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      IMPORTANT Registration rules   02/12/2017

      Use your real name or you will NOT get in.  No aliases or nicknames, no numerals in your name. Do not use the words knives, blades, swords, forge, smith (unless that is your name of course) etc. We are all bladesmiths and knifemakers here.  If you feel you need an exception or are having difficulty registering, send a personal email to the forum registrar here.  

jake pogrebinsky

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jake pogrebinsky last won the day on August 11 2016

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About jake pogrebinsky

  • Birthday 05/28/1966

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  1. For all of you skandi guys

    Geoff, I'm afraid that geographically the provenance of this is Afghanistan. Here's an example:http://autoknife.com/index.php?l=product_detail&p=2927 (if that link doesn't work,try searching Google "afgan folding knife").
  2. Still a few spears and javelins ....

    Great work,Ibor,and Really neat-looking iron...What did you do to it to reveal the structure so well? (impressive output as mentioned above-you're a workaholic!:)
  3. Dene(Athapaskan) dagger with the Y-pommel

    Well...I know so little about this here bizness that it's difficult to even analyse what's happening... First thing this morning i attempted to cut the end of the stock on my regular cut-off hardy.Did it twice,a little at a time,to make sure of what i'm seeing. The photo below is utterly worthless,sorry about that(trouble with the micro function),but what appears to be happening is that the action of smashing the stock unto the hardy embrittles the material so rapidly that only about half of stock depth gets cut,the other half is by then brittle enough to break off. That's the shiny bright part in the photo,with it's crystalls so enlarged as to be Easily visible with the naked eye(if it was steel this size grain would be entirely unacceptable). It made me wonder if that effect is representative of that material/force used in general...Is That how rapidly the work-hardening takes place,in this material? Next,i went to attempt to cold-forge the blade a bit flatter/more regular,and here finally my comeuppance for all the quick and dirty casting caught up with me-the nasty fissure from the back of the blade has propagated all the way through to the bevel-side! Well,i've lost that patient...However,there was still much to be learned,it even becoming easier to experiment now,kind of a load off one's shoulders,all hope for a finished product now vanishing. Annealing the handle-end(and grinding the coarse-structure off the tip) i proceeded to fuller it cold,preparing to forge the "antennae",using a fairly humanely wide fuller.After some distortion,maybe 50% or less,the anvil facing side has cracked visibly....Now,heretofore,i've ascribed all the fissuring and cracking to the melt process.This time it was unlikely,as it was suspiciously too well lined up with the forces produced by my fullering.The stuff was coming unglued due to work-hardening,without much of a doubt. Well then,now was finally the time to try the recombining of some sort. Up above Alan says some wise and pertinent things about welding this stuff,i tried to keep them in mind.The trouble with the "sweating" look was that,after melting a portion off yesterday,i was too scared to bring the flux to the proper runny- bubbly stage...(As far as the reducing atmosphere is concerned-no problem,i weld in this forge regularly). The look of the copper itself told me nothing,thanks to my complete ignorance of the subject(other than the cool color and shadow effects meaning lord knows what:). The flux that i was using was some nasty old borax remnants mixed with an ancient store-boughten cast-iron welding flux.That latter has an incredible adhesion strengh,about impossible to clean it off afterwards,so much so,that after a few heats i just proceeded to forge my pre-form for the antennae,not really knowing if it welded,or was gooped together by the flux...But it stood that,and i had my pre-form afterall.... After quenching(i'm totally out of my depth and running scared,and taken to quench-annealing every time i turn around...),i whip out my stone-saw....There's no way i got the cajones for hot-cutting this stuff.... Miraculously,nothing untoward happens...It has either welded together,or the cracks were centralised enough and just got mashed into the either half?Beats me... Here it is though after the first or second forging heat: And the rest is history,as they say...The antennae parts gave NO indication of being in any way impaired...No splintering,or spalling,or nuffink.... Again,i lack the information basis to analyse any of this properly. I'd love to continue with the Cu experiments,but unfortunately(or fortunately for the poor forum's space),i need to go on my annual migration soon,and only have enough time for maybe a WI version...No more Cu smelts for a while....
  4. Dene(Athapaskan) dagger with the Y-pommel

    Done with forging for today,and must run about other chores now. I'd like to organise my thoughts about it all so far,see exactly what if anything i learned... But i can tell right now,Alan-this ain't no cold forging,i don't think....
  5. Dene(Athapaskan) dagger with the Y-pommel

    Yessir,very much so.And all of us here being more or less familiar with the working of metals must conclude,like you have,that some form of annealing MUST have been done. I mean,just look at them curlicues on those (supposed) originals...Even if those famously enlarged crystals in the "float",or native,copper allowed for some uncommon ultra-plasticity,still,drawing it out That fine is a bit rich,without some heat involved somewhere... (Unrelated,yet,look how easy and natural it all happens: ) Obviously,the cultures involving themselves with Cu took it rather seriously: The Ojibwa were hesitant to reveal the locations of "Miskwabik," their word for copper, because of the spirits who inhabited it. In 1666 the Jesuit priest Claude Allouez reported: "One often finds at the bottom of the water [of lake Superior] pieces of pure copper, of ten and twenty livres' weight. I have several times seen such pieces in the Savages' hands; and , since they are superstitious, they keep them as so many divinities, or as presents which the gods dwelling beneath the water have given them, and on which their welfare is to depend. For this reason they preserve these pieces of copper, wrapped up, among their most precious possessions". And what those folks Focused upon they did rather well...What we think of as the "South-West Indian art" is all,in effect,learned by the roaming hoards of nomadic Athapaskans descending from the North ,from the Spaniards and the (eternally)resident Hopi and others...Learned quickly,and excelled at,all the horsemanship,the silversmithing,weaving,pottery... Somehow doubtful that folks that Learn so well and so rapidly and reliably had not some extensive background at some complex skills... Look at this curious map(it's from the "Constructing Cultures Then and Now;(Celebrating the Jessup North Pacific Expedition)",Contributions to Circumpolar Anthropology #4,Nat.Museum of Natural History,Smithsonian Institution 2003). These are the trade routes for 1775-1900,but it kinda gives one an idea....(afterall,no trade routs are New,they don't just occur,they normally follow only the more ancient ones,and/or some natural pathway,such as oceanic current et c.). Look how essentially Close Alaska is from both the Orient(or places known to've been well connected to thereabouts),and the Great Lakes Region...(as indeed many papers discussing the Mississippian Culture make mention of that Michigan copper having been traced as far as Bering Straight ....). We DO lack any physical proof,to date,but just speaking most informally here-would not it seem at least Possible that the Skills,along with the trade items,would percolate,one way or another,sooner or later,to Such a crossroads sort of a place as Alaska?
  6. Dene(Athapaskan) dagger with the Y-pommel

    Alan,thank you VERY much,your thoughts help a great deal.... Well...It was interesting,in any case! I hot-forged(into bright red,i'd call it) the ingot,using a peanut grinder to cut out Anything suspect at all,and eventually forged it into a clean(-looking)forging,of a variable dimentions,but transitioning reasonably. Then proceeded as i normally would...(forgetting completely that i was going to pursue a different plan,and forge it to a flat-faceted pyramid this time...ah,well). Pretty soon,i started seeing some fissure action start coming back,especially on the edges...Small,but i thought now's the time to try to weld it a bit,(kinda like wrought,to keep it regular). It was at this point: In bringing it to welding i paced out for a sec,and of course melted off an inch or two of the tip...(bugger it anyway,it won't melt when i Need it to...)... No biggie,i reforged the point and kept going,figuring that the fissures will wait till my sandstone action,or whatever... After a short while though,i chanced to look at the back side....and the fissures were attacking now in dead earnest! Well,after saying some very bad(but so helpful in a bracing kinda way)words,i realised that it's time for a think-break(hates those,i does...). And this is what i thunk:I've been attacking this poor piece of Cu like it was iron,in all ways-i'm getting it Way hot,and i'm beating the living daylights out of it,AND,i haven't even had the decency to anneal it in who knows how many heats....I had a feeling that it liked neither of these three things very much. So i annealed it a couple times for past sins,and i proceeded to work it cold. And it liked that.The fissures(no idea how deep they are,just like i've no idea if i caused them by forging,tho' my gut tells me they've originated in the melt...) didn't say boo,no matter how ruthlessly i pounded it all cold. So,in a while,i cleaned it up with some grinder and some file-work,and called it a day in the forge,as i still must make charcoal today... So,to summarise thus far-methinks this weird stuff Likes it cold....Also,i think i did an outrageously filthy thing by letting the ingot solidify in my melt-pot...Pouring it out would surely provide more homogenous material... Also,unrelated:It sure was moronic of me to fuller it so deeply....A flat-faceted shape would be so much kinder to the material---it'd be like gently patting it Together,vs renting it asunder with me crude fullers...:( Anyway,here's where i quit:
  7. Dene(Athapaskan) dagger with the Y-pommel

    Ah,Alan,tis' so...But... We all must use the tools that we've got...And one of my tools is my weird lifestyle,comparable almost to some Neolithic indian...(a Neolithic indian with an internet connection-the most confused kind there is!). As such,that is the very problem i've ran into-the lack of proper size stock.So,the problem that i'm delving into here is one of Agglomeration,put it that way. Now we Know that to forge Cu properly one must heat-anneal it.(and we Do know that,1,Cu WAS forged quite "properly",by Dene,and 2,those A,B and C "stages" archaeology describes in regards of hot-forging Cu,et c.). So...IF they were already turned on,in whatever degree,to the Thermal end of things,just How,and to What extent?(lets remember here that the Europeans have only melted iron/steel proper in 17th c.,but did manage to play with it for a millenia or two in Any number of pretty sexy ways....Is that not so?). So,first i needed a bigger chunk.Then,having performed my barbarous casting,i instantly was faced with possibly having to heal all sorts of pitting/cracking/bubblage and other voids...How would i do that? Can a chunk of Cu be forgewelded?By means of what,rather-T alone,or the "triangle" of Fe welding(T/Atm./Pressure)? So what if i was a poor injun,not in possession of a giant nugget?(or have been shamelesly robbed by that worthless Peary dude,(pox on him),who left me only small fragments to play with?:) Could i perchance Mokume-fy a few smashed fragments?What T range would That require? WAS it done,that is the question,or rather-was it studied,whether it Could have been done?! I'm going out to the forge now(like Capt.Oates,"...and i may be a while".:),to try to first forge that turd of an ingot i obtained.And especially if unsuccessful,will also try to learn to forge-weld Cu....
  8. Dene(Athapaskan) dagger with the Y-pommel

    Well...I still have no idea where i'm going with it all,and Why,but it seemed plain wrong to not at least try copper... And for that,i had to melt together an ingot to experiment with,this for two reasons:One,i just plain don't have a right size chunk of copper,and two is slightly more complex... In that paper(again...),by Frances Eyman and John Witthoft they basically differentiate between the native and the trade sources of copper roughly based on the first having a very coarse crystalline structure and the latter,having been smelted,a much finer one. But that is all in regards to the Tlingit tradition,the one less involved metallurgically.But why couldn't some of the Dene artefacts have been "smelted" as well?...(i'm not exactly sure of a definition of "smelted",and here use it as in heated to liquidus).Just hypothetically? If so,wouldn't their structure then be at least reminiscent of that of the trade copper,and we may have to then re-access some of the data...So,anyway,i see no reason for why they couldn't have done so,re-melted say scrap,or combined material for a big-enough blank,or for whatever other reason. And so yesterday ,in a brazen and cavalier manner,i tried to melt a bunch of scrap in my forge,quick and dirty,(the way i do everything...:(..).And was thoroughly and justly punished,by a total failure after an entire day of work and a barrel of charcoal. So today,humbled and contrite,i took much better care and paid much more attention. I plugged the ends of a black pipe,and cut open it's side,to make this canoe-shaped "open-container-weld" sort of a device,that i put in my forge,and then raised the sides around it,and even roofed it partially. So i had somewhat of an enclosed smelter,but open on one side for adding charcoal. I then connected a small chinese shop-vac in addition to my hand-operated blower,and just took my time and paid attention. And voila,to liquidus it didst come,in not too long.Cool stuff,never played with anything of the sort before... I had the opening in my lateral pipe-mold loosely covered with some stainless foil,but of course a bunch of junk got in there anyway. The inside of that pipe was pitted and filthy as well.And so my lovely copper ingot was all pretty nasty on the outside,and i ground about a third of the mass away with an angle-grinder... I didn't really care,it still has plenty of beef to play with,and i'm not even sure where the heck i'm going with it all...(it's roughly about 1" x 5/8";and the mild that i used the last time was 1"x3/8",and at that Way more than i needed...). So,now i have the material,it seems,for a try at a copper one of these....:)
  9. Dene(Athapaskan) dagger with the Y-pommel

    P.S. So,it seems to me (based on what (little:(...)info that i've managed to garner...),is that: The Tlingit and the Dene,although practically related,and having had close trading ties,practiced Different (fairly radically,as in Reduction s Deformation)metalworking technologies,AND,had different sources for their copper as well....
  10. Dene(Athapaskan) dagger with the Y-pommel

    Thank you,Geoff,yes,that is the very meteorite(-s).As we know,meteoritic material has it's own extremely individuated component "signature"(collected by the US gov't in a special data body,wherefore one's asked politely to please contribute any new material for filing). And so,again,artefacts containing those Greenland meteorites have been discovered,to date,somewhat westerly of the mouth of the Coppermine,along the Arctic coast of Canada. (Not to be confused with the Copper R.,in South-Central Alaska). And speaking of that,and the other part of your mssg.,taken from here:https://www.penn.museum/sites/expedition/metallurgy-of-the-tlingit-dene-and-eskimo/ (wonderful study,i can't recommend it enough...) "....We have therefore submitted some of our most valuable copper specimens to emission spectroscopy in attempts to find chemical trace elements that may relate materials to copper outcrops. The results are surprising, and are reported in the following paragraph. The two Tlingit daggers differ from the copper of the Copper River Basin, containing a different trace element. They therefore came from another area. They differ more markedly from the copper of the Copper-mine River, a basin in which natives made extensive use of musk-ox horn. All that we can say at the present time is that the mine for Tlingit copper has not been located. Our best guess is that it is somewhere near Great Slave Lake, at the source from which the Chippewayan obtained the metal for their knives....."
  11. Dene(Athapaskan) dagger with the Y-pommel

    That's right,Geof,i do remember that great piece you guys did....And you're absolutely right. That link is very good,very informative,and contains among others that second one i posted,that late 60-ies study of the specifics et c. THAT has some curious details,pointing out that the coastal cultures like Tlingit,Haida,and so on down the coast were in fact Very different from the Dene of the interior... In Many ways,some very significant,like they being Lithic in their approach to metals(cutting it with saws and working it by many other methods normally applied to stone),whereas,the Athapaskans were indeed a true Chalcolithic culture(plastically deforming the stuff). It was thought in the past that the two were much closer connected,that indeed Tlingit had obtained their copper from the Ahtna Athapaskans,et c.But it turns out all's not so simple,and the source of native copper that Tlingit used is not known to this day... But the two were very different cultures,and copper-working of the Dene is closer related to those ancient copper cults in the easternmost Canada,the Coppermine R.,Chippewa,Chippewyan,all that...
  12. Dene(Athapaskan) dagger with the Y-pommel

    Thanks,Alan! Well,yes,in essence,at least so far,we must presume that any and all ferrous material had to come from elsewhere.... Here's where things get a bit complicated,as in geographically spread-out..The options are as follows: As you say,the Orient.Which has a LONG Pacific coastline,all washed by the currents heading straight for Alaska...(i'm still a big fan of Thor Heyerdahl,and his insistence that cultures spread With,and Along the oceanic currents).It included places from Indonesia to the Russian Far East,where many an iron-working culture dwelled...Even the Ainu on the Kuril Islands had iron.And even today,my low-life friends down in South-East Alaska,who catch loose logs that drifted loose from the commercial rafts,on occasion catch a sandalwood log,or something along these exotic lines... Also,Greenland,of all places,had 3 different sources of iron: Meteoritic,from that small bunch in the north that Peary so shamelessly stole for the N.Y.Museum of Natural History(fairly common in artefacts along the Arctic coast of Canada,but finds today do not quite reach the McKenzie delta,so are a bit short of Alaska). The viking settlements in 13-15th c.c.,who's iron as far as i know has not been recorded in artefacts,but exists in probability. The Telluric iron of a number of locations in Southern Greenland.That,according to one of my archaeologist friends,was a b*tch to work as in it's about tawdall lack of plasticity,and was mostly used in a manner of microblades,i.e. by insertion into other media,wood or antler et c. And yes,i know that i'm a Bad scientist:)...I'm scraping the bottom here,searching Hard for any shreds of evidence,i just SO want us to have ferrous metalworking in the Arctic!!!!:)
  13. Dene(Athapaskan) dagger with the Y-pommel

    http://vilda.alaska.edu/cdm/ref/collection/cdmg31/id/17 This is the one i've actually seen.Workmanship,again,was Superlative,extremely fine.Pictures don't do it justice.
  14. Dene(Athapaskan) dagger with the Y-pommel

    Well...i suppose that then brings me to the end of my story.... I can only add that i've personally seen only one of the (supposed)originals,in Sheldon Jackson museum in Sitka,Alaska.It was iron(though on an on-line file that i'll post in a sec it's filed as "copper"...that's Alaska for ya...half-@ss,as usual...:( What struck me immediately is how Well,as in Fine,the work was done...In comparasence,i've just done a barbaric imitation...But,again,it was but a brief incursion,and without even a clear purpose...
  15. Dene(Athapaskan) dagger with the Y-pommel

    Hey,guys!:) Vern,very much so.We must remember that the spirit,put it that way, of conquest,was not exactly amicable...Or rather the aftermath.Pretty much systematic attempt to wipe out the culture.For that and a number of other reasons the artefacts are very far and few between... In this way,these particular objects,having to do with men,and the rites of warfare(these are not utility tools...),the people would be particularly reluctant to expose to the invader.... And here likewise,right here in my area,the confluence of the Yukon and Koyukuk,the first ever Clovis find in Alaska,very recently,about 15 years ago...