Shop's Log #19: Hock Marking Knife

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Blog entry by terryR posted 01-08-2015 04:02 PM 2863 reads 3 times favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 18: First lathe bowl Part 19 of Shop's Log series Part 20: How to Make a Handplane Tote »

Hi everyone. Another quick Blog to share a marking knife I just completed. Have had this Hock blade sitting in the shop for a year, and decided to put him to work since my other main knife has a round handle and rolls badly.

This blade has a full-tang, so should make a stronger user! I didn’t care for the square edges on the original blade, so used french curves and a sharpie to lay out a few nice curves.

A quick trip to the grinder, and I had a sexy shape to play with. I also used the belt sander to smooth the outer shapes.

Next, I chose some highly figured East Indian Rosey, and laminated a flat piece of Elk antler to one end. Re-sawed the blank in 1/2 to create bookmarked scales!

Using double-sided tape, I positioned the knife blade exactly where I wanted it on the scale, and proceeded to drill holes for the pins. First, drilling one scale. Then, more tape to position the opposite one, before drilling through the first set of holes and into the second scale. Make sense?

I also traced the outline of the steel onto each scale, so extra wood could be removed quickly at the scroll saw. I’ll sand the wood down flush with the steel later, but want to use the scroll saw to save time now.

For a little accent, I cut some red vulcanized plastic spacers which will seat against the steel blade. Also decided to use stainless steel pins to match the blade on this piece. All waiting for a little heat and epoxy…it was 52 degrees in the shop even with the heat pump running!

No boring photos of the clamping, although I did manage to epoxy one plywood caul to the lovely rosewood! oops!

I spent a few more minutes at the belt sander to true up the edges of wood and steel, but final shaping was done with handheld sandpaper against a dowel or block of wood.

And, then, an hour of sanding to 800 grit while rounding over the edges of the handle…buffed wax for a finish…

Nice. Heavy. I even honed the edges and scored a few test lines. Sweet user! And the square shape won’t roll off the bench.

It was a shame to cover up Mr. Hock’s name on the steel, since He has such nice blades, but that’s the way it goes! I still consider it a Hock Knife!

Questions and comments are always welcomed…

-- tr ...see one, do one, teach one...

15 comments so far

View Brit's profile


7108 posts in 2566 days

#1 posted 01-08-2015 04:13 PM

That is the dog’s gonads Terry. Best general purpose marking knife I’ve ever seen period, but an hour to sand that handle to 800 grit? Were you working in slow motion? :o)

-- - "The hand speaks to the brain as surely as the brain speaks to the hand." Frank R. Wilson

View Hammerthumb's profile


2737 posts in 1699 days

#2 posted 01-08-2015 04:18 PM

Nice knife Terry. Can I get a set of steak knives?

-- Paul, Las Vegas

View Brit's profile


7108 posts in 2566 days

#3 posted 01-08-2015 04:20 PM

Seriously Terry, if you ever fancy making more of those I’d like to reserve one.

-- - "The hand speaks to the brain as surely as the brain speaks to the hand." Frank R. Wilson

View terryR's profile


6803 posts in 2032 days

#4 posted 01-08-2015 04:28 PM

Thanks, guys, I love to re-handle knives. Cannot wait for a proper forge, so I can hammer them as well.

Andy, will make more! And, I think I still have your address?

Paul, Working on 2 Henkel steak knives now! :)

-- tr ...see one, do one, teach one...

View Brit's profile


7108 posts in 2566 days

#5 posted 01-08-2015 04:36 PM

Let me know the cost and there’s no rush.

-- - "The hand speaks to the brain as surely as the brain speaks to the hand." Frank R. Wilson

View terryR's profile


6803 posts in 2032 days

#6 posted 01-08-2015 04:44 PM

Andy, my dear friend, the cost shall be terrific!

You must share with me all the tool secrets down deep inside your memories. Teach me to sharpen saws, restore braces, and honor my fellow man. Instill in my cells the love of vintage hand tools, and the desire to surround myself with as many as possible…even learning how to use a few!

...oh…you’ve already paid many times over what is required!!!


-- tr ...see one, do one, teach one...

View john2005's profile


1752 posts in 1902 days

#7 posted 01-09-2015 12:16 AM

That is one handsome knife Terry! Very nice!

-- In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is.

View Slyy's profile


2641 posts in 1379 days

#8 posted 01-09-2015 04:54 AM

I asked a question about actual steel knives on the project post. But I see you mentioned the idea of getting a forge. Man, if that ever comes to fruition I can only begin to imagine the kind of blades you’re gonna make. Couldn’t wait to see some TerryR original folded Damascus with some incredible scale work. Thanks for sharing Terry.

-- Jake -- "Not only do we live among the stars, the stars live within us." - Neil Degrasse Tyson

View AnthonyReed's profile


9211 posts in 2164 days

#9 posted 01-09-2015 11:18 PM

Ha! Your response to Andy almost outshines your design and craftsmanship, almost.

Stellar Terry.

-- ~Tony

View chrisstef's profile


16667 posts in 2730 days

#10 posted 01-09-2015 11:52 PM

Damn classy knife Terry!

-- Something, something, something.

View terryR's profile


6803 posts in 2032 days

#11 posted 01-10-2015 03:16 PM

Thanks, gents!

-- tr ...see one, do one, teach one...

View CFrye's profile (online now)


9579 posts in 1563 days

#12 posted 01-18-2015 05:02 PM

Beautiful workmanship, Terry! The red really sets it apart! Where do you get those spacers? What are some other things that can be used as spacers? Keep the tool projects coming!

-- God bless, Candy

View terryR's profile


6803 posts in 2032 days

#13 posted 01-18-2015 05:55 PM

Candy, Thanks! Knife supply stores online have those vulcanized plastic spacers usually for $2 per 8×11” sheet.

Thin wood also looks great, and metals, too. Thin brass switch covers from the Borg, as well.

-- tr ...see one, do one, teach one...

View ShotgunWillie's profile


14 posts in 504 days

#14 posted 04-11-2016 02:19 PM

Looks great.

I have a similar project I’ve been putting off for a long time. Can you share a little more info on how you fastened the parts together? Is there an epoxy applied to the pins?

I have a on old blade that already has the holes drilled. I was going to match the holes in 2 pieces of river birch that I’d cut down and milled a while back. Where in the hardware store would I find those kinds of pins?

Thanks in advance. Seeing your blade is what inspired me to pick up my old project. It’s been sitting in my workbench for over a year.


View terryR's profile


6803 posts in 2032 days

#15 posted 04-11-2016 03:09 PM

Thanks, Will.

Yes, the pins are epoxied in place. I get pins online at a knife supply site like

Lots of choices for pin material. Usually $2 per foot or less. Shipping is the killer in the deal. But other metals can be used, maybe cold-rolled steel from the hardware store? I haven’t tried it, but it’s round and should polish to be pretty. I’ve also used micarta, carbon fiber, and Delrin. If you have anything round in your shop, it may work fine to hold the handle together, if you want to save money?

Worst case scenario, the handle comes apart in a couple of years, then you get to try again! :)

-- tr ...see one, do one, teach one...

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