Next, I cut thin veneers on my bandsaw, and rough-shaped them to sandwich the aluminum tang. I drilled three holes in the aluminum blank—two in the tang, and one decorative hole on the front top of the blade. Using the tang as a guide, I drilled holes into the two pieces of maple.

Using two-part epoxy, I glued the maple handle pieces in place and pegged the holes with round toothpicks. Once the epoxy cured, I clamped the cleaver in a vise and filed the maple pieces to match the profile of the cleaver’s tang.

I rounded the maple pieces with sandpaper to give them a comfortable look, then gave it a light maple stain. Final polishing of the blade with fine sandpaper gave it the final, finished feel.

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