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Recommendation? Best way of making removable knife scales

Discussion in 'Shop Talk - BladeSmith Questions and Answers' started by doublepiedavid, Apr 17, 2019.

  1. doublepiedavid

    doublepiedavid

    24
    Jun 1, 2017
    I came up with a concept for a knife that has a detachable firesteel (For the purposes of this thread, a firesteel is a piece of carbon steel that produces "cool sparks" when struck with a hard rock such as flint or quartz, not the modern ferro rods). While, yes, I could just use the back of the knife, that is somewhat difficult, dangerous, and ruins the knife over time. Last summer I ordered a custom knife made that had a full hidden tang and a crossguard; the user can unscrew the end cap, pull out the handle and guard, and use the guard as a firesteel. The concept works, but you need pliers in order to tighten the end cap enough to keep the guard from wobbling.

    I came up with another plan involving a full tang knife with a small hollow compartment that holds a firesteel (along with a magnet to keep the parts from rattling). My one problem is that to access the firesteel I need to remove the scales, which requires an allen key or screwdriver, both of which are one more item to carry/loose. With my current knife I can at least access the firesteel without tools, or even without removing it (may damage the handle), but this way, my only option will be to use the back of the knife (or whittle a disposable allen wrench).

    So my question is, does anyone know of a way to make knife scales that can be removed and replaced without any tools but your hands, or easily made tools such as sharp sticks? Please, nothing complex, expensive, or protruding. Ergonomics > Aesthetics.
     
  2. AVigil

    AVigil Adam Vigil knifemaker working the grind Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Platinum Member

    Feb 17, 2009
    I have not seen anything other then a hollow tube handle knife that would fit that bill.

    Considering every fixed blade needs a sheath, it stands to reason a fire steel would be better to attach to the sheath instead of a knife.
     
  3. KNelson

    KNelson

    103
    Jan 9, 2019
    I agree with Adam.. also IMO crap in the handle (survival stuff) makes it seem like their trying to hard, almost a good idea but to me its not.

    Maybe if you were able to make a slot in the butt for the rod to slide into and have a friction lock to hold it in? kinda like the loveless sheath welt if I'm correct.. that would be quick, slick and simple to get at if the retention was right.
     
    The_Iron_Joe and DevinT like this.
  4. doublepiedavid

    doublepiedavid

    24
    Jun 1, 2017
    Won't work, I am trying to fit a 3" x .5" rectangle of steel in the handle, not a .25" rod of some alloy

    something like this https://sensiblesurvival.org/2011/08/14/equipment-for-a-flint-and-steel-fire-part-1/

    not this https://www.amazon.com/überleben-Bu...ocphy=9001666&hvtargid=pla-679756214574&psc=1

    sorry if I wasn't clear enough
     
  5. AVigil

    AVigil Adam Vigil knifemaker working the grind Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Platinum Member

    Feb 17, 2009
    What would be the benefit of having it in a knife version vs. on a sheath?
     
  6. KNelson

    KNelson

    103
    Jan 9, 2019
    Aaagh I didn’t realize it was so big..
     
  7. doublepiedavid

    doublepiedavid

    24
    Jun 1, 2017
    Keeping it in the knife as opposed to on the sheath makes the firesteel harder to lose; along with keeping it from catching on my clothes, branches, seatbelts, and the like. You won't believe the amount of times I lost firesteels and ferro rods that way, and the hooking is just plain annoying.
     
  8. DevinT

    DevinT KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jan 29, 2010
    KNelson has a very good idea here. Early knife maker Larry Hendricks, made what he called a kangaroo knife. Similar idea, it had a caping knife that would snap in from the end.

    Hoss
     
  9. Teppojutsu

    Teppojutsu

    942
    Jan 18, 2015
    I remeber seeing those
    I think its in my old knife magazines from late 90s

    Good idea
    mabey a ball detent could be used?
     
  10. doublepiedavid

    doublepiedavid

    24
    Jun 1, 2017
    A ball detent pin may work. Thank you
     
  11. Bill DeShivs

    Bill DeShivs KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jun 6, 2000
    Two words- Bic lighter.
     
    Night Rider, AVigil and Natlek like this.
  12. Natlek

    Natlek

    Jun 9, 2015
    One word ............matches :)
    [​IMG]
    Sorry guys , I could not resist :D
     
  13. doublepiedavid

    doublepiedavid

    24
    Jun 1, 2017
    Matches, almost as reliable as a wet fire plow, almost.
     
  14. Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith

    Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith ilmarinen - MODERATOR Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Aug 20, 2004
    If I was as concerned about actually needing a fire steel and worried about loosing it before the need arrived, I would put it on the end of a paracord loop through the lanyard hole.. Make a pocket in the fold of the sheath for the steel to slide into. The effect would be the same as a marlin spike on the side of a seaman's knife sheath.
    [​IMG]

    To put the steel on the paracord loop, put the loop through the hole in the steel end (or handle) and pass around the tip of the steel. This will lock it on the steel with two half hitches. To remove, simply slip off the paracord loop.
     
    doublepiedavid likes this.
  15. doublepiedavid

    doublepiedavid

    24
    Jun 1, 2017
    I like that idea, may try that instead.

    Beautiful knife BTW
     
  16. Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith

    Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith ilmarinen - MODERATOR Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Aug 20, 2004
    Not my knife, but I have made many like it. The fold in over sheath with an inner and outer welt is very easy to do.

    It is sometimes easy to get caught up in how to make a complex design when there may be a very simple and easy solution. Or in a simpler koan, "It can be hard to see the forest for all the trees."
     
  17. LARRYZ10

    LARRYZ10 KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Feb 6, 2010
    Exactly my thought. Larry
     
  18. Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith

    Stacy E. Apelt - Bladesmith ilmarinen - MODERATOR Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Aug 20, 2004
    Just a comment:
    As has been pointed out, a simple lighter or matches will start a fire easier than a fire steel.
    What is most valuable in the same pocket on a sheath is a 1/4" round diamond sharpener to keep your knife blade sharp.
     
    Natlek likes this.
  19. Sure a lighter of matches will work, but a ferro rod will last nearly forever. Btw, is it very hard to drill through ferro rods? What about drill speed, for a 1/8” bit/hole?
     
  20. AVigil

    AVigil Adam Vigil knifemaker working the grind Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Platinum Member

    Feb 17, 2009
    Bic Maxi Lighter has about 3000 flicks to it. If you packed a couple in that should cover it. :)
     
    doublepiedavid likes this.

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