I get a kick out of making tool handles. I’ve been putting handles on the files I use the most. The traditional method to fit a handle to a tapered tang is to drill a small hole, heat the tang and drive it on, then repeat the process until you get a good fit. I use another method.
The first step is to mount the blank in a chuck, and turn it to a cylinder. The hole is drilled before shaping the handle.
I measure the tang with a drill index. I use a white pencil to mark 3 dimensions, roughly 1/4, 1/2 and 3/4 of the length of the tang. I mark bits of those sizes for the depth I want to drill. I have the bits lined up to show how deep to drill.
The smallest bit is drilled first, to a depth roughly 1/4” deeper than than the total length of the tang. The next bits get drilled to the marked depth.
I use a cone live center in the hole for tailstock support, and turn the handle to shape. If I am going to use a ferrule, I put that on before shaping the handle. I’m skipping the photo’s for that step in this blog, but it’s basically the same as this project.
I part it off and clean up the handle end in a chuck.
That’s about all there is to it. They are a good tight fit, and you can glue them in if you want. Here’s a chisel I picked up at a flea market. The old handle was loose and cracked. I use it to cut a groove when I burn a line into a turning. It’s also good for a small parting tool.
And a few other handles done the same way.
-- the last of Barret's Privateers...