I’ve been getting more and more into leather work and now offering leather sheaths available for most of my knives. That’s a great option but it also means some upgrades to current tools/processes.
One thing that is super handy if you are doing a lot of leather work is a stitching pony, or stitching horse. It’s basically a clamping tool usually made of wood that hold the piece that you are sewing so that you can have both hands free from the leather being sewn. It also helps keep the leather rigid and prevents it from flexing while sewing.
I checked out a few options that are commercially available and decided it would probably be cheaper just to build one . All in it was a 3 hr project (made good use of my milling machine) and it’s going to save so much time! There are easier DIY versions of a stitching pony out there but I wanted something that was a little unique, and I wanted to find a way to use only materials that I had laying around and not have to buy anything for this build. Check out the build video!
In setting up a useful shop, one of the early tools that should be considered would be a decent bench vise. Regardless of what you plan on doing in your shop, in most instances you will find a bench vise to be an incredibly valuable tool. It’s a tool that will be equally as useful to a person just getting starting in there fixing, building, making journey as it is to a master craftsman who has years of experience. Yup, I think bench vises are awesome.
The list was released as a “holiday gift guide” on my YouTube channel but since it’s a list of other recommended YouTube channels and not a list of stuff to try and get under the tree before Christmas morning, I figured it’d be fine to save this one for a little later on to post to the blog.
Anyway, here is a very condensed list of some YouTube channels that I really enjoy. Keep in mind this list is incredibly abbreviated as there are so many great people sharing what they do on Youtube. But, for a quick place to start, here are some you may have heard of and maybe some you’ve never seen before. Check them out and enjoy!
Well, to get things moving further over on the youtube channel, I have decided to give away a handmade knife. We haven’t really shared much on the knife-making front here the blog, but it does happen and it happens fairly often. What started as a hobby and a way for me to have all the knives I wanted without having to drain the bank (knife collecting can be an expensive habit) has turned into a fun little side hustle that is starting to gain some momentum. It was about 3 years ago that I tried making my first knife, and since then they have steadily been getting better.
I’ve started to sell a few here and there and I am now getting orders for one-off custom knives from collectors in the United States. It feels nice to have people want and appreciate things that you make by hand. Anyway, I did a video on making a bushcraft knife and showed all the steps involved. That video is here:
Part of the reason for making that blade was so that I could have that exact knife to use as a giveaway once the SLL youtube channel reaches 2000 subscribers. We’re at just over 430 now so it’s a bit of a ways to go, but I think that it’s a fairly attainable goal. Especially if we can keep putting up half decent content for people to watch. There are tons of channels on YouTube that have multi-thousands of subscribers, and some in the millions, so really, 2000 is not by any means a big YouTube channel, but I think it’s a pretty decent start. Anyway, here’s the announcement video of the contest. Make sure to subscribe, and comment on the video that I will put up once we reach 2000 subscribers and you could win this knife!
With the wood burning stove in the sea-can shop, I’ve been going through firewood a lot faster that I had thought I would. I’ve burned up almost 3/4 of a cord already, and it’s been a mild winter. With lots of wood burning comes lots of wood chopping. I found a little trick that makes this job much quicker.
Use an old tire (I just used one from my pickup when I replaced the tires) and stand the wood you are chopping up in it. Make sure you get it nice and tight, and when you chop, it stays put. No flying firewood, and after you’re done chopping, gathering up all the pieces is a snap. I’m not overly big on little “tips and tricks” for the most part; and I really didn’t think this one would be as effective as it is. But it actually makes a big difference. Something I thought was worth sharing. Cheers!