Gijotoole

WIP first pattern welded billet

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Depends on the flux, powdered glass or quartz sand is not very water soluble; but the common boric acid/borax flux is and will work with the above instructions.

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True, I don't think of sand or glass as flux, I live in such a narrow little world.

I suppose soaking in a strong base to dissolve the silicates might require more than the average home shop PPE and eviro. precautions. Can a guy even buy sodium without jumping through gvt. hoops? Can you dilute sodium with distilled water? I'm no chemist do NOT take my chem advice without consulting a pro.

Frosty The Lucky.

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1 minute ago, Charles R. Stevens said:

Sodium would become a bit "energetic" if you try to "desolve" it in water, lol. 

 

It does doesn't it. What's the liquid sodium we used to get in chemistry sets diluted with?

Frosty The Lucky.

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blame it all on my funky historic background researching all sorts of odd ball stuff---I haven't done the one of using dirt dauber nests as flux yet; I would expect them to be rather similar to the japanese clay and rice straw ashes.

I have quenched in a bloodmeal solution and case hardened with bonemeal---"Sources for the History of the Science of Steel" has an amazing list of Renaissance quenchants I'd like to try---like worm water and radish juice for 2 examples...

I think I'll take a month off this fall and only forge wrought iron, save to teaching new folk of course...

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Okay, will do. Just so long as I don't get the blame. :)

Actually I gave thought to lap welding mild steel with sand between plies to see if I could get a "wrought" silica filament analog. I've never tried it, anybody out there try it?

Frankly with good fire management flux is more a lucky charm than necessary, even in my gas forge. Tristan's Alaska flux works as well as any commercial flux I've ever used, even some of the old recipes that are too toxic to sell now days. His "secret" ingredient is powdered charcoal.

My brain tells me the charcoal does two things: First, carbon has a higher affinity for oxy than iron has so it scavenges it out of the joint. CO2 being a gas it's driven out of the interface/weldment. Second, Carbon and iron mate up nicely and the higher the carbon content the lower the melting temp.

Combine the two and you have an oxide free joint interface with a lower melting temp that the parent stock.

I don't know about dirt dauber nest but paper wasp, termite, Swallow, etc. nests should work fine seeing as they're digested plant matter glued with saliva. I've seen African blacksmithing videos where the smith is chewing pieces of charcoal out of the fire while the stock heats, then gives it a spit and forge welds the pieces. Talk about indeterminate materials, folk are paying him in found scrap.

Frosty The Lucky.

 

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considering the higher grades of wrought iron have over 100,000 silicate spicules per cross sectional inch I think you would have to fold that billet a couple of times.

I once read an *old* book that was speculating the welding of cast iron and iron to make "damascus" steel; so I've tried that---fine grade cast iron from an old bathtub---thin and mild steel.  It was most amusing as the cast iron was liquid at welding temps and when I hit the stack with my hammer large gobs were expressed and flew through the air in dull blobs until the carbon burnt off and then they exploded into "burning iron" sparks.

I have tried the "stick a bunch of iron plates into a crucible of molten cast iron to carburize them" trick yet.  Or mercury quenching---some things are too stupid even for ME! (and I don't have to worry about reproductive toxins anymore)

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Well, Jerry, I didn't have your chemistry set, but the last time I played with sodium it was a white metal that melted on contact with water, liberating hidrogen and producing a gob of heat! that is before the hydrogen ignited, hydrogen makes a very unique pop/boom sound

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I had a chemistry teacher in high school who loved to play around with sodium and water.

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My memory isn't accurate that far back? DARN! Now I'm wondering what the clear liquid in the eye dropper bottle was, I recall it saying sodium but it could've been anything else in the mix too. Sodium Silicate coming to mind as that's what suggested the idea to me. . . . Nevermind.

So much for my chemistry advice and ideas. Maybe Admin should make a rule saying if Frosty says mix this and or that. DON'T do IT! Roll your eyes and shake your head. Just don't do it!

Frosty The Lucky.

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Well, major delaminating has ended this project. I'll probably just make it a wall-hanger. It seems that the flux was the primary means of bond in this blade. 

Disappointment.

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15 hours ago, Charles R. Stevens said:

Yep, squirt bottle and sodium! Lol fond memories! 

Note, don't drop the oil filled vial of phosphores... 

The phosphorous was kept under lock and key in a locked cabinet in the locked back room of the chemistry classroom in any school with one I went to. It's undoubtedly a good thing nobody let ME get my hands on phosphorous when I was a kid.

Frosty The Lucky.

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Well I brought my pattern-welded knife with me to Cambodia and decided to give it a test run - it fell apart. I'm not even sad about it; it was an excellent test of real-world use and it failed. I'll have to get better at it, I guess. On the other hand, the other knife I made from 5160 has been a beast and hasn't shown any real signs of wear other than a patina from use on the bamboo and hardwoods. The local people here really dig the fact that "this American dude makes knives".

 

Thanks for the help, everybody.

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