Author Topic: Sheath Build - the PW way  (Read 12603 times)

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Offline PetrifiedWood

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Sheath Build - the PW way
« on: July 01, 2012, 03:50:32 PM »
Certainly not the only way, and probably not the best. But this might give some folks some ideas to use on their own projects.

I recently finished a knife that needs a leather sheath. I wanted to do a bit of tooling, and use a snap for retention.

The process starts with a idea, and then a sketch. I used the actual knife blade template in this case to create a sketch of the sheath on paper. I made three copies of the sketch on my printer because I'll need to cut out different parts to form the front and back, belt loop, liner, and welts.






As you can see in the above pictures, I like to glue the paper pattern to a manilla folder before cutting it out. This gives me a stiffer, more durable template to trace around when transferring the pattern to the leather.

So, after cutting out the leather pieces, I do some tooling. I've marked the border and cut it with a swivel knife, then I mark the center line to establish a straight basketweave stamping pattern. This is done using the stylus on a modeling tool, and you have to case the leather first.


To do basketweave stamping, I put the diagonal corners of the tool on the center line and make the first stamp. the for each following stamp, I place one of the straight "bars" on the corner of the stamp in the opposite corner of the previous impression. Tandy has a good video demonstrating this technique.


After following the pattern to the end, I connect a second row of stamps.


When the pattern is filled out, I go around the outside edge that I cut with my swivel knife, and use a beveling tool to stamp the pattern down to give nice contrast with the border. I then use a small camouflage tool to blend the pattern around the edges.


A quick coat of tan dye. It will dry lighter in color than this, I'm counting on it. ;)


Now to case, mark, and cut the front of the sheath to prep for tooling. As you can see, I cut out another part from my original pattern to use as a tooling template, and to mark the snap retention position.



Cut the border with a swivel knife. I later finish the border around the snap as well.


Basketweave stamped in.


The border beveled and camouflaged. I use the modeling tool again to touch it up here and there.


Maker's mark on the back of the sheath.


Dyed with tan again, punched the hole, and set the snap.


I've turned over the front of the sheath, and applied Barge cement to the back of it, and to the back of the liner. Normally I wouldn't use a liner but since this sheath has a snap, it is needed to prevent the snap from scratching the blade.


After 10-15 minutes you can stick the two pieces together. Make sure you have them properly aligned because once this stuff grabs it's permanent.


Next comes the neat part... using Tandy's "Super Shene" as a resist. I use a pointy little brush to apply the finish to the center, tooled portion only. After this dries, I can then go back with the brush and apply a darker dye to the border to make the weave really stand out.


Ok, so here's the medium brown applied thick to the borders...


I won't apply super shene to the borders because they will need to be cased again so I can mark, cut and drill for the stitches. Then the stitch grooves will need to be re-dyed as well.


Ok, that's all for now. I'll add more to the thread when I have made more progress.






Offline The Warrior

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #1 on: July 01, 2012, 04:18:38 PM »
Man oh man, this is freakin' cool. Love these kind of threads. Thanks much for sharing, appreciated. Looking really good.
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Offline greyhound352

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2012, 04:36:21 PM »
Thanks Ron, for the tutorial on how you do a knife sheath. Looks great so far!
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Offline Dano

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #3 on: July 01, 2012, 06:10:02 PM »
WOW PW, that's really taking shape nicely!!  Thanks for sharing your methods on this, especially using the Super Sheen as a resist...I always wondered how that worked.

Wish I trusted myself as much LOL, I still get it all glued together and then run it across the belt sander to smooth and straighten the edges first.  Guess that comes with time and practice...

Looking great so far, and thanks again for sharing!

Offline kanukkarhu

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #4 on: July 01, 2012, 06:19:06 PM »
Awesome thread and beautiful case!
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Offline PetrifiedWood

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Sheath Build part 2
« Reply #5 on: July 01, 2012, 07:00:11 PM »
Thanks guys!

OK, next steps...

I use a stitching groover and overstitch wheel to groove and mark for the stitches for the front piece only.


I mark and drill the belt loop and the back piece to stitch the two together. By attaching the belt loop to the outside of the sheath I am able to provide clearance for the bolster and make it a better fit. If I had just folded the back over to form the belt loop it wouldn't fit the knife as nicely.


Here they are together. I used tan artificial sinew.


Gluing up the welts.


The whole thing glued together, I use Barge cement.


Drilling the stitch holes with a Dremel drill press attachment.


After drilling, I touch up the dye with a Q-Tip.


Then it's out to the shop to use a 36 grit belt on the grinder to even up the edges.


And then I remove the sharp edges with a #2 edge beveler.


Dying the edges to match. I follow this with some gum tragacanth to slick them, then some black Fiebing's Edge Kote.


Now to make the retention snap. I like using paracord with a little snap tab like this so that tension can be adjusted and the cord can be replaced if it gets dirty or gets cut when removing the knife in a hurry. Leather straps stitched or riveted onto the sheath are ruined if they get cut, and aren't easily replaced by the user.


Punch some holes in the belt loop to attach the retention strap.


All that remains is to rivet the snap onto the tab, then feed 550 cord through it and knot that inside the belt loop.

Here are some finished pics.






Hope you enjoyed the pictorial! :)

Offline GrowlingBear

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #6 on: July 01, 2012, 07:57:05 PM »
That came out pretty spiffy, PW.  I like the retention tab snap thingy.
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Offline Remo007

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #7 on: July 01, 2012, 08:06:04 PM »
Very Sharp PW!!! 8)
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Offline The Warrior

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #8 on: July 01, 2012, 08:46:34 PM »
Man, that is too cool. Very nice work. Thanks for sharing.
Weshecat-too-weh! Weshecat-welo k'weshe laweh-pah!

Offline Dano

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #9 on: July 01, 2012, 08:50:36 PM »
That's an awesome looking sheath and a great tutorial!!  The two-tone finish really sets this combo off!!

Offline OutdoorEnvy

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #10 on: July 02, 2012, 07:34:24 AM »
Nice one PW, enjoyed the progress pics and your process too.  Thanks man
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Offline MATT CHAOS

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #11 on: July 02, 2012, 09:03:34 AM »
Holy shnikeys!  That is gorgeous!
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Offline PetrifiedWood

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #12 on: July 02, 2012, 09:48:36 AM »
Thanks everyone! :)

Offline hushnel

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #13 on: July 02, 2012, 09:34:35 PM »
That's great brother, nicely done. Hadn't seen the Super Sheen as a resist, I'll give it a try.

Offline PetrifiedWood

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #14 on: July 04, 2012, 02:43:36 PM »
That's great brother, nicely done. Hadn't seen the Super Sheen as a resist, I'll give it a try.

Thanks man! It works, but you can't let the dye sit on it for too long. It gives you enough time to wipe up any mistakes before it sets in though. You can supposedly use it as an antiquing resist with nice effects according to the label.

Offline Dano

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #15 on: July 04, 2012, 03:42:08 PM »
That's great brother, nicely done. Hadn't seen the Super Sheen as a resist, I'll give it a try.

Thanks man! It works, but you can't let the dye sit on it for too long. It gives you enough time to wipe up any mistakes before it sets in though. You can supposedly use it as an antiquing resist with nice effects according to the label.

I watched  one of the Tandy videos after seeing your sheath, and he uses the Super Sheen as a resist on a dyeing project.  I can't remember if there's anything on the antiquing process or not.

Offline PetrifiedWood

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #16 on: July 04, 2012, 05:48:52 PM »
Was this the video Dano? I just watched it, and it was very informative. I want to get some of that antique stain next time I'm at Tandy!


Offline Dano

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #17 on: July 04, 2012, 08:59:03 PM »
Yes Sir, that be the one....I don't know how to post/link videos yet.

They have some pretty good stuff on their video collection, at least at my level!

Offline PetrifiedWood

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #18 on: July 04, 2012, 09:28:25 PM »
Yep, Tandy has some great instructional videos for most of their products.

Offline MATT CHAOS

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #19 on: July 05, 2012, 07:38:33 PM »
Thanks for posting that video!  That was nice to see!
 :)
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Offline Barbarossa Bushman

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #20 on: July 05, 2012, 09:39:27 PM »
You do great work. That is one high class sheath.
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Offline TheOutdoorist

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #21 on: July 06, 2012, 07:14:43 AM »
Looks hard word but also looks fantastic!

Well done :D
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Offline Red

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Re: Sheath Build - the PW way
« Reply #22 on: July 07, 2012, 08:21:40 PM »
well done!
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