Dune 2021 Crysknife
A functional version of a famous prop knife!
I have long been a "Dunie". I read the classic science fiction book Dune by Frank Herbert when I was in Jr. High School in 1978. I was hooked! I went on to devour the whole series, and have read Dune at least a dozen times since. I'm fascinated with the world and culture that Herbert created. Director David Lynch released a film based on the book in 1984, which for those of us who loved the book series was something we had long waited for. The movie was great, but didn't have enough celluloid to tell the whole story.
In 2021, a new iteration of the Dune story was released as a two-part film by director Denis Villeneuve. A central prop in the film is the famed "Crysknife"--a desert fighting knife carried by the Dune natives (called Fremen)--made from the tooth of a giant sandworm. As a knifemaker, I wanted to replicate the weapon as a functional but stylish battle blade. Since there seems to be a short supply of sandworm teeth, I used steel! The knife shown below is the result of my efforts. I hope to release a YouTube video eventually, chronicling step-by-step how I made the knife.
NOTE: I am not offering this knife for sale. It was simply a project for my own entertainment!
A fighting scene from Dune 2021
Copyright Warner Bros. Pictures
My own steel version of the knife
made with 5160 spring steel
and cast aluminum and resin handle
The Project, and its ups and downs
I knew from the start that this would not be an easy build. I am an experienced knifemaker, but this would stretch my abilities to the realm of prop-making, since I would need to somehow cast a handle that simulated
the construction of a knife made from a sandworm's tooth wrapped with metal reinforcement, and partially exposing
the "root" of the tooth.
My plan was to make a blade with a stick tang that I would then cast an aluminum handle around.
Having never worked with cast aluminum, this was to be an experiment with no shortage of frustration