Making a Deer Antler knife handle.
Deer antlers make stunning, sturdy and durable knife handles that will last many many years. Deer Antler knife handles make use of something that might otherwise end up discarded. the unique style of each handle makes a Deer Antler handled knife a fabulous gift for the discerning outdoors person in your life.
They make excellent handles for rat tail or hidden tang knives as the slender tang marries perfectly to the drilled out antler.
Thinking of converting a current knife to Antler handle simply burn off the current handle. You can also buy a wide variety of blanks, Knives Ireland will be stocking these towards the end of the summer. While there are many many methods to do this the method outlined below is ideally suited to a first attempt.
Ideally your selection of antlers will have a piece that will suit with out too much faffing about, you can cut the tang a little to ensure best fit. When you have settled on a section of antler cut that section out, err on the side of caution because once its cut you cant put it back on again, use a hack saw or a grinder with a thin cutting disk, personally i use a stainless steel cutting disk, be sure to and i cant stress this enough use dust mask, eye protection and gloves.
Use a vise to hold the antler section in place, drill out a hole large enough to fit your tang. If curved simply drill halfway turn over and drill the rest. Slow steady drilling is whats needed here.
Slide your blade tang into your newly drilled cavity sometimes a little bending of the tang will give optimal fit. Ready for epoxy well almost, this is where your first time knife handle can come a cropper, be sure to prepare the tang surface by sandblasting or simply grinding the surface this allows the blade tang to adhere to the epoxy in the best possible fashion.
OK now we are ready for epoxy, be it acraglas or something like Loctite E120HP or maybe you have a favorite comment below we would love to hear about it, tape off any areas you want epoxy free, i like to stand the knife up in my vise, get and i mean get as much epoxy into the handle cavity as you can and leave overnight, you can then sand off any excess epoxy ideally with a rotary tool and grinding stone, and hey presto you now have a beautiful Antler handled knife.