Western Fixed Blade Restoration

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orvet
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Western Fixed Blade Restoration

Postby orvet » Fri Jan 11, 2019 2:45 am

I love the carbon steel in Western knives, and they are some of the best that was ever made, IMHO.
I am however, not is excited about their bifurcated tang, other than the fact that their bifurcated tang coupled with the layered leather handle leaves me a good supply of knives with rotten leather handles that can be replaced. The bifurcated tang that is open on each side allows moisture to enter and get underneath the layered leather and cause it to rot. Because I think so highly of the steel I love to replace the handles with bone or stag and then seal them on the inside with glue to keep out the moisture. They look nice when I'm finished and someone gets a knife that will with minimal care last him/her a lifetime!

I thought I took pictures of this one before I started work on it, but I can't find them. Basically all the leather was gone from the handle and the pitting was even worse than it is now. I did not try to regrind the blade, because there would not have been much of it left, but there is plenty of blade left, (in spite of the pits) to use this for a hunting or fishing knife. The steel is awesome and takes a great edge, it is easy to resharpen and I think it makes an attractive knife with a new handle on it. The sheath that comes with this pattern was one Western called a tube sheath. Basically is a piece of leather folded over to make the sheath. The sheath that came with this knife was in pretty rough shape so I made a brand-new sheath and because of a spot on the leather that would have showed through a lighter finish, I used Fiebings USMC Black leather die on the sheath. I asked the guy at the leather store what was the difference between black and USMC Black? He said all of the dark dyes, brown, black and other dark dyes actually have a blue base tint to them, the USMC Black does not, it is completely black. I did notice the difference when I used it. I was pretty impressed with the dye. In the last picture you can see that I covered the snap with a piece of leather so that the snap on the strap would not scratch the bone handle. I also left the strap a little longer to make it easier for someone wearing gloves to open the strap.

On the knife itself, I use three layers of spacers, (white, black, white) next to the tang to raise the handle up a little bit as the bone was not quite thick enough. I thought the spacers looked pretty good. I probably should've replace the horizontal spacers as well. The handle is CSB (carved stag bone ) from Culpepper's. I believe the color was Mossy Oak.

Thanks for looking and please let me know what you think.
Attachments
Western L48 custom-CSB Mossy Oak a.jpg
Western L48 custom-CSB Mossy Oak d.jpg
Western L48 custom-CSB Mossy Oak e.jpg
Western L48 custom-CSB Mossy Oak f.jpg
Western L48 custom-CSB Mossy Oak k.jpg
Western L48 custom-CSB Mossy Oak m.jpg
Dale
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FRJ
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Re: Western Fixed Blade Restoration

Postby FRJ » Fri Jan 11, 2019 2:51 am

Another great save for a great knife! ::tu:: ::tu::
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Re: Western Fixed Blade Restoration

Postby glennbad » Fri Jan 11, 2019 3:27 am

That's a dandy Dale, i love the green!

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Re: Western Fixed Blade Restoration

Postby philco » Fri Jan 11, 2019 3:46 am

Great job Dale. That one is ready to head out to the woods now. ::tu::
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zzyzzogeton
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Re: Western Fixed Blade Restoration

Postby zzyzzogeton » Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:28 am

Very good save. Keep looking for the before pictures, you got them hidden somewhere. Would love to see the before.

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Re: Western Fixed Blade Restoration

Postby Delmar Morgan » Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:53 am

That's a beauty. Like the color of the handles. ::tu::

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Colonel26
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Re: Western Fixed Blade Restoration

Postby Colonel26 » Fri Jan 11, 2019 5:18 am

You know me and Western knives! I love em. This one is no exception. You do great work on these old Western fixed blades. I still have the bird and trout that you did in Stag. Fantastic knife.
“There are things in the old Book which I may not be able to explain, but I fully accept it as the infallible word of God, and receive its teachings as inspired by the Holy Spirit.”
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orvet
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Re: Western Fixed Blade Restoration

Postby orvet » Fri Jan 11, 2019 6:33 am

Thanks guys, I appreciate the kind words and encouragement.

Glenn - I saw a knife or two that you did in green CSB and I liked the way it looked. I found a set in my inventory so I decided to use it. I am glad I did!

ZZ - I will see if I can find those pictures.

Wade - I remember how much you like Westerns. ::nod::
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Re: Western Fixed Blade Restoration

Postby eveled » Fri Jan 11, 2019 7:04 am

Love it. Amazing job on it.

I never understood Westerns use of the H shaped washers. It just seems like a bad idea. I’m honestly surprised so many of the handles lasted as well as they did They must have thought it added strength to have the double tang?

Great save on a great blade. The end results are amazing. The pits don’t detract from it in any way IMHO.

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Meridian_Mike
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Re: Western Fixed Blade Restoration

Postby Meridian_Mike » Fri Jan 11, 2019 1:11 pm

WOW.... Dale...Your work is really, REALLY nice.... THAT knife is a real beauty with that nice handle you put on it. Just amazing!!
I have to tell you, you inspire me to keep striving for the level you have achieved.

NOW... look around for those before pics so we can be even more amazed!!

Mike
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Re: Western Fixed Blade Restoration

Postby edge213 » Fri Jan 11, 2019 1:21 pm

Love those handles.
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Re: Western Fixed Blade Restoration

Postby Tony_Wood » Sat Jan 12, 2019 3:58 am

Great work Dale. Love the green.

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Re: Western Fixed Blade Restoration

Postby TripleF » Sat Jan 12, 2019 11:59 am

philco wrote:Great job Dale. That one is ready to head out to the woods now. ::tu::


My thoughts exactly Phil!!!
Awesome craftsmanship Dale! ::not_worthy::
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Re: Western Fixed Blade Restoration

Postby oldprof » Sat Jan 12, 2019 3:32 pm

Dale
I love old western blades.The one you show suits me right down to the ground.I have a bunch of them;leather,delrin,stag.My
favorite is an stag handled one with pits and carbon spots.It is my kitchen knife that is used to cut everything.
Wayne Byram


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