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Everything posted by RedNeckLeftie

  1. Where are my manners, sometimes the engineer gets the best of me? Tell, that's a right-nice looking blade there. The body looks like a mirror-polish, bet that took a while. And for goodness sake, Jake, I hope your week gets better! Brian
  2. I am so glad this forum is here, I can't imagine anyone figuring all this great stuff out alone! Dan -- The whole 1505-1520-1550 thing is potentially an issue. I have no doubt that the thermocouple is indeed at the indicated temp, but that is in the upper, right-front corner of the kiln. I'm sure there's a temp gradient in there, not sure how bad. Plus, the kiln was designed by a bass-ackward right-hander, so it takes me about 5-10 secs to get the piece into the quench bucket. I thought of getting an infrared thermometer as a second temp check, but after reading their specs they're basically just a SWAG. Which is what sent me off on the magnetism versus "indicated" temp hunt. Jake -- The 1050 was sold as "Annealed, Pickled, and Oiled." I'm no metallurgist, so I could be way wrong, but I didn't think low-alloy hypoeutectoids could be spheroidized. Anywho, I cut out the basic shape with a sabre saw, grind in geometry, and refine with file/sen, then 180-grit waterstone. The parts are then normalized no more than twice at 1600F (kiln-temp). I did not know about the descending normalize heats, makes sense in hindsight, adding that one to the list... The stuff I destructively tested had a nice gray velvet, but was much rougher than a broken tap surface. As to kiln "air," I don't run a reducing atmosphere, to keep the protective oxide on the electric elements. So decarb could well be an issue--unprotected pieces will build up scale, or is that par for the course? I've been trying to target a temp that allows for no more than a 30sec - 1min soak. Also mix in some carbon with the satanite (very light coat for normalizing, clean and properly re-coat for quench). My day job limits blade-work so most experiments have to happen on weekends. As data trickles in, I'll keep ya'll updated... Brian K.
  3. Thanks for the hints and tips. Looks like I've got some more experimentation in the works... I have not cracked any 1050 in the quench thus far (crossing fingers, frantically looking for wood to knock on). The only thing that's cracked was my sen made out of 1095. All my stuff is knife-sized, with blade lengths less than about 6 inches. I originally went with a higher quench temp ~1520F, but read here that I might lose hamon activity/definition at higher temps. That lead me to try dialing down the temp. Tell, I am still working on the 1050 I bought from Admiral about 1-2 years ago, unfortunately I don't know of any other sources. Many Thanks, Brian K.
  4. Hi Folks, I have a few questions regarding my current medium of choice, 1050 steel from Admiral. Background: I do stock removal and electric furnace Heat Treat (HT) of the metal(s) in question (Paragon kiln). Typically, I do a satanite-based diff HT. My questions are: 1. Is 1050 even useful as a blade material, and what is its maximum as-quenched hardness, Rc ? [i have seen numbers range from 58-60, yet an article from SFI claims 1050 is best used at 57-58 Rc--I've found this very hard to do. Furthermore, my edges always seem to roll, never crack or break, even though I quench in ambient temp water (50-85F, depending on season).] 2. Does this mean that I should not temper my blades? [i suspect that at least a 275F temper is in order, but cannot prove it] 3. I have magnet-tested metal down to a kiln temp of 1465F, and this should harden in quench, but I empirically determined that metal at kiln temp = 1505F never got above 40 Rc. Am I doing something wrong? Thanks, Brian K.
  5. Threw in my "2 cents" (at least!). This forum is chock full of great info and great folks. Though I am a lurking "monkey with a [bench] grinder and a paragon kiln," I hope to have enough experimentation behind me soon so I can ask some useful questions... Brian K.
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