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RKNichols

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  1. Very thin blades can be quenched (assuming sufficient hardenability) by compressed air blown at the tip backward toward the handle. I do this will O1 and sometimes W1. OR....use two heavy steel plates: put one on the ground, place the hot blade on top of the first plate, cover with the second plate. However, time is important so move quickly. You can actually quench only the blade, leaving the handle exposed to normalize if you choose.
  2. Extremely cool shape. I gotta go make one, too.
  3. Heat it and beat it. All else is mental masturbation.
  4. Hahahahhahahahaha.........snart.......you are a sick man, J. Arthur! I can respect that.
  5. Hey, Scott, count my Kudos, too! When I presumed to be smart enough to teach college level courses in metallurgy and material science, I wandered into the University of Texas of the Permian Basin (Odessa TX) and found that for a new school it had an excellent collection of *COPIES* of old manuscripts. Several of them were on metallurgy and heat treating. I wish I had made some photo copies of the copies.
  6. Most of what happens during annealing takes place between about 1550F and about 1100F. Carbides are getting bigger and that involves the diffusion of carbon. The diffusion of carbon in steel slows dramatically below the A1 which is about 1330F. If you can slow cool until it loses its color, you have done most of what can be done. Keeping it for an extra two days to get to room temperature is not usually worth the trouble. There are some exceptions which my critics will now raise in vast profusion....
  7. The non-magnetic temperature is about 1430F and only .80C steel will be fully austenitic at this temperature. Lower carbon steel needs about 75-100F more heat to become fully austenitic. If you quench without getting fully austenitic, you will not form as much martensite as is possible and hardness will be lower than expected. Also, try normalizing first, this will help break down carbides and distribute the carbon for more uniform hardness.
  8. Try Ken Scharabok's "Poor Boy Blacksmith Tools", it is a storefront on eBay. Or you can email him from anvilfire. He makes and sells a pretty decent gas forge made from a freon bottle for about $150, not including the regulator, gas line and tank.
  9. Well, you need to know how hard it is BEFORE you temper it. If we quenched out a .95%C steel and a .15% C steel, and tempered them both at 300F, which one do you think would be the hardest? The tempering temperature would drop them both approximately the same number of Rockwell units (assuming we have no significant alloying differences) but I am betting the .95C would be a lot harder even if it were the same temper color as the .15C steel. I would guess stone working tools would be in the Rc 40-50 range.
  10. Potassium Permanganate will put a nice brown patina on bones and antlers. You can buy it from Dixie Gun Works. It is called "Old Bones" and costs a few dollars for 4 ounces; that will make about 4 gallons of solution.
  11. Foreign Foods: Yep, eat what the locals eat. They have no idea how tourist food is supposed to taste. I have been all over and some of the best and worst foods were in China and Taiwan. Deep fried jelly fish tentacles was about the worst...the worst drink was the Chinese rice liqueure. It really did taste like gasoline. Blessedly, I forgotton the name of this noxious fluid......AKKKKKK! It just came to me: Mao Tai! DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME! :261:
  12. It is amazing how good we get at salvaging blades around the cracks...... Anneal first, do your hand work, then normalize. Things like section changes and sharp edges or corners will crack so I try to round the edges a bit. Did you hollow grind it before or after heat treatment? It's a nice shape, I hope you can finish into something you like. I always get kinda negative when the primary plan goes tits up.
  13. Non-uniform heat transfer is another common cause of warping. If you get one side hotter than the other, you may get a slight delay in the hot side reaching the Ms temperature relative to the other. Since the formation of martensite is accompanied by a volumetric expansion, the side that transforms first will cause the blade to warp toward the other side. Now the hot side will eventually begin to transform and because it was somewhat hotter, it may expand slightly more than the colder side. It is really to complicated to predict but you get the idea. Stand the blade on its spine to heat and do not place it near a wall. Bought a little Delta 1" belt grinder last week to do more of my carving knives. The blades are usually 1" - 1.25" long so it should work just fine. Now to actually get out and do some forging work.....
  14. I know for a fact a lot of you guys just "heat it and beat it"....
  15. I suspect that the thickness to length ratio of a knife is much more difficult to bend than that of a sword. Or it may be PFM. :261:
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