Making a Marking Knife #1: The Stock

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Blog entry by Eric posted 08-09-2008 07:45 AM 3502 reads 3 times favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Making a Marking Knife series Part 2: Filing a Bevel onto a Knife Blade (Aargh!) »

I was wading through my old woodworking bookmarks, and stumbled across this great guide to making a marking knife. It looked like a fairly easy project, and cheap! Looks like I can take that Japanese marking knife off my wish list. So here we go:

The blade is taken from a jigsaw blade, and it didn’t take too long to file off the teeth:

jigsaw blade - before

jigsaw blade - after

For the handle, I took a 6” section of kempas scrap that I had lying around. Incidentally, you can see on the bench that I filed the point of the blade into a spear shape.

handle stock

Okay, so I had no idea what to do at this point, just as a disclaimer. I have no lathe, so I can’t turn a handle. I have no carving tools, so I can’t carve it. I decided to trim it down a little with my saw, and then use my chisels to round the corners off until it was more round than square. Here’s the first take, after I cut the corners off (basically creating a long diamond-shaped handle). Why didn’t I just start with smaller stock to begin with? I dunno.

handle taking shape

I knew that I wanted the handle to be thickest at the bottom, to be able to hold and use the knife more securely. I chiseled down from the thicker part to the thinner, for a smoother transition, and then just kept working at it with my 3/4” chisel until I was generally happy with it:

shaping the handle

It’s got a kind of Louisville Slugger look to it. The top part will likely taper quite a bit, but I’m going to wait until I have a ferrule and know what dimensions I need.

Thanks for reading!

-- Eric at

2 comments so far

View Beginningwoodworker's profile


13345 posts in 3700 days

#1 posted 08-09-2008 05:01 PM

Thats some nice work, Eric.

View teenagewoodworker's profile


2727 posts in 3795 days

#2 posted 08-10-2008 11:34 PM

looks very cool! i can’t wait to see how this turns out!

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