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I Forge Iron

Asking for suggestions for my new axe

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Hi folks,


I'm working on the handle for a new axe. It's my second attempt at an axe, and I'm pretty happy with how this one went. It's forged from a single piece of 4140 (scrap piece from the metal supplier). I'm going to do some copper wire inlay in the channels I've cut into the handle, but I'm not sure what colour I should stain it before I do. I'd like something that contrasts with the black steel and the copper. Any suggestions? Part of me is thinking blue, or a medium brown that leans towards yellow. Let me know what you think!



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I really like that axe head, the fit and finish on it looks very good from here.


All of the wire-into-wood inlay that I have ever seen was done by cutting the channel with a very sharp, thin chisel, and then hammering thin, flat strips of wire into the gap. The wire strips are usually as wide, or even wider at the bottom than at the top, in order for the wood to swell shut and hold them in place. Joe Keeslar has a DVD out on the subject, and there are several threads on the subject in the knifemaker forums.


I could not tell you how to get round wire to stay in those wide, shallow channels. I would suggest trying it out on a few scrap pieces until I got the technique down pat.

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Thanks everyone! I took a few more pictures of the axe head. It still needs to have an edge put on it, but I'll do that when I'm done with the rest.







I think I have my plan for the inlay (like this: http://s9.postimage.org/50eol0fe7/IMG_0618.jpg), but I'm really curious about what people would recommend for a colour for the stain to contrast the heavy copper.

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Is this going to be a using axe or just a display piece?

If a using axe put the copper further down the handle where the impact won't jar it loose over time and perhaps go over your channels with a hot iron for wood burning decoration. (Or fill them with coloured enamel paint)

How about a red stain?

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