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Thread: Knife handles

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Townsville, Tropical Nth Qld.

    Default Knife handles

    Any knife makers on here? If so, what constitutes a good piece of wood for a handle? Does it need coarse or fine grain, light weight or heavy?
    The reason I am asking is I am cleaning out 35 years of wood hoarding and I often think some of it would look real good on a knife, but I am usually wrong.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    gold coast


    Hi Crocky,
    while I'm no expert, I have made a few knives over the years and have a butter box full of short lengths of 'pretty' wood, I have collected over the years to make handles for knives "when I get the time".
    From my reading over the years, and my experience , I would suggest that a hard fine grained wood, polishes best, and will often take a good shine with no more need oil or varnish. Desert Ironwood, Gidgee, and similar 'acacias' seem to stand up well.
    Ive used Ringed Gidgee and it has a beautiful pattern. If you decide on using some of the desert ironwoods from North Queensland, be careful since some of the 'dust' can be poisonous. (ask me how i know)
    On finishing---I use finer grained paper down to 1800 and 2000 and that usually gives a shiny finish that can easily be touched up after prolonged use.
    If the handles get 'dirty', I wash them in warm soapy water and dry well, but for these sorts of knives that's not something that happens much.

    I will probably be proved wrong, but that's my take on this.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Mackay North Qld


    Hi Crocy,

    I have used Dead Finish on a few knives.

    It was readily available around Emerald when I lived there.

    It seemed a pretty tight grained tough timber that polished up well.


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