Mineral oil is food safe, doesn't smell or go rancid and you can get a good sized bottle for cheap at any pharmacy. Works great as a rust preventative also – mineral oil is what is used as Japanese clove oil used for swords, they just add a drop of clove oil for scent.
Mineral oil is also great for stag and for conditioning wooden cutting boards, can also be used as a honing oil.
^ I love danish oil as well if I want something for an extended trip/more permanent solution I will throw a thin coat of danish oil on. I use it for my walking sticks and it holds up a very very long time.
I’ve always used mineral oil on stag. Never used it on wood but it would have to work well. Love threads like these to brainstorm on.
Depends what type of wood and and method of construction. Hard woods like iron wood I would just buff with beeswax. Oils are meant to penetrate wood and this could be an issue if the handle is just held on with epoxy. Not such a problem if the handles have been riveted on.
I used to stabilise and preserve softer woods, stag and bones in a vacuum jar with a mixture of tung oil and spirits. Leave in a vacuum for several days to penetrate then let air dry. Worked well but wife was not happy I was using her food vaccum processor!.
If you don't have any beeswax, I think it's worth having some around. It's cheap. I use for all kinds of things, including making lip balm for the winter season. It's one of the bees' "miracle products." For some reason, the stuff they make (honey, wax, royal jelly, etc.) all seems to have some amazing properties. Interesting.