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heat treat titanium


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#1 cottonmouthforge

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Posted 06 September 2011 - 04:04 PM

i recently bought a 2 ft by 1/4in by 1 in section of t6-4 grade titanium. i want to make knifes out of it i want to know if it is necessary to heat treat it, if so how do you do it right. i will show you pic of it finished. and i assure you i am not trolling i will even post the link to where i bought it. i did the spark and anodize test it came out positive of ti. http://www.ebay.com/...=item1e5de60604

#2 MattBower

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Posted 06 September 2011 - 06:57 PM

You can strengthen Ti through some heat treating processes -- quite different from the way you harden steel, I think -- but I'm not very familiar with them. A little Googling tells me that it requires pretty precise temperature control over fairly long periods of time. And the maximum hardness of your Ti is probably somewhere around 40-45 RC, which is pretty darned soft by blade standards. Frankly, Ti makes rather poor knives. It's good for certain special purposes because it's extremely corrosion resistant, and non-magnetic. But if you want to make a knife that gets really sharp and continues to cut stuff for a while, your best bet is good old-fashioned high carbon steel. I'd save the Ti for fittings. Ti forms some beautiful (and very tough) oxides when heated.

#3 BIGGUNDOCTOR

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Posted 07 September 2011 - 12:06 AM

Unless you are planning on making knives for divers, I would use it for other things like maybe scales for folders, or something totally not knife related.
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#4 cottonmouthforge

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Posted 07 September 2011 - 12:40 PM

Unless you are planning on making knives for divers, I would use it for other things like maybe scales for folders, or something totally not knife related.

actually i was planing to make a dive knife.i am going to anodize to change to colors.i have i friend in Cleveland who has a computer control gas kiln to anneal glass. will that work to heat treat it. i knew it would be soft before i bought it. if no one here knows how to heat treat ti that is ok. i could not find much any where.

#5 MattBower

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Posted 07 September 2011 - 01:22 PM

Well then, you're one of those rare people for whom a Ti knife makes sense! But I can't tell you how to harden it, or even if you can. Ti is very different stuff from steel. There seems to be a lot of info out there on Google and especially Google Books, but it's all pretty technical and I suspect you'd have to a good bit of reading to make sense of it.

Good luck!

#6 Nakedanvil - Grant Sarver

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Posted 07 September 2011 - 01:41 PM

While it can be "heat treated", that does not mean it can be hardened. You can heat treat it to relieve forging stresses or to toughen it, but I don't believe that you can harden it.
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#7 ThomasPowers

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Posted 07 September 2011 - 02:23 PM

What does the ASM handbook on heat treating suggest? My copy is quite old and so may not cover any of the Ti beta alloys.
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#8 thingmaker3

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Posted 24 September 2011 - 12:30 AM

I have never played with Ti. But...

From the ASM's Metals Handbook, Volume 2, 8th Edition:

"It has been shown that Ti-6 Al4 V sheet should be cooled to 1000F from a solution treating temperature of 1700 F in no more than 1.5 sec to develop maximum strength after aging, and that the delay from the time this material is removed from the furnace until it is water quenched should be limited to about 2 sec."

Recommended solution treatment for bars from the same source is 1650 to 1750 F for 0.5 to 1 hour. For sheet, 1650 to 1725 for 5 to 20 minutes.

Whether a knife would be more like a bar or more like a sheet, I cannot say.
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