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I Forge Iron


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    Gainesville, FL, USA

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  1. I've been able to pass a few of the ABS knife function tests, not the bending in half part. I'll be making another test knife in the next month or so, so we'll see. I'll wait till I can pass those tests before tackling iron bars.
  2. I just learned about this guy through this article. Pretty neat. Anyone ever try to recreate this? https://clarksonhistory.wordpress.com/2013/05/06/secrets-of-the-dead-the-richtig-knife/
  3. I like that Gladius, looks great. Is that a hole at the tip of the blade? Or just a black mark?
  4. Lake City? I live just south of there nearish to Lake Butler. If you need any help setting up shop again I could lend a hand. I am in contact with some people in FABA in and around Gainesville, as well. I wouldn't mind learning from you if you teach as well. Welcome to the neighborhood.
  5. It really depends on the type of steel you are using, when it comes to hitting it cold. I use 1095, and don't have any trouble with hitting it cold. I believe you only have to worry about micro cracks in alloyed steel, that has alot of chromium or manganese. Not 100% on that though. I usually straighten at a black heat, just below red. I try to straighten and true the shape I am working on at the end of each heat, that way the over all shape won't get away from you. Lets say I am working on forging the end of a piece of flat bar into a point for the knife. I'll pull it out at yellow/orange and forge the point with heavy even blows. As the metal cools into the red I lessen the strength of each hit, making them faster and lighter. I do this in order to planish the piece, removing any hammer marks from missed blows. Then I eyeball it for straightness, and give it a few more light hits as it cools into a black heat in order to make it relatively straight. Back in the fire it goes. I will do some tweaking in a vice as well. You want to have the part that needs to bend just outside of the vice jaws, use a pair of tongs with a good firm grip for leverage and bend just a hair past straight. You'll get the hang of it.
  6. I'm glad others feel my pain. Thanks for the good words Kendall. Micheal i am gonna try this. Baking soda, hmmmm
  7. There I was sanding a knife ready to go out to a customer, when I notice this strange shadow along the blade. It doesnt sand out, and I am not sure it's even really there. After a day of polishing and soaking in acid turns out it was a hamon, and I wasnt even trying for it. Really excited about this, my crappy camera doesnt do it justice. This was with 1095 too, which I thought I understood was harder to get these kinds of results with. Anyway I am super happy and had to share this with ya'll.
  8. I thought about the hot punch, but I don't currently have punches in the sizes I need for the pins. I always drilled because it seemed easier, and more precise. It may be I will just start punching. Still this is a good lesson in proper annealing. Love this forum
  9. I live in Florida i didnt think those things were necessary. If this metal is so hard it beats a drill bit made for drilling metal even after a poor but mostly sound attempt at annealing, at the very least it's been air cooled, why the heck am I going through the bother of hardening at all!? I say that mostly in jest. I am just blown away that I have spent the better part of a year learning the how to make my steel tough and hard and springy and all that, only to find that its harder than a drill bit without me even doing anything to it. Seriously though for the helper bar. Just stick a heated chunk of rebar in the bucket along with the knife? Or stick it in before I put the knife in, kinda like I do for preheating my quench oil?
  10. I have recently had some issues with drilling the pin holes for my full tang blades. I am using a 5 speed table mounted drill press, set to the slowest speed, cobalt drill bits, and oil to keep the temp down while drilling through the steel. My problem is I seem to be hitting a section in the steel, maybe 1mm deep that appears to be too hard for my drill bits to go through. Some times the hard spot is deeper, almost in the center of the 3/16 thick handle I am drilling through. I've taken to annealing my blades before I drill, and today it still happened. I went through 2 brand new drill bits just to get through this bugger. My annealing process is to heat the blank as evenly as possible to non-magnetic and stick it in a 5 gallon bucket of vermiculite over night. I am using NJ Steelbaron 1095. What am I doing wrong? I am ready to tear my hair out.
  11. I gave it 30 secs. You will definitely want to test it on a sample first. The saltiness of the water seems to be a factor in how quick it makes a mark.
  12. Red(Positive) wire attaches to blade. Cotton ball soaked in salt water and placed over the surface to be etched. Black wire pressed into cotton ball. It is that easy.
  13. Just thought I would share this with anyone who is new to knife making, and wants a super easy way to put a nice etched logo or makers mark on their knives. I use a stencil I got from a real nice fellow named Ernie, at Blue Lightning Stencils, but you can also coat your blade in wax or nail polish and scrape away the bits were you want an etch to happen. Here is what you need, salt water, a couple wires and a 9 volt battery. Photos are of my rig, and of the knife I etched. Its for someone in a local Beard Club, I've done a couple knives for these guys, and they love that I can etch their logo into the blade.
  14. Yes sir you are on the right track. I've never used it to heat steel with but Cowboy Charcoal gets really hot and may do the trick. Its a natural wood charcoal for grilling. Get your self a brake drum to use as a forge, hairdryers will work fine to get you started, but I don't imagine they are up to the task of being a full time forge blowers. Or you can check out this link. http://www.msforgecouncil.com. It's a blacksmiths club based out of Mississippi. The club I am in in Florida has an annual meeting complete with classes, tail-gate sales, and demonstrators. Monthly meetings too. Great resource.
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