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 Post subject: Handle Making - Micarta or Vulcanized Spacer
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2017 11:27 am 

Joined: Tue Jan 10, 2017 9:17 pm
Posts: 9
I am going to be making a new wa octagonal handle. My neighbor has over a hundred pounds of local cherry burl that has been dried for four years that I am going to be using. I am going to keep the handle simple but wanted to put a little spacer of white to catch the eye. I have never done a handle before and was wondering what your guys experience is with micarta versus vulcanized spacers?


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 Post subject: Re: Handle Making - Micarta or Vulcanized Spacer
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2017 1:07 pm 

Joined: Mon Dec 22, 2014 1:56 pm
Posts: 1400
Location: Geneva, Ohio
Look in to G10 :)



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 Post subject: Re: Handle Making - Micarta or Vulcanized Spacer
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2017 1:53 pm 

Joined: Tue Jan 10, 2017 9:17 pm
Posts: 9
Thank you, very interesting. I have never even heard of G10. I will take a look at it.


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 Post subject: Re: Handle Making - Micarta or Vulcanized Spacer
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2017 3:06 pm 

Joined: Thu Dec 24, 2015 9:43 am
Posts: 482
Location: Chicago
100 lbs.. sounds heavy.


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 Post subject: Re: Handle Making - Micarta or Vulcanized Spacer
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2017 3:07 pm 

Joined: Thu May 10, 2012 3:21 pm
Posts: 932
Honestly, I would not use either. Stick with a natural material. The Micarta or vulcanized will not move (expand/shrink) and the cherry will. You will have a noticable ridge in no time. Look for a natural contrasting substitute of possible, or something that will move at the same rate.

If you do happen to use the vulcanized spacer make sure to be careful not to overheat when sanding.


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 Post subject: Re: Handle Making - Micarta or Vulcanized Spacer
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2017 3:13 pm 

Joined: Thu May 10, 2012 3:21 pm
Posts: 932
sight wrote:Thank you, very interesting. I have never even heard of G10. I will take a look at it.


G10 is a fiberglass composite. You can get it on most colors (even glow in the dark).

I used to make a fair amount of handles and have a bunch of cutoffs of most materials you could use for spacers. If you are in the US I would be happy to send you some to play with. Just drop me a pm if interested.


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 Post subject: Re: Handle Making - Micarta or Vulcanized Spacer
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2017 4:00 pm 

Joined: Sat Mar 01, 2014 1:15 am
Posts: 3040
Location: Raleigh, NC
I don't know what kind of woodworking background you have, so take this with a grain of salt, but if this is a first handle it's perhaps already more complicated than you'd like. Burl pieces have figuring that make working it more difficult and with a spacer you're adding another possible point of failure. My first handle had a body of softwood with a dowel insert and an oily hardwood cap, no weird figuring or anything like that, and it still gave me trouble because watching three episodes of This Old House a decade ago is no substitute for years of experience. I loved dipping my toe into woodworking, and I loved the result, but I wouldn't have wanted to make it more difficult.


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 Post subject: Re: Handle Making - Micarta or Vulcanized Spacer
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2017 5:57 pm 

Joined: Tue Jan 10, 2017 9:17 pm
Posts: 9
My woodworking background isn't terribly deep but I have done various projects with the most relevant probably being a walnut gun stock. I assumed I could just use a similar finishing process (sand to 320 / true oil wet sand / dry / true oil+sand+dry until i am happy / wax coat and hand buff final). I also planned to use the dowel technique, or maybe even a brass rod to help with balancing, of construction. I was going to keep the cap and body all made out of the cherry with the cut line to install the dowel where the spacer would be placed when bound together. I am not saying I have any idea what I am doing but I hope they I can muddle through and be happy with the result.


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