Monday, 9 April 2012

Drawknife Wallet

A dull damp Easter bank Holiday, well to be fair, the Good Friday was lovely and we got some work done on the garden.
On the Saturday I went up to the club to help out with the have a go archery, but there weren't many visitors. I'd taken along a stave and my drawknife to work away at and give a bit of a demo if needed.
On the walk up to the camp I'd stuck the drawknife into my crossbow bolt quiver where it contrived to snag my hand.
You can see where this is going now, and I set to, making a wallet to protect me from further incident.
I've previously made a cover for my axe head, but the blade tended to cut the stitching and I had to put in a copper rivet to protect it. My brother told me how to avoid this by stitching in a thin strip of leather between the front and back, this provides a buffer for the sharp edge of the blade and protects the stitching.
The end result does look a little twee, but I expect it will have a nice worn appearance in 25 years or so! (I shall kick it around the garage floor to hasten the ageing process).
The primitive crossbow which I took with me drew a fair bit of interest so I've added a picture of it to my website on the 'Other Stuff' page with a link to the Bowyers Diary entry where I start building it.
I'll be up at the camp when they run their Belatane Festival (May 7th) setting up my shave horse and tillering rig and I'll be working away all day doing demos, tillering a bow and chatting away. If you are in the area (Herts/Essex border) and want to entertain the kids for a day it's worth a visit (the archery club is separate from the camp, but we all muck in and help with the have a go archery and stuff on the big event days). The Owl display is great and Barney the Barn owl is a fave'.


  1. Not in the least twee tho a bit of oil might help.
    In another life I carried many sharp tools, all had similar covers for both reasons - to protect me as I am clumsy, and to protect the hours I invested in sharpening.
    Including a double-bitted axe with a lovely balance and two different blade profiles, one blunter for splitting and one narrow for cutting.

  2. Nice stitch work btw

  3. And should I be confused by a Celtic festival in the land of the Normans?

  4. You could always dye the leather (if that's your cup of tea) with an iron solution.
    Just put iron (filings, soap free steel wool, bit of iron wire etc.) in a bottle of water with a glug of vinegar in it (to speed up the process).

    After a few days, decant a little and sponge on a spare piece of leather. You might need to repeat the process or leave the solution for a few days more to get a deep bluish black colour (depending on how fine the iron is ie contact surface with the water and the pH of the solution).

    I've built wooden bows before but the last five years time has been scarce. Your blog is an inspiration and a swift kick in the behind to actually take it up again, despite lack of time and space (I have a tiny man cave in a storage room, tillering will have to be done elsewhere)


  5. Thanks for the comments guys.
    I shall have to try the iron filings on an offcut. I'll leave the wallet tho' as it matches my quiver and axe head cover (which are slowly darkening). My son teased me when I'd first made the quiver by saying it was pink! It's veg tanned leather.
    I think those Celts got about just about everywhere and the odd anachronism here and there slips though the net too.