but maple would be something down the road to consider.

    M


    "If there’s something worth doing, it’s worth overdoing.” - An US saying.

    If my KKF Inbox is full (or not), please contact me via Email: anvlts@gmail.com

  4. #4
    Its because i had one experience that i thought was super weird, I had re handled like 6 western knives 3 with stabilized wood and 3 with unstabilized. After 2 weeks in the store 3 of the knives scales shrinked just under 0,5 mm and guess what it was 3 stabilized The unstabilized stuff was just fine but it was Snakewood and Ironwood hehe

    But yeah very good seasoned wood will hold up just fine i think

  5. #5
    Oily woods like snakewood and ironwood are naturally stable, it would take pretty extreme changes in humidity to notice their movement. Koa and maple, on the other hand, are not oily. Stefan mentioned many times that in Hawaii they make oars out of koa.

    Found this - "Because of its nearly equal tangential and radial shrinkage, (its T/R Ratio is only 1.1), Koa tends to be quite stable regarding environmental changes in humidity)

    Anyway, I will give this project a try and see how thins turn out.


    "If there’s something worth doing, it’s worth overdoing.” - An US saying.

    If my KKF Inbox is full (or not), please contact me via Email: anvlts@gmail.com

  6. #6
    Senior Member Anton's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Venice, CA
    Posts
    545
    From my perspective the lower weight would be greatly welcomed, for me there's nothing like a very nimble and overall light blade

  7. #7
    Senior Member zitangy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    SIngapore
    Posts
    497
    Quote Originally Posted by Marko Tsourkan View Post

    Found this - "Because of its nearly equal tangential and radial shrinkage, (its T/R Ratio is only 1.1), Koa tends to be quite stable regarding environmental changes in humidity)
    From my understanding, Quartersawn cut wood would have the above said movt properties. Either Kiln dried or naturally and it is the latter, has to be for about 1 inch think.. takes about 1 year of storage in a well aired and shaded place.

    Only way I can tell is when looking at the growth ring lines.. it shld be greater than 60 degrees slope.

    hv fun and stay sharp..
    D

  8. #8
    Sponsors Dream Burls's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    1,207
    Quote Originally Posted by maxim View Post
    Its because i had one experience that i thought was super weird, I had re handled like 6 western knives 3 with stabilized wood and 3 with unstabilized. After 2 weeks in the store 3 of the knives scales shrinked just under 0,5 mm and guess what it was 3 stabilized The unstabilized stuff was just fine but it was Snakewood and Ironwood hehe

    But yeah very good seasoned wood will hold up just fine i think
    Stabilization can be performed in many ways and many of them are not really effective. I'd be interested to know how the stabilized pieces that shrunk were stabilized and by whom.
    Please visit my store at www.dreamburls.com Imagine the possibilities!
    Email me at service@dreamburls.com
    Visit our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/dream.burls
    All sales are backed with a no questions asked money back guarantee.

  9. #9
    by Knife & Gun Finishing Supply in Arizona

    Quote Originally Posted by Dream Burls View Post
    Stabilization can be performed in many ways and many of them are not really effective. I'd be interested to know how the stabilized pieces that shrunk were stabilized and by whom.

  10. #10
    Sponsors Dream Burls's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    1,207
    Well that is weird! The only thing I can think of is that the wood was not dry enough when it was stabilized!?
    Please visit my store at www.dreamburls.com Imagine the possibilities!
    Email me at service@dreamburls.com
    Visit our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/dream.burls
    All sales are backed with a no questions asked money back guarantee.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •