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What size pin stock for Tojiro ITK rehandle?

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TB_London

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Hi all,

Am going to rehandle my Tojiro ITK 270mm bread knife, but before i take the scales off does anyone know what size the pin holes in the tang are? That way i can buy some in so i don't have to use it without a handle whilst i wait for some to pin stock to arrive.

Cheers,
Tom
 

kalaeb

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I usually use 1/4 inch corbys. The required tang hole is about 3/16. I have to bore out the tang holes just a litte to make it fit.
 

Dave Martell

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You likely have rivets holding the scales on now which if so have very slim shafts running through the tang (maybe 2-3mm wide?). So unless you can find pinstock this narrow (and you won;t know how narrow the holes are until you remove the scales) you'll find that you'll likely have to drill out the holes so you might as well plan for that by selecting the pins that you want and purchasing a corresponding drill bit ahead of time. I'd recommend slightly oversizing the holes in the tang to allow for some wiggle room for you in fit up. If you have a drill press you might be best served with a carbide tipped drill bit since the tang may be hardened a bit (sometimes the front hole section is very hard).

Good luck!
 

TB_London

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Cheers for the responses, yeah pretty sure they're cutlery rivets. I have some cobalt drills but these have struggled with enlarging the holes on other tangs, shall take a look for carbide drills sound to be more useful. Sounds like it's a case of cut them off and see what i find :D

Cheers,
Tom
 

ThEoRy

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Keep us posted on this with maybe some progress reports. I'd like to take a crack at this soon myself.
 

TB_London

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Will do, going to take the handle off tomorrow so will take some pics of what lies beneath the scales
 

SameGuy

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Do people rehandle yos to was? Is it fairly easy to grind the tang to the length required for use in mounting a custom wa handle? I assume balance goes way off, but for the ITK bread knife than might be less of a concern.
 

Dave Martell

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Do people rehandle yos to was? Is it fairly easy to grind the tang to the length required for use in mounting a custom wa handle? I assume balance goes way off, but for the ITK bread knife than might be less of a concern.
For a bolsterless knife like this one it's pretty easy to grind the tang down for a wa handle. It's much more complicated doing this conversion on a bolstered knife since you have to grind the bolster off and re-surface the knife too.
 

SpikeC

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Why not just reshape the bolster to match the front of the Wa handle?
 

Taz575

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Ugh, I hate bolsters of metal! Especially ones that are already on the knife, can't change much w/o serious grinding.

This is a Tojiro Honesuki (DP maybe??) that I redid with red micarta. I have been using 1/8" pin stock for most handles lately, I finally got a #30 drill bit and love how the pin slides right into the hole w/o having to ream the hole or sand the pin down. I haven't looked up the right pin for 3/16" or 1/4" pins yet, but one of these days I will!



If I do the 1/8" pin in an oversized hole, I groove the pin to hold epoxy and make sure the hole is completely filled with epoxy (JB Quik Weld). I will drill the handle material so that the pin is right at the back of the hole closest to the blade and at the front of the pin hole closest to the butt of the handle. This way the handle can't slide back and forth much at all, makes it easier to align. I have carbide bits, but my drill press isn't very tight and precise, so I haven't used them yet.

I agree the bolts are stronger, but I've never had any problems with the pins and epoxy coming off. I tried to redo some of my older knife handles with the quik weld and pins and the handle materials were splitting before the epoxy was letting go. I would take another knife blank with a thin tip, and hammer it into the gap between the handle and tang to split them.
 

Deckhand

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Why not just reshape the bolster to match the front of the Wa handle?
I like how you think, and it would look cool. It seems that unless the bolster was very large this wouldn't work. Unless you made a very skinny wa handle. I thought about having Dave modify some of my knives to wa from western.
 

jmforge

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Yeah, that weld would make fitting the scales interesting.
Ugh, I hate bolsters of metal! Especially ones that are already on the knife, can't change much w/o serious grinding.

This is a Tojiro Honesuki (DP maybe??) that I redid with red micarta. I have been using 1/8" pin stock for most handles lately, I finally got a #30 drill bit and love how the pin slides right into the hole w/o having to ream the hole or sand the pin down. I haven't looked up the right pin for 3/16" or 1/4" pins yet, but one of these days I will!



If I do the 1/8" pin in an oversized hole, I groove the pin to hold epoxy and make sure the hole is completely filled with epoxy (JB Quik Weld). I will drill the handle material so that the pin is right at the back of the hole closest to the blade and at the front of the pin hole closest to the butt of the handle. This way the handle can't slide back and forth much at all, makes it easier to align. I have carbide bits, but my drill press isn't very tight and precise, so I haven't used them yet.

I agree the bolts are stronger, but I've never had any problems with the pins and epoxy coming off. I tried to redo some of my older knife handles with the quik weld and pins and the handle materials were splitting before the epoxy was letting go. I would take another knife blank with a thin tip, and hammer it into the gap between the handle and tang to split them.
 

Taz575

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The weld wasn't too bad. I busted out the Dremel and ground away a gap for the weld. The original handles had a gap milled already in the handle. On the Kikuichi Carbon Elite I redid, the bolsters were hollow, which was pretty cool!
 

Taz575

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LOL, no, I didn't take the after pics. I will see if I can get some today maybe. It came out OK; I used my buffing wheel to polish the bolster and blade up a bit just to see how it would work. It did much better than I thought it would, but there are some deeper scratches I need to remove and I over sanded the handle at one point, so it's a bit below the bolster. I rarely use the knife, so the stuff like that doesn't bother me. I mainly wanted to see what the red Micarta looks like when buffed out compared to the Maroon.
 

TB_London

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So, drilled the rivets out and good news was the handle wasn't glued on at all, so once the rivets were out the scales came clean off.
Pin holes are 4mm with slots at the top and bottom and a hole in the middle. I have 4mm stainless rod already so just need to work out which wood to use. From the pictures which do people think would be best, I'm thinking the Chestnut burl...

Pics:
Drilling the rivets:

Tang:

Choice of woods:

Close up-chestnut left, Black Ash right

Left to Right-Desert Ironwood, Ringed Gidgee, Maple burr
 
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The Edge

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My vote would be for the Black Ash. I think it would go well with the serrations.
 

quantumcloud509

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My vote for the desert iron wood. I think it fits the knife better, and if I had you rehandle my ITK into WA, thats the one Id ask for... *hint, hint* :biggrin:
 

Taz575

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I would say Ironwood or Ringed Gidgee. The others looks too nice for a more plain blade. When you get a blade for the other wood handles, you will know. Sometimes the blade/blank speaks to you :)
 

kalaeb

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That is some wicked looking black ash. Have fun.
 

Eamon Burke

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That is a mighty fine piece of ash you got there, bit my vote is for the gidgee.
 

TB_London

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Managed to get a bit done on this tonight, had problems getting hold of the right sized drill to countersink for the cutlers rivets, will post up pics tomorrow.
 

SpikeC

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The counter sink is the tricky part with cutlers rivets. I finally broke down and bought a dedicated tool for it.
 

RobinW

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Nice WIP.

Thinking about doing the same to my ITK bread.
 

TB_London

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Aaaaah, where the belt finish from the blade extends to the tang, it's slightly rounded and no longer flat. This explains the gaps I had on the stock handle, and the F+F issues people noted in another thread. Guess I'll just use a bit of glue and sawdust to seal it.
Is this where a slightly compressible liner would even it out?
 

Taz575

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A liner may work, or use some JB Quik Weld (it dries a dark grey, thick stuff, not runny) to fill in the gap there. Of you are going to use an epoxy and sawdust, let it start to set up a bit before you use it so it's not as runny, depending on the type of epoxy you are using. Some can be runny, others can be nice and thick to fill the gap.
 

chefwatson

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I would like to preface this by saying, I am not trying to hijack the thread and I hope that it is ok to post these here. I am by no means trying to drum up business or anything of the sort. I just thought others would like to see what is, at least, possible

I have never worked with wood or metal before but when I first received my Tojiro ITK bread knife, the first thing I thought was that it needed new scales.

I don't have any before and after photos... just the after. I am sure enough people here have seen the knife to know what it looks like stock. I purchased some black and white ivory from Mark @ Burl Source and bought a rod of mosaic pin off of eBay.








Please be gentle with me, like I said I have never even considered attempting something like this before. I know some don't like the mosaic pin look but I thought with this color wood, it would bring everything out more. Critiques and questions are welcomed. I know better photos can be taken as well.
 
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