New Rasp Handles

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Project by mattsanf posted 08-21-2007 08:30 PM 3917 views 2 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I took a short break from the desks that I am building to turn a couple of tool handles on the lathe. The top one is an Auriou rasp and the bottom one is a Gramercy Tools rasp.

I used a piece of Tulipwood for the Auriou and some Osage Orange for the Gramercy. I polished them on the buffer and put on a coat of wax for finish.

I could never understand why such high-end rasps as the Auriou rasps come with such crappy handles…it always bothered me. I think that it looks better now.

The Gramercy handle was already OK, but it also looks better now.

-- -- Matt Sanfilippo, Pittsburgh, Pa.,

12 comments so far

View Bob Babcock's profile

Bob Babcock

1809 posts in 4115 days

#1 posted 08-21-2007 08:37 PM

Really nice. I need to get a good rasp. I’m starting to do a lot more organic looking work and really need something better than what I have.

-- Bob

View TheGravedigger's profile


963 posts in 4053 days

#2 posted 08-21-2007 08:57 PM

What did you use for the ferrules? Those don’t look like tubing offcuts (my usual material).

-- Robert - Visit my woodworking blog:

View mattsanf's profile


34 posts in 3992 days

#3 posted 08-21-2007 09:20 PM

Having a good rasp is a revelation (at least it was to me). I use them constantly now that I have a couple of good ones and will buy more.

Get an Auriou (despite the price) and you won’t regret it. The Gramercy Tool rasps are a bit cheaper and just as good also, but they don’t have as many models.

Rasps are like planes….a poor one is will convince you that you will never use one…until you try a good one.

-- -- Matt Sanfilippo, Pittsburgh, Pa.,

View mattsanf's profile


34 posts in 3992 days

#4 posted 08-21-2007 09:21 PM

I reused the ferrules that were on the original handles….Lee Valley sells similar ferrules also if you can’t salvage the old ones.

-- -- Matt Sanfilippo, Pittsburgh, Pa.,

View Greg Mitchell's profile

Greg Mitchell

1381 posts in 4098 days

#5 posted 08-21-2007 11:41 PM

Great looking handles Matt. You can also use 3/4” copper tubing for the ferrules. Just cut to length, and sand down the edges.

-- Greg Mitchell--Lowell,

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 4190 days

#6 posted 08-22-2007 12:41 AM

how wonderful!
Love the lines in that wood

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View Dano's profile


222 posts in 4061 days

#7 posted 08-22-2007 12:53 AM


I have a Jet mini lathe and have done a considerable number of pens but nothing else. How do you turn these handles, do you use a chuck?

-- Dan in Central Oklahoma, Able to turn good wood into saw dust in the blink of an eye!

View mattsanf's profile


34 posts in 3992 days

#8 posted 08-22-2007 03:00 PM

I don’t use a chuck. Just turn the handle like you would a spindle between centers, and then at the last minute use a parting tool to nearly cut through the end of the spindle that will be the finished end of the handle. Shut off the lathe and use a handsaw to cut through the final 1/4” or so. Remove the handle from the lathe and then sand the end of the hand smooth and to its final shape. Its even easier that doing a pen!


-- -- Matt Sanfilippo, Pittsburgh, Pa.,

View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 4276 days

#9 posted 08-23-2007 12:50 AM

Good looking handles feel like making about 20 or so for my lathe chisels and rasps? lol Nice job. jockmike

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6859 posts in 4009 days

#10 posted 08-23-2007 07:05 AM

I have a habit of replacing handles on lathe chisels. (just so they match)

The handles on files and rasps would be a good canidate also.

Nice job.


-- by Lee A. Jesberger

View Dick, & Barb Cain's profile

Dick, & Barb Cain

8693 posts in 4329 days

#11 posted 08-23-2007 10:22 PM

Nice handles, & a nice project, everyone needs file handles.

-- -** You are never to old to set another goal or to dream a new dream ****************** Dick, & Barb Cain, Hibbing, MN.

View sharad's profile


1117 posts in 3834 days

#12 posted 10-22-2008 02:39 PM

Very impressive piece of work in making these handles. They look beautiful.

-- “If someone feels that they had never made a mistake in their life, then it means they have never tried a new thing in their life”.-Albert Einstein

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