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Easy to find Nickel steels?


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First of all let me introduce myself,

My name is Christian, 16 years old and I am from the Netherlands,

I've been blacksmithing for about half a year now, mostly making simple knives.

My question is, does anyone know what are very common items (like rasps or springs) that contain nickel?

I really want to try my hand at making Damascus for my knives.

I find it very challenging to find the right steels I need for my work, that is also why I use leaf springs for all my knives.

Thanks in advance for everyone's help

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While a combination of mill quality 1084 and 15N20 appears to be one of the most widely used modern choice for forging pattern welded billets for blades, I believe that some folks use bandsaw blades (from large lumber processers) and pallet band strapping in combination with leaf springs to create their Damascus.

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I'm one of those people and some of the metal cutting bandsaw blades will have appreciable nickel. I also test the pallet strapping and use the higher carbon versions, (heat, quench and break).  Getting a billet that will easily weld, look good and harden well is more of an art than a science if you are using scrap materials.  I strongly suggest you find someone to teach you the welding part hands on (in person)  as that will speed things up immensely.  Till you get skilled, you may want to use known good materials in your billet so you can factor out material issues while you are learning. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I'll second the lumber mill blades. If you have a mill close by, call or stop by and get in contact with the saw sharpener and tell him what you're looking for and why.  When I did that, I got about 30 feet of 10" wide blade scraps.  I'm fortunate enough to live in the PNW where logging and milling lumber is a big part of the economy, and the mill gives me as many pieces of their broken band saws as I want.  I did give the head saw sharpener a Damascus blade as thanks, so that may have helped....

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