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Thread: News from the shop

  1. #21
    Das HandleMeister apicius9's Avatar
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    Hi Spike, that is an interesting idea, I will send you a pm once I did a bit nore research on them.

    Stefan

  2. #22

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    Stefan, just out of curiosity, what type of epoxy do you use for your handles? I have been using Gorilla Glue for some of the western handles that I have done, but it is a bit of a PITA due to the expansion. I would love to know what the pros use.

  3. #23
    Das HandleMeister apicius9's Avatar
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    O.k., This is what the handles looked like last night:


    By apicius9 at 2011-04-03


    This is what they looked like tonight when I left the shop:


    By apicius9 at 2011-04-03

    A few still need a bit more tapering and a few are still a bit large, but it's moving forward. I am a little worried that a few will come out a bit smaller than I wanted - the last batch was a bit large and maybe I overcompensated a bit. We will see...

    Next step is cutting the octagon edges or shaping them into a D-shaped handle. Most are going to be octagons, only 2 or 3 are D-shaped. I like doing a few D-shaped ones while I work on octagons, less boring and makes me pay more attention. For the octagons, I start the edge on a disc sander that is angled to 45* and then finish them on the sander. It's all about eye-hand coordination... I could probably build a jig, but where is the fun in that? Depending on the materials, I go to anywhere between 400 and 800 grit on the sander and then finish by hand sanding. I have bcome pretty good and precise on the sander, but some materials, like white horn or purple heart wood, burn very easily at higher temperatures (= higher grits), so I vary depending on the materials. Same with the D-shaped ones, just that I completely free-hand them on the sander. I have a few more handles in the works, they were on another table.

    Kalaeb,

    I have gone through about a dozen epoxies. Gorilla glue is very strong, but the expansion makes it next to useless in this context IMHO. This last batch I just glued with Devcon 2-ton, you should find that easily in Homedepot etc. It's a decent epoxy but not the best, I only use it if I have 'unproblematic handles', i.e. no metal parts, nothing overly brittle or things that need a stronger bond. For those, I often use the house epoxy by knifeandgun.com. That one is suposedy industrial strength and I never had issues with it. However, it's a 24h epoxy, so it takes forever to set. But if metal is involved, that is my favorite. But if you use corby bolts, the epoxy is just an additional security, and any Davcon should work fine. There is also the 5-minute stuff, but I rarely use that, too much pressure to act fast

    I also like West epoxy that is used in marine contexts, but I am just out of it, need to get a new set. That last stuff is pricey ($65) but it's a larger container. I also like that it is more liquid that others, so it's the best one I know for filling things and rehandling.

    Hope that helps,

    Stefan

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  5. #25
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    Stefan, regarding the epoxy, have you any experience with AcraGlas, a rifle barrel bedding product sold by Brownell's? I remember using it some years ago to fit a set of grips to a small pistol and I thought it was a great product. Might be just the thing for bonding dissimilar materials.

    http://www.brownells.com/.aspx/pid=1.../ACRAGLAS_reg_

  6. #26
    Das HandleMeister apicius9's Avatar
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    Thanks for reminding me, I have some acra glass sitting on my shelf, but have not tested it, yet. It is supposedly the most heat stable one and might be a good choice when metal is involved that can heat up very quickly on the sander. I will run a test with it and see how I like it.

    Stefan

  7. #27
    Delbert Ealy's Avatar
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    Stefan,
    I have used acraglass on all my kitchen knives and I will continue to use it. When ever I ask some of my most trusted knifemaker friends what is the best glue to use the answer always came up the same; acraglass. Its a bit thinner than most epoxies, but I have found that is more of an asset than a hinderence. I like to leave it overnight to set and then get back to work the next day. Measuring it out is critical, it won't set right if the amounts are off. It also has to be mixed well, 4 minutes of mixing.
    I will second the recommendation on the flex-shaft tool, check out rio grande jewelers supply, they are made for working and will out-do the dremel. I have had mine for close to 20 years and its still going strong.
    Thanks,

    Laminated metals specialist, Kitchen knife and gadget maker
    www.ealyknives.com
    www.mokume-jewelry.net
    "Build a man a fire and he will be warm for a day, set a man on fire and he will be warm for the rest of his life"

  8. #28
    Das HandleMeister apicius9's Avatar
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    Thanks for the confirmation, Delbert, Rick & Spike. I had all forgotten about the acra glass on my shelf, I will definitely try it out next. Supposedly this is also the most heat stable of all the epoxies, so I will try it out with the next handles that have a metal spacer. And I have also decided to get one of the flex-shaft tools, just figuring out which one - there is a woodcarving basics kit, that might be the one for me Just need to sell another camera lens first...

    Stefan

  9. #29

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    Thanks for the tips on the epoxy. It is much appreciated and I will try out some on my next re-handle.

  10. #30
    Das HandleMeister apicius9's Avatar
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    Busy day at work today, and I still found enough time to spend almost $400 on a Foredom, $60 on a stand for my sander, and $160 on drills. Sent wood for stabilizing that will cost me $500+, am about to send out a $700 order for buffalo horn, and I still need a band saw. Well, maybe I'll make a profit next year...

    Stefan

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