At our Clarington Forge site we not only manufacture solid forged spades and forks, but also manufacture a variety of handles for our tools and other tool companies. The range of handles we produce is vast, as different tools require different handles. For the majority of our Premier Range, we use an Ash YD handle. The Ash we use is from sustainable sources in either Germany or the USA.
The manufacturing process for an Ash YD handle is as follows and is shown in the video below:-
- The Timber is chosen for the straightness of grain, only A grade timber can be used for YD handles, anything else will split or snap.
- The timber is then sawn to the length required, and turned to the correct diameter.
- It is then sawn down the centre, forming the beginning of the handle.
- The sawn end is then steamed to the correct temperature.
- Once at the correct temperature we split the wood on a pneumatic press. It pushes the timber into a cast iron mold, forming the split part of the handle.
- The timber is then dried for 3 weeks.
- After drying, sanding takes place. The inside of the handle is sanded first, then work begins on the length of the shaft. This takes some skill, the wood shop team use a waxed glove to ‘spin’ the wood on the sanding belt, this makes sure the handle is sanded equally along the length of the shaft.
- Holes are then drilled, and the handle put in place, it is the riveted. We also rivet just below the split in the wood, this makes sure that the timber cannot split further down the grain.
- The handle is then ready for final sanding, before sanding and varnishing.