Restoration of a German Folding Dirk circa 1910-1930

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orvet
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Restoration of a German Folding Dirk circa 1910-1930

Post by orvet » Tue Aug 20, 2019 4:44 am

This project is the restoration of a folding dirk made by J Dirlam & Sons, Solingen Germany. John Goins guesstimates the date of this company to be 1910-1930.

I had posted previously a few pictures of this knife in a topic called "Your Opinion Wanted!"
viewtopic.php?f=14&t=61121&hilit=Derlam&start=15

The topic was about dying bone handle slabs. I used the same basic method but using a light brown Febings leather dye called British Tan. I was definitely surprised by the results!

I will list a few pictures and describe the steps as I go along.

This is the before picture:
~J Dirlam before.jpg

These three pictures show the knife in pieces:
1-J Dirlam & Sons Solingen a.jpg
2- J Dirlam & Sons Solingen b.jpg
3- J Dirlam & Sons Solingen tang.jpg
These are liners I cut from .040” brass sheet. As you can see I used layout fluid to scratch the outline of the holes from the liner on to the new liners. It was a straight up tracing from the liner on to the new brass sheet. I cut the liners out with aviation snips and then clean the edges up on a 5 inch disk sander.
The second picture shows the two new liners clamped to the old liner I used as a pattern for the holes.
4a- liners traced from original liners.jpg
4b- J Dirlam & Sons.jpg
Re-creating a working mechanism – the knife is been apart for months and I wanted to set the mechanism up so I could watch it work before I assembled the knife.
5- JJ Dirlam & Sons - re-creating a solid model b.jpg
5- J Dirlam & Sons - re-creating a solid model c.jpg
Cleaning bolsters – The knife is between 89 and 109 years old, there was lots of crud in the hollow bolsters and so me I suspect was solder that has broken down over the years.
6-J Dirlam & Sons - cleaning bolsters before soldering.jpg
I learned to solder it was not electronic soldering. I was taught to get some flux hot and melted on each surface and get a little bit of the solder melted onto that flux. A little bit of that solder will adhere to the metal that is a process known is tinning. I want this tinned coat of solder very thin, so will be liner or bolster is still hot and the solder is still liquid I rap the liner on the edge of a small anvil on my workbench to knock off the excess solder. With the bolster I used an air hose to blow off the excess solder. This is not a clean soldered joint in this case because of the dirt in the old solder and bolster, nevertheless it is a thin coating of solder and it is attached to both pieces which is the major objective.
7- J Dirlam & Sons - Tinning cleaned bolster & new liner.jpg

Soldering tinned bolster to tinned liner - This is fairly easy if the solder is a very thin coat. Just like the bolster and the precise position you want it on the liner and heat the two items with a little torch. If the solder on the two items is a thin coating then they will both melt and harden in place when the heat is removed. If you have a thicker layer of solder, solder becomes liquid it tends to flow in the bolster is floating on the solder and it shifts position and you have a bolster that is not in the right place. DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT grab the bolster and move it into position with your fingers. If you still have feeling left in your fingers, you will immediately know that you still have feeling there!
A thin coating on both parts, put them in the correct position, heat them up till the solder melts on both pieces, then remove the heat and they will harden into the proper position if you do not have too much solder on the parts.
8- J Dirlam & Son - soldering bolster to liner.jpg


I will have to get more pics & text ready for the next post.
I hope y'all enjoy the pictures and the description of the process.
Dale
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orvet
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Re: Restoration of a German Folding Dirk circa 1910-1930

Post by orvet » Tue Aug 20, 2019 5:03 am

Bolsters and liners soldered together and ready to be cut down some before handles are added. You can see the scribed line around the edge of the liner, the line is the point to which I will sand the liner back using a disk sander.
9- J Dirlam & Sons – bolsters soldered and ready for handles.jpg
Bone has been dyed and is drying
10- J Dirlam & Sons -bone is finished dying & drying liners already.jpg
The liners have been cut down to about the proper size and the bone has been attached to the liners via epoxy. Liner has been stamped and dated.
11 - J Dirlam & Sons – signed & dated mark sideliner.jpg
The handles are attached to the liners, pin holes have been drilled and parts are ready for assembly.
12J Dirlam & Sons- knife parts and unhafted handles..jpg


This last section are pictures of the knife nearly finished.
I still have little bit more finish work to do on it, including my etch on the blade, but it is about 95% complete.
J Dirlam a.jpg
J Dirlam b.jpg
J Dirlam c.jpg
J Dirlam d.jpg
J Dirlam e.jpg
J Dirlam f.jpg

Correction, 80% complete. I have not put the old shield back on the new handles.
Should I put the shield back on or leave it off?
You guys, please let me know what you think.

The orange color was totally unexpected coming from a light tan leather dye that had seemingly little if any red in it.
Must experiment more! ::nod::

Thanks for your opinion and thanks for looking! ::tu::
Dale
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Re: Restoration of a German Folding Dirk circa 1910-1930

Post by rangerbluedog » Tue Aug 20, 2019 11:26 am

I vote YES on the shield. Looks good Dale!
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Re: Restoration of a German Folding Dirk circa 1910-1930

Post by btrwtr » Tue Aug 20, 2019 11:28 am

Great job Dale!
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Re: Restoration of a German Folding Dirk circa 1910-1930

Post by djknife13 » Tue Aug 20, 2019 11:28 am

Really nice work Dale. I'd like it even better with the shield. ____Dave

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Re: Restoration of a German Folding Dirk circa 1910-1930

Post by Steve Warden » Tue Aug 20, 2019 11:52 am

Always fun to watch an artist work.
Looks great. ::tu:: ::tu:: Yes on the shield.
Take care and God bless,

Steve
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Re: Restoration of a German Folding Dirk circa 1910-1930

Post by glennbad » Tue Aug 20, 2019 12:04 pm

Cool! I say yes to the shield, due to the length of the knife

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Re: Restoration of a German Folding Dirk circa 1910-1930

Post by Meridian_Mike » Tue Aug 20, 2019 12:20 pm

Beautiful job Dale.... Thanks so much for doing a start to finish photo session. And thanks for posting a mock-up of a lock mechanism like the one I just finished in my scratch-build. I can see that the best design for the spring is to have a pivot point farther away than my original design. VERY informative!!

ALSO, I really like the leather dye idea for the scales. It does look like the dye penetrated into the canals and colored very nicely.

I will have to re-read your thread BUT.... did you paint the dye on or soak the scales in the dye for a period of time to get that result?

Great thread and beautiful restoration Dale!

Mike
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Re: Restoration of a German Folding Dirk circa 1910-1930

Post by Jeffinn » Tue Aug 20, 2019 12:40 pm

That turned out great Dale! I’m in the minority but I like it without the shield.
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Re: Restoration of a German Folding Dirk circa 1910-1930

Post by Doc B » Tue Aug 20, 2019 1:57 pm

That's awesome! I love that mechanism! I'm torn...on the shield. The bone looks really good in the blown up pictures. I bet it it looks really good in hand. The shield certainly won't hurt it. A very cool old knife, feeling the love again!!! ::tu:: ::tu:: ::tu::
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Re: Restoration of a German Folding Dirk circa 1910-1930

Post by Beavertail » Tue Aug 20, 2019 2:10 pm

Yes to the shield!
I can't wait to see the finished product. ::tu::

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Re: Restoration of a German Folding Dirk circa 1910-1930

Post by knife-nut » Tue Aug 20, 2019 2:18 pm

Very good step by step pictures. Beautiful work. I vote for installing the shield. It will add a little class to it.

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Re: Restoration of a German Folding Dirk circa 1910-1930

Post by edge213 » Tue Aug 20, 2019 4:52 pm

Shield ::tu::
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Re: Restoration of a German Folding Dirk circa 1910-1930

Post by orvet » Wed Aug 21, 2019 6:49 am

Thanks guys, I really appreciate all your replies and all the input on the shield. It was pretty lopsided in favor of the shield and I agree I think the shield adds a great deal on that knife because of the length. That long thin bar shield flows nicely with the lines of the knife.

I will try to get started on that tomorrow and post pictures when I'm done.
Thanks again for all your awesome input it really is helpful!
Dale
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Re: Restoration of a German Folding Dirk circa 1910-1930

Post by Reverand » Thu Aug 22, 2019 12:27 am

Though the polls are closed, I still vote "yes" to the shield. And I LOVE the way the bone dyed! It has such a beautiful color, and I love the uneven, almost 'Apaloosa' look on the mark-side scale.
And, thank you for the tips on soldering. I see that I have been using too much solder on mine.
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Everything else is just a hobby.

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