Phillip Patton

Damascus Fighting knife WIP

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Hey folks,
I recently started this project over on another forum, and thought I might as well "mirror" it here. Enjoy!

I'm forging a billet of "Gordian's Knot" damascus. The original bar had about 100 layers.


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Big version of that last photo:




The billet after sitting around for a few days:

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I'm soaking it in acid for a while to loosen the scale. Then I'll grind most of the cracks from the twisting off. That way I'll know that I won't be forging them into the blade, and risk ruining everything....

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This is the drawing of the knife I'm making:

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Not done layering? what is the count now?


Yes, the patterning is done, and there are some pictures of the pattern in post numbers 2 and 3. I thought you were asking for pics of the finished knife....

The billet is made up of 4 bars, each with 100 layers. Two bars are twisted clockwise, the other two counterclockwise. Then all four are welded together, then the resulting bar is twisted clockwise. Then it's forged flat. That's pretty much all I've done so far. Tomorrow if I feel like it (I'm getting over a bug of some sort) I'll forge the blade to shape.

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Here's what it looks like after soaking in HCL for a couple days:


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After angle grinding down to bare metal:

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After cleaning up on the belt grinder:

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I want to make sure the billet is flawless before I waste the effort forging a blade... Looks good so far!

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Well, I think today's the day for forging. But first, I need to make an aluminum template, which I did yesterday:

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I also welded a sturdier handle onto the billet:

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Looks like you have it well planned out!


"If you fail to plan, you plan to fail." :D:P

Really, every knife I forge gets a template, and a drawing. Some people can seemingly whip out a really nice knife with no planning or forethought, but that doesn't usually work for me. I like to know where I'm going and how I'm going to get there. :)

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i agree- lovely clear photos - looks amazing! thanks for bothering to show us in such detail! :)

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Finished forging the blade today, and also thermal cycled it, and then ground it. Just have to file the guard shoulders and stamp my mark on it, then it's ready for heat treat.

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Yesterday I heat treated the blade, and this morning I re-ground it. I started to hand sand it, and decided it could use a little more tempering, so it's back in the oven now.

Here it is after hardening:

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Hardness testing:

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Re-grinding the ricasso and tang:

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Beveling the edge prior to grinding the blade:

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Re-ground with a 60 grit Blaze belt:

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Ground with a 240 grit belt:

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The blade in my hand sanding setup:

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A quick etch after a little sanding with 400 grit paper:

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