How to Rivet Knife Handles on a Knife

Written by danny donahue
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How to Rivet Knife Handles on a Knife
Knife safety is important at home and on the job. (knife image by apeschi from

One often overlooked aspect of home safety is knife condition. A knife is a tool that has many uses and takes much abuse. Most people pay no attention to the condition of their knives until the neglect leads to an accident. A cracked or missing knife handle will not allow the user to gain a proper hold, causing a slip that leads to a cut. Replacing a knife handle involves removing the old handle, or what is left of it, and replacing it with a new set of handle slabs. Then, your knife will be safe and ready to use again.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Fine grit sandpaper
  • Wooden handle slabs
  • Clean, dry rags
  • Metal knife blade/tang
  • Epoxy resin with hardening agent
  • Plastic bowl and knife
  • 1-inch paint brush
  • Rivets
  • 2 blocks of wood (1x2x6 inches)
  • Rubber mallet
  • C clamps

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  1. 1

    Shape and smooth the wooden handle slabs with fine grit sandpaper. Wipe away excess dust with a clean, dry rag.

  2. 2

    Sand the metal knife tang with your sandpaper to clean away debris and scuff the metal to prepare it for the epoxy. Wipe away debris with a dry rag.

  3. 3

    Mix recommended amounts of epoxy resin and hardening agent in a plastic bowl. Stir with a plastic knife.

  4. 4

    Brush the epoxy onto the knife tang on both sides with your paint brush. Place the wooden slabs in place on the tang of the knife. Paint epoxy onto the male ends of the rivets. Slide the rivets into place through the handle and tang. Place a block of wood on each side of the knife handle and tap each side to lock the rivets in place.

  5. 5

    Place a C clamp onto the blocks at each end. Allow the epoxy to cure for 24 hours. Remove the clamps and sand away the excess epoxy. Wipe the knife clean with a rag.

Tips and warnings

  • Working with knives is hazardous. Always be aware of where your hands are in relation to the knife blade.
  • Epoxy should only be used outdoors or in a well-ventilated area.

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