Jump to content


Popular Content

Showing content with the highest reputation on 04/19/2020 in all areas

  1. 6 points
    So it's about time for bi-yearly photo dump I mean to just post more often here and it never happens... so I apologize again for the flurry of photos that is to come, but hopefully you guys enjoy! I'll start with a smelt that Matt Berry and I did in January as a follow up to a previous smelt at Dragon's Breath that I ran for their yearly hammer-in. We used local iron sand from the beach a la Japanese and ended up with some really nice steel. I wanted to up the ante with the second smelt and built the furnace to provide a better yield (theoretically). It worked a charm! We charged 19.2 kg of ore and got 6.8 kg of steel out of it. A 35% yield! And not just any steel, it's as high quality as the tamahagane I have forged from Japan. At three folds it was already nearly flawless and forged like butter! So first is the bloom! We had to build the furnace in 16 degree weather and built a fire inside to mitigate freezing and cracking. The next day we fired it up and somehow managed to get the furnace through the whole smelt! That was a trial in and of itself. The aftermath of the furnace. This was how it ended up post extraction, the furnace fell during the night. Preliminary spark check! I didn't think the whole thing could be like this, but it certainly was. We had to heat it back up and cut it under the power hammer because it was too solid to cut by hand. Nice and solid inside! One half as is, and the other half forged out prior to any folding. First fold done! 3 folds... I forged a small replica of a knife Peter Johnsson had made and hardened it without clay to see what the steel would do. And success! Over 64 RC out of the water. This one is making its (overly complicated) trip to Peter now! IMG_5131.mov With success behind me, I decided next thing to do was forge a tango from the rest of the bar. I chose a Bizen school shape which I am drawn to and prepared the blade. This one still has a fair ways to go, it still needs a habaki and proper mountings. This is the first blade I'm happy enough with to give it the full treatment. There are a few things to change, like the spine it a little too tall, but that can be fixed! It has exceptional activities present in the blade and the hardening is actually pretty reminiscent of some Soshu work that must also have been done without clay! This one also reached over 64 RC out of the water and ended up nice and straight. For blades like this you introduce a downward curve during forging/normalizing so that the blade ends up straight out of the water, instead of curved, basically you're adding negative sori. IMG_5219.mov While we're still in forging territory, I played around with fire strikers while working on a sword blade for another project that will likely be posted soon! I made a top and bottom tool with some round 'teeth's forge the squiggly iron and then took some 1075 and folded it on itself. Afterwards a little flux! And presto! There was some grinding to clean up the ends afterwards, but not too much! I also cracked it during the hardening but it makes some nice sparks! I plan on making more of these soon, they're a greta shape to forge and will make a great addition to a viking kit! Jumping forward to the end of February I went down to NYC with some of the usual suspects and enjoyed the opening of Peter's amazing dedication to the goddesses! There was a lot of time spent at the Met enjoying some recent additions to the arms and armor gallery. From left to right the man of the hour Peter Johnsson, Owen Bush, Jordan LaMothe, Dakota Slack, and Rusty Griffin! And the group shot during the opening! Out of frame is Rusty but there's Jordan, Dakota, me, Sixt, Peter, Owen, Brett, Scott, Isabel, Michael, Zack and Rasmus. A rowdy group for sure! Jump forward a couple more weeks and I went to Maine to NESM for a seax class! Here you have Eric doing the initial forging of the edge billet we made. We folded to 480 layers of 15n20 and 1084. Man having access to a power hammer makes for fast work! We made a few different kinds of twist bars so students could choose what they liked! These twists are all based on historical Viking Age or earlier patterns. Cory doing some twisting! Most people assembled their billets from 4+ bars. Jay holding his monster seax! Once we had blades forged and cleaned up we hardened and tempered them overnight! From left to right is Jay, Matthew, Eric, Cory, and then two I made as different demos. I wanted to do bolster construction with these. I brought a moose antler that we divided up into small chunks for bolster making. Here I am fitting the bolster with a couple of drilled holes, a jewelers saw, and some needle rasps. This one was meant to be a through tang construction as a demo on making a seax with peened construction. And glued! Kind of... We bedded the tangs in the handle once things were fit up so that we could remove the blade during the shaping process to make sure everything was perfect. A shot of Cory doing the front detail on his bolster. A useful trick is to trace the blade shape with pencil before doing this so you can make sure things are staying even in case of a slightly uneven fit of the bolster to the blade. And finished! A class photo on the last day. From top to bottom, Cory, Eric, Matthew, me, and Jay! And some closeups! Cory's first Then Eric's! He used a sweet piece of steel made in a previous NESM course for the edge. Look at those nicely matched interrupted twists! And Matthews! And Jay's! What a crazy piece of work! Next up I was supposed to go to Germany in a few weeks time for the KNIFE show hosted by the Deutches Klingenmuseum. Of course, with recent world events that wasn't; going to happen! Though they did decide to keep the kitchen knife contest open! Basically the prompt was 'the perfect cooking knife', so here's what I came up with! I started with some oroshigane made with Pavel Bolf during Ashokan. I made a 7 inch Japanese style knife, a sujihiki. It was hardened with no clay into water using a technique called zubuyaki that I learned from Pavel. Once polished you can see all the fun stuff in the steel! Once the blade was finished it was time for the rest! I had a sudden thought while driving from the shop one day about how I should finish this up, but it seemed ridiculous. I haven't ever seen someone do something like this for a kitchen knife, so I figured it wouldn't hurt to try! Worst case scenario it doesn't work out! I decided to make a traditional style of handle, a D shaped grip, using iron, bog oak, and silver. First was making the tenon. The collar isn't round, it is forged oval, so I had to rough in the tenon and then clean up to match the ferrule by hand. Then file finished and inlaid using ten-zogan! Applying the patina, little by little. It is a forced rusting called sabitsuke. A little bit of fussing and assembling and you have a finished knife! Next is a slightly older project that recently found a new home. It was a collaboration with Jordan LaMothe. He made the blade and sent it my way for finishing. I choose some dark dreamlike themes based the blade, kind of light a 'starry night' with fewer stars! Seeing these two one after another actually makes me realize there's a lot of common motifs between these pieces I've made lately. Well to be honest you can't go wrong with bog oak and silver! Next we come to the most recent couple weeks, the quarantine! My job has me working from home 30 hours a week (my regular schedule) so I've been doing a lot of bladesmithing related work at home as well, just because I'm already there! So I have jumped headfirst into some sheath work and other various projects that needed finishing. First off, a hairpin for my girlfriend for her birthday based off an original from somewhere that's escaping my brain at the moment... Carved from cow bone with a garnet in a silver bezel. Next is a couple of sheaths made for some knives, the zoomorphic one for the seax made at NESM and the other two for some other pieces! The one on the left is for a seax Luke Shearer made and sent to me for finishing, and the rightmost is for a piece made from bloom I just finished recently. And now dyed! I finished out the black one with silver rings and silver fittings. The blade is made from bloomery steel for the edge, high and low carbon iron and steel for the twist, and an iron spine. The bolster is finished the same way the ferrule of the kitchen knife was. I am super happy with how this one turned out, and honestly may just keep it for myself! Next one is the sheath for the demo piece from the NESM class! Based on the sheath fittings of a broad seax I found in some archaeological PDF! The tooling is based on some zoomorphic art from the Viking Age. The two together. A pretty handsome pair I think! Next a little guy made from some unknown antique tool steel I found at my old shop. Hardened with no clay as is becoming my custom. The carving is rough but a good step towards making decent carvings! I got some really fantastic help from Jeff Helmes in regards to carving better. A garnet is inset in the handle in a silver bezel. I'll probably make a simple sheath for this one and use it as a letter opener Some cool cloudy activity in the blade. And last but not least the most recent one! I made this one yesterday. I'm getting pretty quick at this! Pretty proud of myself, the whole handle and assembly took me about 5 and a half hours! Made from the same billet as the zoomorphic one. It's based on a German seax from the 6-7th century. The fittings are mild steel with diver salvaged white oak for the handle. It has a very nice flat profile for the handle as is evinced by the shapes of the front and back plates on these seaxes! The peen on the back end is ground flat and polished again. The handle actually feels really good, the narrow section fits in the crooks of your hands really well! The blade is etched deep for really nice chatoyance, and shows a nice hamon in the right light. And a 'family' shot showing a bunch of them together! Anyway, as usual, my profuse apologies for the 100,000 photos and the book of text, but hopefully you guys enjoy! -Emiliano
  2. 3 points
    I am about to finish up a master's degree in physiology, after which I will be moving to start dental school. Because of this I won't have space for a workshop and likely won't have the time for knife making, so I decided to work hard to finish these up before the move. A kitchen set for my parents. All triple-quenched high-carbon damascus, mokume bolsters, and snakewood handles. Hope you enjoy.
  3. 2 points
    I made this one out of a small off cut of low layer Damascus I got from another maker. I’m really liking this style of knife, once get some more steel I’ll try making a few worthy to sell. Is my photography better than the last one in terms of less background distractions?
  4. 2 points
    I decided that I liked the shape of the accidental hamon on this one so I etched & polished it. I may do a little more tomorrow to see if I can get a little more contrast before attaching the handle.
  5. 2 points
    All glued up. Now all that's left is flushing up the pin, peening the tang, and finishing the buttcap.
  6. 1 point
    As I am planning on attending the Big Sky Conference/hammer in this year, I put together a collection of knife designs that I hope to take with me to the hammer in as completed knives. I have no grand expectations for the small blade show, most of these blades already have places to go, but I would like to take a good selection of my best work to show and receive feedback on. There is one three finger EDC that might be Damascus, a fighter with an oval guard, a drop point ladder pattern Damascus, and a baby seax style knife that will be my kith entry. My biggest goal with these knives is to design them well before hand, and stick to the design as closely as possible throughout the making process (particularly on the handles). The drop point Damascus has already been forged and profiled, though not by me, while the other three exist solely on paper. I have drawn up some designs to the best of my abilities and submit them to the experts for review Thank you.
  7. 1 point
    First post, long time reader - thank you all for your contributions, forum communities like this expand the world's knowledge and abilities, myself included. I've been making knives for a couple of months now, have done a few in stock removal, but I really prefer the forging method, forging is so much more fun for me. This one is made from a piece of truck leaf spring, forged down into a half inch by half inch square bar, and then forged into the shape. It's the first time I've made a blacksmith's knife that includes any sort of dressing on the handle. Pretty happy with how the leather cord wrap turned out, it's the first time I've attempted something like this. I chose to heat treat this knife in the forge, and tempered it back to 385 in the oven. Holds a very sharp shaving edge, and it's very strong, way stronger than a bird / fish hunter's knife needs! I love to hear any critiques, though I bet I already know some of them that will turn up. Thank you guys for reading, and I I'm happy to now be a participant instead of just a bystander
  8. 1 point
    Aaand done! A couple more crappy cell phone pics, one showing it next to one my my later concept sketches. I'm going to turn it over to a friend at work to get some better pics. I'll post them in Show and Tell once she is done. Thanks again to everyone who's been along for the ride during this build. The tips and advice have been a huge help along the way.
  9. 1 point
    Minor Dagger update: I changed the guard design. I just wasn't digging the original after I got the arches ground in. After making a template for the front spacer, I did get the handle and double spacer packages pinned together and ground to shape. Front spacer ready to shape. Front spacer and handle wood held together with threaded rod. Both spacer packages and handle ground to shape and sanded. Now to fit the pommel.
  10. 1 point
    Nice. White oak can be burnished plain or accept a lot of different stains.
  11. 1 point
    Lol. I don't think its fair that such a mountainous state has only two real areas to find gold, Coker and Tellico. But you have to admit, it would be cool if he could put gold accents on a knife made from ironsand that he pulled the gold out of!
  12. 1 point
    Hush, now, you'll have that boy down at Coker Creek if you're not careful! That aside, he's right. Magnetite and gold-bearing quartz often occur together, especially out west. Just one of those geology things. Did you collect that sand with a magnet? if not, a LOT of magnetic separation is in order. Then pan the rest for gold...
  13. 1 point
    Great start! Be very careful with the join between tang and blade. File out the transition to a nice round and get rid of that "barb". Don't want your first blade to go PING because of a stress riser. Got an idea about the handle material??
  14. 1 point
    Traditional ones don't, except for the two that do... One is a simple iron plate, the other is gold and garnet from the Staffordshire Hoard.
  15. 1 point
    A bit more progress with the 1/8 inch micarta spacer epoxied to the butt pad. Thumb notch and bolt release cut in and for this it is easier/quicker to just use a couple of soft faced clamp to tighten the action into the wood for trials as I get the recesses down to the right level. There is a lot of file a bit and check to get this right with just the few thou clearance under the bolt release. Next was some shaping to the forestock and I start by marking in the major plan lines with a specially tapered board I keep for this purpose. I always like to have a very slim fore stock as it sits down into the hand better and is an aid in aiming with it sitting like this which allows for more accurate "pointing" before you get onto the sights. Next was to get the bolt handle notch sorted and the loading port filed in. I finished the day by getting the steel grip cap epoxied into place. It is not fixed permanently as I use vaseline as release agent and fill the hollow in the back of the cap with epoxy, drill a few shallow holes into the wood round the inside of where the cap will sit and screw it into place. This way when I am doing the shaping take the cap off to get the rough shape done and only replace the cap for the final fine sanding and polish the edges of the cap at the same time. I know it will always go back the same way with a punch mark on the undersside of the cap denotes the front.
  16. 1 point
    I was going to use one of the chain links you sent me.
  17. 1 point
    Great work. Good luck in dental school. Where are you going?
  18. 1 point
    Sad loss to the knifemaking fraternity if you are not able to continue making knives of that quality but hope it is a forshortened hiatus
  19. 1 point
  20. 1 point
  21. 1 point
    Yeah! I hope they don't have a heart attack when you give it to them.
  22. 1 point
    I bet some gold/silver mokume would make a nifty crown, and all the dentists I know got really good at wax casting in school... Nice set!
  23. 1 point
  24. 1 point
    I just finished cutting my own hair. No, I will not be posting a photo.
  25. 1 point
    I got 5 blades going at the same time. It's a personal record .
  26. 1 point
    Yeah I've been told that a lot so it must the right thing to do. Theres one not far from where I am so should be fun
  27. 1 point
    I've yet to do a lot of sand & polish as well as to etch the blade but all of the components are there now.
  28. 1 point
    The tacks on the edges are holding everything (when they are done well ). The rest is just there to seal out air (Which causes scale, as I'm sure you know). We also used a bit of WD40 in each joint, to burn up O2. Owen Wood talked about using superglue to do the same thing. You make sure your fit up is tight, then SG the pieces together, and encapsulate the pieces, by welding, by foil, by boxing, whatever works for you. It's a fussy process. The more precise you want the final piece to be, the more fussy you need to be about the prep. Geoff
  • Newsletter

    Want to keep up to date with all our latest news and information?
    Sign Up
  • Create New...