Tools for Working Wood

 Joel's Blog at Tools for Working Wood

Making (and How To Make) Folding Knives in Sheffield England  

05/31/2011

When we decided to stock traditional English pocket knives we went to Taylor's Eye Witness in Sheffield, which has been trading since 1838. While they do do modern work their manufacture of folding knives relies on skill, practice, and remarkably unsophisticated machinery. Each knife is made by a single craftsman. In the video below we see a lot of traditional tools such as a knife maker's anvil which has a slot for the excess pivot pins. They have buffing wheels galore and the traditional disposable plastic coffee cup for cooling. Take a look at the video. The knives we stock are from their "Premier" decorative and fancier line, with multiple blades and decorative workbacks and take more effort and skill, but the core concept is the same.



The way you get good at free hand blade grinding is you practice. Here is how it's done (not at Taylor's Eyewitness but at another firm)


If you want to make your own folding knife the videos above were made in conjunction with this website which has very well done step by step instructions for making a folding knife and assumes you know very little about the process. If you navigate the website thoroughly it even has videos on knife design and short videos on hand operations that might seem tricky like riveting. I'm impressed at the method of instruction.

If you want to take a look at some very nice, very fancy, yet production, very useful, made in Sheffield folding knives for a present for your self or someone else - (father's day and graduation day are coming click here.

Here is a link to the researcher who made the films and the how to website as part of a project to understand how craft skills can be taught. Dr. Nicola Wood.

ps. Festool Jigs saws on sale tomorrow!!! (June 1).
Tags:Product News, Sales, and Promotions,Woodworking Tools and Techniques,Historical Subjects
Comments: 2
05/31/2011Steve 
There's a nice slide show about another Sheffield knifemaker, part of the Guardian's Disappearing Acts series: http://www.guardian.co.uk/money/audioslideshow/2010/jan/26/sheffield-pocket-knife-trevor-ablett?INTCMP=SRCH
06/07/2011Anthony http://thedinosaurwalk.com/woodworkerswarehouse
This would be a great project, my grandfather will love it, thanks for the post. It kind of makes you agree with The Anarchist's Tool Chest, 50 tools or less and you can make anything.
Comments are closed.
The opinions expressed in this blog are those of the blog's author and guests and in no way reflect the views of Tools for Working Wood.
Subscribe
 Joel's Blog
 Built-It Blog
 Work Magazine
 Classes & Events
Recent Blogs:
The Saw-Book Quarterly January 1903-05/04/2016
Big Discounts on Festool Vacuums, Demo Days, and Sharpening Classes, and Surprise Sale Bin Stuff -04/27/2016
The Old Merchant's House-04/20/2016
Festool All Brilliant Abrasives and 15V Cordless Drills Being Discontinued-04/13/2016
Six Reasons Why You Have Trouble Getting a Razor Sharp Edge-04/06/2016
Maurice Fraser 1928-2016 RIP-03/30/2016
Hayward - You Blow Me Away-03/23/2016
Sawmaking returns to 26th Street-02/10/2016
New Space - New Plans - Too Much to Do!-01/27/2016
Moving! Moving! Moving! and More on Building Decorations - And Popular Science!-01/13/2016
The Casual Decoration of Objects Before the 1930's-01/06/2016
The Craftsman Magazine, Christmas, & Jacob Riis-12/30/2015
Christmas Cheer-12/16/2015
Festool Fall Promo - Festool - A - Friend-12/10/2015
A Video about Pottery-12/09/2015
The Art Nouveau Furniture of Carlo Bugatti (1856-1940)-12/02/2015
Repair Tip-11/25/2015
A Visit to the Long Island Museum of American Art, History, and Carriages-11/11/2015
Begin at the Beginning-10/28/2015
Here Lies Duncan Phyfe-10/21/2015
Older Entries...