Making a Pagan Boline (Witchcraft ceremonial knife) for a customer

A friend of mine is a Pagan with Norwegian descent. For her herbal witchcraft practices, she asked me if I could make her a Boline (a ceremonial sickle) with an antler handle.

I took up the challenge and started working on it.

Since my place is still under repair, I could not setup my forge so I decided to go with stock removal techniques. The Boline's blade will be cut from an old circular saw blade.

Old rusty circular saw blade

I first drew the design with a silver marker on the saw blade and made sure the proportions are correct in relation to the deer antler.

Boline on circular saw blade

Boline with antler on circular saw blade

With the use of an angle grinder, I started the slow process of cutting the saw blade steel. You can't cut curves like this so I had to remove piece by piece and fine tune with a hand file.

Cutting a saw blade with an angle grinder

Rough cut of a Boline blade

After the blade has been cut, it's time to shape the cutting edge. Again, my angle grinder with a flap disc was used for the rough shape and I finished with a bastard hand file.

Previewing the Boline

Once again, I previewed the proportions by placing the antler on the blade.

The surface rust was removed using a rough sanding paper and some phosphoric acid based solution was used to add patina (dark color) to the steel to give it a rustic look.

I took some steel sample to a laser engraving service to give it a test.

Laser engraving runes on steel

My friend chose to engrave her family bind rune and it turned out very nicely with the steel showing through the patina.

Family bind rune

Family bind rune laser engraved on steel


Once the blade was ready, I drilled some holes in the antler to insert the blade tang and glue it in. Some of the antler texture were sanded down to make it comfortable to hold.

Antler handle Boline

I then stained the sanded areas with coffee ground to give it back its rustic coloring.

Wicca Boline and mint

Pagan Boline and lavender

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