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New handle for my Bill- hook ?

 
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Falstaff



Joined: 27 May 2009
Posts: 1014

PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 15 10:49 pm    Post subject: New handle for my Bill- hook ?  Reply with quote    

Clearly an antique - but like most vintage tools, it takes and holds an edge and is a joy to use.

However the handle is split right through and basically is in two halves, held together by the ferrules at either end.

I want to replace it and have a choice of some green hawthorne cut in about August - about 3" diameter - or a length of dead straight Holly which is about 18 months seasoned in my back garden. that is around 2 - 2.5" diameter at the "thick end" - [it's about 9' long in total.]

My problem is in accomodating the tang which is basically triangular looking side on - tapering from around 3/4 " or a little more to about 3/16 or a little less at the remote end, goes completely through the handle as they do and is rivetted through a washer at the end. !

I'm thinking drill a hole completely through the new "handle" and then try to fit the Tang - but the only true fit I can think of would entail heating the tang and inserting into the drill hole - allowing it to burn away the wood a little at a time and then re-heating etc etc - But I don't like the thought of getting the metal hot and probably softening it ! - But then as I said the tang has been rivetted through the washer - so that implies it must be reasonably soft in any case !

My thought is that if I can get a small diameter drill long enough (say 8" ) to go right through, I can use the holes as my centres and turn the handle after the tang has been accomodated .

Any advice would be very welcome please !

Last edited by Falstaff on Thu Dec 03, 15 10:53 pm; edited 1 time in total

Nick



Joined: 02 Nov 2004
Posts: 34027
Location: Hereford
PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 15 10:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Don't tread on one, he's done nothing to you. There might come a day when he's treading on you.

Falstaff



Joined: 27 May 2009
Posts: 1014

PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 15 11:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Nick wrote:
Don't tread on one, he's done nothing to you. There might come a day when he's treading on you.


Sorry Nick - You've lost me mate !

Hairyloon



Joined: 20 Nov 2008
Posts: 15266
Location: Today I are mostly being in Yorkshire.
PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 15 11:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

You can get heat sink putty stuff which may let you heat the tang without affecting the temper of the blade: try your local welding supplier.

ETA: This kind of thing: http://www.frost.co.uk/cold-front-414ml.html
Is dearer than I'd expected though.

Falstaff



Joined: 27 May 2009
Posts: 1014

PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 15 11:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Hairyloon wrote:
You can get heat sink putty stuff which may let you heat the tang without affecting the temper of the blade: try your local welding supplier.

ETA: This kind of thing: http://www.frost.co.uk/cold-front-414ml.html
Is dearer than I'd expected though.


Thanks HL - I'm wondering whether just clamping it tight in my big 6" vice would do the same job ?

Also whether heating enough to burn the wood could be achieved without going hot enough to lose the temper in the blade ?

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 35528
Location: yes
PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 15 11:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

the vice might well work especially if you use two bits of sheet lead and a wet cloth in the jaws but you will still alter the temper of the tang which should be hard enough not to bend and soft enough not to break and soft at the end for riveting.
the tang is usually tempered along with the blade by skilled dipping in stages (as was probably done my the maker ,re tempering such a tool is tricky and i would not start learning on a favourite blade or heat any part of it unless it had been fire damaged )

alternatively a "stacked"handle with each "washer" holed and filed to fit if using a hard material such as horn,antler or wood . leather can be punched just under size and driven on(swell it with a drying oil after riveting the end washer then sand it to shape)

or a wood handle can be pre drilled and filled with milliput before driving the tang through and fixed with riviting the end of the tang over the end washer.

the latter is easy and very robust

Ty Gwyn



Joined: 22 Sep 2010
Posts: 4261
Location: Lampeter
PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 15 12:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Heating the tang won`t lose the temper in the blade,unless you leave it in the fire so long that you can see the heat traveling up the blade,
that is how they were fitted.

Falstaff



Joined: 27 May 2009
Posts: 1014

PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 15 1:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Ty Gwyn wrote:
Heating the tang won`t lose the temper in the blade,unless you leave it in the fire so long that you can see the heat traveling up the blade,
that is how they were fitted.


Thank you Ty - I was hoping you'd be along soon ! - That's it then - I'll do it that way I'll clamp it in the vice with the lead or probably copper to act as heat transfer systems and heat it a little at a time until the "burn" is ok - but not too fierce (I'll try it with a big plumbers torch as I don't have a forge ! )

dpack - I have some of that epoxy somewhere - I was only looking at it the other day - I also have a "wire saw" which the "Army" was supposed to use in "survival situations" (basically rubbish if you want to cut anything in a hurry ! ) and I could saw the wood out and use a lesser portion of epoxy as "filler - that would be a sort of compromise - but I'd really like to do it proper - like ! Thanks for your idea there !

Now which type of wood ? - Is Mistress Rose out there ?

Edit - I also have seasoned oak (at least 7 years weathered heartwood ) and seasoned ash, sycamore and could probably dig out some well seasoned hawthorn - if I get "on my bike "

Edit 2 - Oh and some seasoned yew - About 18 months "in the log"

Nick



Joined: 02 Nov 2004
Posts: 34027
Location: Hereford
PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 15 7:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Falstaff wrote:
Nick wrote:
Don't tread on one, he's done nothing to you. There might come a day when he's treading on you.


Sorry Nick - You've lost me mate !


You've corrected your typo. You originally asked for ant advice.

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 10901

PostPosted: Fri Dec 04, 15 7:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Ash is best for tool handles, as it is resilient so deadens the shock of hitting anything. Hope it goes well.

Falstaff



Joined: 27 May 2009
Posts: 1014

PostPosted: Mon Dec 07, 15 7:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Nick wrote:
Falstaff wrote:
Nick wrote:
Don't tread on one, he's done nothing to you. There might come a day when he's treading on you.


Sorry Nick - You've lost me mate !


You've corrected your typo. You originally asked for ant advice.


Oh yes - I see !

Falstaff



Joined: 27 May 2009
Posts: 1014

PostPosted: Mon Dec 07, 15 7:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Mistress Rose wrote:
Ash is best for tool handles, as it is resilient so deadens the shock of hitting anything. Hope it goes well.


Thank you Mistress Rose - Been out today and found a piece of ash which should be ok. I think it came down in the summer of 2012 or 2013 (can't remember which but I've been walking past it for a few years now)

It's not enough diameter to quarter it and make handle from one of the quarters, but being between 3 & 4 inches diameter, it should lose the sapwood as I turn it down I think.

Trouble is now I don't have a fairly small drill long enough to go right through -

Slim



Joined: 05 Mar 2006
Posts: 5383
Location: New England (In the US of A)
PostPosted: Mon Dec 07, 15 7:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Falstaff wrote:
(I'll try it with a big plumbers torch as I don't have a forge ! )


mapp gas instead of propane for higher temp?

Falstaff



Joined: 27 May 2009
Posts: 1014

PostPosted: Tue Dec 08, 15 12:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Slim wrote:
Falstaff wrote:
(I'll try it with a big plumbers torch as I don't have a forge ! )


mapp gas instead of propane for higher temp?


Thanks for the advice Slim - I just realised I have a decent sized BBQ - and some briquettes left over from the summer - so perhaps I DO have a forge !

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 10901

PostPosted: Tue Dec 08, 15 7:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

If the ash is well seasoned, you might get away with it Falstaff, but there is a chance it might split. Quartered is far better as it is less likely to split as it fully seasons.

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