Jump to content
I Forge Iron

Recommended Posts

It's been a long time since I last posted. After a big move and resetting up the shop I am back to making things. I thought I would share some of the cable knives I made in the last few months. They are forged out of extra improved plow steel cable. The first one has a dyed maple burl handle and leather spacers. The second knife has a bubinga wood handle and a azurite spacer.  

Frank B.

 

Cable-knife-12-1.jpg

Cable-knife-12-2.jpg

Cable-knife-12-4.jpg

Cable-knife-13-1.jpg

Cable-knife-13-2.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites

Gorgeous work!  I realize these aren't likely to see a lot of impact, but do you have any concern about delamination/cracking starting along the top of the spine and spreading down into the blades?  I find the visual effect striking though.

Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Buzzkill said:

Gorgeous work!  I realize these aren't likely to see a lot of impact, but do you have any concern about delamination/cracking starting along the top of the spine and spreading down into the blades?  I find the visual effect striking though.

Cable doesn't exactly work like laminated Damascus.  Even fully hardened breaking them is an adventure.  It's that way because it is a true hi/low Damascus and the wires twist through the billet.  It only works if done right though. 

These are well done.  Can welded?

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks,  Yes these are can welded. And the cable damascus seems to be strong when hardened, or at least it breaks differently. I like to do destructive testing on blades as you learn a lot. I took 4 pieces of cable damascus quenched in 2 different quenches and 2 with tempering and 2 at full hardness and broke them in a vise. After having a pile broken pieces sitting on the bench for a while I thought I would see if it was possible to forge weld all the mangled pieces together. And it surprisingly it worked. I was never planning on finishing the blade when I was forging it out so I left it was a little rough. Of course I couldn't let it lay so I put a handle on it and someone liked it, so it sold. Photo below. 

Multi-Cable-billet-1a.jpg

Multi-Cable-billet-1c.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice!  Got a description of your can welding method?  I've done a few billets with powdered metal, but never tried cable in it.  I have a love/hate relationship with wire rope damascus.  Partially I'm super intolerant of any pin holes or flaws.  I get pretty decent success by cutting into 6" lengths and stacking 9 or so pieces together and welding in squaring dies on the press.  That's after letting the pieces soak in diesel for a week or two and sometimes taking the wire apart to get rid of any crud or the occasional paper tag.  I hate getting a flaw, but when everything goes right I love the stuff.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I also have a love/hate thing going on with cable. I also take it apart down to the bundles that are 3/8 dia and clean. But with the amount of dirt that comes off of new cable I am sure there is a lot more of it farther inside. I said it was can damascus, which is guess it is, but I do not add powered metal. I just stick it in a stainless steel tube to shield it from scaling and then forge it together just like you would a normal cable billet.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks, do you seal it up air tight?  I hadn't thought of adding powdered metal, figured it'd be too close a match with the cable alloy unless you maybe used nickel alloy powder.  Hmm, maybe a bunch of loose strands in a high nickel powder?  May have to give that a try one day.  Do you twist while in the can, or after initial welding?

I've tried new and old and have had a lot better results with new cable, but only after about 60-70% reduction.  I'm about 50/50 when doing a single piece by hand.  Really irritating to be doing the final grinding and find a flaw.  Got some that's got a strip of paper in the center strand that was giving me fits before I took it apart and found it.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I make a bunch of cuts on both ends of the tubing for folding over to seal up the ends.  I leave at least a 1/4 hole on the ends for the pressure if there is any. I bring the cable up to temp, flux. I do that twice. I do twist the cable to tighten before inserting it in the tubing and then I bring it up to welding temp. BE Careful about what way the ends of the tubing are pointing and where you are standing when doing the first setting of the welds as hot flux can squirt out the end hole. And it does!!!! especially when using a press!!!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...