|Project by RaggedKerf||posted 10-20-2012 11:40 AM||979 views||1 time favorited||3 comments|
I decided to use some of the thicker birch branches I trimmed from one of the trees that was getting to friendly with the deck back in early September. Originally I had planned to let them dry and use them as the sides for a garden tool tote for my wife instead of add to the firewood pile.
I’ve had a Nicholson bastard mill file (my one and only file besides my micro hobby files) in the toolchest for a year and a half now and haven’t gotten around to getting a handle for it yet. See where this is going?
I used the new bench hooks to cut the branch (about 2” thick) around 5” long. Then I used a utility knife to slice off all the bark and started to whittle. I don’t have a proper carving knife or anything other than utility knives and kitchen knives. Surprisingly, it worked rather well. The last time I whittled anything was probably 15 years ago when I was in the Boy Scouts and a pocket knife was a status symbol.
This birch felt great in my hands and the wood was very easy to whittle. In only a few minutes I had a nice shape. This was 2 days ago.
Today, I went back out there, chucked up a drill bit a little smaller than the tang on the file and drilled a hole. Then I pounded the tang home. The handle looks a little rustic, but the shape fits my hand perfectly and it is so much easier to use now! I can’t believe I didn’t do this earlier. So easy!
After a quick once over with some 220 grit sandpaper, I have a nice handle for my file, made from a branch I harvested on my own land. How cool is that?
-- Steve http://vaughtwoodworks.wordpress.com