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I Forge Iron

Second Blade

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Are you using gas or coal?

I ask because it appears you really have kept the scale to a minimum. Any hints?

Great hammer control, but that doesn't suprise me at all.

Very nice blade. Be sure to post pics when you finish it.


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Don, I used coke, and I keep the scale blown off my anvil at the scaling heats then brush before I do finishing blow in the end. The number of heats it takes to distribute the metal can be a big factor with pitting from scale. I attack the dimensions that I'm going for. I don't just work on one area to finish. I bring it all down together.

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Brian thank you so much for sharing this as it is a gold standard piece to illustrate wot I have been preaching for years on here. When you want to forge you need to learn the basics. When you have the basics of safety,hammer control, body mechanics, proper use and selection of tools, then forgeing new to you pieces is an application of wot you have spent the time learning. When you have developed a forgeing plan that lets you deicide exactly wot you will do when you remove the metal from the heat and wot you will get done in one heat. You will take fewer heats to forge the item to shape. When you do not pound scale into the surface of the hot metal you do not have as much surface to remove to clean the piece up. Thanks for sharing.....

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Thanks, Rich. How can I join that church you've been preaching at?lol
The first blade I ever forged was in Michigan at a blade makers event. I'm not sure what it was called, but all the top blade guys were there. I was there with Tom Clark and they had me demonstrate forging techniques. I think it was back in 2002 or 2003. I did what they call "green coal" where you have a chance to make your first knife with a master bladesmith instructing you. I enjoyed it, and I really liked watching them do their competition where they would cut a 1" rope with one swipe and all the other things they did.

The only reason I made this knife was because, Mike, one of the guys that came by and helped us make the big nails, wanted to see how to make a knife at the end of the day. He is just starting out blacksmithing, but he made a ring that day and several hearts and horses. He also made several punches and he struck and we made him his first forged hammer. It was a 3
pounder made from 2" 4140 and it took about an hour. He's coming back Thursday and that will be my day to get some work out of him for me. It's amazing what a day of making nails will do for some one just starting out.

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