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About Sly

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    Senior Member

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    Ogden, Utah
  • Interests
    Bladesmithing by hand, traditional blades

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  1. Same way you differtiate between passing steel over coals and sticking it in an oven for 1500 for twenty minutes People shame those who take shortcuts but still shortcut other areas, maybe you didnt forge a perfect tool and ground out the rest of the profile, Making tools to shortcut IS the point so my arguement was there really shouldn't be shaming in that. Especially the guy using three aprentices or a power hammer shouldnt be shaming the guy with a heat treat oven thats just hypocritical. On the note of hand drawing versus a power hammer theres a mechanical different in how the steel is drawn that causes distortions and ripples that gives it strength and astetic value on apraisal IF there is a material that applies to, IF. Folding two identical steels with some pattern isnt going to give it any advantages. That only applies to certain materials. I guess it would boil down to the perceived spiritualism of sweat in a world of automaton. But where is it acceptable to cheat and where isnt it? If you cheated somewhere you cheated but does the steel really care? Its steel. I take pride in hand crafting like everyone else but i wouldn't shame someone for using a tool to do it the easy way? It has a quality or it does not have a quality thats where i find an issue.
  2. 1095 has some issues... Its got a really low manganese content which attributes to hardenability, ductility and flexibility at the same time, and a rather low silicon content so its not nearly as durable and its niche in heat treatment. Its got low Si content as well fot a 10xx steel, if you want to regularly make knives i recommend getting some 1084, has three times the manganese and twice the Si so it heats so much easier without the fragility and the range of acceptable quench temps is more forgiving and on average its got twice the use toughness. Otherwise soaking to austenize or thermocycling at higher heats is your best friend. Like steve said.
  3. Another option for the leather is to cure it in oil, i get trolled for using it but i wipe my blades with a thin coat of olive oil and then wipe that off with a paper towel, same thing with my leather sheiths, light coat of oil wipe it off after it soaks in a little.
  4. There are alot of smiths who dont really know anything about metallurgy and it isnt terribly required to swing a hammer on hot steel, they usually troll conversations though but you can get by with a little basic knowledge of heat to 1600-2100f typical forging range and most steel when austenized at 1500ish amd quenched makes martensite then temper for 2 hours at 350 or whatever. Most steels you can look up those basic parameters for, which is the advantage of the known steel. Not every steel is the same, so dont assume a guide on low carbon steel applies the same to high carbon or high carbon applies the same to high carbon with high alloy content, its good to do some reaserch on the steel you find or use. Recommend reading Verhoevens guide to Metallurgy of Steel for Bladesmiths & Others who Heat Treat and forge their steel, its a free pdf.
  5. I suppose it would be a skillset to be able to make and forge from scratch using the most primative of tools to replicate steel and then the tools from that steel. Buuuut most of the time its a historical cult you walk into and they often get xxxxx about things like using propane or electricty powered anything delcaring theres a skillset that needs to be practiced. I think i put it before as; its just a source of ego, it doesnt change the science of the metallurgy, sure theres a skill but its just an ends to a mean. Every metalworking group and forum has its niches and its ways and doesnt cater well to people who do things differently, this forum is better then some but still got some of the same mentality, people do things differently in each group, and theres always a troll out there whos been doing things so long and not open minded to the methods of others. *cough* above. I suppose lets use an example though, a person buys premade damascus rounds and uses a power hammer to make barstock, then laminates it to 1095 using a power hammer and then grinds in the bevels and the tip, puts a cheap hamon on it and calls it a san mai katana.. The japanese never made san mai they made hon san mai which has a soft core and a edge steel, to be san mai by definition it would have to have soft side plates to absorb shock and add back in toughness to the edge steel. Does it really matter? No damascus isnt really wootz steel but the term gets used enough that its now the new definition Buuuut does it stop the brand from saying hand forged? If it was forged the pattern would be deformed so you can obviously tell the bevels were not forged. But you will still say: hand forged because thats what the martial artists want, its a selling title tag for your google foo.
  6. clean steel has its owns benifits sometimes, clean steel can be alot pricier, mostly i purchaced one inch round and made my own barstock starting off, i still forge my own barstock by hand, it was a good way to learn to forge and built my arm up quickly. Some people go as far as saying forge clay then soft steel and move your way up, but i would just recommend getting some scrap steel or a round of 1045 or low carbon and playing with it, if you can forge that you can figure everything else out easy enough with enough time, rebar is another good material to practice welding with. Once you can forge out a rectangle try tapering it down thinner into stock, making rounds ect and it should give you a good feel for that, theres also youtube for how to's and ABANA runs a good tool shop lessons if you can find a chapter near you. You can also look up AISI codes for steel and find a local mill and order a batch or order it online in barstock, just keep in mind sometimes you do run into bad batches. Cold roll is more expensive then hot roll because its heat treated and tempered to be used as is, hot roll comes in some off hand state, but either way you should austenize your steel sufficiently to work it, something after experience youl know by heating it and tapping it, if its not ready to be forged you just put it back in. (This assumes the steel has enough content to be heat treatable, if its lower carbon content it doesnt really matter but its a good practice) given enough experience with a steel you should be able to tell when its too cold or losing its ideal austenite state, usually it goes from soft and makes a certain kind of dinging sound not typical to the forging heat, first time it feels like that its too cold, depends on your alloy but its more true with treatable steel. Better to be safe then sorry. And avoid that heat by a safe margine likewise a steel has a burning temp you want to stay under. Home depo typically has some plain 1018 thats expensive by normal prices but not too expensive for a bar to play around with. Still under 15$, you dont need alot of it to play with for a while though.
  7. The tides have changed! Grammar sharks! Fish are friends not food!
  8. Keep calm dont panic. In the end everyone loses so i dont think it was ever about winning. Anywho 5lbs of pure iron (99.2) costs 15 $. Shipping costs 25$. I have a small book i keep receits in with warrenties and mill reports on the steels in my small stockpile, most of thats shipping.
  9. Ah but see you mistake me im a blade smith not a cut away guy, my love is for the fire and swinging the hammer and not the grinding part. Only people i disdain are the kids on reddit who say swinging anything bigger then a 2lb will hurt your body. Or someone who makes a sword without distal and longital tapers. As for how you temper or quench steel its just a means to an end, as long as its austenized properly and the requirements are met does it matter?
  10. There are so many different methods to even work the material.. I think the simplest way to explain it would be that the goal is to engineer the microstructure of EACH part of the steel. Idealistically youd refine batches with different properties and mix them until you have something like tree rings, each layer on the tree contributes something just a little different but it still acts like a single unit. The main goal regardless of country is to defuse shock since it passes through each material differently as well as other properties but the truth is you end up losing half of your content that you typically have to mix it, and then fold that until it will heat treat acceptably. Mixing batches helps with the refinement process too, you could say fold the billets only 5 times mix them and then refold 6 times to get each layer to the requirement of 11 folds to be refined. Its as complicated or as simple as you want it to be. Not to mention alot of the surviving blades had single layers that were counted in the thousands to ten thousands presumed to be reused swords, european or japanese. Such a broad topic anyways its hard to sumerize. But the real wonderful thing is if you fail you can just undo the heat treatment with a long austenization and refold till it works, probally happened alot.
  11. My first idea for carbonization was to pack carborize a bar 1045 for a sword so the outside would be around .8-9 % and the interior would still be the .45. It worked decently but i made the mistake of carborizing the round and then working it. my forging left the content uneven as to where it was, after forging and grinding it the content was really uneven and it warped. So if you wanted a tool with differential treatment i would advise either having an even carbon content or selectively carborizing just the part you wanted to after it was shaped.. Say you wanted to carborize just the tip end of a wood chisel?
  12. As someone who tempered blades over and in a fire for years as well as used boiling oil and borrowing a heat treat oven or even just using a toaster oven i would have to agree on that. While our world is filled with monkey see monkey imitate and everyone is so proud of the methods they use to acomplish their goals the science of the doing is what really attributes to success or failure, the implements are just toys and ego. Admittedly using a solid fuel forge requires skill and experience especially if its water quenched and flame tempered, compared to stock removal heat treat with a 1000$ oven and expensive oil and then tempering with that oven on forum info requires no experience or aquired talent what so ever in comparison. Or the guy who pays for it the answer is all the same, do you hold a good tool at the end of your effort was the fruits of your labor successful and are you happy with the time and money spent, buyer or maker.
  13. Well by stick to things i mean that litterally like duct tape, you can still peel the tape off but it will just... Stick. Im not saying 1018 isnt weldable its just merely the microstructure of ingot steel has areas where the alloys are bunched up and then areas where its just iron, that inconsistency is where the problems awry. Wrought iron tends to be more pure iron and yes it plastically deforms much easier then 1018 as Jennifer pointed out, so it sticks better. The carborized wrought has a few interesting mechanical properties which make it more useful to anything thats intended to be hardened or welded. Its different then ingot steel. Which if you mess up and over carborize you can just remix it with other layers and fold till you get it right. Other simple reason i recommended it was that the traditionalists use wrought they purchased or made to carborize so you can readily reaserch into that wheras pack carborizing 1018 wouldnt be that prevalent in a google search, wheras people like Verhoeven like to list it their papers... Key terms being blister steel and sheer steel there, was a major method of refining steel to be used in crucibles for a few hundreds of years. Most of the available data on phase diagrams is also iron iron carbon so its closer to home i guess... No offence was ment to those who weld 1018, wrought is expensive.