Saturday, May 31, 2014


For the second chef's knife I wanted to try something a little different. I've seen the keyhole bolster on some high-end knives and wanted to give it a try. I made a plan to make the bolster pieces out of 304 stainless.

 I started with a piece of 0.25" x 1.5" 304 stainless and cut off two pieces about 1.75" long.
With the belt grinder I trued two sides, then traced and shaped the belly curve.
 Once the basic shape was made, I marked where the pins will go and decided on a place for the keyhole. The L (left) piece is shown.
I clamped the two bolster pieces and drilled a pilot hole. Then I went through with a 3/8" bit.
Once the main hole in the keyhole was drilled all the way through, I lined up and clamped one piece back on the tang.
Now to drill the pin holes with a cobalt #30 bit. Once the one piece has its pin holes, I place some temporary steel pins in to secure the piece to the tang. Then clamp the second piece when the edges are matched. I then remove the temporary pins and drill the second piece.
The pin holes perfectly match. This was the objective.
Now to finish the keyhole. I used a protractor set to about 65° and marked with a permanent marker. I set a piece in the vise and cut with a hacksaw. Repeating for the second piece.
Rough cut. These get pinned together and shaped a bit better with the file.

Now the pieces are pinned back on the knife and checked for alignment.

Of course this is only half the job. The other half is fitting the scales into the keyhole.

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