28/10/2013 – During this past weekend I decided to take a wee break from my extended plane-building-activities. I wanted to do something else on a weekend where there would be plenty of interruptions, with a 5 year old’s birthday party, the October Fest and several other social commitments. The Witpeer (Apodytes dimidiata) board below has spent about 3 months acclimatizing to the shop so I thought it could do the job for all the file handles I want to turn. While preparing the stock for these handles, I decided to also turn a scratch awl.
The board was a bit wavy so I first chopped it into shorter chunks as shown. Then I used the bandsaw to rip these pieces ideal for file handle turning and a scratch awl.
The thin strips pictured, were cut from the off-cuts on the bandsaw intended to be used as spatulas while glueing (other projects).
This was all that was left of the board, and soon to become “fynhoutjies” to start a fire.
Before turning the handles and awl, I changed my lathes around. The grey one has developed a slight wobble so it is now earmarked to become a disc sander.
I used this beautiful shop made Jack plane to find a piece of stock with very straight grain by planing the various surfaces to see what is going on.
The Awl being turned.
For the ferrule I used part of a 7 mm Remington Magnum brass case. You can see how I proceeded to shape it.
In the end I came up with a ferrule that suited my purposes perfectly.
In the picture below you can see the steel punch I used for the sharp end of the awl. I drilled a hole in the wooden shaft and cut a slot in the front part intended to end up inside the ferrule. This part was turned slightly bigger than the inside diameter of the ferrule to ensure that the two sides would clamp down on the shaft of the punch when the ferrule is tapped over.
As you can see the wood was first lubricated with epoxy and then the ferrule was taped over. The block of wood underneath has a hole drilled into it to let the punch through in order to only move the ferrule into position.
Here you can see the final product after a tung oil treatment.