Knives are a staple in the kitchen and pocket of every man. Whether you’re using it to cut up vegetables or carve pieces of wood, your knife is an essential tool that can make or break any experience. Knife handles often come with the knives themselves, but what happens when those worn-out wooden handles start to show their age? That’s where we come in! We’ll guide you through everything from choosing your handle material to making sure it fits perfectly on your blade. So let’s get started!
Why Use Wood For Knife Handles?
Knives are widely-used in our homes for many different tasks, but when it comes to creating a pleasant kitchen atmosphere, most people stop at the knives they use for cooking. While these are definitely an important part of any set of knives, there are several other options that can make your home more aesthetically pleasing.
One of the best ways to do this is by using wooden knife handles.
Not only do they add to the beauty of your home, but these types of handles actually improve your grip and comfort when working with knives that have them- making them safer in the process. This makes them a great choice for any kitchen, especially if you’re just starting out and don’t yet own many specialized knives.
What Are Some Of The Benefits Of Using Wood For Knife Handles?
It’s important to consider malleability and flexibility so that they can be held comfortably without causing too much strain on your hand muscles. It’s also crucial to choose a type of wood that’s specifically designed for use in kitchens such as hard bamboo or maple wood.
When working with knife handles, it’s important to remember that wooden handles are a lot easier on the hands and fingers than other common options such as molded plastic or metal. Wood is a much more malleable substance that makes it even easier to hold onto when you’re cutting through food.
In addition to being comfortable in your hand, wood can also add a touch of beauty and class to any kitchen environment. In fact, many professional chefs prefer using this type of handle because they believe using wood not only helps you work with knives better but actually connects them with the artistry of cooking itself.
Although a wooden knife handle is generally seen as an upscale choice for those who love cooking at home, you don’t necessarily have to go out and buy a specialized set of knives to use them. As long as your knife is made from metal, you can switch out the handle with one that has a wooden design.
The Best Wood for Knife Handles
When it comes to creating a pleasant cooking environment, rosewood is one of the best woods you can use. This type of wood provides an aesthetically pleasing look along with improved grip and comfort thanks to its malleability.
This wood is not only attractive and inexpensive, but it’s also strong, long-lasting, and highly pest resistant.
2. Maple Burl
Not only is maple one of the most durable types of wood thanks to its density, but it’s also been shown to have a consistently good appearance over time. These factors make it an excellent choice for people who are looking for wood that is both attractive and functional.
While many types of maple trees can be sensitive to weather conditions, burl maple has a naturally beautiful grain pattern that makes it perfect for adding comfort and aesthetic appeal to any knife.
Walnut wood is a great choice for people who want to add a touch of beauty and sophistication to their home. In addition to looking wonderful, this type of handle has been shown to provide an improved grip that makes it easier to use over time.
Although walnut is not as sturdy as other woods, the dense nature of walnut wood makes it difficult for bacteria and rotting agents to penetrate the surface and damage it.
Oak is tough and extremely durable which makes it a great choice for wood that’s going to see a lot of use. Not only is it strong and thick, but this type of handle has been shown in studies to give users more grip overall.
The most significant advantage of oak wood when compared to other types is its ability to retain its shape and not warp over time.
5. Ebony Wood
Ebony wood has a smooth and shiny finish that gives it an unquestionably elegant appearance. In addition, this type of wood is extremely sturdy and long-lasting which makes it perfect for people who want to ensure their knives look as good as they perform for many years to come.
Although ebony trees are rare and slow-growing, the wood provides natural resistance to splintering and other types of damage.
6. Cherry Wood
Cherry wood is one of the most popular choices for people who want to add a touch of elegance and personality to their home cooking experience. Not only does this type of handle have a beautiful, classic appearance, but it’s also been shown in studies to improve grip and reduce hand strain when compared to other materials.
This wood is often chosen by people who want to add a more rustic feel to their kitchens without sacrificing aesthetics.
7. Cocobolo Wood
This type of wood is extremely dense and has been shown in studies to provide users with increased control while they’re slicing through ingredients for cooking. This along with the attractiveness of cocobolo makes it one of the best wood for knife handles and for people who are looking to improve the overall feel of their knives.
This type of wood is a bit more expensive than other types, but most people believe that it’s well worth the money due to its beauty and durability.
8. Bocote Wood
Bocote wood is a popular choice for people who are concerned with grip and appearance. This type of wood has been shown to provide users with added stability due to its density, but it’s also attractive enough to work in any environment without looking out of place.
This type of handle provides excellent protection against bacteria which makes it more sanitary than other types of wood.
9. Birch Laminate
Although this type of handle does not provide the same kind of durability and stability as other types, it is still highly resistant to damage due to the lamination process. Birchwood is also very easy on the hands when in use which makes it perfect for people who do a lot of slicing in their kitchens.
The most significant disadvantage to birch wood is its tendency to warp over time. If warped, a birch handle can break easily which could be hazardous when cooking with knives.
Hickory is a classic and attractive choice that has been shown to reduce hand strain when in use. The density of the wood makes it durable and resistant to damage, but this type of handle also provides excellent grip even in wet environments.
The one major drawback to using hickory for knife handles is its tendency to warp over time.
11. Birch Bark
Birch bark features a unique look that’s certain to fit in with any theme or kitchen design. Although the pattern is not as deep as other types, this type of handle features excellent protection against bacteria which makes it safe for daily use when cooking.
This type of wood is extremely lightweight and easy on the hands when in use which makes it perfect for the home kitchen.
12. Desert Ironwood
Desert ironwood is a rare type of wood that has been shown to provide users with increased control while using it to slice through ingredients for cooking. The dense nature of the handle gives the knife added stability which reduces hand strain when compared to other types.
Although desert ironwood is usually more expensive than other types, its durability makes it perfect for people who want to ensure their knives look great for many years.
13. Amboyna Burl
Amboyna burl is a beautiful wood that provides users with increased control when in use. This type of handle has been shown to reduce hand strain while slicing through ingredients for cooking which makes it perfect for regular at-home use.
Like desert ironwood, amboyna burl is usually more expensive than other types but its durability makes it perfect for long-term use.
14. Bloodwood Satin
Bloodwood satin is a popular choice thanks to its durability and attractive appearance. This type of handle has been shown to reduce hand strain which makes it perfect for daily use whether you’re preparing meals for friends or for your family.
The biggest disadvantage to using bloodwood satin is its tendency to break easily, but the overall stability of the handle makes it perfect for regular use in the home.
Pakkawood is a stunning type of handle that has been shown to reduce hand strain while in use when compared to other types. This type of wood is extremely lightweight which makes it perfect for daily use, but most people find this material to be too lightweight for professional cooking.
The biggest disadvantage with pakkawood is its tendency to warp over time which can lead to loosening of the handle.
What Is The Right Wood For You?
Whether you’re looking for the perfect addition to your professional kitchen or if you want a beautiful handle for daily use, what type of wood do you need?
Although wood provides excellent grip and durability, the best option depends on your individual situation. No matter which type of wood you choose, rest assured that any one of these handles will be an excellent addition to your knives.
The one major factor you should always keep in mind is how durable the wood will be and whether it will stand the test of time because, at the end of the day, this is your safety on the line.
How to Care for Wood Knife Handles
After getting a new wood handle, you should always keep in mind how to care for them.
First and foremost, it’s important to clean your knife handles after each use because rust can develop in between the grooves where food particles might get trapped. To prevent this from happening, add some mineral oil to a cotton ball and apply it around the grooves after each use. This will keep your knives looking brand new for years to come.
In addition, you should never leave your knives to air dry because this can lead to warping over time. Instead, wash them with warm water and hand dry them immediately afterward. This will help prevent the wood from drying out over time which could lead to cracks.
It’s also important that you never put your knives in the dishwasher. Doing so can cause water damage and unnecessary wear and tear over time which will ultimately lead to cracks or warps on your handle.
Be sure to follow these steps every time you wash your knives, and keep them looking brand new for years to come.
Whether you’re a professional chef or just enjoy cooking occasionally, your knives are one of the most important tools in your kitchen. If you want to take good care of them and make sure they last for years to come, it is essential that you know how to choose wood for knife handles correctly.
In this article, we’ve given some advice on what type of wood should be used based on your needs as well as tips from experts about best practices when working with different types. We hope our suggestions will help you find the perfect handle material so that all those hours spent chopping vegetables won’t have been wasted!
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Lawrence D. Reynolds is an experienced carpenter and woodworker who started this site to help others get into this craft by providing advice on choosing tools and materials and sharing How-To guides about woodworking. He has been into Woodworking for over 25 years and enjoys nothing more than sharing his knowledge and helping others learn about this wonderful material.