"chicago screws" for knife handle?


10mm Mike
August 4, 2010, 09:55 PM
I am finishing up a project modifying a Remington F.A.S.T. fixed blade knife. I changed the profile of the blade and shortened the handle. It's coming along pretty well. All thats left is to finish sharpening, then painting, then sharpening again for good measure.

Once I finish this, I want to take the plunge into amateur/hobbyist knife making but I'm having alot of trouble finding 1 really important element: screws to attach the grips to the knife.

The Remington FAST knife, as well as several others that I have, use what I've heard called "chicago screws", "mating screws", "sex bolts", or "binding post screws" to secure the grips to the knife. A quick google image search on "chicago screws" should show you what I'm talking about incase you're not sure.

I really like these instead of using pins, rivets, or those screws that are meant to look like pins when finished. I want to be able to take the knife apart for cleaning/refinishing/whatever and these seem like the most convenient way to go about it.

I'm having an incredibly hard time finding some of these screws that are suitable for a knife handle. Most of the screws that I can find do not have a driver head on the female screw, in addition to being too large. All of the female chicago screws on my cheap commercial knives have some sort of driver head, usually torx or hex/allen and are fairly small compared to what I can find online.

I've looked at my local hardware stores, several online stores, and a few specialty fastener stores (as well as some online knife maker stores) and so far no luck. Hopefully someone here can point me in the right direction for what I'm looking for.

I dont know why its so difficult to find since most knife manufacturers use them. Even high end ones like Benchmade use chicago screws on some of their knives.

Anyhow, any help would be greatly appreciated.

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August 4, 2010, 10:06 PM

10mm Mike
August 4, 2010, 10:39 PM
Thank you very much HSO.

I dont think that female post is slotted for a screw driver though.

August 5, 2010, 08:31 AM
I'm not sure that I've ever seen one.

See if you can substitute tang nuts for what you're looking for? http://www.texasknife.com/vcom/product_info.php?cPath=52_36_823&products_id=1859http://www.texasknife.com/vcom/images/TN101_550.jpg

August 5, 2010, 08:46 AM

10mm Mike
August 5, 2010, 09:37 PM
Thanks for the help guys!

Even though I didn't find exactly what I was originally looking for, with you guys help, I think I may have found something that will accomplish the same thing and allow me to choose the kind of driver head I want to use.

Correct me if I am wrong, but won't this barrel pivot (http://www.texasknife.com/vcom/product_info.php?cPath=52_890_867&products_id=2843) for folders work exactly the same way as a chicago screw?

August 5, 2010, 09:52 PM
I'm the wrong knifemaker to ask, as I never used anything but pins and epoxy, but look up "chain ring bolts" - you get them at bicycle shops I think. You might also cruise over to usualsuspect.net as they talk about this stuff all the time under "Steel Dust Junkies".

August 5, 2010, 10:03 PM

Black Toe Knives
August 6, 2010, 05:30 AM

August 6, 2010, 02:42 PM
Texas Knifemakers Supply can also fix you right up:


They are a good source for anything related to knife making.


August 6, 2010, 08:33 PM
If you have a Michael's craft store, they sell Chicago screws for scrapbooks in various sizes.

Smokey Joe
August 7, 2010, 11:49 AM
10 mm Mike--finishing up a project modifying a Remington F.A.S.T. fixed blade knife.W/o pix, it never happened. Show us illiterates!

August 7, 2010, 01:05 PM
Tang nuts? I thought Tang was orange-flavored! You can learn a lot here...

There are a few knife-making parts suppliers who will have them. Check Brownell's, too.


Smokey Joe
August 7, 2010, 01:13 PM
10 mm Mike--Jantz Supply has Chicago screws also. www.knifemaking.com

August 7, 2010, 03:28 PM
In actual fact, Chicago screws are better used on scrap-books then to hold knives together.

The actual Corby fasteners or Loveless bolts used in knife making are hell for strong brass or stainless steel bolts.

Chicago screws are like little toys in comparison.
Most all of them anymore are only brass plated aluminum.


August 7, 2010, 11:27 PM
What they are really good for is making a little book of laminated 3x5 cards with your ballistics data, tel. numbers of your shooting friends, game check station locations and times, game law abstracts, etc. so all essential information is in one handy waterproof package. The scrapbook screws are not really good enough for a knife, they are plated and flimsy, but they are ok for a "scrapbook" type thing.

August 8, 2010, 12:59 AM
Chicago screws aren't used in knives but in Kydex sheaths along with rivets. Chainring bolts for bycycles or fasteners listed at the links above will do the job.

August 8, 2010, 01:22 AM
I used to use brake rivets from any auto supply store.


August 8, 2010, 07:39 AM
The link I posted above carries several styles in both zinc plated steel and stainless. I have bought from them before, and the service is excellent, the prices reasonable. (No vested interest, just a happy customer). :) A quick pictorial of all their products is here:


10mm Mike
August 8, 2010, 08:04 PM
Pics of the modified remington will have to wait until UPS delivers my new camera and also when I've finished sharpening and painting the blade. So, maybe I'll have pics in a week or so.

I'll also post pictures of the chicago screws used on the knife before I put it all back together. They definitely aren't weak little scrapbooking screws.

Thanks everyone for the replies.

10mm Mike
August 10, 2010, 12:31 AM
Here's a picture of the chicago screws in question. These are what got me to get this thread started in the first place.

Notice that both the barrel and screw are torx head.

For those interested, I should have a few pictures of the modified knife a few days.

Black Toe Knives
August 10, 2010, 03:52 PM
First Question is do you want the handle removable? Then you want to use something like a Chicago screw. Corby and loveless bolts require countersink tools. They are meant to be installed and the slots ground off. They are not meant used to make handles removable.

10mm Mike
August 10, 2010, 06:04 PM
Yes, I want the handles to be removable. That is why I'm avoiding the the rivets and most of the bolts offered on many of the knife making sites.

August 11, 2010, 03:38 PM
Chainring bolts from a bike shop would work well, if strength is a concern ask for single speed steel sets.

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