This subject is not like your asking about pistolas back in the day. After you have looked at photos of some of the relics then you can decide which direction to go. If you decide to go fancy you Will spend long hrs. just on the blade. The leaf spring does make for a good blade BUTT you will have a lot of material to remove. 3/16 x 2'' high carbon flat bar works, but this will rust. If you look in the knife making cat. you will find better steels that will hold an edge and won't rust. As for the handle, are you still going authentic? Can you give a little more on what you are looking to make. My fisrt knife was made with leaf spring from a boat trailer. 1/4 x 2'' I made a small skinner and used an old axe handle for the handle. youd be surprised what a torch can do to in crease the charector of the wood. Good luck and get out the elbow grease cause you gonna need it. Wills in da Swamp in La. One Shot One Kill.