SDC Handmade Blades

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This one was to experiment with reconstituted wood, also called fineline. Fineline is basically a bunch of thin sheets of wood (usually Ayous) that are glued together and cut in the perpendicular direction. This makes a cheap, very consistent and relatively light veneer. This is also the material used nowadays for handles in most commercial blades. Because it's soft, Ayous accepts color really well, so the sheets are pre-dyed and then glued, enabling those intricate patterns. Performance wise I would call this the "poor man Hinoki", it's soft but very bouncy.

Composition: Fineline / Glass-Fiber/ Kiri / Glass-Fiber / Fineline
Weight: 90.4g
Thickness: ~7.15mm
Freq.: 1290Hz
Balance: 3.4cm (Med)

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This is the first of two blades I built for a customer. He's a very good player and also a coach, you can check his insta account @keean.tt
This one is my Innegra outer composition which has received good feedback lately, featuring Singapore colors in the handle.

Composition: Limba / Innegra-Carbon/ Framiré / Kiri / Framiré / Innegra-Carbon / Limba
Weight: 87.1g
Thickness: ~5.8mm
Freq.: 1290 Hz
Balance: 1.8cm (Very low)

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The color combination of the Innegra and Framiré is awesome. The Framiré looks like gold next to that layer. Is that it's natural color?

Why did you/your customer choose Framiré instead of the normal Limba or Ayous?

Yes, that's the natural color, but just like limba there can be some variation, I've seen some much darker veneers.

Well, Limba or Framiré over Ayous because they are heavier and harder. Ayous would make this composition too slow, it's better combined with a harder top like Koto. Framiré and Limba are very very similar, the former being just a little lighter and harder. This gives a slightly crispier feel but the difference is almost negligible.
 
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This is the second blade I've built for @keean.tt. The composition is similar to the N301 and once again we tried to incorporate Singapore's flag red and white in the handle. It also features a really cool white Koto top Ply.

Composition: Koto / Ayous / A-C / Ayous / A-C / Ayous / Koto
Weight: 94g
Thickness: ~6.0mm
Freq.: 1315 Hz
Balance: 2.6cm (Low)

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Many years ago I used to be in the fiberglass business and one of my biggest problems was always to get tidy clean cuts on Kevlar and/or hybrids. so I admire your skills and the finish you are achieving on the edges with the Carbon/kevlar hybrid. I got myself an innerforce and marvel over their finish too.
All the best.
lodro
 
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Many years ago I used to be in the fiberglass business and one of my biggest problems was always to get tidy clean cuts on Kevlar and/or hybrids. so I admire your skills and the finish you are achieving on the edges with the Carbon/kevlar hybrid. I got myself an innerforce and marvel over their finish too.
All the best.
lodro

Thanks, I do put a lot of manual work in the finishing department. Carbon is easy to smooth but sometimes the dust gets in the wood pores if the cut is not smooth to begin with. Zylon is a lot more resilient than kevlar but somehow I seem to get better edges with it. But then again Diolen is even softer than kevlar and it's a real pain to get smooth.

I would love to know how Butterfly does it, it must be a quick process so that it is cost effective. Although I do see some loose fibers in their blades sometimes.
 
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Thanks, I do put a lot of manual work in the finishing department. Carbon is easy to smooth but sometimes the dust gets in the wood pores if the cut is not smooth to begin with. Zylon is a lot more resilient than kevlar but somehow I seem to get better edges with it. But then again Diolen is even softer than kevlar and it's a real pain to get smooth.

I would love to know how Butterfly does it, it must be a quick process so that it is cost effective. Although I do see some loose fibers in their blades sometimes.


As far as I can tell, butterfly cuts their blades oversized with some type of router, and then they use these monster sanders to finish stacks of blades all at once. Check out this video (starting at :20):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0YiNEfBakqs

If you don't mind me asking, how do you cut your blades out? My flush-trim router bit tends result in some tear-out on one side (when going against the grain right) near where the blade-face rounds into the handle. To eradicate this issue, I recently built myself a tool (involving a bearing just larger than my sanding drum) so that I could use an oscillating spindle sander to cut blades flush with my template (and I recently used it on some ZLC with tremendous success).
 
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Quote from Nate4s """" If you don't mind me asking, how do you cut your blades out? """

Of course I am also very curious but now that i am in my 70ies I won't start up anything like blade building.
My specialty was Carbon/hybrid wing paddles for the serious Kayakers. For cutting Kevlar dry I had a specially ""Adapted"" pair of Nylex gardena garden scissors and for cutting the over hangs on the split molds a Stanley knife did the job if I got the hardening process just right. Otherwise it was the old angle grinder.

Honestly,,I would not tell anybody ..............;);)
 
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As far as I can tell, butterfly cuts their blades oversized with some type of router, and then they use these monster sanders to finish stacks of blades all at once. Check out this video (starting at :20):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0YiNEfBakqs

If you don't mind me asking, how do you cut your blades out? My flush-trim router bit tends result in some tear-out on one side (when going against the grain right) near where the blade-face rounds into the handle. To eradicate this issue, I recently built myself a tool (involving a bearing just larger than my sanding drum) so that I could use an oscillating spindle sander to cut blades flush with my template (and I recently used it on some ZLC with tremendous success).

Well, there's no way I can compete with that kind of machinery :D

I attach the template to the blank and cut it roughly leaving 1-2mm gap. Then I use my disk sander to leave the smallest gap possible. This is serves more to alleviate some work from the router bit than anything else. Then off to the router it goes. I'm using a 2+2 compression spiral bit and that helps a lot with with splintering of the top ply, never had an issue with that since using this bit. However I also get some tear out when going against the grain. Not always, it also depends on the piece of wood. I tried all kinds of things, fast passes, slow passes, climb cutting, different router speeds, etc, but nothing seems to fully eradicate this issue in blades with fibers.

That spindle sander idea has crossed my mind because I noticed it is easier to sand fibers than cut them, but unfortunately I don't have enough space in my shop for a spindle sander.
 
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Quote from Nate4s """" If you don't mind me asking, how do you cut your blades out? """

Of course I am also very curious but now that i am in my 70ies I won't start up anything like blade building.
My specialty was Carbon/hybrid wing paddles for the serious Kayakers. For cutting Kevlar dry I had a specially ""Adapted"" pair of Nylex gardena garden scissors and for cutting the over hangs on the split molds a Stanley knife did the job if I got the hardening process just right. Otherwise it was the old angle grinder.

Honestly,,I would not tell anybody ..............;);)

Cutting the cloth is the easy part. Well, not easy, it's still very labor intensive, but getting the fibers smooth while at the same time having a perfect wood edge is very hard.
 
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A pair of commissioned blades with the Innegra outer composition.

Composition: Framiré / Innegra-Carbon / Framiré / Kiri / Framiré / Innegra-Carbon / Framiré
Weight: 86.2 and 86.7g
Thickness: ~5.7 mm
Freq.: 1313 Hz
Balance: 1.9 cm (Very Low)

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