I have been busy making a knife with an deer antler base (AKA coronet) for a handle. Using a deer antler is the first for me. It was much easier than making a two piece handle from wood.
The antler had a 4" spike that I had to remove, so that's why it had the white spot on the side. After I inset the big stone in the coronet, I decided to inset another on that white area. I have an old milling machine, but found it was much easier to cut a hole and then grind the turquoise stone to fit the hole rather than cut the hole to fit the stone.
The tail end of the blade (AKA the tang) has a round 1/4" x 3.5" rod to fit back into a hole, so I drilled a straight hole into the crooked antler, fit the front of antler to the bolster (the brass hand guard) and used epoxy to mount the antler to the tang. Also, the antler was so gnarly that it was difficult to hold securely in the vise of the milling machine without damaging it, even after I padded it with a piece of fabric, so I drilled the deep hole for the tang with a hand held drill. The antler is about like drilling and grinding a medium density wood such as maple.
I still have not done anything with that Bois D'Arc shaft, but I did cut some limbs off to promote new sprouts next year. I also found a dead limb that was cured and ready to use. My neighbor wanted to make handles (AKA scales) for a knife he is making, so he cut it into 1/4" scales and they are a beautiful orange color. I think it will make a really nice knife.
If anyone is interested in trying your hand at making a knife, you can make one from an old file; a saw blade; a car spring or buy a finished ready to use stainless steel blade (AKA a blank) on eBay for about $12 to $20. Most are made in Pakistan, but are really nice.
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