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John Morris

Making a Knife from a Metal File

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While perusing YouTube this morning I came across "The Art of Craftsmanship" YouTube channel and he had a wonderful method that anyone can employ with the tools as woodworkers we already have on hand.

First, you need an ol rusty file or a file that isn't usable anymore, then you need your woodworking skills and common sense.

 

This was an enjoyable video for me to watch anyway, not a whole lot of music, straight forward speak from the young man knife maker, and speaking in easy to understand terminology.

There are many ways to make a knife, but I thought this was one way we all, as woodworkers can wrap our heads around, and most of us already have all the tools on hand to complete a knife from a file. Hope you enjoy. :)

 

 

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I don't watch you tube but I have been saving large metal files for years thinking some day I will have time to make a few knives.  I might have at least 30 laid back for that day to come. Most of what I been saving are the 14 and 16" models. I noticed a few have BGL engraved on them with the old 6 volt car battery  they use to use before they started selling electric engravers.... Dad died in 1951 so that stuff was use during ww2 at the ship yard where he worked. I wonder if aged metal get better with time?

Edited by Smallpatch

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Small side note you will NEED something to heat treat the knife when finish.  Simple VERY simple to do.  Heat it up until NON MAGNETIC I HIGHLY RECOMMENCED NORMALIZING THE metal BEFORE you go into the heat treating process.  You can get away with using Canola Oil... Your basic cooking oil.  I've used that on multiple occasions and it works quite well.  Not only that I would then go into the Tempering process.  After you've cleaned off the scale and what not the cooked oil from the quench.  Throw it in your Oven at about 450 degrees F for TWO 2 Hour cycles.   Then you should be good to go.  Other wise the file knife will not hold an edge.  Just something to add to that... If you plan on getting that far with it.

 

Edited by AndrewB

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Once you've done it.... it just becomes easier the more you do it.  Soon enough  you wont have to use a magnet youll just be able to tell by the color of the steel.  Small side note @John Morris if you come across any old NICHOLSON files.... those work the best and are the better quality of steel.  1095 I think it is.

Edited by AndrewB

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