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Heat Treating 1060 Confusion

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Hello everyone, I am currently working on a short sword that I forged from a rail clip and I need a walkthrough the HT process.  So far I have gathered that the material is something like 1060 with slightly higher manganese content than usual. I've looked at as many relevant discussions that I can find but I couldn't find anything going in depth into the heat treat process. What I did collect from those discussions is that an oil quench has been the most successful but I am still unsure what temperature to normalize, quench and temper. hoping for somthing more specific than non magnetic because that hasn't gone great in the past.

thanks to anyone who responds,


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Jacob, welcome aboard from 7500' in SE Wyoming.  Glad to have you.

The best way to determine how to heat treat any scrap steel is experimentation, ideally before you start forging the object.  Take some small pieces and quench them in different media and temper them to different colors.  Test for hardness with a file and if you want to test for toughness/brittleness put them in a vise and whack them with a hammer.  These pieces are usually called "coupons."  You will find some metal that just doesn't want to cooperate with heat treating that we can do in a home shop.  That is the stuff you want to avoid putting in hours forging and grinding only then to learn that you can't heat treat it and you have, at best, a wll hanger.

In your situation, since you have already forged your blade, I suggest that you make some coupons either from metal you have left over from the blade or another rail clip and experiment.  1060 is medium carbon and is pretty forgiving regarding heat treating.  I would try a heated vegtable oil quench when the metal is heated to just beyond when it becomes non-magnetic and tempering it to a blue.

"By hammer and hand all arts do stand."

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