Cariboo Blades
Handmade Working Art
sun print darker.jpg

Process & Philosophy - Cariboo Blades

bushcraft gardening, cooking with a wood stove, homesteading, knife making, living off the grid, living sustainably, making art, power with solar energy, the boreal forest, widlife environment, wood heat

Pictures and images of our lives in the bush in 2018. We survive in the working forest making working knives, working art.

We live and work with the sun.

Since 1997 we’ve lived towards a sustainable existence. We are sustenance farmers, growing as much of our food as we can, 75% of our electrical needs are covered with solar energy. We make handmade working knives and tools with art from material that we’ve recovered & recycled...Great material and it’s all around us. Takes some time to process but so do a lot of things.

A Sun Print

A Sun Print

The sun. 4.6 billion years old with at least that much more to go. We have dedicated ourselves for the past 20 years to living andworking with the sun. We started from the beginning with what we needed. We have a backup generator when clouds get in our way. From March until October everything is made with solar energy. From November through February we slow down and maintain things.

Head Saw Blade Pieces, Our Knife Steel Stock

Head Saw Blade Pieces, Our Knife Steel Stock

We recovered and recycle lumber mill saw blade. We use everything, even the teeth. They left saw dust, we leave metal grindings.

High carbon steel with a molybdenum, chromium and nickel content. Some blades also include cobalt and tungsten.

Swans of the Tundra

Swans of the Tundra

Every few years when the water is low enough swans gather over 2 or 3 weeks in November. There were 150 on the lake. The lake froze. I’ve heard trumpeter swans don’t fly the distance that most do. They made the lake look smaller. Coming, going and feeding.

Old Saw Blade Knives

Old Saw Blade Knives

Old sawblades with no carbide teeth. With our kitchen knives, except for hand forged chef knives, cleavers and a few others, we can draw and cut patterns out like this one. For many of the kitchen knives we remove stock from lumber mill bandsaw blades and the thinner carbon steel mill circular blades instead of forging. We anneal the hardened saw blade steel, finish, re-harden and differentially temper.

Shop trees

Shop trees

With a dirt floor in the knife shop and light we have trees growing from the floor.

Rock Wall Heat Sink

Rock Wall Heat Sink

A frost can come anytime here. Between June and September there are 2 or three frosts. Could be July 12th or August 2nd. We have a lot of rock. We’ve used the rock to alleviate the hit that frost inflicts in our gardens.

Firewood

Firewood

Every fall, crisp and cool, the best time of year, we go and fetch our firewood.

Dogs

Dogs

There is no time.

Dried Mushrooms Wildcraft

Dried Mushrooms Wildcraft

Foraged, cleaned and dried for winter. This year we gathered a lot of mushrooms. Mostly boletes.

Knife Shop

Knife Shop

Building the knife shop with logs, gas for the chainsaw and diesel for the tractor. When we build, the bonus is a winter supply of wood. Back in ‘98.

The Knife Shop in Winter

The Knife Shop in Winter

Lots of light for the shop. Rather than fill in the walls and install windows and lights we covered the walls with ultraviolet protected 6mm plastic. Still need a few lights and we use a few more sticks of firewood.

Old Truck Wrecks, A Source For Carbon Steel

Old Truck Wrecks, A Source For Carbon Steel

Automobile wrecks are a great source for us. We recover leaf and coil springs for knives and tools.

Children

Children

grow up…

Front Yards

Front Yards

this is ours. Elbow room.

In a space between a big sky and a dwindling forest.

Saw Blade Drafting Table

Saw Blade Drafting Table

Drafting out patterns for knives and woodcarving tools. Each knife and tool we make starts here, on the saw blade. This is a piece of headsaw.

Big 2 Metre Lumber Mill Head Saw Blade

Big 2 Metre Lumber Mill Head Saw Blade

These big saw blades are obsolete. We found a few tucked in behind some equipment in a large lumber mill 20 years ago. The blade keepers (filers) keep them hidden.

Today mills cut big logs with big band saws.

Winter Firewood

Winter Firewood

Kai and Scott foraging. The boreal forest burns hot and fast. On average we burn 4 or 5 cords a winter. We cook on a wood stove, heat with a wood heater and bathe in the wood heat in our sauna.

Meat Birds

Meat Birds

We’ve just started this site. More to come…

We raise chickens for food, take a look.