File handle

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Project by RaggedKerf posted 10-20-2012 11:40 AM 1408 views 1 time favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I decided to use some of the thicker birch branches I trimmed from one of the trees that was getting to friendly with the deck back in early September. Originally I had planned to let them dry and use them as the sides for a garden tool tote for my wife instead of add to the firewood pile.

I’ve had a Nicholson bastard mill file (my one and only file besides my micro hobby files) in the toolchest for a year and a half now and haven’t gotten around to getting a handle for it yet. See where this is going?

I used the new bench hooks to cut the branch (about 2” thick) around 5” long. Then I used a utility knife to slice off all the bark and started to whittle. I don’t have a proper carving knife or anything other than utility knives and kitchen knives. Surprisingly, it worked rather well. The last time I whittled anything was probably 15 years ago when I was in the Boy Scouts and a pocket knife was a status symbol.

This birch felt great in my hands and the wood was very easy to whittle. In only a few minutes I had a nice shape. This was 2 days ago.

Today, I went back out there, chucked up a drill bit a little smaller than the tang on the file and drilled a hole. Then I pounded the tang home. The handle looks a little rustic, but the shape fits my hand perfectly and it is so much easier to use now! I can’t believe I didn’t do this earlier. So easy!

After a quick once over with some 220 grit sandpaper, I have a nice handle for my file, made from a branch I harvested on my own land. How cool is that?

-- Steve

3 comments so far

View jjw5858's profile


1135 posts in 3086 days

#1 posted 10-20-2012 12:52 PM

I think it is very cool! Making wood craft with wood on your on property is always rewarding and at the same time amazing when you stop to think just how long that tree has lived and stood throughout our lifetimes.

Next is a spoon!!!! I am just trying to bring you over to the madness that is the addiction of spoon making…lol

Great work Steve, I hope you continue to enjoy working green wood projects as well.

Take care,


-- "Always continue to learn, laugh and share!" JJW

View vakman's profile


301 posts in 2888 days

#2 posted 10-20-2012 03:20 PM

Made the way it ought to be, great job!

-- - Power is not revealed by striking hard or often, but by striking true. -

View RaggedKerf's profile


425 posts in 2605 days

#3 posted 10-20-2012 09:05 PM

Thanks guys!

@Joe: yeah, I have been keeping an eye the Peter Follansbee blog and have caught myself more than once thinking…you know… I might could do that. It doesn’t look all THAT hard….goodness knows I could use a few more in the kitchen…hmmm Your work is amazing by the way! Way to get me motivated to try (at some point when my bench is finally done LOL)

Something deeply rewarding yet inexpressible about harvesting my own wood and making that simple file handle. It wasn’t much but it felt great to finish it (and then use it!)

-- Steve

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