Re-scale a TF western handle

Kitchen Knife Forums

Help Support Kitchen Knife Forums:

tostadas

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 27, 2020
Messages
2,070
Reaction score
3,674
Location
California
Curious if anyone has photos of what a western TF tang/bolster looks like with the scales removed.

I'm considering re-scaling one of my TFs as a future project. Just from visual inspection, in general the handle looks pretty uneven. Also, everything I've read about this work should steer me away, but I'm still curious. I've seen some nice finished products of rehandled TFs, but the question is what work is needed to get to that point?
 
Joined
Aug 13, 2016
Messages
3,094
Reaction score
4,657
Location
USA
Many use g10 liners between the scales and tang since the tangs are usually pretty rough. This makes it easier, without the need to make the tang super flat.

PXL_20211016_215215894.jpg
PXL_20211016_215245705.jpg
 

McMan

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 15, 2018
Messages
2,405
Reaction score
2,619
I had one rehandled by Dave 5+ years ago. It's in hiw re-handle thread (and he may have even posted another thread). Long story short, he had to convert to hidden tang because the TF tang was jacked--multiple low spots filled with black epoxy. I'll see if I can dig up the thread.

Edit:
It's post #559:
 
Last edited:

McMan

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 15, 2018
Messages
2,405
Reaction score
2,619
And here's the thread that shows the TF tang:
 

new2brew

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 18, 2017
Messages
55
Reaction score
50
Location
Media, PA
I too have a TF western handle that I would like to “rehandle”, not rescale. If I went from western to wa would the balance of the knife be thrown off too much? Could / should I use a heavier wood to counter this? Is this a possibility? Any comments would be appreciated.
 
Joined
Jul 28, 2020
Messages
1,150
Reaction score
3,422
Location
Atlanta
I too have a TF western handle that I would like to “rehandle”, not rescale. If I went from western to wa would the balance of the knife be thrown off too much? Could / should I use a heavier wood to counter this? Is this a possibility? Any comments would be appreciated.

do you want to sell it to me and just buy a wa instead :p

Usually TF wa is more forward balanced than yo. This is because of the full tang (metal all the way through the handle). Removing a good portion of that steel in a wa conversion would tip the knife forward.

If you prefer the balance of a yo but the shape of a wa then yes you could choose a heavier wood/longer handle/install further back.

Also IME the tangs of TF wa is thicker than the tangs of TF yo
 

new2brew

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 18, 2017
Messages
55
Reaction score
50
Location
Media, PA
I’m thinking your joking about selling you the western, but yes I would. I mistakenly chose the western by default as I went back and forth on their website thinking my original choice held, but reverted back to western default. They would have taken it back but….shipping is on me. So if your not joking and it’s amicable sure!
 
Joined
Oct 2, 2019
Messages
1,542
Reaction score
2,701
Location
CT
I’m thinking your joking about selling you the western, but yes I would. I mistakenly chose the western by default as I went back and forth on their website thinking my original choice held, but reverted back to western default. They would have taken it back but….shipping is on me. So if your not joking and it’s amicable sure!
Is that a 240 denka? I have a WTB thread for a 240 western denka just so you know.
 
Joined
May 31, 2014
Messages
293
Reaction score
285
Location
Amsterdam
Did anyone give this a try in the mean time?
I am about to give it a shot on my TF Mab 210. I feel the handle is too narrow. Bought some stabilized walnut that I plan to install with brass pins.

I am just a bit concerned about unknown unkowns that may appear from under the scales. Not a pro and it doesn't have to achieve Dave's standards but I would still like it to look pretty good.

Thanks for any input!
 

tostadas

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 27, 2020
Messages
2,070
Reaction score
3,674
Location
California
Did anyone give this a try in the mean time?
I am about to give it a shot on my TF Mab 210. I feel the handle is too narrow. Bought some stabilized walnut that I plan to install with brass pins.

I am just a bit concerned about unknown unkowns that may appear from under the scales. Not a pro and it doesn't have to achieve Dave's standards but I would still like it to look pretty good.

Thanks for any input!
I ended up ripping off the scales, but haven't gotten around to installing new ones yet. There was minimal epoxy to contend with. Mainly just 2 pakka scales held on with compression pins. Comes off fairly easily with some prying. The dremel wasn't necessary but helped a little.

My tang is also tapered, just fyi

Here's some pics
 
Joined
May 31, 2014
Messages
293
Reaction score
285
Location
Amsterdam
So yesterday as part of the rescaling project I started out with reshaping/tapering the tang (or is it bolster?) with the factory handle still in place. I figured this would give some guidance when shaping new scales.
Took inspiration from pics in this thread and pics of beautiful Shigefusa western handles and convinced myself that the factory tang shape had to go.

The tang is really soft stainless that can easily be reshaped with a file. Clamped it to a cutting board on the kitchen countertop.

Really happy with the result, tang is now tapered and has wider flats on the sides which makes it much more comfortable.

Some before and after pics.
Didn't go all the way because I want to save some steel for later.

EB552919-78F7-46F2-9B7A-8ACF38CFFEEF.jpeg
53BF94A7-6E25-4E67-BF3C-03D6B229ED3A.jpeg
898A77C5-4A6D-489C-95D3-AD37E3DC6626.jpeg
9205A43C-40E9-44EA-84EA-4D18E74C1A65.jpeg
 
Last edited:
Joined
May 31, 2014
Messages
293
Reaction score
285
Location
Amsterdam
So now I knocked of the original scales, using an old screwdriver as a chisel and a light hammer to carefully chip away. Took 5 minutes.
What is underneath was pretty decent and flat. And it has the stainless cladding so no risk for rust underneath the scale.
 

Attachments

  • 72D2B2F6-FE38-49D0-9B27-2FBF370178AF.jpeg
    72D2B2F6-FE38-49D0-9B27-2FBF370178AF.jpeg
    88 KB · Views: 32
  • 34347223-DA25-4361-9EB4-0C2C19873E93.jpeg
    34347223-DA25-4361-9EB4-0C2C19873E93.jpeg
    68.1 KB · Views: 32
  • 220A839D-56C2-4171-9397-898DB8DDD3A5.jpeg
    220A839D-56C2-4171-9397-898DB8DDD3A5.jpeg
    90.6 KB · Views: 33
Last edited:
Joined
May 31, 2014
Messages
293
Reaction score
285
Location
Amsterdam
I made a dummy handle in soft pine wood to see if I could actually make what I had in mind, something more sculpted. I cut it in 2 halves and installed it as a mock-up just to find out whether I like the shape (which I do!).
Next step will be making real scales with stabilized walnut.
 

Attachments

  • 1FDED75A-EBBD-4D98-B937-799C354DF193.jpeg
    1FDED75A-EBBD-4D98-B937-799C354DF193.jpeg
    72.1 KB · Views: 74
  • C5379B14-1CCE-4D70-8456-9E60F8F93CB5.jpeg
    C5379B14-1CCE-4D70-8456-9E60F8F93CB5.jpeg
    56.9 KB · Views: 67
  • 0F801BEC-D9DF-4E96-A55B-EF56AA28FBFC.jpeg
    0F801BEC-D9DF-4E96-A55B-EF56AA28FBFC.jpeg
    74.9 KB · Views: 58
Last edited:
Top