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Stormcrow

Dawg Skinner

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A member of another forum who goes by the handle Dawgboy approached me with what he wanted in a knife, and we got down to designing it. After he saw my "primal/tactical" knives, he decided that he wanted a cord wrapped handle. He got to see a sneak preview of the scavenger blades that I posted recently (made from plow disk) to see the new style of cord wrapping and decided that he liked it. I used one of the hunters as a starting point and drew out a sketch, widening the blade and giving it an upswept tip. We made one alteration to it, and he gave me the go-ahead.

Here's what it looked like after I had it blanked out from a piece of plow disk. This is a stock removal blade; the only forging done to it was taking the curve out of it from being a plow disk, and stamping my touchmark in it.

dawgskinner004.jpg

I soaked the blank in vinegar overnight to clean the scale and rust off the blade while leaving the beautiful rust texture in the steel. After grinding, heat treatment, and wrapping the handle with hemp cord over leather slabs and a cotton Turk's head knot sealed in amber shellac, I sharpened it to shaving sharp. And this is what it looked like just before I packed it up and sent it.

dawgskinner05.jpg

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Nicely done. I love the simplicity of your designs. I appreciate how the working part of the blade is clean, while the spine is left pickled. The balance between ground and clean to rough and raw fits well.

Phil

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Thanks, guys!

BlissStreet - I have drawn inspiration from so many knife makers down through the years, it is nice to inspire others as well.

MacBruce - No, it is wrapped dry and then shellacked. I'm essentially making a composite material in place.

Phil - I focus on the flow of lines on my blades and don't get too concerned about the embellishment. That's where my eye is drawn, and I pass over a lot of knives simply because their flow of lines are bad or boring. The contrast of the smooth flow of the lines and the rough forge finish/rust pitting texture is pleasing to me. I like to see the work of Man and the work of God in harmony. :)

Jaques - I don't see no ugliness here. Whatchoo talkin' 'bout? :) See my comment to Phil. There's a Japanese philosophy on aesthetics called "wabi sabi". As I understand it's meaning, I think it could at least partially apply to the aesthetics I like to use in my knives.

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"Wabi-sabi is underplayed and modest, the kind of quiet, undeclared beauty that waits patiently to be discovered." Link

Now I understand slightly better.

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I like it I started making a skinning knife too, but in some ways like yours a touch better. I for sure like the cord warped handle so I might steel that part from you. I'll also start looking for plow disk too just wounder if an old plow point would work as well. I have several that were used by my grandfather who plowed with a mule.
Really good job on the knife.
billp

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Test out your steel, bilip. Heat a piece past non-magnetic and quench it in oil (I like canola oil), then see if a file bites into it or skates across it. If it hardened, it should be usable. If the file bites in, try the process again with water instead of oil. If it still doesn't harden, don't use that steel for a blade.

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The "look" is great, Rainy Raven, but I do not prefer having so sharp a point on anything I use as a "skinner".

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Thanks Stormcrow
I have been given the same instructions from a post I did about using 7 1/2" up to 12" saw blades. So I for sure will test all my metal that I use. Just thought someone else may have used the old plow points before and may have some advice on them. As I had another grandfather who had a set up he used just to sharpen his plow points. The shame is I was to young back in the day to lay clame to any of this equipment and now it is all gone to heaven knows where.

Thomas
I think it is a matter of preference as I like a point on mine, it seems to come in handy in a very tight place. But I do find I have to be careful not to go through the skin if I want to save the hide. My problem is in making them I seem to have trouble putting a point I like on a blade so I'm working on solving that now. Which is also the reason I don't use really good metal as I'm still working on my skills for the good stuff.
billp

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Thomas - This is the design the customer wanted. The tasks he described were more camp chores, but he calls it a skinner.

Bilip - Blade steel isn't particularly expensive, but there are plenty of scrap sources for steel that is good to learn on how to make and heat treat knives. Your plow points have a good chance, but test 'em first.

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