Home > Instructions & Guides > Tapered Tang Blades with Pinned Guards & Handles

1. Select Materials and tools required for your project. Read procedure carefully.

2. Cover sharp edge of blade with masking tape. This will protect you and the blade.

3. Fit your guard by aligning pin hole in guard and blade. Pin guard to blade making sure pin protrudes equally from both sides. If guard does not fit tightly to blade (if any gap shows) it will be necessary to clamp at top of guard before going to step 4.

4. Pein pin to guard by placing firmly on anvil. Pein one side then the other, alternating sides until pin has "sculled" out inside the hole making a very tight fit. As you work down your guard, the metals will mesh and you will not see the pin at all, the guard will appear as one piece. Reshape guard & tang as desired.

5. Mark the side of your handle material that will fit next to tang being careful to match any color patterns that your material may contain. Mark end of each piece that will fit against guard.

6. Fit handle material to guard by filing and sanding until you have a good square fit with NO GAPS or lines showing. Do both pieces.

7. Lay blade on handle material carefully making sure it lays squarely and tightly against guard. Scribe outline of blade onto handle, (you may want to clamp first so that handle will not slip.) Repeat with second piece of handle material using opposite side of the tang.

8. Leaving slightly oversize, remove excess handle material with jewelers saw, belt sander or other means available.

9. Using 220 grit sandpaper, sand the handle mated- al flat on the side that will fit against tang of blade. Sand tang of blade with same paper. This will remove any foreign material and assure a good adhesion of blade to handle material.

10. Carefully attach one (1) piece of handle material to tang of blade with epoxy. Make sure the handle material is centered properly and that it fits perfectly against guard with no gaps. Clamp and allow epoxy to set. You may want to allow drying overnight.

11. Using pin holes in blade as a template, drill these holes with the proper drill bit. Be sure to drill in center of holes, drill slowly and carefully so you will not splin- ter handle material, (a drill press is best if available.) EXTREME CAUTION is advised when using your blade as a pattern for drilling holes. Be sure the blade and handle materials are clamped securely and the blade is protected with tape to help protect the opera- tor from being cut or otherwise injured if the drilling operation tries to twist or grab the work out of the vise.

12. OPTIONAL THONG HOLE: If you wish to use a thong hole, drill this hole using blade hole as tem- plate.

13. Repeat step 10 using second piece of handle material.

14. Drill holes for pins and thong hole (it desired) as in steps 11 & 12 using holes through handle material as guides. Holes must be drilled straight and properly centered for pins to fit correctly.

15. Insert pins through holes drilled in handle materi- al. It may be necessary to polish your pins and thong hole tubing with emery cloth to assure they will slide in and out of the holes easily. They should be snug, but not tight enough to risk cracking the wood when pushing in or out.

16. Mix a small amount of epoxy. Roll pins and thong hole tubing (if installing) in epoxy. Insert pins in holes. Allow to dry until set. Excess pin material will be sand- ed off when shaping and buffing handle.

17. You are now ready to shape your guard and han- dle into one. Power tools such as belt sanders and Dremel tools with sanding drums aid greatly in speed- ing up the shaping and roughing work. However, final hand shaping and sanding produce the best results. Using a file, a half-round, second-cut works great, shape your handle and guard to desired shape, fitting to your hand. Sand with sandpapers, finishing with a 600 grit wet-dry. If a polished look is desired, buff with a muslin wheel and a white rouge.

18. Remove masking tape, clean and sharpen your knife to a keen edge.

19. With the blade in the halfway position, insert two strips of .002 shim stock until touching the hinge pin, one on each side of your blade, under the bolster and liner. You might want to counter- sink the hinge pin hole a small amount on the bolster to avoid the pin loosening. Pein the hinge pin. You may want to remove shims and check the blade from time to time for tightness. Be sure it is tight enough to work well with no side play, but not so tight that your blade binds up.

20. Remove the shim stock.

21. Using a tapered punch and hammer, gently expand the thong hole tubing piece to fill the hole. This is done by placing the tapered part of the punch into the hole and gently peining to expand the tubing. Tap gently and use care to avoid cracking handle material.

22. Carefully operate your blade to check for fit. It may be necessary to pein pins a little more. The locking lever must not be too tight or it will bind up. Now pein any remaining pins.

23. Polish and buff your blade as follows:

A. Leave blade as is if a satin finish is desired.

B. Bring to a mirror finish by sanding with 220, 320, 400 and 500 grit emery cloth, then buff using a soft wheel and white rouge.

24. Buff handle and blade with white compound on a muslin wheel. This will bring the handle material to a shining luster.