getting started with kydex....tips?

O

obsessis

Guest
i want to make some kydex sheaths for the knives I make. with that said, i'm not planning on making them to sell so I don't need the biggest and best tools to make them but I'd like things that work.

will the $7 eyelet stamp and anvil work okay? I don't mind redoing the occasional eyelet.

will making a cheap press with the walmart camping foam stuff work okay?

If you have any other tips for someone just starting out I'd appreciate it.
 

Precision Plus

Super Moderator
well i am not sure about the $7 eyelet stamp and anvil because i have never used them but i do know that Tracy at www.usaknifemaker.com carrys a very good eyelet die set and he also carrys the arbor press for them. and i do no they work very well and at a hobby production rate will probably last a lifetime.

i have never made a kydex sheath so i am far from a professional but i would think that the walmart foam would work ok.

Travis
 

leatherman

Sheath Forum Moderator
Thats a good question, can one of our kydex benders offer up ideas for a functional base line kydex sheath making kit?

Some of the things I've come across:

Plywood makes a decent press, thick enough not to warp under pressure.

The wal mart closed cell foam pads do work, but do need to be replaced occasionally.

The eyelet tool, I hear requires some practice, but if your not making a business out of sheath making you should be ok with it.
 

Tod Lowe

Well-Known Member
Yes the cheap eyelet setters will work. Instead of hammering straight down on the eyelet you need to work around it in a circle to compress it or will probably only look ugly at best. Put a piece of leather on the anvil of your vice and use it to set the eyelets on so you dont damage the face side. Tracy sells very good eyelets. Dont waste your time ordering them from someone else because you dont know what you will get.
The blue foam camping matts do work good for the press.
I have found that the kydex is ok on hollow ground knives but on flat ground it will scratch the crap out of the blade. I do a light press on the whole knife then after getting it almost done I repress it where the compression area is. This is so I dont get the kydex to tight on the blade which causes the scratches.
I use big metal cutting scissors from lowes to cut mine and a heat gun to heat it.
 

BossDog

KnifeDogs.com & USAknifemaker.com Owner
Staff member
I use 3/4" plywood and 2 pieces of that blue camping mattress foam pad on each side glue to the boards. Each board is attached to a large wood vise I got for 20 bucks from harbor freight or something like that. Pretty simple press really and you can crank it with one hand while slipping the whole mess with the other. I'll try and post a picture of it.
 

murphda2

Super Moderator and KD Blade Show Boss
After purchasing a kydex press, I've found that the cheap camping foam from Wal-Mart actually works better than the foam that comes with the press. The camping foam is a bit firmer and provides a better press.

Murph
 
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