The brackets are heavy 1/8" thick steel with a slot cut on one end to accept the blade.
|One of two brackets|
|Slot for the blade|
|Slot on other side. Guessing this was the "exit" side of the tool that cut it.|
Note: that roughness was only at the surface - it was perfect on the inside surface.
|See the weld?|
|Hump filed away|
Speaking of the handles, let's get into the making of the frame. I had a big chunk of 2" thick poplar and got all four parts from it. The final thickness of the frame members is 1 5/8" and I took a couple days to get it to final size, allowing some movement overnight (twice) before planing to final dimensions.
|Wood parts ready to go|
|25" long handle stock in back, ~23" piece in middle and 20 1/2" piece in front|
|Made an 11" template to mark half a handle|
|Mortise for bearing plate|
|About 1/16" proud|
|Bearing plate flush with surface|
|First test cut - oh, man this felt good|
|After marking the shapes (including the round-over areas) ...|
|... made a bunch of stop cuts|
|Soaking up some BLO|
|The handles are comfortable and I like the way it looks|
|Red arrow shows bottom location of my handle|
Yellow arrow shows the plan location
I've made a few practice runs at cutting up some stock. And HOLY CRAP! This thing can go through some wood in a hurry! I'll post on that experience next time. But suffice it to say, there is a learning curve involved in getting a straight cut.