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Leather work #1: Skiving knives - make your own.

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Blog entry by Combo Prof posted 12-21-2020 01:16 AM 418 reads 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Leather work series Part 2: Table top leatherwork vise (stitching pony) »

I was trying to decide on what tools I would take camping and how I would protect them. I soon realized I would need some sheaths. In particular a sheath for my carvin axe. But I had no leatherwork tools or leatherworking experience. Among the necessary tools are skiving knives. Skiving knives are used to thin leahter to remove bulk when sewing. They are also used to cut leather to shape. I thought I would make them.

I first thought to repurpose a chisel, but the angle needs to be between 15 and 20 degrees. I chose 15. A 1/4 inch thick chisel would make the bevel almost a inch long. I decide to use a damaged plane iron. It looks like it was used as a paint scraper and it broken.

After a good cleaning with a scotch brite 400 grit wheel it looked like this.

Then I sharpened a 15 degree bevel.

and cut it in two with a cutoff wheel and drilled holes for brass pins and polished the bevel.

I made scales out of birdseye maple and attached them with 30 minute epoxy. Next day I sanded to shape and gave 4 coats of tru-oil. This finished the knives. But I just had to make sheaths.

Next I will make Mafe’s leather spliter.

Click for details

-- Don K, (Holland, Michigan)



7 comments so far

View BlueRidgeDog's profile

BlueRidgeDog

787 posts in 795 days


#1 posted 12-21-2020 01:34 PM

You could also make a stitching punch out of a plane iron. Some simple file work and you have your hole spacing.

View Combo Prof's profile

Combo Prof

4591 posts in 2293 days


#2 posted 12-21-2020 02:03 PM



You could also make a stitching punch out of a plane iron. Some simple file work and you have your hole spacing.

- BlueRidgeDog

Yes I think you could. But I don’t think they need to be hardened, but I will keep this in mind. I do have a set of 4 mm, stitching punches. They call them leather chisels for some unfathomable reason. I do wish they were longer and were 5mm. So maybe I will do that later. But the 4mm will do for now. I am contemplating making a half moon leather cutter from an thick card scraper or saw plate. The “knives” seem to be the expensive leather tools.

-- Don K, (Holland, Michigan)

View HokieKen's profile

HokieKen

16737 posts in 2154 days


#3 posted 12-21-2020 03:13 PM

Nicely done Don. I’m no leather worker but I can certainly appreciate re-purposing an old iron for a new task :-)

-- I collect hobbies. There is no sense in limiting yourself (Don W) - - - - - - - - Kenny in SW VA

View Combo Prof's profile

Combo Prof

4591 posts in 2293 days


#4 posted 12-21-2020 05:52 PM



Nicely done Don. I m no leather worker but I can certainly appreciate re-purposing an old iron for a new task :-)

- HokieKen

Apparently neither am I. LOL.

-- Don K, (Holland, Michigan)

View mafe's profile

mafe

12950 posts in 4105 days


#5 posted 12-21-2020 07:26 PM

Really nice work Don, I love the idea you came up with and agree that thicker irons would be a struggle both to make and to sharpen after.
Now I have to make some soon, thanks for the inspiration. Smiles.
I look forward to see when you make the splitter.
Lovely to see you mader sheaths for them too.
Merry Christmas,
Mads

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect.

View Combo Prof's profile

Combo Prof

4591 posts in 2293 days


#6 posted 12-22-2020 01:20 AM

Thanks Mads. Splitter is nearly done, I just need to buy a couple of bolts.

-- Don K, (Holland, Michigan)

View mafe's profile

mafe

12950 posts in 4105 days


#7 posted 12-22-2020 09:26 AM

Cool!

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect.

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