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Lockback Folding Knife Kits & Assembly

Lockback folding knives are a very common locking knife. In most cases, the locking mechanism functions by a spine that is spring activated. When pushed down or forward, the spine moves forward in the handle allowing the blade to fold back down. A lot of tactical knives and EDC knives utilize a spine lock because of durability and the added security of having a folding blade. Below, you'll learn how to assemble your own lockback folding knife from scratch, including supplies, and each step in the process.



  1. When using Dymondwood, match the handle material you have chosen so that identical color patterns are to the outside of the blade. Some materials have a color combination that is obvi- ous (such as red on one side and black on the other) other materials must be studied carefully to assure a good match.

  2. Sand one side of each piece of handle material that will be fitted against the knife line so that it is true and flat. This is important to assure a good adhesion when you epoxy the handle material to the liner of your lockblacle.

  3. Sand one side of each piece of handle material, so that it lays flat against the bolster of your lockblacle. On lockblacles with bolsters at both ends fit before drilling holes. Rough out using a pattern cut from paper, one for each side. The pattern can be glued to the outside of your han- dle material then cut with a jewelers saw. You should cut your handle material a little oversize to allow for proper fitting. Fit by removing a small amount at a time with a file or sandpaper. You can use inletting black to tell where to remove excess material.

  4. Mix epoxy (30 minute, 2-ton epoxy is best). Coat the outside of each liner and the side of the handle material to be glued to the liner.

  5. Carefully attach one piece of handle material to a liner. Make sure handle material is centered straight with the grain and aligned with the bol- ster(s). Clamp securely with C-clamps and blocks. Make sure you do not squeeze the epoxy out by clamping too tightly.

  6. Follow this procedure for both liners. ALLOW TO DRY FOR 24 HRS.

  7. Place handle material and liner in a vise and using a file, (a halfround, bastard cut works great!) file the outside edge of the handle mater- ial to match the shape of the liners, This proce- dure can also be easily accomplished with a belt sander or a Dremel tool using 1/2" sanding bands.

  8. Contour the handle material to the desired shape, rounding edges with your file and then sandpaper. After shaping to the desired effect, finish with 220, 400 then 600 grit wet/dry sandpaper.

  9. With the liner up, carefully drill through the first hole in the liner and continue to drill all the way through the handle material. Your first holes should be the countersink holes that hold the handle to the liner, (these holes do not attach to any of the inner workings of your knife). If possible, use a drill press and vise for this procedure as you must make sure the holes are drilled straight and not at an angle. The second hole drilled should be at the opposite end of the liner as the first. With two holes drilled and pinned, (see step 11) you can drill the remaining holes for pins and thong hole tubing.

  10. Drill holes on second liner and handle material in the same manner.

  11. Pin handle to the liner through the countersink holes. It may be necessary to pein a small head on the pin to fit the countersink. With liner and pin head on a flat surface, (an anvil, for instance) pein pins with a 4 oz. hammer. Peining pins must be done gently and carefully. Tap pin on one side of handle, then turn over and tap on the other side of your liner. Continue this procedure until pins are properly tightened. It may be necessary to polish your pins and thong hole tubing with emery cloth to assure that they slide in and out of the holes easily. The pins should be snug, but not tight enough to risk cracking the wood when pushing in or out. Strike gently many times to enlarge the pin in its hole. File off excess protrusions on inside of liner. NOTE: SOME RODS MUST BE CUT TO BE USED AS TWO OR MORE PINS IN SOME BLADES. DETERMINE PROPER LENGTH BEFORE CUTTING

  12. Lay handle material and liner, bolster down, on your worktable.

  13. Place pin through the locking lever and liner.

  14. Place pin through the spring retainer(s) and liner.

  15. Place pin through the blade and liner. The locking lever should be fitted into the lock notch on the blade.

  16. Attach the second liner and handle material. Clamp together and grind off pins so they can be peined. Do not pein at this time. All pins except the hinge pin (located on the front bol- ster), should be ground so that about .015 is showing on each side. The hinge pin should be left with approximately 1/16" on each side. Check for proper operation before final pinning. If blade does not lock or release properly, it may be necessary to remove a small amount of metal from the notch or locking lever. Be sure you know what to do before you attempt this. Removal of too much metal could ruin your lock- blade.

  17. Pein rear pins using the same procedure as for the countersink holes.

  18. Push out the locking lever pin about 3/32" and put a SMALL amount of epoxy into the recessed hole. Do the same on the other side. Pein on each side lightly, one side then the other until tight in holes. Be careful not to get them too tight or the locking lever will blind up.