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SteveShimanek

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Everything posted by SteveShimanek

  1. A death grip on the handle causes a lot of damage to body structures; the hand and arm should guide the hammer and let it hit, but a looser grip is needed. The shape of the handle is important as well, most stock handles are too thick and not indexed. I profile mine like the profile of a samurai sword grip, like an oval with square sides.
  2. When using very fine grits after establishing the shape and foundation polish, it is better to go in one direction (along the length and back) while ensuring coarser scratches are not left behind; this is all wet sanding with water with baking soda added to minimize flash rusting, and a lot of rinsing and changing water at each grit change.
  3. Sorry, I wasn't too clear...use the highest grit that affects the scratches on the blade effectively, then move to higher grits. Your surface is already fairly clean, so keep your sanding direction along the length, all in the same direction. Clean carefully when changing grits, change water, and add some sodium bicarbonate to keep flash rust down.
  4. If you go the sandpaper route, start with the highest grit you can, and treat the entire surface the same to avoid any dips or waves; use a backing pad of something firm and flat. The kissaki area is finished perpendicular to the rest of the blade. If this is a Japanese sword, the value will be lost by an amateur "polish"; as a maker who also has done some restoration work on antique swords, i can state it is not an easy process to learn. If this is just a Chinese replica, have at it. Please respond as to the origin of this sword?
  5. If this is a Japanese sword, the value will be lost by an amateur "polish"; as a maker who also has done some restoration work on antique swords, i can state it is not an easy process to learn. If this is just a Chinese replica, have at it. Please respond as to the origin of this sword?
  6. Worth a try, nothing to lose but time and some fuel.....and you might learn something.
  7. Bet he didn't have eye protection, either....the rice straw bundle is for diverting most of the flux spray, but how many have been blinded no one knows?
  8. Glad to see you posting again, Dan....I wondered what you have been up to. Nice work!
  9. working on the 40 year old sail boat, mowing the lawn, polishing and making shirasaya for a Japanese spear....the usual.
  10. Garry, you are doing some very fine work there! I wonder if you would be interested in doing a wood trade...I have a Hawaiian Koa rifle stock blank that i would trade for an equal amount of NZ swamp kauri, if you are interested. I did not see a private message button on your profile anywhere, so put it here.
  11. Mild steel has worked fine for me.
  12. The steel plates probably effectively quenched the tang; you may need to temper to blue or hot stamp your mark earlier in the process.
  13. Not bladesmith related, but I have been teaching myself to TIG weld aluminum, as i repair numerous corrosion holes in a diesel fuel tank from my 40 year old sailboat. Aluminum is a very different animal than steel, but I am making progress. Boat work has taken precedence over shop work lately, but i have some sword polishing backlogged that i will be back to soon.
  14. That cannon pattern is rocking; have you cast it yet?
  15. Rewelded my riding lawn mower frame, replaced the drive belt...now I can catch up on my mowing; 3 weeks behind due to dodging a cyclone and being in a monsoonal trough for too long. Also made a machigane (little triangular bit of copper for bottom of habaki) and brazed up and fitted the habaki to the Japanese swrd restoration project i got from Geoff. Will post photos to the other thread later.
  16. That is awesomely good for a first, better than mine was for sure; the only thing other than what Alan pointed out was that the alignment of the blade and tang seems bent....maybe it is an optical artifact?
  17. That is some very clean forging!
  18. The changeover from tachi to katana was based on the main means of warfare, and occurred in the 1500s. The most obvious difference was in how the sword was carried, and the length and sugata (shape) of the sword. In earlier times, samurai fought from horseback using longer swords, and carried them edge down in a suspension harness; later, they fought on foot and carried their sword inside their obi (belt) edge up. (short version)
  19. I just did a search on the gidgee tree, being unfamiliar with it; it looked similar to Hawaiian koa, which makes sense as i found it is a member of the acacia family, like koa. Nice! ps i hate autospell, it is more work to fix the words it replaces
  20. Full refund, clean break, no jackwad in your forge....bullet dodged!
  21. I did some electrolysis on the tang to reduce the active red rust for about 2 hours; it came out pretty well. The shiny areas are remnants of the hamon after the sword was shortened...the end of the handle was reshaped like an unaltered sword, which was a practice in the 1500s that generally did not occur after that.
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