billyO

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About billyO

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    Senior Member

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Eatonville, Washington
  • Interests
    as always
    peace and love

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  1. billyO

    Looking for brighter light

    Thanks.
  2. billyO

    Looking for brighter light

    Thanks Thomas, but not sure what you mean. Now that RadioShack is no longer, I'm at a loss. Any suggestions on how to or where to go to compare brightness? I can't drive anymore due to medical issues, don't live in an urban area and need to find rides into town, so shopping around at different stores is not practical for me. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Watermark As an aside, the watermark in question is from Fabriano, where my Grandfather was born. I actually picked it up over 20 years ago before I got into blacksmithing, and it's a watermark of blacksmiths.....I'll post pics when I'm finished. How much did the set cost, Das?
  3. Hello all. This isn't specifically blacksmithing related, but it is for a forging project I'm working on. I'm making a standing frame for a watermark I have and looking for a way to provide the lighting. I purchased one of these battery powered tea lights off the net and it's not bright enough, so I'm looking for ideas. There's no way that I can see to swap out the bulb for a brighter one. Thanks.
  4. billyO

    Third damascus

    I'll agree with both of the above, but I've also had a failure, so I try to clean the steel as much as possible first. Even if it doesn't matter, I feel the less nasties I burn up in the forge, the time spent doing this isn't wasted.
  5. billyO

    Third damascus

    The swages do help, but not necessary. At the beginning. go very slowly and strike softly until the steel feels like it's getting compressed into a solid mass and keep twisting the stock like you are trying to tighten the twist as you forge.
  6. billyO

    First kitchen knife. Ladder damascus. Pic heavy

    Nice looking knife. Nice! I will hopefully remember this on my next one. Thanks for sharing.
  7. billyO

    My latest pattern welded attempt

    I hear ya, Maxwell. My brother is expecting -40 in Minnesota.... But to be honest, I'm more concerned about the 95 deg summers with 90% humidity that cools down to 90 deg with 90% humidity at night. You can always put more clothes on, but only take so much off. Stay warm and safe. As always peace and love billyO
  8. billyO

    My latest pattern welded attempt

    Steve - I grew up in the Chicago area, have lived in Washington for 25 years, and am thinking about moving back to the South Side, like I said.
  9. billyO

    My latest pattern welded attempt

    Hmmm...I don't use a press, but do use a #250 chambersburg with big flat dyes and haven't had that happen on the 3 billets I've made yet.... sigh - I guess I have to keep trying.. as always peace and love billyO PS- whereabouts in norther IN are you? I'm from the Chicago area and thinking about moving back to somewhere on the south side
  10. billyO

    My latest pattern welded attempt

    I'm still trying to figure out how that happened, so my other thought is... Did you forge this by hand? My guess is yes, and if you've noticed, while drawing out a billet, because of loss of material due to scale top view the bar ends up looking something like this: So when stacking for the chisel cut, you wouldn't get the exact alignment I showed in the 'standard' above, which could cause what you ended up with. When using power, there is less loss of material, so it's easier to keep the layers aligned like the 'standard' pattern. I'd appreciate some input from those smiths who have been doing this longer than I have. as always peace and love billyO
  11. billyO

    Chainsaw chain etching

    This might not be the most economical way to learn, but IMHO, as long as you're paying attention, the best way. If just starting out, I'd recommend joining any 'local' blacksmiths organizations. A great way to meet close smiths, get invited to their shops, and learn. as always peace and love billyO
  12. billyO

    Chainsaw chain etching

    Is that sanded/polished or still rough forged? You'll possibly (probably) be able to see the chain better after finishing. Welcome to the obsession of pattern welding....and have fun. as always peace and love billyO
  13. billyO

    Chainsaw chain etching

    I'm not sure what you mean by 'muddy mess', but if you're referring to the fact that it doesn't look like a chainsaw, that's due to the all the squishing around from forging. If you're referring to the pattern not being very dark, there are a couple possibilities (and I'd says it's a combination of all of them). First, the chainsaw chain's links are probably not very high carbon content, even might be mild steel. This is probably the main reason. Second if you only soaked it in the coffee for 20 minutes, that's not long enough. I've left mine in the coffee for 24 hrs without any difficulties other than a bit more to clean off the steel with the nickle content. Third, because there isn't many layers, you won't get much topography with the acid etch, so when you clean/polish the blade, unless you are extremely careful to clean only the 15N20, you can't help removing some of the etch/coffee. I'll correct this by saying stronger solution. The coffee won't do any damage to the blade, and actually, doesn't etch for all practical purposes, only darkens the carbon steel. The coffee solution that I use is 1/2 lb of the cheapest instant coffee I could fine to 1/3 gal water. (I read somewhere that someone was going to do a test with different types of coffee, but haven't seen any results.) I've also found that the more I use it, the darker it etches. I'm not saying the above responses are wrong (well, except for that part of Frosty's) because remember, if you ask 10 blacksmiths how to do something, you'll get 12 different answers.
  14. billyO

    First damascus attempt

    On my kitchen knives, I etch to topography, then coffee. How strong was the coffee? The coffee solution I use was a 1/2 pound really cheap instant coffee to 1/3 gallon of water. I've found that the more I use it the darker it makes the pattern. Also, how you clean it will affect the longevity. I wash my knives immediately after use, don't use any scrubbers and then blot dry then air dry before putting away. Wiping the blade will wipe the coffee darkness off. These aren't the best pictures, but I think you can see the contrast on at least part of the blade. The top one is the first knife I made 3 years ago and the bottome one is 1 1/2 years old. Neither one have been re-etched or re-darkened. as always peace and love billyO