Laughing Dog Forge

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  1. Thanks Thomas (sorry about the Tom) I am going to try your advice.I have over 100' of this cable, so lots to practice on. And I will seek out a sensei. I have a full time job and get very little time in the forge. I'm going to order some 15N20 and 1084 and play around with it. I will share my results here. Thanks Steve, I read everything you write and think very highly of you. For what kind of knives I am trying to make, I want to start with a bird and trout, and or a bush knife, kind of a an every day knife for a guy to carry, then maybe dive into kitchen knives, or folding knives. The later two only when I develop my skill more. If I have more questions I know I can ask for help here. Thank you
  2. Thanks Thomas, my inexperience is showing, I just got done with two knife making classes but feel like I really need more. I am really excited about making knives out of this cable. I just wanted to share with everyone my journey, seek advice and encouragement.
  3. So the goal is to make a really cool knife out of the tram cable, really highlighting the cable strands. with good to excellent quality. All expert advice is really needed. how would you do it?
  4. Thanks Steve, Like I say I really respect you, I did not know the difference in the language, Thanks for clearing it up for me.
  5. Thanks Billy, Yes I am a member of the NWBA looking forward to the next conference!
  6. so..... If I was to do San Mai what steel would you recommend for the edge? If I was to add another steel to really make a good knife and be able to show off the cable, what steel should i use? 1040 I know does not make a good blade, could I forge weld another steel into it to add carbon, create patterns and make a good blade? I did not know that folding had a limit, I just thought more was better, what is the theory on how many times you fold it?
  7. Tom, I forged out the cables into a billet then cut it in 5 sections and reforged it and repeated until I got 625. This is how I learn. Since this was my first knife I wanted to take it as far as I can, I annealed it and and then drilled the holes for the handle and heat treated it at a knife making class and put a handle on it just so I could experience the whole knife making processes from beginning to end, then I can picture everything that needs to be done. I did use full strength Muriatic acid. what are your recommended dilution ratios?
  8. I am sorry If I sound like an Idiot, as i said I am New to knife making and I forged the steel just to see if I could do it. I did not know at the time of forging what the steel was. I paid to have it tested so that I could see if this could work. is this worth doing? can I add another steel to this to make a steel that is realistic to make a blade, Steve I have your book and respect your opinion, However I just want to know if there is a way to show off the cable in the pattern, and help with the heat treating. I didn't expect to get beat up.
  9. Hi everyone, I am fairly new to knife making, I have been playing around with blacksmithing for a long time now and am still learning all the technical things that are involved in this hobby. I have a 225,000 BTU propane forge, a 50lb Little Giant Power hammer and just about everything else except a press and a 2 x 72 belt sander. I have acquired some Portland, OR. aerial tram cable and am trying to forge some pattern welded steel knives out of it that really show it off. I have forged the cable and folded it 625 times just to see if I could do it. It seemed to turn out ok. after a soak in muriatic acid there was no noticeable pattern. I have since had a part of the forged billet tested and the results came back that the steel is 1040. My desire is to be able to make a knife that really shows the cable off and makes a good knife, I think that I need to add another steel that is darker and will have the same heat treating properties. I have been thinking of trying to do canister forging, this looks like fun and I think that the cable strands would show up real well or I could forge weld the cable strands with another metal and play with patterns. So now for my questions; what would be the best steel to add, whether for canister or forge welding, thoughts on carbon migration, quenching oil, acid to use, reducing fire, and anything else I have forgot. 201905169LaughingDog.pdf
  10. I want to thank everyone for responding to my question, I really enjoyed brainstorming on this subject and I hope others enjoyed it and or learned something new. The driveway only interfered with gate in the last 2' of the swing and needed to rise about 12". Seemed that cost was going to be expensive no matter what. I measured the grade of the drive and he has plenty of room to lower the grade at the gate opening area and spread out the grade change over about 35'. I made the suggestion to check with a paving contractor to see how much that will cost, then we will compare it to making both his in and out gates power, and see what he wants to do from there. More than likely he will want underground operators for the gates. (He has an entry gate that we never discussed that is on level ground, the self rising gate was the driveway exit gate.) Thanks again everyone.
  11. Ok since crazy ideas are now being pondered, here is another one, maybe not so crazy. I hope I can describe this well enough. What if since the posts are hollow one was to put a weight inside the post to act as a counter weight (I know it will be very heavy) with a pulley at the top neatly set almost completely inside with the cable attaching to the gate. Then when one opens the gate one would lift it up on hinges that slide up a long strong hinge pin and swing it open. You could even add a simple gate latch at the bottom to prevent unwanted movement and to maintain gate height alignment when closed. I thought this could also work with a spring kinda like a garage door however it would have to be used as a coil instead of with torsion, just not sure yet how to adjust it.
  12. This is the other idea I came across on a mig welding forum. http://www.mig-welding.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?t=14391&highlight=rising+hinges The drawing made by the member called "the snooper" really intrigue's me but without power would be difficult imho to open manually. I have been thinking along the lines of a folding lower portion. If I cant come up with a reasonable option he needs to step up and make them power then they will always be closed. The road in front is too narrow to open out and sliding could work in one direction which would require making the gate one piece which would be real long and also need power.
  13. I have a customer who had a gate built with rising hinges built by someone else. It is a double gate spanning 17'. The gate opens inward onto a uphill sloping driveway. the rise is 12'' up at the full open swing of one gate (103"). The customer is unhappy with the look of the gates when open, he says they appear broken. Has any one solved this problem before? I was thinking about fabricating a self rising butt hinge but thought the weight would make it difficult to open and wear out sooner since these are manually opened. Then I was brainstorming and thought that if I built hinges that floated up on the pin I could put a wheel touching the ground near the hinge that would force the gate to rise when opened. Or an articulated hinge like on a car hood that would lift up (maybe with a helper spring) then swing open. Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.
  14. Thanks Bill for the link, very good pics and info. especially when the author mentioned squaring up the toggle arms to the spring rest, I had not thought of that. That takes some of the fear out of being square. I am going to start making a jig for the arms and cross head. This has been a real slow process with not alot of time and money right now. So while waiting for money to get back in my hobby account it is nice to know there are things I can do in the meantime. I just got finished building new lower link arms on a jig I made. The next step is to repair the holes on the upper toggle arms, crosshead and ram. My ram guide is in real good shape and had about 3/16" of shims when removed so adjustment there should be doable.
  15. Thanks for the description of the jig, I was thinking along the same lines. I like the idea of tack welding it in place keeps me from having to fabricate a clamp. For doing the ram I was thinking I could set it on "v" blocks to keep it perpendicular. I took Sid's class before I disassembled my hammer so I was unaware of the amount of wear on the front moving parts, so I didn't even think to ask him about repair of them, I remember he did use reamers and also suggested using a piece of emery cloth put into a slit cut into a bolt with the head cut off and chucked into a drill as a inexpensive reamer. The machine shop I am using for the lathe work suggested using bolts instead of the pins for the arms so that they would wear before the arms and then replace them on regular maintenance. I was thinking that I could use the bolts along with thrust washers and then tack weld the nut to keep it from backing out. I was wondering what your thoughts were on that. Grade 5 would be softer and wear faster and grade 8's may last longer but could be more brittle. I was thinking the tolerances for the all the holes on the front moving parts should be .003 oversize does the sound reasonable?