A new grip, for an old rapier

The grip on my friend’s rapier broke, so I made a new one for him.

This is four pieces of mesquite with four steel spacers. I routed a channel for the sword tang into the mesquite blocks, then glued the whole shebang together. I cut it down with files and the belt sander to make it comfortable in the hand, and to fit smoothly in the pre-existing hilt assembly. It is sanded to 500 grit and finished with olive oil and beeswax, as is my customary procedure.

A set of wooden dominoes

These are a standard set (28) of 6 x 6 dominoes, larger than usual, about 2-1/4″ long by 1-1/8″ wide, and 1/4″ thick. They were a custom order from a neighbor who is giving them as a graduation gift. I cut them on the table saw from a single plank of mesquite, so they all match.

Mesquite is notorious for pin holes and cracks, and I filled the worst of these with a mixture of mesquite sawdust and clear epoxy, which matches the wood color nicely and sands smooth to become barely noticeable.

The pips are drilled, and the lines cut on the bandsaw, by hand. Then they are filled with marine epoxy, which hardens to a pleasant off-white color, before final sanding and breaking of edges and corners. They are finished with olive oil and beeswax.

I would sell a similar set for $85.

Some wooden blocks, for my boy

Some blocks I made for my boy’s first birthday.

I milled these myself from local mesquite logs. The lumber was waste¬†from trimming my wife’s parents’ tree in their backyard.

I cut the blocks to show off accents of the lighter sapwood. I smoothed all faces, chamfered edges and broke corners on the belt sander, then finished the surfaces with several applications of olive oil, followed by beeswax applied with heat and hand rubbed clean. This is my favorite treatment for both wood and leather.

I think they came out pretty nice.

There are 24 blocks in this set; a similar, but still one-of-a-kind, set would cost $80.