Best types of wood to use

Discussion in 'Misc. Knife Arts' started by sjansen, Dec 15, 2008.

  1. sjansen

    sjansen New Member

    I have recently started making training knives from wood. I have used purpleheart and am trying out ipe. Does anyone have any experience with these woods or better ones to use that are low cost but very durable. The ipe seems hard as a rock and sands to a shine. I don't know if I can make long blades from it without it breaking though.

    Let me know what you have used that has worked.
  2. The Phalanx

    The Phalanx FMA's Frank Lucas

    I have got some guava wood this weekend... Some of the straight ones I'll make bastons out of it and the longer ones I'll make staffs out of it... The shorter ones that's not very straight I'll see if I can make some training knives with them...
  3. blindside

    blindside student

    I made three wasters out of hickory, last I heard the two I gave away are still going strong several years later. I'm hard pressed to imagine that if a 48" practice blade can handle the contact, that it wouldn't work for anything shorter. It isn't as attractive as purpleheart, or kamagong, or the like, but it'll certainly take abuse.
  4. tellner

    tellner New Member

    Hickory has the best impact strength of any wood. It's cheap. It's available at every hardware store. And it doesn't require cutting down endangered exotic hardwoods.
  5. sjansen

    sjansen New Member

    Regular Hickory is not that great when it comes to impact strengh tests. Check the billner or janka ratings. There is supposed to be a weapons grade for hickory that comes out of the Appalachians that is supposed to be great, but I have no idea where you get it. I made a stick out of hickory and it splintered bad. Same with all the oak and maple I've tried. So far the Ipe looks the best for splintering and is the hardest.
  6. tellner

    tellner New Member

    Sorry, I meant impact grade hickory.
    By the same ratings regular hickory is still pretty good.
    Osage Orange is excellent.
  7. sjansen

    sjansen New Member

    Do you know where to get the impact grade hickory?
  8. tellner

    tellner New Member

    I get small pieces from local specialty stores like Woodcrafters. But even shaved-down tool handles work just fine. I've been using a modified axe handle instead of a baston for two years now with no trouble.

    Knives really don't need to be as tough. They don't get the hard repeated pounding that sticks and swords have to endure.

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