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JRigoni

Firefighter axe WIP

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A guy at work wants a pick head axe, so here we go.  The first two attempts were disasters.  The chisel kept wanting to walk to either side under the power hammer when drifting the eye, and trying to forge down a corner for the pick head axe part, kicked a yellow hot 10lb chunk of metal into my chest and hand.  Finally, on attempt block#3, I drilled/filed a 3/8" groove into another blank and it worked.  I also cut out a square of material from the blank to help make the forging process go easier.  So far so good.  None of my drifts would fit under the power hammer, (having 8" clearance) so most of the work was slowly done by hand with sledges.  The block started out as 1.5"x3.5"x8".  The axe is pretty much forged, and now it's up to the client to either have me smooth the sides or leave it as forged.  I'll profile the handle tomorrow.  Axe is now 7.5lbs, solid 4140.

John Rigoni

Rigoni Ironworks

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From the first failed attempt I made this drift for the next block.

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Eye is drifted.

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Spike is finished, woot!  More handwork since the taper was too extreme for a taper attachment on the power hammer.

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Rough forging is finished, time to straighten the blade and begin the outer profile.

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Here is the axe so far.  7.5lbs, fought me most of the way, but so far so good.  The texture from the forging was achieved using crowning dies on my Sahinler.  Next step is the handle and inlay.

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Edited by JRigoni

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Looking good so far, just a thought, if you put 2 light lines down the side of the 'spike' you will have a great bird of prey head.B)

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The handle will be cut from ash, not sure which wood to use for the wedge though.

Edited by JRigoni

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Wish I could remember which woods were used for wagon wheels,  one would shrink the other expand, and everything would stay tight.

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Today's work:  Overnight soak in vinegar to pop the forge scale off, grind down the cheeks, and wire inlay his badge number in copper.  Almost finished.

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Rigoni, I'm in love with this ax! What was the process for the copper inlay? 

I just did a small ax from 4140... what will you temper it as? I went with 400 F for 1.5 hours. 

 

This is just awesome! 

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Thanks for the inlay, I used a no.6 flat graver and copper wire from home depot, annealed.  Undercut the grooves and hammer in with a small punch.  I hardened the working edges and tempered in the oven at 400 for a few hours.

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What would it take for you to make another one, pm me, I cand get you badge numbers.  That ax turned out awsome

 

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Firefighter axe project is finished. The finished weight is 7lb. Axe head is 4140, with the cutting faces hardened, ready for the house fires :) Definitely the largest blade/tool I've made so far.

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I really like the way the hammer marks compliment the wood grain in the handle. Beautiful piece of work, no fu-fu, all serious business.

Frosty The Lucky.

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Thank you :)  After three separate attempts (failures) it worked out just fine.  If I make another, I will make a series of power hammer drifts to relieve the stress of hand forging the eye like this one.

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I really like that axe, it is superbly understated and I love the forge marks.

 All the ebst Owen

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