A revelation in cheap sheath material!

Discussion in 'Baryonyx Knife Co.' started by FortyTwoBlades, Sep 26, 2018.

  1. FortyTwoBlades

    FortyTwoBlades Moderator Staff Member

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    If you're at all like me, you've probably acquired a lot of sharp things that, for one reason or another, don't have sheaths. The volume of these means that getting nice leather or kydex made for them represents a significant cost that just isn't feasible. I just recently hit on a solution that I've been absolutely giddy about: root barrier sheeting.
    It's UV-treated high-density polyethylene (HDPE). Available in rolls of varying dimensions and with a degree of flexibility and cut resistance equal to leather roughly 3x its thickness by my estimation, and dirt cheap. 20 square feet in 30 mil thickness (about that of a credit card) was $18 shipped to my door. It's ductile in temperatures down to -90° F and melts at 250° F, and can be heated with a heat gun at 240° to give it some mild stretch and formability like wetted leather. Because it's not a woven material, it doesn't need the edges hemmed, and because it's a polymer it's highly weather resistant. Not the prettiest stuff in the world, but using a weltless compression rivet arrangement I was able to knock this lightweight and durable sheath in about 5 minutes. I'm gonna' be covering ALL THE THINGS with it.

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  2. Bushman5

    Bushman5 Member

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    NICE! i love working with HDPE and UHMW plastics!
     
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  3. FortyTwoBlades

    FortyTwoBlades Moderator Staff Member

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    And yes, I'm working on a sheath design for the Kingfisher Machete with this stuff. I'll be able to offer cheapo sheaths for knives/tools that currently don't come with one. Here's an axe mask I made for my Rinaldi "Genova" pattern. :)

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  4. OKcherokee

    OKcherokee Member

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    Nice!
     
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  5. Wolfman Zack

    Wolfman Zack Member

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    Very cool!
    That actually could be a better alternative to leather for wet environments.
    I wonder if it comes thicker.....say 1/8”/2.5-3mm or so......in heavier weight, and sewn with heavy nylon contrast thread, it could yield a rather nice looking product, though the rivets are certainly much more practical for ease of assembly and don’t look bad either.
     
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  6. FortyTwoBlades

    FortyTwoBlades Moderator Staff Member

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    It comes thicker, but 1/8" would be overkill. I got the thinnest material as an initial test, and will be getting thicker ones to mess around with, as well. But the durability of this stuff is such that really I think the 30 mil thickness will be all that's needed. I'll be experimenting with stitching, but I've found a source for black rivets at only around $0.05 apiece and it's way faster to just use a bunch of those. Labor cost is going to be the most significant factor in terms of cost of the sheaths, so keeping them quick and easy is key. They're not meant to compete with nicer sheaths, but rather to provide an option better than cardboard for models that don't have factory sheaths available. :)
     
  7. Caleb O

    Caleb O Member

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    That's awesome! I've a few customized machetes that need new sheaths. Thanks for posting this up!
     
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  8. FortyTwoBlades

    FortyTwoBlades Moderator Staff Member

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    Made this one today.

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  9. jeeter

    jeeter Member

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    Brilliant idea! I've been looking for a machete sheath for a bit now, and you gave me a solution.
     
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  10. Charlie Delta

    Charlie Delta Member

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    Any concern with the rivets contacting the edge due to lack of welt?
     
  11. FortyTwoBlades

    FortyTwoBlades Moderator Staff Member

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    Nope! When fully tightened the rivets create a "dimple effect" that puts material directly in front of the edge, and the two pieces are so tightly held together that I can't expose the post of the rivet even if firmly tugging the material in opposite directions.

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  12. Charlie Delta

    Charlie Delta Member

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    Cool, pretty much what i expected. I didn't actually think you would overlook that detail.:D
     
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  13. Bushman5

    Bushman5 Member

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    YES! i pulled a sheet of this stuff out of one of our construction bins on a jobsite!

    like 3' x 6' x 1/8" thick!

    going to whip up a sheath for the Esee lite 'chete this weekend
     
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  14. FortyTwoBlades

    FortyTwoBlades Moderator Staff Member

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    1/8" thickness is probably massive overkill and will be likely to behave more like hard plastic sheeting than leather. This experimental Kingfisher Machete sheath is 60 mil (0.06" or 3/50") and was way heavier duty than it has any reasonable need to be. The 30 mil is more than good enough for most tasks. It's thin material, but incredibly tough and cut resistant.

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  15. Bushman5

    Bushman5 Member

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    im not 100% that the stuff i got is 1/8", just eyeballing it. I'll know more when i pressure wash the mud off it this weekend and cut it.
     
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  16. FortyTwoBlades

    FortyTwoBlades Moderator Staff Member

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    Finalized the pattern for a sheath for Tramontina 18" machetes last night. Made of 60mil HDPE so it's crazy-tough. Now to work on the 14-inchers. I think I'm preferring the 60mil for long blades like machetes and 30mil for smaller knives since it's more flexible and conforms better to the tool. The 60mil is pretty stiff, but it resists flopping around when used for long sheaths and the increased thickness helps ensure that a hefty tool dropping into the sheath isn't going to have even the slightest risk of cutting through.

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  17. TuffPossumGear

    TuffPossumGear Member

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    What knife is that? Looks like what would happen if Morakniv made a dagger...
     
  18. FortyTwoBlades

    FortyTwoBlades Moderator Staff Member

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  19. C99c

    C99c Member

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    I'm happy to see this as I just gave away my last Tram 14"er and will need to order another from you soon. I'm definitely interested in trying out one of these sheaths when they're ready.
     
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  20. FortyTwoBlades

    FortyTwoBlades Moderator Staff Member

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    I finalized the 14" trail machete sheath today. Just don't have pics to share yet. :)
     
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