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I Forge Iron

some of my axes

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The way I do axes generally is to start with a big enough mass of steel to draw the beard from either by upsetting the edge section back or by forging a larger section down to get the eye .I do this prior to punching or drifting .I would then punch the eye out and forge the blade, working fullers across the blade to get the beard width .
I hope that makes sense the 3 axes there have 3 different constructions one is a bow tie folded and forged welded around a center core of the same steel . The other two are punched ,one having a damascus edge welded to it .

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Those look good. I took Elmer Roush's Viking Ironworks class at John C. Campbell Folk School in 1999 (i think). We made some of those bearded axes in the traditional way. You folded the steel to form the eye with one piece of iron or mild steel. You shaped another piece of iron or mild steel to the length and width you wanted the beard to be, and then butt welded a piece of high carbon steel to the edge. The high carbon steel was maybe half an inch long with a width that matched the width of the beard. Once those were welded the beard was sandwiched into the end of the piece which was folded to make the eye and forge welded.

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