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I Forge Iron

First attempt at a Hamon Line

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Hi everyone!
So I decided to try and get a hamon line on this new blade that I was working on. I mixed up some local clay, ash, fine iron filings, and water, then put it along the back of the blade, and quenched in oil. Rarely in my life has anything gone so smoothly. There was no warping or cracking in the blade, and the edge really hardened. My only concern with this blade is that I ground the edge too thin to start with, so I don't think it'll last for very long. I guess I'll have to be gentle with it.
This photo is of the blade after tempering in my toaster oven and some brief sanding, then I did a quick etch with hot vinegar to see how clear the hamon line really was.
I'll probably polish this blade up and put a handle on it in a few days.
So now to some questions: Should I quench in water, or is oil okay? Will the hamon line show up properly if I give it a real fine polish? What wood do you guys think I should use for the handle?


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