Thursday, May 15, 2014


The sheath for the DH21 is similar to the Basic Sheath I have posted for the DH1.The difference being the size of the ricasso is quite a bit bigger on the DH21 and the shape of the sheath has to accommodate this. Again I will do a basic fold over.

Start with a fair size piece of 8 to 10 oz. tanned leather. At least 12" x 12". With the rough side up, lay the knife down with the cutting edge to the edge of the leather.
Trace around the blade leaving about 3/8" border. Be sure to trace over the ricasso area as this is going to be inside the sheath.

Now "roll" the knife over on it's spine without re-positioning it.

Then "roll" the knife down on to the other side and continue to trace about 3/8" around the blade

Normally I wet the backside of the leather and fold it over the blade and check the lines. Compare the lines to the blade and see if there is going to be enough room for a welt and stitching.

I continue to draw the pattern and make a sweep transition line across the opening. The belt strap will be about 1" to 1-1/2" wide and about 5" long. This will allow a 2" belt to pass through it when it's glued and stitched down.

I cut out the shape with a utility knife on some scrap wood.
Once cut out, we need to make a welt. This is going to be just a bit wider than the border size we made in the first few layout steps. Mine will be a little over 3/8". If its a bit wider no problem as we will sand the excess off once it's all stitched up.
The welt is cut out. The shape is a little bit longer than I need, but it will be trimmed later.
In the tip where the fold is going to be, the welt will stick through. I drill a 1/8" hole about 5/16" in from the tip and then cut out to the end.
This is a test fit of the welt in the slit. Fits good.
I do a fold to test the lines and check the welt positioning. I clamp with a simple document clamp. A few mistings of water is helpful in bending the leather over.
Now the knife can be inserted. It should be difficult to slide in. The whetted leather can be pressed in certain areas to help in the forming.

Once we're happy with the shape and form we can get fancy.
I scribe a pencil line around the edge with a compass. This is about 1/2" border and doesn't need to be pressed very hard as the leather is moist.
Then I make a line with a straight edge to connect the border lines.
Now I start tooling. I have a thick piece of MDF that I like to stamp on. I am starting the basket weave pattern by following the "spine line".
Once the basketweave is done, I walk around with a border stamp. This one happens to be my scalloped stamp I made in my DIY Leather Stamps tutorial.
Now that the border is done, we add some camouflage stamps to soften the border to basketweave area.
I stamp the serial number of the knife on the sheath with a standard alpha-numeric stamp set.

Ready to dye.

For this sheath I used Fiebing's Tan and then went around the edges with Fiebing's USMC black. Rubbing the black towards the edge so as to leave some small tan area in the middle.

To be continued...

No comments: