Interested in starting down the road of metalworking but not sure where to start? Try this project to make a knife from a sawblade to get your hands a bit dirty. Carrying something on the belt that came out your own shop is a huge symbol of pride for most makers. It’s the physical manifestation of a skill, and the demonstration of a job completely well done. A custom knife is a great project that gives a solid excuse to build up a few nice side projects at the same time, like a Soupcan Forge. The only other tools you probably have in the shop already, like some basic files and a solid place to hammer out the shape if needed.
I love this project because it doesn’t require an anvil (although it certainly helps), or large forge, a large vise helps but it's not essential. First, let’s talk about the metal –
Knife metal should be soft enough to be manipulated when working, but must also be hard enough to hold an edge after it’s finished. High carbon steel is the prime metal for knives and if you happen to have a few old saw blades in the shop, you’ve got some. If you don’t have saw blades, snoop around for some old files, but keep in mind that metal has a higher carbon content and will be harder to work.
Now that you’re inspired enough to go find those dusty blades, get to work turning them into something sharp enough to be proudly strapped to your belt.