Got some scrap wood and a railroad spike? Make a drawknife....

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Blog entry by A Slice of Wood Workshop posted 06-04-2013 05:05 PM 7841 reads 0 times favorited 4 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Drawknives. They can be expensive or cheap. They are used by green woodworkers and chairmakers (for the spindles). You can use them for taking bark off trees as well. With only a $1 railroad spike and some scrap lumber you can make your own drawknife. Also view a different way of placing handles on your homemade tools tangs.

It must be noted that I do not condone taking railroad spikes off of tracks. It is illegal and you can get in serious trouble for theft and/or killed by a big freaking train. Take some drinks to a local rail yard and trade for some spikes or check out ebay.

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4 comments so far

View grfrazee's profile


388 posts in 3630 days

#1 posted 06-04-2013 05:51 PM

In general, railroad spikes are made with crappy steel that won’t hold an edge. You can find spikes that have “HC” stamped on the head (meaning “high-carbon”) that will work a little better. It’s a good way to improve your smithing skills, but it won’t make a tool that will last a long time. Nothing beats a drawknife made with proper high-carbon tool steel.


View A Slice of Wood Workshop's profile

A Slice of Wood Workshop

1126 posts in 4663 days

#2 posted 06-04-2013 06:25 PM

@grfrazee- I totally agree with you on all the points you made. You would have to resharpen this more. The spikes I use are the higher carbon steel, just not high enough to keep a good edge. This however is a great starting point if you want to try out green woodworking or making spindles. After a bit I would advise on purchasing or crafting a better drawknife. Thanks for watching.

-- Follow me on YouTube-

View clieb91's profile


4267 posts in 5425 days

#3 posted 06-06-2013 12:36 AM

Tim, Really neat tool and a great video. The burning of the handles looks like a neat practice. One of these days I want to try my hand at some smithing.

Thanks for sharing.


-- Chris L. "Don't Dream it, Be it."- (Purveyors of Portable Fun and Fidgets)

View Brit's profile


8519 posts in 4333 days

#4 posted 06-08-2013 02:07 PM

Wow! That looks like a lot of un Tim. Nice job.

-- Andy - Old Chinese proverb says: "If you think something can't be done, don't interrupt man who is doing it."

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