Thursday, November 17, 2011


Here's the knife I made for my brother. It's for karate, so it's blunt (both blade and tip), but apart from that and the lack of heat-treating (not very necessary when no edge-holding is required) it's made exactly like a sharp knife would be. The blade is 1095 high-carbon steel, and the handle is African Blackwood. It took about eight hours to make and another six to eight hours to polish, but the polishing is easy and was primarily done while watching TV or reading.

There are a couple things I wish I could've done better with this. For one, there are still a few filing scratches visible on the blade. I should've spent more time with rough sandpaper when polishing it. In addition, I countersunk the holes for the bolster pins a bit too much, leaving small divots around the edge, and I used a pointed punch on the bolster pins when it turned out to not be necessary, so there are tiny holes in the middle. I wish there were a bit more blade definition, but that's more just aesthetic preference.

I've got another shipment of knife materials coming tomorrow (wood and synthetic scales for two handles and enough metal for seven blades), so hopefully I'll get a chance over the weekend to get started on another one.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Recent stuff

Sorry about the lack of a post in October, but I forgot. It happens.

Anyway, a bit of interesting stuff has happened lately.
1. Running a half-marathon: This past weekend I ran the McDonalds Half-Marathon in Richmond (putting me at exactly 365 miles on the year). I was aiming somewhat optimistically for a time of 2 hours, but due to the complete lack of hills (compared to my normal running routes, at least) I managed to finish it in 1:55:10, and like the Charlottesville Ten Miler I ran the second part faster than the first (8:54 a mile for the first 10k, 8:41 a mile for the rest). I need to do more practice at these distances so I have a better idea of what pace I can handle.

2. Looking for a job: Due to budget cuts at the place I was going to work, I no longer have a job lined up once I finish with the start-up in a few weeks. I'm working on fixing that. I've applied a couple places, so hopefully I'll get something.

3. Knife making: Back in September I decided to make a knife for my brother for his birthday, as he was in need of one for karate and hadn't had much luck finding a suitable one. I'd made one or two really crude ones in high school and college, but nothing fancy or nice-looking, and nothing with a design as specific and tight as this one needed. It ended up turning out much better than expected (I'll post pictures of it once I get a chance to take them later this week) and now a handful of other people want them, as well, so that'll be my project for December after I'm done with my current software job.