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knife making
16 April 2018, 19:02,
RE: knife making
Thanks MB between us we will get him to give it a go.
17 April 2018, 23:02,
RE: knife making
(16 April 2018, 19:02)Pete Grey Wrote: Thanks MB between us we will get him to give it a go.

I fully believe that there are certain skills every man should have, no matter what he considers his "call in life".

One of them is the ability to make a usable knife from found materials. A good sound blade that will hold an edge, even if it looks like crap on a shingle.

If a man in prison can make a shank from a petrified turd, any free man with a few power tools and good materials should be able to make a fine blade.
18 April 2018, 14:34,
RE: knife making
Interesting site, “A Woodworker’s Guide to Tool Steel and Heat Treating”.>toolsteel

Gives a chart showing colours of hot steel for hardening and tempering, for more or less any blade.
18 April 2018, 19:00,
RE: knife making
That is an excellent resource and a suitable reminder that the ability to properly heat treat metal is not confined to knife blades.

Chisels, screw drivers, planes saw blades and other tools need regular attention.

This knowledge is also useful in reconditioning tools after they have been in fires. Treat the metal items salvaged after a fire as if they were new found steel. Anneal, harden and stress relieve and you can put "ruined" tools back into service.

Most cutting tools such as knives, plane blades and chisels will respond to the same treatment as the book recommends. Treating everything as if it were O-1 or O-2 is a good generalization.
18 April 2018, 20:17,
RE: knife making
Local blacksmith used to use a sand tray over a gas ring to aneal or stress relieve welded cast iron items, also useful for slow cooling any tempered blade.
19 April 2018, 03:00,
RE: knife making
We kept two sand buckets in our shop. One was full and the other empty.

We would heat the item to cherry red, then pour half the sand into the bucket, place the red blade in the sand and pour the rest on top.

It would take up to 12 hours for the metal to cool, at which point it would be dead soft so we could drill or work it with files before doing the actual forging.

I would often forge a blade to rough shape, anneal it in the sand bucket last thing of the day and let it cool over night.

Next morning I would file the tang to shape, drill the holes for scales and do whatever initial grinding the blade needed. Then I would harden the nearly finished item ad take it home to stress relieve in the oven.

Many times I would have a half dozen blades going through the process, especially if they were small blades.

I always wanted several blades lying about when tour buses came through the museum. I finally wound up with hand made knives from my forge on every continent except Antarctica, in most European countries, several in Australia and a couple in Russia and China.

Big knives I only did as favors to close reenactor friends. That was mostly because as an unknown maker I could never get what a big knife was worth in money return for hours spent on the project.

So I would spend a week on a knife and gift it to a deserving friend with the understanding that they were never to sell it. They could pass it down to a family member, or pass it on to another reenactor friend, but never sell it.

In my area at that time we did a lot of American Civil War personas and I must have made and given away a dozen D-guard Bowies made from horse shoe rasps. Dozens of bone and antler handled primitive "long-hunter" knives hammered from 10" mill files.

We had a Stanley Tool Company factory nearby and one day a truck arrived at the door of the shop.

Burly guy got out and bellowed "Can you use some tool steel?"

I said "yes" and asked what it was.

"Its 1080, what we use for chisels. Some moron set the cut off saw an inch too short and we had to scrap it all. You can have it all."

There was half a ton of perfect tool steel in that truck! All of it 5/8" diameter and cut an inch too short to be a Stanley chisel. He even told me they heat treated it just like O-1. I also learned that it made a fair blade just laid to the side of the forge and air hardened. It made some of the best knives I own to this day.
20 April 2018, 21:22,
RE: knife making
I have only ever used silicon manganese spring steel for blades as we had access to all sizes of the stuff.

I’ve made knives, a seax, and spearheads, the last for an assegai stabbing spear just three feet long, concealable, and if any one came along with funny ideas they would have quite a surprise.

One thing i have never been able to master is fire welding.

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