I was recently humbled to receive Member of the Year award for 2016.


I can recall when Jan first joined. JJ Smith III was my first official "iKC friend" back in early 2010. I've been around here for awhile & it was simply amazing to be honored in this way.

Thank you .. all.


I also received a Jantz gift certificate .. which I quickly put to good use. I ordered a Jantz pattern # 33 blade blank in D2 tempered to 60 +/- 1 HRC in a peened (sandblasted) finish ..&.. a 0.375” X 1.5” X 10.0” piece of black paper micarta. The blade blank is a measured 0.125" thick & has three tang holes ..  measuring ~ 0.144" diameter on one side & ~ 0.138" diameter on the other side .. there's a minor burr present on the small side. Not an issue ..since.. they're holes clearanced for common 0.125" (1/8") pin material.

The remainder of the requirements .. pins, scale material, adhesive, etc .. I'll use what's already available in-house.

I’m looking at Brazilian Brownheart for the wood. Brass & copper washers. Black paper micarta as the bolster.

On the blade blank .. I removed the rear step (originally meant to capture the bolster) from the blade blank. It turns out .. the width of the blade blank @ the intended point of the bolster .. 0.560” .. is @ or within a few thousands of the widest point of the remainder of the tang .. once the step is removed. I machined a 0.125” X 0.560” slot in the micarta to accept the blade blank. I also sanded a few thousands from the lower part of the tang .. insuring that the bolster spot was the widest point of the tang.

To do washers .. I’ll need about a 1” square of material. The smallest amount of copper material I could find @ the hardware store was 0.062” X 4” X 10” for just under $ 8.oo. I went to the plumbing section & picked up a copper 3/4” dia splice fitting for $ 1.49 + tax. I’ll need to cut a slot in it .. anneal it .. flatten it .. blank out a ~1" square ..&.. machine a 0.125 X 0.560 slot into it. I already have brass flat stock in a couple of thicknesses that I can use. I intend to do some combination of alternating brass & copper washers between the black micarta bolster & the Brazilian Heartwood scales.

I used a 0.125” end mill to machine the slot in the micarta. SO0o .. the ends of the slot were round. I used a 6” file to square the corners of the slot & for final fit to the blade blank. I .. somewhat tediously .. fit the micarta to the tang until the micarta could just be forced onto the bolster area of the tang. It is a tight press fit at the moment.

I did some quick research on annealing copper. It has to be heated to about 500 deg F & then allowed to air cool. If you're short on patience .. a water quench will apparently obtain workable results. Copper is also a metal that work hardens. SO0o .. I may need to anneal it more than once during the flattening & blanking process.

The 3/4" copper splice is slit lengthwise & I’ve began the annealing process. I heated the splice fitting with a propane torch as hot as I could get it & held it there for 1~2 minutes. It is now air cooling. It turns out .. it’s a rather large chuck of copper to be annealing with a propane torch. Copper conducts heat very well, i.e. it’s a great heat sink. I may have to cut out the smaller 1” X 1” square & anneal just that .. I’ll see.


This is the current point in the process. I'll post further progress pics .. as I progress .. in the comments section.



D ale

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It sure is looking good!  Thanks for the heads up on the diamond stone.  I like johns idea and it may well help keep a good stone flat


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