Poor Man's Kydex

Discussion in 'Self-made Gear' started by p1pe, Feb 5, 2010.

  1. p1pe

    p1pe Tracker

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    I have been experimenting with an idea. I know that some types of plastic are pretty easy to work with. The cloudy plastic jugs that are used for milk jugs here in the USA are pretty malleable... When I watched a video of how kydex sheaths are made, I said to myself, "I bet other kinds of plastic could be used for that." I was right. This is just a preliminary experiment. I bet some of the super talented dudes on this site will perfect better methods.... so here's the basic idea (hope you like it). :)

    This is the kind of plastic you need.

    [​IMG]

    This is what you can make with it.

    [​IMG]

    First, you have to clamp it as tight around the knife as you can.

    [​IMG]

    Then add heat. I used the heat gun shown, but you can also put the plastic in boiling water for a while and then clamp.

    [​IMG]

    Let it cool and add grommets. And this is what you get.

    [​IMG]

    It stays in pretty good. Here it's set up to be a necker.:):):)

    [​IMG]
     
  2. daveridesbikes

    daveridesbikes Guide

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    very cool!
     
  3. RangerJoe

    RangerJoe Bushwhacker Bushclass II

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    good job man!
     
  4. snakedoctor

    snakedoctor Deceased

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    Ok thats very cool!
     
  5. Grits

    Grits Guide

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    Very resourceful!
     
  6. MountainWoman

    MountainWoman Guide

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    Mu ha ha ! Most excellent Dr. Kydex-stien :D
     
  7. Skab

    Skab Staff Staff Member Super Moderator Vendor Bushclass I Bushclass Instructor

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    Nice, I like it, you could make red ones out of the red folgers plastic container.
     
  8. Spork

    Spork Supporter Supporter

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    ...and orange ones from Tide detergent jugs
     
  9. Jason

    Jason Founder Staff Member Administrator Bushclass I

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    OK this is one of the best and cheapest pieces of home made gear I have seen. What a great idea! I love the resourcefulness of the members here and appreciate the fact that things don't need to be expensive to be good. Bravo!
     
  10. Easy_rider75

    Easy_rider75 Supporter Supporter

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    Or blue ones from a Maxwell house container. Very cool idea though.
     
  11. daveridesbikes

    daveridesbikes Guide

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    alright can any one think of a readily available black, brown, or green things we could do this with?
     
  12. Skab

    Skab Staff Staff Member Super Moderator Vendor Bushclass I Bushclass Instructor

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    A brown Hydrogen Preoxide bottle, I also have a very large, liter size Black shampoo bottle that I think would work great.
     
  13. Spork

    Spork Supporter Supporter

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    The one caution I have about using this material is not to make sharp folds in it. I made a number of them for kitchen knives kept in a drawer and eventually they split along the fold line as the plastic aged.
     
  14. Earendil82

    Earendil82 Scout

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    Absolutely awesome idea!
     
  15. Spork

    Spork Supporter Supporter

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    I believe I've seen somewhere a machete sheath made from a damaged plastic garbage can.
     
  16. p1pe

    p1pe Tracker

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    This is why I chose the kind of plastic I used. It doesn't take much heat to make it almost do something similar to wet-forming leather. The only problem I have is keeping it warm enough while I am forming it. I haven't tried other kinds of plastic yet. Thanks Spork for the heads-up, though.
     
  17. Trekon86

    Trekon86 Guest

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  18. 72shane

    72shane Guest

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    Ive used PVC pipe before but this is great! I think ive seen shampoo and lotion bottles of many colors. I will surely be trying this...thanks
     
  19. Spork

    Spork Supporter Supporter

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    Here's an ideal...you could put together a simple sheath with old seat belt webbing with the plastic riveted in as a liner. In fact I've seen cheapo nylon sheaths made that way.
     
  20. daveridesbikes

    daveridesbikes Guide

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    well i know what ill be doing this weekend:)
     
  21. tnrick55

    tnrick55 Banned Member Banned

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    View attachment 8114 i used the cover out of car spare tire thing there mostly flat abs plastic.
     
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2010
  22. night wolf

    night wolf Scout

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    wow thats awesome man
     
  23. anvilbreaker

    anvilbreaker Guest

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    Excellent!!! Somtimes the best ideas come from simple things. This was one of those times when you thump your head, and say: Now why didn't I think of that!

    Good Job!!
     
  24. Cyberslinger

    Cyberslinger Scout

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    I love this... Make sure you see Trek's thread where he used the Folgers can and a Notebook binder. Excellent stuff guys. This should also be added to the camping gear for under $100 bucks thread.
     
  25. snowmanx7t8

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    that is very cool....nice job
     
  26. walkabout

    walkabout Guide

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    Ingenius, dude! absocluckinloutley ingenius! these sre the things that made me become a member here! there are some very crafty folk who haunt these parts.
     
  27. STOBBER

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    old empty motor oil containers come in a number of colors........i'm trying this over the weekend !!!!!!!!
     
  28. hog

    hog Guide

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    Very, very inovative, good job.
     
  29. Coach

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    dadgum!! I'm sooo trying this this afternoon! thanks for the idea's.
     
  30. tnrick55

    tnrick55 Banned Member Banned

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    how about those tote containers you can buy at the dallor store there in differnt colors
     
  31. kevinkinney

    kevinkinney Current on Tetanus. Vendor Supporter

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    OK, in decades of tinkering, I've yet to see a better use of a material we all take for granted.

    Thank you.

    Kevin
     
  32. 45jack

    45jack Supporter Supporter

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    Plastic, it's upcyclable Dude.:cool:

    Upcycling is a component of sustainability in which waste materials are used to provide new products. ...

    A term coined to describe the creation of a product with higher intrinsic value, manufactured from a material at the end of its service life ...

    The repurposing of a material into a product of higher quality. An example would be a purse made out of woven candy wrappers. Or a sheath made from an old bottle.;)
     
  33. silversalmon

    silversalmon Tracker

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    Now that's what I need. I threw out my crappy fall-apart canvas sheath a while back.
     
  34. NJStricker

    NJStricker Supporter Supporter

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    That's neat. My only suggestion is that it might make a good liner inside a leather or canvas sheath. That type of plastic breaks down under UV rays in a few months, and becomes very brittle.
     
  35. Dryad

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    Fantastic. I like your choice of rivets. Useful to lash on a pack, etc.
     
  36. Keyser Söze

    Keyser Söze Usual Suspecto Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    you guys are freaking cool , go green, LOL
     
  37. 72shane

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    I dont have a heat gun so i tried to boil the plastic...didnt work? I used a red tide laundry detergent bottle? I cut a piece the right size, put it in a pot with about 3" water and weighted it down, and rolling boiled it for about 30 minutes. As soon as i took it out it cools instantly? Any suggestions? ...besides boiling my knife. Thinking about microwaving it! :D
     
  38. p1pe

    p1pe Tracker

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    Shane, wrong kind of plastic. The plastic milk jugs can be used and formed in many different ways. But it is chemically very different from what you were using.
     
  39. 72shane

    72shane Guest

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    Thats what i suspected...i'll try something different.
     
  40. MoxemDeliph

    MoxemDeliph Guide

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    I didnt pay this thread much attention unfortunately! Now that Im hear, my head is spinning with all kinds of junk I have around the house. I got one of those Harbor Freight heat guns on sale two weeks ago for 7.99...but its capabilities when combined with an *endless* supply of plastic is amazing!
     
  41. Capt'n

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    Now that's what I call Green!

    Wow ..... the possibilities are endless!

    Upcycling at home .....

    You should be put up for the nobel peace prize!
     
  42. silversalmon

    silversalmon Tracker

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    It may be that boiling water wasn't hot enough. It only gets to 212 degrees and no hotter.

    This Black & Decker heat gun does 500 or 1000 degrees. http://www.amazon.com/Black-Decker-9756-Dual-Temperature/dp/B0000302U8
     
  43. Rooster

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    I like the sexy see thru look of that milk bottle sheath.
     
  44. Avair

    Avair Scout

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    I love this idea!, the red is sweet! I am doing this for sure. Really great idea.
     
  45. Creek Walker

    Creek Walker Guide

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    Yep this is definitely something to try. I've made machete and knife sheaths from pvc this should prove interesting.
     
  46. Adventure Sworn

    Adventure Sworn Guide

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    Talk about being creative. Good stuff.
     
  47. monsterdawg725

    monsterdawg725 Tinder Gatherer

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    great idea never thaught of this
     
  48. anubis1335

    anubis1335 Bushmaster

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    SWEET! Never thought of the different colors of coffee cans!

    If you wanted stronger w/ the milk jug, could you double it up and melt/heat it together?

    Great ideas!

    I also posted on the ESEE forum on BF as well :D
     
  49. ChapmanPreferred

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    Great thread!
     
  50. hushnel

    hushnel Guide

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    I was linked to this thread, very cool idea, I really like this kind of thinking so I registered and jumped right in.
     

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