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Wood Handles in the Desert

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Forum topic by AandCstyle posted 11-15-2014 01:44 AM 1096 views 0 times favorited 16 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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AandCstyle

2575 posts in 1725 days


11-15-2014 01:44 AM

Topic tags/keywords: question

We moved to the desert SW a few years ago and I noticed that the handle on a file has shrunk so that the tang and the ferrule are both loose. I can remove the metal and soak the wood in either water or mineral oil. Which of the two is preferable or is there another better option?

-- Art


16 replies so far

View Nubsnstubs's profile

Nubsnstubs

826 posts in 1198 days


#1 posted 11-15-2014 02:08 AM

If you soak it in water to get it tight again, when it dries again, it’ll be looser than before. The oil will probably be a better soak, but I’ve never heard of doing it that way…. Jerry (in Tucson)

-- Jerry (in Tucson)

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AandCstyle

2575 posts in 1725 days


#2 posted 11-15-2014 02:34 AM

Jerry, thank you. You must have some wooden handles that get loose from time to time, what do you do?

-- Art

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jumbojack

1667 posts in 2092 days


#3 posted 11-15-2014 04:04 AM

Have you considered turning a new one?

-- Made in America, with American made tools....Shopsmith

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Moron

5032 posts in 3361 days


#4 posted 11-15-2014 07:03 AM

i cant imagine having such a good problem

; )

-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

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bold1

262 posts in 1315 days


#5 posted 11-15-2014 11:59 AM

We always kept an old bucket at the wood shed with oil in to set our axe in. Keeps the head tight. If it’s already loose it takes awhile to swell tight again. The problem with this is it will dry out if not kept soaked. You really don’t want a file handle to be oily all the time. I’d prob. make a new one with wood that’s already dried to your areas moisture average.

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Tim

3119 posts in 1429 days


#6 posted 11-15-2014 12:00 PM

Are you against epoxying the ferule on? That’s one option. Is the hole for the tang drilled deep enough that you can just tap it down deeper with a mallet to seat it more firmly?

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Gene Howe

8263 posts in 2896 days


#7 posted 11-15-2014 12:22 PM

Here in N. AZ, I used epoxy. Haven’t had one come loose in many years.

I recently made oak handles for a bunch of files. I drilled holes a bit smaller than the wide part of the tang. Heated the tangs with a torch and pushed the handles on, burning a path.

-- Gene 'The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.' G. K. Chesterton

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racerglen

3112 posts in 2248 days


#8 posted 11-15-2014 01:33 PM

Dry here as well, I’ve been using a wood sweller product called “Chair Loc” for years, It swells the wood’s fibers to a tight fit and then drys that way.
File handles, hammer handles, axe handles all stay tight (my humidity meter in my shop is now flashing “L-L” or too low, another in the shop is showing 20%)

-- Glen, B.C. Canada

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timbertailor

1592 posts in 892 days


#9 posted 11-15-2014 02:13 PM



Dry here as well, I ve been using a wood sweller product called “Chair Loc” for years, It swells the wood s fibers to a tight fit and then drys that way.
File handles, hammer handles, axe handles all stay tight (my humidity meter in my shop is now flashing “L-L” or too low, another in the shop is showing 20%)

- racerglen

Great product.

+1

-- Brad, Texas, https://www.youtube.com/user/tonkatoytruck/feed

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AandCstyle

2575 posts in 1725 days


#10 posted 11-15-2014 04:58 PM

Thanks for all the replies. I am going to try the epoxy solution because I have it on hand and I want to use the file today. I will probably pick up some Chair-Loc because LOML’s grandfather’s Windsor chair needs a little TLC. :)

-- Art

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Grumpymike

1919 posts in 1783 days


#11 posted 11-15-2014 05:04 PM

Great info here … Thanks Art for the post and to all for the replies

-- Grumpy old guy, and lookin' good Doin' it. ... Surprise Az.

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bondogaposis

4037 posts in 1819 days


#12 posted 11-15-2014 07:09 PM

I think you’re going to have to re-handle some of your tools. Soaking in water is only a temporary fix and not a very good one, it actually makes it worse once it shrinks again. I don’t think the oil will work either as is doesn’t cause the wood fibers to swell. The epoxy will work of course but I bet some of your other tools have this same problem and you may not want to epoxy all of them. Best fix is to make new handles w/ wood that is acclimated to your climate.

-- Bondo Gaposis

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Nubsnstubs

826 posts in 1198 days


#13 posted 11-16-2014 01:25 AM



Jerry, thank you. You must have some wooden handles that get loose from time to time, what do you do?

- AandCstyle


The only tools with wood handles I have are lathe tools. I have had them for 3 plus years and no problems yet. My sledge hammer is the only tool that concerns me. I keep it outside on a brick floor in the shade, and after 2 years with the new handle, no shrinkage yet.
Where in the SW? ............. Jerry (in Tucson)

-- Jerry (in Tucson)

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AandCstyle

2575 posts in 1725 days


#14 posted 11-16-2014 01:53 AM

Thanks for the suggestions to turn new handles, but I am a flat wood kind of guy. :) I have been told that turning is a slippery slope and I’m not ready to take that step.

Jerry, I’m in ABQ. I keep the shop between 30-50% humidity, but that is nothing like upstate NY in the summer.

-- Art

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wseand

2754 posts in 2509 days


#15 posted 11-16-2014 04:45 AM

Art,
Being a bit south of you we are a bit dryer then you. I usually get a thin piece of hard wood and glue it in the hole to tighten the piece in. I also sand down the handle and spread some TWP on, it really helps the wood from cracking and splintering. TWP seems to work the best for wood in my area, I use it on anything wood that is in the elements. I live in Las Cruces

BILL

-- Bill - "Freedom flies in your heart like an Eagle" Audie Murphy

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