Restoration project - Advice needed!!!

Discussion in 'Sharpening Station' started by ModRQC, Feb 21, 2020.

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  1. Feb 21, 2020 #1

    ModRQC

    ModRQC

    ModRQC

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    Hello guys,

    For TLDR’s focus on the bold part; because I had too many pictures, posted this as two messages; see below

    Some down time yesterday, found a scrape piece of medium grit sandpaper in junk stuff I was trashing, and it reminded me of something I had put aside long ago as a lost cause. Knowing more now about this particular domain, and having seen/read about the kind of stuff you guys can pull out, and having more specific equipment at hand, I decided it was time to try giving a new life to an old heirloom.

    This knife was my grandfather’s and it’s been abused in ways you’re about to discover. The man was good with his hands and with wood, but apparently, he didn’t carry out this kind of care or patience towards kitchen knives… At the point I decided to document this I had already used the sandpaper to bring back the handle a bit. You’ll surely recognize it…

    I don’t want to rehandle or anything, trying to keep this a restoration project, and use only what I already have or can have access to for free.

    IMG_3863.jpg IMG_3864.jpg IMG_3869.jpg IMG_3871.jpg

    … for the rounded parts of the handle I worked “off the board” in order to preserve the natural curves, sanding very lightly until smooth.

    IMG_3866.jpg

    … Nearest rivet was jutting out quite a bit, but I compressed/shaved it down with the sandpaper spread and attached to a hard surface without too much difficulty, just using a modicum of force. It’s still not entirely level but feels smooth, and same goes for the whole handle despite how roughened it still looks at some places.

    IMG_3867.jpg IMG_3868.jpg IMG_3872.jpg IMG_3873.jpg

    … Most of the work still to do: some sanding to remove the last bits of rotten-soft wood adhering to the metal and sand a bit inside the cracks too, but I will need to cut down the sandpaper to tinier bits and find a way to precision-use them there – no biggie. Thorough treatment with compressed air to remove any wood dust left in the cracks. Then sanitize, oil, and seal those cracks – I’ll use a bit of epoxy I have left to seal. Then I’ll give a bit of finish sanding, some rust eraser on the rivets to restore appearance, wash and dry, oil the whole thing and wax it.

    Obviously...
    IMG_3875.jpg
     
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  2. Feb 21, 2020 #2

    ModRQC

    ModRQC

    ModRQC

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    Now… It’s the metal I need your advice about. Never done that – and “that” is a big job no matter what it implies that I know of or do not know of yet. See the damage… it’s to the point that I can’t be sure WHAT the knife is exactly… but it’s sure vintage Victorinox Rosewood.

    According to my father, his father had it already when he was young, so it could be as old as 70 years or so. It measures up to a weird more or less 11 inches, depending if the whole blade or just the edge. Thinking it might have been a 12 inches scimitar, but if so, the damage done is far more extensive than I would have thought as it’s supposed to be much wider and upward at the tip – isn’t it? Perhaps it’s some kind of fisher knife Victorinox did back then to bone whales or something.

    IMG_3880.jpg IMG_3881.jpg IMG_3882.jpg

    Tip is damaged or otherwise have been broken and “reprofiled”…

    IMG_3885.jpg
    Gigantic chip right in the middle of the edge…

    IMG_3886.jpg
    Heel has been messed up too…

    IMG_3890.jpg
    Even the spine is extensively chipped…


    So guys… what are my best options?


    I have access to my 320 and 1000 grit Shapton ceramics… I may have coarser sandpaper somewhere… otherwise I’ll find some probably at my father’s garage, where I also have access to a couple of grinders and millings whatever they are… Don’t know much about these kinds of tools to tell the truth but could post some pictures of the equipment he has and will learn to use properly if you think some of it may get the rough part of the job done better.

    Thanks in advance for any help identifying the blade, any suggestion where to go from its state, any suggestion of tools best to use for the job before I get to the sharpening part at the very end of this project. I want to buff/remove enough metal to also remove the scars, would like to save what’s left of the logo if possible (don’t seem possible to me), but mostly I want it to be usable again. Would use I guess as some kind of carving-slicing knife for bigger cuts of meat, either raw or cooked.
     
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  3. Feb 22, 2020 #3

    ModRQC

    ModRQC

    ModRQC

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    Finished the sanding yesterday... way I figured it as I started to work was that I could just shave back the cracks into the handle until I reached the point where it was still fully touching the blade. Started with the worse side, and then shaved the other one about equally. Only place where I didn't try to shave down further was the big crack at the heel.

    Used a small metal brush inside the crack to remove any chips of wood left in there, and condition for the next step.

    Sprayed a fair amount of lemon juice inside... This revealed how close I was to the hollowed cracked part in the handle; on one side of the blade there's a faint dark line from the juice where scale meets tang; on the other side, a pronounced line, and further down the big crack a wet stain emerged where the wood is almost paper thin over the hollow.

    IMG_3897.jpg IMG_3898.jpg IMG_3900.jpg

    This was warm air dried, cooled down, then I used a torch lighter for a split second with a "swipe" inside the crack. Not the best treatment of the wood, but this huge cesspool needed to be addressed and that's the course I decided on: the handle would either endure that harsh treatment or something would be aggravated. That wouldn't be so bad: better now than later in use. But nothing yielded.

    Then a good amount of Boos Mystery Oil was used... I'd say a crazy amount, about half what I use on one side of my 12"x 18" board to maintain. Half of that amount was dripped inside the crack until it toppled out, twice; the other half two great dollops on each scale, then rub and let sink in and rub again.

    This morning it looked just gorgeous, rich dark healthy rosewood color, truly amazing! I'll take some pics tonight, of the handle and the fairly symmetrical shaving I did on both sides. All I have left to do now wait for the crack to absorb excess oil, fill with epoxy, lightly sand off excess epoxy when hardened and wax the whole thing.

    Then it's on with the blade... and I really would like some input folks! PLZ!!
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2020
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  4. Feb 24, 2020 #4

    ModRQC

    ModRQC

    ModRQC

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    More pics: oil-conditioned handle

    IMG_3901.jpg IMG_3902.png IMG_3903.jpg IMG_3904.jpg

    Still some equalizing to do... shaved as little as possible because I didn't want to weaken the handle further by applying pressure or thinning too much wood where it overlays the crack. I'll wait to fill the crack with epoxy before rounding all that up a bit more.

    IMG_3905.jpg

    Rivets were cleaned with a rust eraser and look much better too. And look at that wood, how old and soft it's become - guessing exposure to grease and water, and not much proper cleaning/drying, obviously never maintained. Up close you can see what I felt as I sanded it: it's chippy/powdery and mush a bit like sanding the end part of corrugated cardboard.

    IMG_3908.jpg IMG_3911.jpg IMG_3912.jpg IMG_3925.jpg

    The rivet jutting out has been sanded a last time before I cleaned it with the rust eraser. Still can feel it when rubbing with the thumb but looks and feels fairly equal otherwise.

    IMG_3926.jpg

    And then I realized I still didn't publish a picture of the whole thing... o_O:D
     
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  5. Feb 24, 2020 #5

    ModRQC

    ModRQC

    ModRQC

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    IMG_3920.jpg IMG_3919.jpg

    Of course I identified it since... my stupid mistake as it's a simple butcher knife, but I never looked much into those and thought Victorinox only made these with the wide rounded tip. Looking more closely at the lineup I saw they also have this profile as butcher knife. Guessing that at some point this oldie had a longer, pointier tip and was a full 12''...
     
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  6. Mar 30, 2020 #6

    ModRQC

    ModRQC

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    UPDATE - REPROFILE OF THE TIP... and thus of the whole knife.

    Reminder - what it was
    IMG_3880.jpg IMG_3882.jpg


    What it has become:
    OV-tip1.JPG OV-tip2.JPG OV-tip3.JPG OV-tip4.JPG

    Dropped the nose - grinded more proper, pointier tip - thinned according to the spine as true as possible considering a somewhat major change.

    Could have grinded a thinner/finer tip but the drop along the taper would have been much more significant; moreover, for the intended use of this knife in the end (slicing raw-cooked proteins) it wouldn't have been as interesting as dropping the tip to gyuto-alike and thin it enough so some tip work could still be involved without shifting the whole profile's purpose.

    Rough as this might appear to be, wait until I post the pics of the tool I worked that on... that was the real challenge, if nothing else. Have to wait to clear some "authorizations" to the intended use of the pics, and what they would show exactly. Equipment/location are not mine and I paid respect accordingly.
     
  7. Apr 1, 2020 #7

    ModRQC

    ModRQC

    ModRQC

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    Here's the equipment... Don't laugh. The authorizations needed were from my dad to confirm he didn't care if I posted pics. He said they don't use this grinder much nowadays, mainly the brush to clean bolts but most work he has more specific equipment for. Hence the state of this thing. He offered me to work on some expensive mill he has but I wanted simple and rustic equipment because my understanding and experience of it is such.

    However, pretty proud of my tip and spine grind because it SUCKED working there: the grinding wheel is so worn out that I was constantly working "around" the grinder motor, not so much "at" the knife itself.

    IMG_4239.JPG IMG_4240.JPG IMG_4241.JPG
     
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  8. Apr 2, 2020 #8

    Michi

    Michi

    Michi

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    You could buy your dad a new grinding wheel :)
     
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  9. Apr 2, 2020 #9

    ModRQC

    ModRQC

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    Knowing him he must have some spares ready to take place, but on the one hand I didn’t want him to waste any on my possibly bad use of it, on the other hand he might just have some spare brushes because that’s its only real use nowadays. I also guess that solely using it for bolts allows him to use them to almost nothing left without any hindrance. I don’t know or care past this reasoning.
     

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