May 04, 2017 2 min read

This week we'll continue our focus on the leather working tools Anvil uses everyday with the swivel knife. The running theme with all of these tools is a sense of elegance and simplicity. The swivel knife is no different. Functionally this tool is used during the leather tooling process. After the leather is cased (slightly dampened) the leather craftsman uses the swivel knife to cut into the leather. Usually this means cutting deep enough to provide a strong contour line without cutting entirely through the piece of leather.  Using a swivel knife does require a bit of manual dexterity. 

The tool consists of three major components. The Saddle is a curved section where the leather craftsman typically rests his index finger. The Body of the swivel knife is attached to the saddle with a bearing to allow it to rotate freely using the thumb and the middle fingers. The Blade is a sharpened rectangular wedge that slices thinly and then pushes the leather apart. Everyone handles theirs a bit differently and it's important to find one that is weighted and sized in such a way that it is comfortable. 

In use, the Swivel knife is held at a slight angle to make maximum use of the blade as a wedge. The leather worker applies pressure and a bit of guidance with his index finger in the saddle, while controlling the rotation of the blade with his thumb and middle fingers. The wrist and pinky act as a pivot for the purposes of finer guidance. With a bit of practice the leather craftsman can cut any number of shapes, lines, curves into the leather. From there a maul and any number of textured wedges can be uses to create illustrations and patterns on the surface of a piece of leather.



Also in Anvil Customs Leather Blog

What Leather Makes the Best Wallet?
What Leather Makes the Best Wallet?

December 09, 2019 3 min read

When we look at the weight and gauge of certain leathers we're having to do a little tactile mathematics. Because our wallets are seldom made from a single ply of leather. We're looking for the right combination of leathers that get a certain thickness and flexibility that we know will break in well.
Read More
2019 Guaranteed Christmas Delivery Order Deadline and Free Shipping
2019 Guaranteed Christmas Delivery Order Deadline and Free Shipping

December 04, 2019 1 min read

If you would like to be certain that your order from Anvil Customs this year is under the Christmas Tree, I would recommend making your order by December 10th. That's the last day we can promise to have your order done in time and shipped for Christmas. That goes doubly true if you live out of country...
Read More
Who Makes the Best Custom Leather Wallets for Men?
Who Makes the Best Custom Leather Wallets for Men?

November 11, 2019 2 min read

If you do your research you will find hundreds of websites that sell mass produced thin leather wallets from Asia that really don't have that "special" quality about them. Plus they're basically designed to fall apart in a year or two, so that's right out. No no, you want something that is unique, nicely crafted and built to last don't you? That's the type of gift that really makes a statement.
Read More

Subscribe