Flint Knives Again

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Project by terryR posted 05-09-2012 08:17 PM 5953 views 6 times favorited 28 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hi everyone, I finally made time to finish a few more of my knives…so many LJ’s liked them last time…I guess I’m not breaking the project rules too badly. These guys appear half wood and half stone, but, the handles take 3-4 times longer to make than the blades, so I hope you’ll think of them as woodworking related as well…

Anyhow, on to the photos…

#1 is a pretty piece of Flint Ridge Flint from Ohio, hafted to Maple Burl with a live edge. A very simple shape for the handle to let the burl shine!

#2 is similar to above, but features Indian Jasper for the blade.

#3 will go into my ‘keeper case’ since the blade is knapped from Tallahatta Quartzite (lower Alabama)...a very chalky, difficult stone to work. In fact, this represents the best point I’ve made so far from the material in SEVEN+ years of trying! Handle is shaped from Che-Chen.

#4 is a striking knife which was difficult to photograph. The blade is from a man-made material sold as Opalized Glass, and has a subtle beauty which can hide depending on background color, and the even prettier handle is made of stabilized Box Elder Burl…tinted, of course.

#5 is made from un-obtanium all the way! The blade is man-made Fulgurite from the Space Shuttle Project! Huh? Fulgurite forms naturally when lightning strikes sand…cooking the material into glass…well, this blade started out as sand that some NASA contractor used to form molds for the Space Shuttle tiles. The tile material was so hot it cooked the sand into beautiful and RARE scrap! The handle for this guy is shaped from stabilized Black Palm…kinda matches the black spots in the blade, I thought.

Oh yeah, last time I posted knives, someone wanted to see the joinery used between the blade and handle. Here’s a shot of the flint ridge knife in progress to give an idea of what the others look like as well…

I use the drill press to rough out this mortise, then fine tune it with small chisels. 5 minute epoxy holds each blade fast to the handles, and deer rawhide is wrapped over the joint to hide ugliness…I mean, for a rustic look. :-)

As usual, all blades were hand-knapped by me. I use modern copper tools, but ancient techniques in chipping the stone. All handles are finished simply with wax.

Comments and ideas are welcomed…

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

28 comments so far

View IndianJoe's profile


425 posts in 2580 days

#1 posted 05-09-2012 08:46 PM

Nice vary good work I play with this from time to time so do my kids

-- Nimkee** Joe

View Martyroc's profile


2712 posts in 2637 days

#2 posted 05-09-2012 08:52 PM

Great work, these all came out very cool.

-- Martin ....always count the number of fingers you have before, and after using the saw.

View Bertha's profile


13566 posts in 3024 days

#3 posted 05-09-2012 09:24 PM

Absolutely gorgeous. If youre selling, please pm.

-- My dad and I built a 65 chev pick up.I killed trannys in that thing for some reason-Hog

View Brit's profile


7672 posts in 3173 days

#4 posted 05-09-2012 09:27 PM

Wow Terry, they look great. The last one is my favourite.

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

View BTimmons's profile


2303 posts in 2816 days

#5 posted 05-09-2012 09:32 PM

Awesome little knives, interesting stories behind them too!

-- Brian Timmons -

View bowtie's profile


990 posts in 2677 days

#6 posted 05-09-2012 09:52 PM

beautiful knives, very unique. have you ever used deer antler to knapp with?

-- bowtie,.....jus passin thru....

View SisQMark's profile


384 posts in 2931 days

#7 posted 05-09-2012 11:31 PM

Very nice job, love these. You make it look easy.

-- Don't waste today, it is yesterdays tomorrow!~SisQMark

View terryR's profile


7471 posts in 2639 days

#8 posted 05-09-2012 11:49 PM

Thanks for the kind comments everyone!

bowtie, yes, I’ve knapped with deer antler…and moose! But, organic billets are more difficult to use, 5-10 times the price, and are affected by the weather. humid days render them useless. Deer works OK for small rocks, but moose is really needed to work larger chunks…and a good piece of moose can run $75!

Nimkee Joe…nice to meet you…glad to hear your kids chip! I try to show the younger generation how cool knapping is when I can…they don’t wanna hear how important it is. :-) keep up the faith!!!

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

View mtnwild's profile


3474 posts in 3858 days

#9 posted 05-10-2012 12:16 AM

Those are awesome! Love the live edge idea. Very cool, great to see…................

-- mtnwild (Jack), It's not what you see, it's how you see it.

View LittlePaw's profile


1571 posts in 3409 days

#10 posted 05-10-2012 01:54 AM

Perfect choices of the wood to compliment the blades, Terry. You did a great job!

-- LittlePAW - The sweetest sound in my shop, next to Mozart, is what a hand plane makes slicing a ribbon.

View deon's profile


2522 posts in 3356 days

#11 posted 05-10-2012 05:37 AM

Great work!

-- Dreaming patterns

View SamuelP's profile


793 posts in 2977 days

#12 posted 05-10-2012 11:31 AM

Any good resources on learning how to knap or chip?

-- -Sam - FL- "A man who carries a cat by the tail learns somthing he can in no other way" -Mark Twain

View 489tad's profile


3563 posts in 3342 days

#13 posted 05-10-2012 11:51 AM

Fantastic work. I like them all. The maple burl on #1 is beautiful.

-- Dan, Naperville IL, I.G.N.

View millzit's profile


111 posts in 2633 days

#14 posted 05-10-2012 11:56 AM

nice work, as usual my friend…...but that goat fence is suffering with all that knappin…....<g>

-- cut that out!

View terryR's profile


7471 posts in 2639 days

#15 posted 05-10-2012 12:40 PM

Sam, an excellent book to read is DC Waldorf’s ‘The Art of Flintknapping’. It can explain some of the basic principles and get you started. But, honestly, knapping is so difficult to grasp you really need an experienced teacher to flatten the learning curve.

If you are really interested in trying it out, I recommend the book, a handful of tools, and some good quality rock. Then, you’ll have to attend a knap-in in your area to watch an ol timer…ask questions…sit and spend time chipping. Lots of time chipping…

Here’s a good site for tools and sometimes rock:

High quality chert is important when you are learning, best and cheapest at knap-ins. Don’t try to use rock you find lying around on the ground…the natural freeze-thaw cycle makes it useless for knapping!

Send me a PM if you want more info…I’ve also got some old tools I made I’d be happy to just give ya…

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

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