Beautiful Custom Wooden Knife Handle Build

Beautiful custom wooden knife handle by Tom Sparrow

In a departure from our usual electronics based builds, Tom Sparrow has been experimenting with making some beautiful wooden handles for gardening knives. Tom says…..

I started by drawing some designs on paper first, then making a model of the knife out of wood as I wanted to make sure it was comfortable for me before starting the real thing. A bit of filing was needed here and there before feeling nice in my hand.

Knife designs on paper

I have been away from soldering and back to primitive making by making a knife for gardening and odd jobs.

Making a jig for the handle

I bought a large knife blank, then drew the shape of my design onto the steel. I then cut it slightly oversized with an angle grinder and finished the shape with a course file.

Transfer the design to the steel blank

Onto the handle! There are some really pretty materials for knife handles, as this was the first attempt I opted for olive wood, which was easy to use and has a nice distinctive grain.

Shaping and sanding

It was just a case of putting it all together now and making it look tidier, so I cut 2 pieces of the wood for the handle and glued them on with 2 part epoxy.

Beautiful custom knife build by Tom Sparrow

After 30 hours drying time the excess wood just had to be sanded to the shape of the knife tang, then the long process of sanding the wood and blade with finer and finer sandpaper and finally finishing the wood off with linseed oil.

A work of art

In the future, I would like to try to make a knife from scratch and heat treat it myself, and maybe try something a bit more interesting for the handle.

A custom holder to go with the knife

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