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Razor Sharp Knife

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  • Razor Sharp Knife

    Many years ago, I made a carving knife from a Straight Razor. I was never completely satisfied with it and so it sat in a box unused. Today I was making another razor knife and it turned out to be the best knife I have ever used. (I have easily used a hundred-plus knives)

    So I dug out that old razor knife and reground it; amazing, it cuts just like the one I made today.

    The tecnique of making a Razor knife came from H.S. (Andy) Anderson's book 'Carving Characters in Wood'.

    I have also seen early photos of Harold Enlow using a Razor knife. I assume he used the same instructions, since he credits his inspiration to carve to the same book.

    If anyone decides to attempt making a razor knife, there are some definate safety issues. First, working with a razor can be dangerous, the thin concave area is extremely brittle and sharp.
    Also grinding any metal can be hazardous to your lungs, expecially when the alloy is not known.

    After many years of knifemaking, it still took me five hours to complete the knife and handle. It is made completely with the metal-removal method; no forging or heat treatment.
    It will require patience and lots of abrasives to complete just one knife.

    Another item to consider, straight razors are collectable, some sell for incredible amounts. Be sure you are not making a $30 dollar knife from a $100.00 razor.

    One last note, I tried using a new $2.00 Pakistan made straight razor and wasted several hours of my time. They just do not compare to the old German and Sheffield razors.

  • #2
    Re: Razor Sharp Knife

    Never thought about it, but suppose you could use a straight razor for chip carving? I have one, but like you said, it is old, a family members now gone, so couldn't cut it up. thanks for the info, interesting, would like to see pictures of it.


    • #3
      Re: Razor Sharp Knife

      Hi Ho,
      I posted pictures of two of the knives I completed this weekend.;uid=731540


      • #4
        Re: Razor Sharp Knife

        Nice job Rick! That has to be outstanding steel in those razors!! knife should hold an edge really well!! thanks


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