Steve Sells

Intro to Heat Treating

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While we're on the subject of bulimia (note proper spelling) and the ancient Romans, let's dispense with the mistaken notion that they had special rooms for throwing up so that they could keep on partying. The "vomitorium" was actually the nickname for the exits to the Coliseum, so-called because of the speed with which a large mass of spectators could exit.

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On 1/11/2009 at 4:05 PM, Steve Sells said:

At room temperature steel is in a body centered cubic structure. The cubes of steel have an atom at each of the 8 corners of the cube, and one in the center of the box. This is called ferrite.

Steve, just to be clear: shouldn't this read "The cubes of steel have an atom of iron at each of the 8 corners of the cube, and one of carbon in the center of the box"?

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1 minute ago, Steve Sells said:

yup  I  seem to have dropped that word here.  Thanks

Dear God. I corrected Steve Sells on heat treating and lived.

What challenge, what pinnacle of achievement remains to me now? The summit has been reached; all else is long, slow descent into shadow and obscurity.

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On 2/3/2017 at 10:28 AM, JHCC said:

Dear God. I corrected Steve Sells on heat treating and lived.

What challenge, what pinnacle of achievement remains to me now? The summit has been reached; all else is long, slow descent into shadow and obscurity.

i make lots of mistakes, it is not that great of an accomplishment to find one, AND CORRECTION IS NOT THE SAME AS A TYPO OR DROPPED WORD ;)

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I have not yet heat treated a blade but have one ready to go, I am truly thankful for this post and the many other post I have poured through over the past few days. I want to blacksmith and make knives and a lot of stuff is trial and error but the information here is invaluable.

Thanks for caring enough to keep this forum going.

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On 8/5/2017 at 6:49 PM, Felstrex said:

I have not yet heat treated a blade but have one ready to go, I am truly thankful for this post and the many other post I have poured through over the past few days. I want to blacksmith and make knives and a lot of stuff is trial and error but the information here is invaluable.

Thanks for caring enough to keep this forum going.

If you put your location in your profile, you may be surprised how many IFI Smith's are near you and could help with hands on stuff.

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On 12/23/2015 at 2:07 PM, Steve Sells said:

I wonder how many people wish they read this before they ruined their blades, trying to teach themselves with you tube?

Well Steve I haven't ruined any blades yet but also haven't had any success in getting a harden blade . I have found on here that used motor oil is not a good oil to use so what is the best oil ? I've also read that canola oil brought up to 140 degrees worked rather well but I'm not sure what is your insite on this ? Thanks in advance.

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7 hours ago, Papaw forge said:

what is the best oil ?

That's a good way to get some people going. I use canola oil, some use corn or peanut oil. Some people spend the money to buy proper quench oil, Parks 50 for example. For me canola is best because it's cheap and readily available. If I was in a production shop where I was turning out thousands of dollars worth of items I'd definitely be buying the good stuff.

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Here is another question for u guys I've been trying to look this up but no luck after you make your knife heat treat and sharpened its beautiful your proud .... How do you keep it looking that good the blades I have made I got them all shinny and clean I have some honing oil I rubbed them down added more to a cloth wrapped them up about three four days later pull them out there rusty not bad but enough . how can u stop it or what do you do ?????

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Carbon steels are going to develop patina (rust and discoloration), it's just how it is. You can put a light coating of oil on the blade to help minimize it. Part of the charm of a carbon steel knife is the patina it develops. In order to prevent it all together you would likely want to use something in the stainless family. 

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renaissance wax is a good coating for both blade and handle.

And as mentioned *best* is a hot button for some of us; because without details it's impossible to answer.  Do you mind if the best oil will cost US$50000 or is illegal to own?  (Whale oils was used a a great quenchant back in the early 1800's)

Canola is quite good warmed and relatively inexpensive.  Some folks use used fry oil from fast food joints, warmed,  You can often get peanut oil for free around Thanksgiving if you ask people who are deep frying their turkey and will not need it afterwards.

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On 12/08/2017 at 5:17 PM, Michael Cochran said:

That's a good way to get some people going. I use canola oil, some use corn or peanut oil. Some people spend the money to buy proper quench oil, Parks 50 for example. For me canola is best because it's cheap and readily available. If I was in a production shop where I was turning out thousands of dollars worth of items I'd definitely be buying the good stuff.

As far as I know, there isn't any one size fits all quenching oil. Parks 50 has been developed for water hardening steels like 1095, W1/W2. It is not recommended for deep hardening steels like O1, 5160, etc. Parks AAA(or any 11 secs) or warm canola is what should be used on those steels.

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Yes for a production shop you would use the proper engineered quenchant for what you are doing---saves a ton of money if the HT works right  first time every time!

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2 hours ago, Joël Mercier said:

As far as I know, there isn't any one size fits all quenching oil.

That was exactly my point. The question was asked, right before my post you quoted, “... what is the best oil?” I replied making mention different options available and that asking such a vague question is a way to get people goin since there is no “best” for all purposes. 

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First thank you for posting this info. Simple easy to follow easy to understand

 

I just pulled my first properly heat treated knife out of the oven, secound heat. Yesterday when I quenched I went straght to the oven for 2 hr at 325. The scale that was on the knife baked in. Should I have cleaned before I went to the oven? How can I prevent this next time? I was able to sand most of it off but not all I'll get a pick after it cools  

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Was there still forging scale on the blade before you did the heat treat, or did you clean it it down to bright metal first? Hardening the blade shouldn’t get you up to the temperatures where scale will form, so if you’re getting scale on a previously clean blade, I would worry that you have overheated and weakened your blade. 

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The blade was clean I heated to just past non magnetic three times trying to reduce temp each time the last heat I took just to non magnetic then quenched, then straght to oven. 

 

Im using coal so insted of scale could it be forge dust for lack of a better word? I was extra caucuses with the heat having had troubles in the past. 

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I used to get that when I used the home made mix of new 30wt oil and trans fluid,  I have not had to deal with that crud since after I started using McMaster Carr 11 second quench oil, perhaps its from the oil you used?

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Verry well could be I used a combination heat transfer oil and hydraulic fluid 

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You are considerably above the scale formation start temp for hardening blades; which is why there are heat treat foils and muffles with crushed charcoal in them to provide a reducing atmosphere while heating for hardening.

Now tempering temps are *generally* below scale formation temps. (Some of the high alloy steels temper in the glowing range!)

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