Friday, 20 June 2014

Frosts Mora 120 rehandle

This is the first whittling knife I bought. I chose the 120 as opposed to the 106 because back then the longer blade scared me. Let's face it, to the un-initiated these knives look particularly nasty and dangerous - just a step away from a Fairburns-Sykes commando knife. Of course, I've since realized the benefits of a longer blade and so this knife has sat in my carving bag doing nothing.

So, when I saw Ju's recent post about rehandling a Mora I couldn't help thinking it would be a nice little project for my oldest knife.

A couple of years ago my father-in-law gave me a shed. He had bought a new one and so I inherited the one he had bough over thirty years ago, back when they made sheds to last. I had put it up hurriedly without first preparing the ground it was on and over the years it had subsided to the point where I could barely get the door open. Plus, it was at the end of the garden so I had to traipse across a wet and sometimes muddy lawn to get to it and trail an extension lead across the length of the garden if I wanted electricity for the bench grinder, belt sander, pillar drill, lathe, band saw, etc.

So at Easter I made it a priority to move it closer to the house and onto the pebbles where it would be more accessible and better supported - I also put 6ft long 2x6 batons under it. And it worked well and I'm very happy to have a dry, straight workshop in which to do little jobs again. I have made many knives in this shed, both with bought blades and blades I have made myself, but this is the first knife I have worked on since movingd it.

It's a simple design, which is the way I like my knives. Brass, fibre spacer, leather, reindeer antler, oak burl, leather spacer.

I had a lovely thick bit of brass for the bolster, but it's been a while since making a knife and I have lost the knack of drilling a slot that fits the blade snuggly and I ending up have four attempts and wasting it all before giving up and settling for something thinner.

It's a good length for me and fits in my hand comfortably.

Ju gave me the slice of oak burl some time ago - I think he got it from a car boot - and while the figuring isn't very great, It's still a nice piece of wood.

There were a few cracks in the oak which I filled with apoxy resin.

 I put a simple chamfer on the end of the handle - looks ok and stops chipping where there would otherwise be a sharp angle.
Not the most beautiful knife, perhaps, but unique and works well. I really enjoyed this little bit of knife making and will definitely do more in the summer holidays. I really enjoyed the smell of the sanded oak and found I had even missed the smell of sanded antler!


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks Brian - I tried it out today and it actually feels really good in hand - I was afraid the polished finish might make it 'slippery'.

  2. What a great looking knife, reminds me of some of the knives in the Swedish Carving Techniques book. Any chance of 'How to do this' now you've got power in your shed?