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How (NOT) to Make an Epoxy Chisel

John Malecki

How (NOT) to Make an Epoxy Chisel

John Malecki Experiments with Making a Clear Epoxy Chisel

Projects
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3
min read
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May 12, 2020

When you’re cooped up in your house and shop for too long, you start to get some crazy ideas. I’m not talking about anything dangerous or harmful of course — I’m talking about my attempts to make an epoxy resin chisel as one of my latest quarantine projects.

It sounds like a worthy task at first. However, after I put my heart and soul into this project I realized it may just be a dream after all. Either way, it ended up being a great way to keep myself occupied and blow some time in my workshop.

In case you’re spectacularly inspired by my sheer ingenuity and determination and want to try this out for yourself, I’ve decided to break down the basic steps and materials for making it yourself. If you find a way to get this epoxy chisel project to work, be sure to shoot me a message and let me know so I can make my final redemption.

How to Make an Epoxy Chisel: Project Overview

Four Basic Steps for Creating Your Epoxy Chisel

John Malecki holds epoxy chisel
  1. Create a Mold
  2. Mix & Pour Epoxy
  3. Spin the Handles
  4. Sharpen & Assemble Chisels

What You’ll Need

John Malecki ponders in amazement

Tools

  • Drill Press
  • Lathe
  • Belt Sander
  • Hand Tools

Materials

  • Silicone RTV Rubber
  • Epoxy
  • Nitrile Gloves
  • Wood & Scrap Wood

How to Make an Epoxy Chisel: The Step-by-Step

Create a Mold

pouring rubber for a mold
pouring rubber for a mold

To get started with your epoxy chisel, you need to begin by making a mold for your chisels. I don’t recommend using the best chisels in your shop for obvious reasons. You need to create some type of vessel for holding the RTV rubber and allow it to set. For this, I made a makeshift cup doo-dad with some Tyvek tape and some scrap wood, cramming the ends of the chisels into the scrap wood that anchors it from the top. Once they’re anchored, mix and pour your rubber mixture into the cup and allow it to set.

Mix & Pour Epoxy

pouring epoxy into a rubber mold

Once the rubber mold is set, cut the chisels out of it. You’ll want to pour the epoxy in the hole. It’s really important here to choose the right epoxy and follow the directions on the container. This will ensure that the epoxy hardens and sets correctly. Psst — if you’re looking for epoxy tips for beginners, be sure to check out this video. Depending on the epoxy, you’ll want to give this a few days to harden.

Spin the Handles

spinning a wooden handle on the lathe

Once your epoxy is poured and setting, it’s time to get to work on the handles. I feel like there are a few ways to approach this, but I opted to spin mine on a lathe for a real ergonomic, craftsman cut.

Start this off by marking the perfect center of your plank, then drilling a hole on the drill press the perfect fit for your lathe. Spin and shape it how you see fit, adding a ferrule if it supports your design. I polished my ferrule for a clean and shiny look.

Sharpen & Assemble Chisels

Once the epoxy has hardened, remove it from the mold and begin shaping it down. For me, this involved a bit of sanding through a few different methods. Once you get your chisel sanded to the appropriate sharpness, attach the handle.

Bonus Step: Admit Defeat

John malecki holds his epoxy. chisels

If you’re like me, you’re going to find that it’s difficult to get your chisel to the appropriate sharpness. I admit defeat on this one, but I would love to hear from you all about your attempts and ideas!


Thanks for checking out this project! If you liked it, be sure to check out some of my more successful epoxy resin projects.

Download the Plan

Want to try this build out for yourself? Download the digital plan now for step-by-step instructions, measurements, and a detailed look at how to punch this project in the face.

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Projects
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3
min read
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May 12, 2020
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John Malecki

I used to be an offensive lineman in the NFL, Now I run my own furniture business and am completely self taught. In my videos and posts you'll see a variety of wood and metal work as well as some tips and tricks. Enjoy!