Knife Design Using Computer Software
Posted 10 January 2012 - 09:15 AM
Thanks for posting up this information. I have no experience with anything but Draw, so I can't offer recommendations for other software.
Draw is also compatible with using a tablets. I've got a Bamboo tablet, but really do not use it much. I can do pretty much anything that I want using the mouse.
Draw has some really good tutorials. But, they cover a lot of stuff that is not necessary for knife designing. By the time that I got through a tutorial, I couldn't remember the parts that would be useful to me. Most of what I have learned about using Draw is from just working with it and looking at the Help Menu. Still, I've spent a lot of hours frustrated because I couldn't remember how to do something that I had done before. I hope that this tutorial thread will be simple enough that it will teach readers the steps necessary for designing knives.
I intend to keep adding to this thread for a long time. I have learned so much about using Draw that I could probably keep posting to this thread for a year. I've got some really cool things to show.
I'll get back to the folder design soon. The next step is designing the spring.
Posted 15 January 2012 - 02:21 PM
With the Pick Tool, select the main blade (not the rotated copy). This will direct the Pen Tool to snap the spring's line to the Nodes on the blade.
Using the Pen Tool, move the cursor to the Node at the top of the blade's spring notch, at the spine. When the work "node' appears, click there. Move the cursor straight down to the bottom of the spring notch and click when aligned with the Node at the corner of the notch. Move the cursor to the right, to a point past the blade's kick. Hold the Shift Key to force the line to be straight and click there. Move the Cursor to a point on the blade handle, just past the point of the rotated blade and double-click to end the line. I have changed the color of the spring's line to red, so it is easier to see in this conglomeration of lines.
Using the Shape Tool, click the Node at the end of the spring line, then convert this line to a curve line by clicking the Convert Line to Curve icon on the tool bar.
Then, shape the spring as you wish.
More Nodes can be added and used to define the shape of the spring.
From the Flowchart Shapes menu, select the circle with crosshairs and size it to whatever size pins that will be used in the handle of the knife. Drag the shape to position on the knife pattern.
An easy way to make duplicates is to use a short-cut key. With the circle-crosshair selected, hold down the "control" key and hit the "D" key on the keyboard to create a duplicate.
Make duplicates of the circle-crosshair as you need and drag them into position.
Make another circle-crosshair and size it to the pivot pin diameter. Drag it to snap into position at the blade's pivot point.
Use the Pick Tool to drag a selection marquee around the handle area. Use the Control + D keys to create a duplicate of the handle.
Click on a blank area of the sheet to deselect the duplicated handle. Use the Pick Tool to select the blade in the duplicated handle, then delete it.
Posted 15 January 2012 - 02:43 PM
On one of the duplicate handles, use the Pick Tool to select the spring line and delete it. Here is your liner pattern. Sorry, I messed up the images. The top shape is the liner pattern.
On the other duplicate, delete the circle-crosshair for the blade pivot. This duplicate will become the spring pattern.
Using the Pick tool, hold down the Shift key and click on the handle and spring shapes to select them; but not the circle-crosshairs. On the Arrange pull down menu, select Combine. Then select Arrange- Weld. This will change the two shapes into a single object (combine) with Nodes at their intersections (welded).
Using the Shape tool, select the Node at the intersection of the handle and spring bottom. Click the Break Curve icon ,on the tool bar. Zoom in and find the Node that is at the end of the handle's bottom line, running towards the front of the knife. There will be three arrows there. One of them is the Node that you are looking for.
Double click on this Node to delete it, along with the line segment.
Continue deleting Nodes and line segments until you reach the front of the spring.
Here's your spring pattern.
Make a duplicate of the handle shape and add lines for bolsters. Make a duplicate of your blade. Here is all of the patterns that you need to build this knife.
Posted 08 February 2012 - 07:03 AM
I never could get my Etch-a Sketch to network with my printer.
I need to get back to this thread and add more to it. There is still a lot of stuff I want to demonstrate. Just a little busy right now finishing knives for the AKA Show.
Posted 25 February 2012 - 08:50 PM
Use the Pen tool to add a line for a false edge.
Use the Shape Tool to convert the line to a curve and then pull the line down with the Shape Tool to create the false edge.
Use the Ellipse Tool to make a flattened hemisphere for a nail nick. Creating a portion of a circle is done by using the Pie Shape controls on the toolbar (red circle).
The nail nick can be filled in with color by using the Smart Fill Tool (red arrow). The Smart Fill Tool will fill any area that is completely enclosed. Click inside the nail nick to fill it with black.
Posted 25 February 2012 - 09:02 PM
Going back to the Smart Fill Tool, use the pull-down color chart to select a darker shade of gray.
Click inside the false edge to color it.
Using the Smart Fill Tool, add color to the bolster areas.
Click on one of the bolsters and then use the Fountain Full to change the solid color to a fountain fill. Also do the other bolster with a fountain fill.
In the next post, I will show how to create a pattern fill from a photograph. I will use the handle material from a photo of another knife to fill the handle area of this folder.
Posted 01 March 2012 - 07:52 AM
This will bring up a menu for you to select the image that you wish to import.
Click on the screen and drag the cursor to import the image and size it to approximately the size of the handle in the folder drawing. Using my photo editing software, I have created an image from the jig bone handle of a folder that I had previously built
Click on the Tools menu, Create, then click Pattern Fill. A pop-up menu will appear; click Full Color.
A cross-hair will appear on the screen, drag the cross-hairs to create a marquee around the image.
A pop-up window will appear; click OK. This will cause another pop-up window to appear, where you will name the new pattern fill and save it in the Patterns Folder.
Use the Pick Tool to select your drawing. Then, select the Interactive Fill Tool (red arrow).
Posted 01 March 2012 - 08:03 AM
Your Pattern Fill will be added to the drawing. It is applied with control handles to adjust the size and angle of the Pattern on the drawing. Adjust the Pattern Fill until it looks good.
Use the Pick Tool to drag a marquee around the drawing and Group the elements together.
Drag your blade into position with the handle. I have filled the blade with a ladder pattern damascus Fill.
If when you drag your blade into position you have this issue where it is placed on top of the handle, you will need to change the order of the drawings on the page.
With the blade drawing selected, pull down the Arrange menu, select Order, then To Back of Page. This will move the blade drawing behind the handle drawing.
You can turn this colorized drawing, or anything that you create in Draw, into a PDF file. A PDF file is a good format to use to send your images to a customer. Almost everyone can open a PDF file and a PDF file is small, so it emails easily. Go to the File menu, select Publish to PDF.
This will display a menu for you to name your PDF file and select the folder where you wish it to be stored.
Posted 19 March 2012 - 07:12 AM
For anyone with access with Adobe, I tried following your tutorial with laid-up and it works fairly well in Illustrator. The differences are minor and easily addressed using the Adobe help for Draw users.
Now if I could only make a blade that looks like the drawings....
John Updike - The Dance of Solids