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jake cleland

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Everything posted by jake cleland

  1. I was literally within spitting distance of Talisker when it happened...
  2. yeah, I dropped my decent camera and it died. And today I shredded my front tire, only to find out the spare was 3" too large, which made for an interesting 25 mile drive home... also my pizza dough didn't rise. It's been a day...
  3. Just finished this up as a present for a friend. Heat blued and lacquered 1095 with a forged copper pommel: let me know what you think...
  4. Nice, but you should finish shaping the nakago before you fit the habaki...
  5. just finishing these up. 3 1/4" blades of differentially hardened 1075+Cr, with safe false edges and filework, dyed burr elm handles, copper butt plates and leather sheaths: let me know what you think...
  6. cut the blade shape from a piece of card and pierce it with a nail or pin at the pivot hole (just below the centre line of the blade - I usually draw round a coin or washer to get the heel shape and pierce through the centre, then design from there, making sure the spine starts above the circle...) leave the backstop/tang oversized at this stage. Then pin the blade template to a larger piece of card, and draw round it in both the open and closed positions and design the handle around that. Finally, with the blade in the closed position, stick another nail through the card for the stop pin where you want the blade to stop. move the blade template to the open position and pierce through the stop pin hole into the tang, and then shape the tang to meet the whole...
  7. yup, turning spindles and a hand saw - no need for power tools. Pre cut scales are hugely wasteful for most things, and massively expensive.
  8. I toyed with the Idea of a talon shaped guard, but it was too busy and messed with the lines, so It'll get basically a Japanese mount - copper habaki and seppas, small hamidashi style tsuba with some sculpting around the mimi, buffalo horn fuchi. Thinking I might make the pommel nut in the form of a lance head...
  9. all the actual carving is done with chisels/gravers, but I used a burr for some surface texturing
  10. Been working on a blade for the past few days. It's a 9 1/4" 9 bar serpent core dagger - silver steel edges with a serpent of alternating 15n20 and 11 layer twist set in mild steel: I'm making it to fit this handle I've been working on, carved from sycamore: it's been pretty fun so far...
  11. I just lay the edge of the blade flat on the anvil with the parts I want to temper hanging off the edge, and place another piece of steel on the edge of the blade to keep it in place, and temper with a torch. The anvil is enough of a heat sink to prevent any bleed into the edge...
  12. Just finished this up, another of the plain kitchen knives I make for friends and locals. *" blade, through hardened Cs70 with a differential temper, 2mm on the spine, tapering to 1.5 at the break, S ground, with an etched and buffed scotchbrite finish, bubinga scales and copper pins: let me know what you think...
  13. Always convex - the convexity, known as niku ('meat'), is important both functionally and aesthetically. How much curve is open to interpretation, and depends on the shape, spine thickness, purpose and again aesthetics...
  14. Dudgeon is an English word, though possibly from a Scots or Welsh root, for box wood root, which in the medieval period was the only native wood which it was legal to stain black to mimic ebony. The word became synonymous with this style of dagger. In Scots we still say that someone is 'up to high dudgeon', meaning in a killing mood, which comes from the dagger form.
  15. Just finished this up. I'll try and get proper pics and say more about it at the weekend, but It's 1075+Cr, bogoak, steel, copper and silver: let me know what you think...
  16. First, the shape of the tip is perfect for that style of blade. The only reshaping I'd do would to be to taper the profile of the nakago more (on the ha side) - it'll make it much easier to fit a nicely shaped tsuka. With the hamon, a lot of the contrast you see on traditional blades is down to the lighting and photography, and a hamon will look white from some angles and dark from others. That said, there are some things you can do to increase the frosty look. Some people use pumice or rotten stone and work it only over the hardened portion, but I think it can give a muddy look and wash out details, though it could work well on a suguha hamon. On mono steel though I think the best bet is to etch quite deeply - you're not just looking for surface oxides, you need to etch into the actual microstructure of the steel, and then you need to polish out all the oxides with a paste abrasive - I use autosol, but I think simichrome is preferred if you can get it. You can also buff with a soft cloth wheel after a deep etch, or etch at a lower grit, say 800, then burnish with 1500 on a soft backing. The point is that the traditional frosty look is a result of a mixture of nie and naoi particles - small and large grains, which scatter the light. On a mono steel blade, you can generally only get one or other, and you don't want large grains, so you need to etch more deeply and polish it back to get the same light scatter... one other thing I'd note is that traditionally a habaki is always wider, ha to mune, than it is tall, nakago to kissaki. The ratio can be anywhere from just over 1:2 to just under 1:1, but it's always there. For some reason western makers, myself included, often seem to want to go thew other way...
  17. Made this over the past couple of days as a break from other projects. 1075+Cr blade, about 3 1/2", burr elm handle with bog oak bolster. There's the ghost of a hamon, but I really struggle to bring it out with this steel, so I didn't...
  18. Dave J's Satoyama knives are his own personal take on a rustic tanto design, but they are not really traditional per-se. You would be better off concentrating on the first link Allan provided, which shows a good classical shape for a ko-tanto - pay particular attention to the tapers, angles and the shaping of the nakago. You need to learn the rules before you know how to break them. The santoyama knives are forged very close to an edge, which is cleaned up with a file to prevent cracking in the quench, and then fully sharpened on a stone. The change in angle between the primary and secondary bevels is just to avoid ruining the forge finish. It's really no different to a Tim Lively or Raymond Richard forge finished western blade, but it's a modern conceit.
  19. I just scrolled backwards through that, and it was insane.
  20. I've been working on a highland dirk for the past couple of weeks of lockdown. 13" blade of antique wrought iron with silver steel edge and spine, steel fittings with copper trim, and a maple handle which I've started carving: today I also started a kitchen knife commission and a wee puukko, and I'm meant to be finishing a dudgeon dagger, but it's stressing me out...
  21. What Charles said - if you work in the middle of the anvil face, the force of the hammer blow will always close down the angle, producing a full flat...
  22. probably just cold stamped with a dulled cold chisel.
  23. I think it's a term I picked up years ago from one of the old 'Knives 19xx' annuals - it just denotes a fairly decorative display knife that doesn't really fit any practical or historical typology...
  24. ok, that fullering trick is genius...
  25. Finishing this up. Water quenched 1095 blade, copper guard plate, antler bolster with carved birds head cartouches , carved box burl handle, leather sheath: let me know what you think...
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