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Moostang

Hello from Indiana

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I'm just getting into blacksmithing and found this forum. Looks like great information.  I've always liked metal fab and recently made a knife from a wrench. I enjoyed that and wanted to try more so I'll be building a forge soon.

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Hello from Ft Wayne.... welcome to IFI.

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 Welcome, from Danville.     Non knife maker here.......             Life is Good             Dave

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And Terre Haute.  My Grandparents live in that area-- Millersburg.

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22 hours ago, Dave51B said:

 Welcome, from Danville.     Non knife maker here.......             Life is Good             Dave

your life would be better is ya were a knife maker,  Just sayin....

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Now now Steve; some folks like chipped flint and bearskins!

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 Guess I'll never be a true blacksmith, or should I say a real blacksmith. By the way, when making a knife, just what percentage of the work is actual heating and beating on iron?......inquiring mind wants to know .........now I'm in trouble.                 Dave

6 hours ago, Steve Sells said:

your life would be better is ya were a knife maker,  Just sayin....

 

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What percentage?  Yes.

The neo-tribal metalsmiths tried to do less than 10% stock removal on a blade; some pattern welded patterns don't show up well without 50% or more stock removal  sort of like asking how much handwork goes into a wooden chest---15 minutes or 15 years of hand carving could be a valid answer.

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39 minutes ago, Dave51B said:

 Guess I'll never be a true blacksmith, or should I say a real blacksmith. By the way, when making a knife, just what percentage of the work is actual heating and beating on iron?......inquiring mind wants to know .........now I'm in trouble.                 Dave

 

I never said that brother,  re read what I posted .... your life would be better......

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4 minutes ago, Steve Sells said:

I never said that brother,  re read what I posted ....

 Aww Steve, I know what you meant....ha ha . I was just wanting to rattle a chain or two. I just keep hearing you need to learn blacksmithing before you make any kind of blade. So what's the use, if 3/4ths of the work is grinding, drilling, wood working, fitting and sanding? I mean, do you need to learn to do a rat tail scroll or do a mortise and tennon  joint. How to make nails or upset a long bar in the middle to make a knife.

 Sure you need to heat and beat, But the beauty of the blade, I my uneducated opinion is not in the smithing per say.(unless your making Damascus billets). As I said before......not a knife maker        Life is Good                  Dave    

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You need to learn how the metal works with heat and hammer first to get a design from your head into the steel.

You also need to lean how to work the high carbon alloys that blades are made from---lots of things you can "get away with" in mild or A-36 will result in blade failure during the forging or during the using.

It's generally easier and faster learning the skills sequentially than doing neurosurgery the first time you pick up a scalpel,,,

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4 hours ago, ThomasPowers said:

You need to learn how the metal works with heat and hammer first to get a design from your head into the steel.

You also need to lean how to work the high carbon alloys that blades are made from---lots of things you can "get away with" in mild or A-36 will result in blade failure during the forging or during the using.

It's generally easier and faster learning the skills sequentially than doing neurosurgery the first time you pick up a scalpel,,,

 So Thomas.....are you saying, the ultimate goal in smithing is to make knives, or swords? I guess that make sense, kinda like you need to learn wrestling before you play football. I knew I was going to get in trouble on this......But Steve started it. lol        Dave

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Can you point out WHERE I said that?  Is every Doctor a neurosurgeon?  Is every Doctor that is a Specialist a Neurosurgeon?

Now does every Doctor start out with the basics before specializing?  

Bladesmithing  is just one of MANY specializations in blacksmithing; it's use of various alloys is another layer of complexity along with hammer and forging temperature control, design, finishing, etc.  As such it's considered one of the more difficult of smithing specialities and one where mistakes can cause fatalities.  More difficult and higher risk.

Perhaps you can suggest a skilled craft where people are expected to participate at the high end from the git go?  I've never met a First Violinist that picked up the bow one day and went and sat in the First seat.

Now why are you resistant to the suggestion that people learn the basics and proceed on to learning ever more difficult things?   I think this process has been proven in over several thousand years so far...

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 I must be way out of line on this. But did Picasso have to paint barns to become a famous painter? I don't see the need to learn to beat on A-36 when all your learning is hammer control. And blade steel moves different as has been stated, forge thick grind thin. I just don't like the thought that to be a top of the line blacksmith, you have to make blades. When truly, in my small world, I see more grinding ,sanding, and wood work , in making a blade than smithing. If I am politically incorrect, let me know and I 'll be quiet. I've just seen an awful lot of great smithing that has nothing to do with making blades. And by no means am I putting blade smiths down. No way I could reproduce the blades I see here. But, I see more smithing in some of the beautiful entrance gates, windows and arches of old.              Dave

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Take it easy guys, it all depends from the perspective you look at things. 

There are many kinds of smithing, and because it is an old trade, the boundaries get blurred. In Australia if you say blacksmith, you are assumed to be a farrier. In Germany or Italy, if you are a blacksmith you make gates and balustrades. I worked as a blacksmith in my dad's shop for over a decade with blacksmith who came from Europe and did architectural and decorative work for 50 years yet they would never show any interest in making a blade, nor in silversmithing or gold smithing or shoeing a horse or gunsmithing for that matter. 

A bladesmith is a bladesmith. Can you start as a bladesmith? Sure if that is what you want to do. You don't need to forge a bed head or a window grill to then progress to bladesmithing or gunsmithing or horse shoeing. They are all different specialties. Some harder than others. I have seen farriers at work and I don't want that job for $500 an hour. Bladesmithing? I don't like it but most folks here love it and I concede that it must be hard. Lots of metal knowledge, expensive equipment for heat treating and grinding, and many years of practice to get good at it. A lot of art in it too.

I don't think there is a progression from making hooks to making blades or from making a gate to making blades, but you must start somewhere, and usually beating up a bit of iron into some useful shape is the way to start.  If you want to make blades, you are in the right place for good tips. Not from me though, never made a blade and probably never will. 

By the way, don't antagonise Thomas, he is a good source of knowledge and fun to talk to. Well ... you can antagonise him but only a little bit ... :)

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I can't seem to find anyone saying you had to be a bladesmith to be a master smith---save Dave51B who keeps referring to it without it being there. And Picasso spent years longer learning to draw and paint than most folks that go on to make knives!  (An Artist is a bad choice to prop up a conjecture that you need not practice a craft!)

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Talking about masters, I was looking up Habermann to see if he ever did any blades and came up with some of his home videos that have now been claimed by Benedikt Kubi Filmproduktion and "no longer available" :(

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Mark1.....Thanks mate....g'day                Dave

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Happy New Year,

The 3 "P's", Patience, Persistance and Practice. This holds True for many things in Life!!

Without them, you get the other 3 "P's", Piss Poor Performance!!

Patience, my little one. Pay attention to what goes wrong and don't be afraid to make changes. Some call this "Inventing". There is no 'Rule Book'!!

There is a beginning to our Journey, There is no Destination, other than Satisfaction.

Neil

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this thread started off with a new member making a comment about making a blade, so Thomas referring to making a blade IS acceptable. Interesting how you first state you are not a blade maker but then tell us what it does or does no take to make blades..... 

but I think Swede said it best

There is no Destination, other than Satisfaction.

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