Tuesday, May 19, 2015


Once the cemented together, I square up the edge with a sander.
A perfect right angle edge makes for true grooves that are equal distance from the edge when you use the groover with a guide.
This is before the grooves go in.
Again having a look for the squareness.
Set the guide on the goover for about 3/16".
Drag the groover using the edge guide to cut a nice line. Go slow and repeat if you want a deeper groove.
Then repeat this on the back side.
Now run an over-stitch wheel, say #6 in the groove. Mark the divots with a fine tip Sharpie if you like.
I use a stitching awl to poke a hole. This helps register the hole. I press only part way in as you'll see we are going to make the hole over on the drill press.
Using a 1/16" bit I go into each hole I made with the awl and slowly drill right through all the pieces. The sheath has to be held at a right angle to the drill bit.
Here I am checking the drilling angle by viewing the back side of the sheath. If the hole comes out the back side in the groove the angle is correct. If not, adjust the angle of the sheath when drilling. Check the backside groove frequently when drilling.
The spacing of the holes is critical and makes or breaks a stitching job. Near the ends, you sometimes have to "fudge" a hole or make it farther apart then the other holes. This error will be covered up when we add extra stitching at the start and end of the seam.
Using Tandy's Waxed Braided Cord,  Brown (11210-02), I measured out 8 times the stitching length and threaded a needle. I started at the second hole in, stitched from the back-side and went back one hole (to the first hole). Then I went forward from there. This locks the thread in.
Once at the end, start moving back stitching in the opposite holes. Pull the thread with even pressure. About 10 lbs. or 5kg of force. Imaging putting a 10 lb. weight on the thread.

When you get back to the starting stitches, you'll encounter some resistance. The first holes you stitched are going to now be tripled stitched. These are tough, but pull the need through with pliers. Make the last stitch end one the back-side.

Here I applied some gum tragacanth to the edge and "slicked" it with a wooden dowel.
I dipped the whole sheath in water and inserted the knife. This will form the shape of the sheath to the knife. 

After the forming, dip the sheath in neatsfoot oil. I have used Dubbin in a pinch. Others have used SNO-SEAL.

Good luck in your sheath making adventures.


No comments: