Jump to content

How to replace a stacked leather handle


Recommended Posts

  • Replies 56
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Thanks! I always try to find a way to contribute to everything I collect. The money I make replacing handles is how I pay for my "keepers". Thats how I got into making reproduction WW2 flight jackets. I started out doing restoration/repair work to fund my collection & got the idea one day to see if I could make one from scratch & it took off from there.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Been working on something a little different today, a Western L-71 "SeaBee" knife. The pommel had broken off & was missing so had to add metal to the dual tang. The original handles on these were made from thinner leather & had the fiber washers on both ends in red & black. I think the handle turned out well & just need to finish up making the pommel & attaching it.

 

 

post-161323-0-39971100-1487570811_thumb.jpg

post-161323-0-43780700-1487570834_thumb.jpg

post-161323-0-39500000-1487570862_thumb.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites

What excellent craftsmanship! Short of replacing the entire stacked handle on knives whose leather washers have shrunk/separated slightly (sometimes only in one spot) do you have a process for applying an insert of some type?

Link to post
Share on other sites

If you only need to replace or add a missing washer, you can split a washer & work it in place. Just make sure you get a good amount of glue on it & wipe off the excess after you get it in place. & tape it tightly to close the split gap until the glue dries & its pretty much invisible unless someone is really looking close. I have this postwar unmarked M3 type knife that was missing a couple washers up front next to the guard. I split a couple washers, added some glue & worked them in place. Just split one end & work it in so the split is on the bottom side (Kinda like a horseshoe)

 

before & after;

 

post-161323-0-30192800-1487650478.jpg

 

post-161323-0-55213600-1487650492.jpg

 

post-161323-0-92205300-1487650504_thumb.jpg

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

That Western turned out great!

 

Did you re use the original fiber spacers or make new ones?

In Memoriam:
Lieutenant J.Kostelec 1-3 First Special Service Force MIA/PD 4 March 1944 Italy
I HAVE SEEN THE ENEMY AND IT IS DAYLIGHT
Forget about the tips..We'll get hell to pay (AC/DC)
"If you cant get out and run with the big dogs then sit on the porch and bark at the cars going by.."

Have you Hugged a Clown Today?

You Cant Get A Sun Tan On The Moon..





Link to post
Share on other sites

Steve just throwing this in the discussion for consideration. When you need to apply pressure to a small piece like the replacement split washer while the glue is drying, instead of binding it with tape I've gone out to a local fishing supply store and picked up a length of small diameter rubber tubing. Stretching it around in this case the leather washer, and tying it off provides a nice clamping force that is pretty much equally applied around the washer. This is a trick a gunsmith taught me in repairing damaged gun stocks using surgical tubing.

The L71 does look great.

donation2014.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

another fine piece of work Steve!

In Memoriam:
Lieutenant J.Kostelec 1-3 First Special Service Force MIA/PD 4 March 1944 Italy
I HAVE SEEN THE ENEMY AND IT IS DAYLIGHT
Forget about the tips..We'll get hell to pay (AC/DC)
"If you cant get out and run with the big dogs then sit on the porch and bark at the cars going by.."

Have you Hugged a Clown Today?

You Cant Get A Sun Tan On The Moon..





Link to post
Share on other sites

Everything is new. It was just a blade & guard when I got it. Picked it up on Ebay for $7.

 

Very nice.

In Memoriam:
Lieutenant J.Kostelec 1-3 First Special Service Force MIA/PD 4 March 1944 Italy
I HAVE SEEN THE ENEMY AND IT IS DAYLIGHT
Forget about the tips..We'll get hell to pay (AC/DC)
"If you cant get out and run with the big dogs then sit on the porch and bark at the cars going by.."

Have you Hugged a Clown Today?

You Cant Get A Sun Tan On The Moon..





Link to post
Share on other sites

You are a busy guy!

In Memoriam:
Lieutenant J.Kostelec 1-3 First Special Service Force MIA/PD 4 March 1944 Italy
I HAVE SEEN THE ENEMY AND IT IS DAYLIGHT
Forget about the tips..We'll get hell to pay (AC/DC)
"If you cant get out and run with the big dogs then sit on the porch and bark at the cars going by.."

Have you Hugged a Clown Today?

You Cant Get A Sun Tan On The Moon..





Link to post
Share on other sites

brother, you don't know the half of it! Right now, I have 5 antique motorcycles to paint, 2 A2 jackets to get some restoration work done on, 2 reproduction jackets to make & just got an order from the military contractor I sub for wanting 42 ammo box covers by Monday...

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Skip! I've always loved a challenge just to see if I could accomplish the goal. I also enjoy restoring these items so they can be preserved & not thrown away as so much does. Doing the restoration work has also provided me the ability to handle so many items that otherwise would never be seen.

 

I recently had a fellow send me his grandfather's A2 flight jacket for restoration work that had been stored in the attic all these years & was completely covered in mold. Under the mold was some beautiful artwork. It's now in a shadowbox in his home, so I got to handle something there that most guys will never see. Kinda like having the museum come to you!

 

post-161323-0-57497700-1487959083.jpg

 

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

So Steve did you make your own staples for that sheath? I like the color you picked for the sheath. How light a shade do you start with and do you prefer a specific type, like alcohol, water, or oil for the dye?

donation2014.gif

Link to post
Share on other sites

Ha! The staples were some I found in some old construction materials I had here. Still searching for a more "exact" staple but all I've found so far are some NOS originals that aren't very cost effective.

 

As far as dye, I've just been using the Fiebings brand As I can get it locally. The new "pro dye" they have out is really nice, although I've only used the black so far. I think it's oil based IIRC. I kinda go "willy nilly" with the dyes. I always start light usually with a british tan, which gives it a russet base & go from there. I mix dyes, change application techniques & do all sorts of other things to age/distress it. The dark spots that look like water/oil stains on this one are made using wood glue before any stain is applied. I put a few drops here & there, let it sit until dry & peel off. Something in the glue soaks into the leather & leaves a dark spot when you stain over it. I found that out once by "accident" & started using it in a controlled way! I've seen some really poor aging jobs done on things & the trick is go easy. I had a reproduction leather flight jacket in a yr or so ago that I had to completely disassemble & restitch. Somewhere along the way, a previous owner had taken 80 grit sandpaper to it to age it & sanded all the thread away. The guy I did the job for bought it & it started falling apart on him. I do some sanding to age the sheaths, but always wetsand usually no courser than 600 grit & always before sewing!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.