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I Forge Iron

Jason W

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    Langley BC

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  1. So I had something kind of odd just happen... Hopefully someone can explain this to me. I live in Canada which believe is relevant for this cicircumstance. I currently use a 20lb propane tank that you would for a BBQ that is filled by weight, I want to upgrade to a 100lb tank that is filled by pump, like you would fill up at a gas station for a propane powered car. The main reason is cost, the liquid propane pump is WAY cheaper than propane paid for by weight. So I made some calls to local gas fitting companies to find out what to do, where to go, what regulators I need, stems, valves etc. I was finally pointed in the right direction but when I asked about the valve for pump filling the guy put me on hold, came back on the line and flatly told me they don't do that and they can't get me what I'm looking for. His whole demeanor changed, it was really weird! What the heck did I say? Does anyone have any insight for a noob? Thanks.
  2. Welshj do you have a jig that you use or just eye and practice? ThomasPowers thanks for the heads up.
  3. Sharpening - That's what I'll do. At worst it will be a conversation piece and a cool letter opener. I'll try the dip for longer too. Like I said before, one of the things I want to improve on is the thickness in the centre of the blade. I think that because it is so thick is why the hammon line isn't really prevalent since the core is still covered with mild steel. I could take a grinder to it too I guess but I don't have one of those fancy smancy 2" blade sanders yet.
  4. Ah! Yes, it's been tempered. So I don't need to worry about that now?
  5. The ferric acid showed up today so I gave it a shot. It didn't turn out how I had hoped so hopefully you guys can give me some suggestions. I did a 3:1 ratio and dipped it a few times for 30 seconds then dipped it in water and cleaned it in between. I've also posted a picture of the spot where I need to improve next time when I'm making the well so the insert fits and welds better. Unfortunately when I file tested it again is didn't skate so either I heat treat it again or start on the next one. Thoughts?
  6. ThomasPowers that makes a lot of sense I sure wouldn't want spikes snapping either. Goods I could see carbon migration as being an issue since I took me a few welds to get it set. I didn't really think too much about why we heat the oil other than it can't be a solid mass of course. I was told by one of my instructors a couple years back that the oil should be at 130f for quenching and assumed that if it was hotter than that it wouldn't harden. Rashelle I used spring steel from a coil spring I got down at the local 4 wheel mechanic shop. I went in, told him I was an amateur blacksmith and he threw me a couple that he just pulled off a truck he did an upgrade on.
  7. Same way, I tried an oil quench first but I think I heated the oil too much so the file didn't skate. I'm using a gallon of olive oil and heating it with a hot piece of steel from the forge. The xxxx dog keeps drinking the oil so I don't have a gallon anymore but the dog's coat is so shiny! I do cover the oil now : ) I did a water quench the second time and that did it. I'm a hobbiest blacksmith so I don't have all the fancy stuff for knives yet. Thanks for the heads up with the colours, once I get it sanded and etched I'll put up another picture. I'll definitely do more of these, it was a fun process and I can see lots of different things to improve on. I definitely didn't draw it out enough since the middle of the blade is quite a bit thicker than the spine and the well I made wasn't super clean on the end so there's a small space between the insert and the spike right at the transition from the blade to the handle. Wait, you meant after the temper did the file skate. Sorry I misunderstood. I haven't checked that yet but I will. Thanks for the suggestion.
  8. Thanks Steve I'll check that out and thanks Welshj that's a great idea. I was on the way home today from doing errands with the wife wondering how I should set up a dip tube. Your timing is impeccable. Daswulf ya, I had read that spikes were on the lower end, that's why I thought it would be a good test to do a san mai on. That and my neighbour keeps bringing them to me lol. I made him about 20 hooks out of them for his stables and noticed some having the "HC" so I started doing some digging.
  9. Good morning! So I finished tempering last night in my easy bake and it doesn't look too bad. I tempered at 425f for 2 hours. I'm a little concerned about the blue on the edge since it's pretty thin and really surprised about the straw on the spike. Can I assume the blue edge is from the spring steel insert? Interestingly enough the spike has an "H" on the head so I'm assuming it's high carbon. As for the ferric, Amazon is the route I went. It should be delivered before Wednesday and was cheaper than ordering online from Walmart. They wanted 17 dollars plus 16 dollars shipping.
  10. Huh! Good to know. I'm in Langley BC. The Source took over Radio Shack up here years ago so I'll check there. Thanks Welshj.
  11. Thanks Thomas I appreciate that. I'm tempering it now, hopefully it stays in one piece. I don't have a vacuum furnace, just a toaster oven so we'll see what happens there. What do you recommend to use as an etchant? I went down to Canadian Tire, Home Depot and Walmart, none of which have Ferric Chloride. They looked at me like I was going to make a batch of meth or something : ). I do have muriatic acid and I grabbed some instant coffee. I'd rather use the coffee but either works. Does one make a more dynamic colour difference than the other? Yes I did harden it last week : / Ah well, live and learn
  12. Good evening all I have a question about my next step. This is my second attempt at a knife and my first san mai so be gentle, I know it looks like a butter knife : ) I did a "traditional" san mai where I made a well in the spike and inserted a piece of high carbon then forge welded them together and drawn it out. If you look closely you can see where the high carbon is on the edge. At this point I've hand sanded it down to 600 grit and want to know whether I should temper it then etch or etch then temper? Any comments, critiques or blasts are welcome. Cheers!
  13. Thanks George that's great information I really appreciate it and that completely makes sense. The next one I do I'll wait to heat treat it until after I shape it. I ended up cracking about 1/8" off the tip when I tried to straighten out a minor warp. The positive part I found was a) it was definitely hard and b) I have a strong forge weld since the tip is still encased. I will have to reshape the end but that's part of the fun. Also, I'll create my own thread. Thanks again.
  14. Good morning what a beautiful piece! I have a question for you about san mai. I tried my first san mai yesterday with a railroad spike and coilspring. I tried what I've heard is the "traditional technique" so hot cut a well in the spike and inserted a piece of high carbon. It seemed to go pretty well for my first time, I tried a heat treat in oil first but it didn't seem to harden. I may have heated the oil too much so I did a second heat treat in water, that got the file to skate. My question is, do you need to temper san mai? Sorry to high jack, I just saw an opportunity to ask someone who might be able to help. Thanks.
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