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Dave Stephens

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Everything posted by Dave Stephens

  1. 1080 and 15n20 are an easy weld. There should be no problem of having the same steel on the weld. Without more data it is hard to troubleshoot. From what you describe you should be getting good welds. However, feather pattern by its very nature wants to delaminate all the time. You probably already know this, but keep it HOT, because if you try to move the steel in a feather billet when its even a little too cold and it'll split up like a celebrity couple. You're not getting flux trapped inside your welds, are you? Make sure you are grinding the layers to a crowned sha
  2. All the 2012 Videos are back now. So, we've lost some trailers and the infamous "Cheesy Swordsmiths" videos forever, but the main content is all back now. 2013 full-length is on the homepage of Arcticfire.org, the 2012 videos are under the video subpage, and I'm starting to link the 2016 videos there. Until then, all the 2016 videos are on Michael's Youtube page linked above. Thanks again Alan and Michael! Dave
  3. When setting a weld with a hand hammer you can have what appear to be a perfect weld by grinding the edge but the layers have not fully fused because insufficient force has been used to join the layers fully. Good welds = Clean + Heat + Pressure. The reason those of us with hydraulic presses, etc. have an easier time in setting welds is the large amount of pressure we can apply. So, my guess is you had a good initial weld, but full layer fusion required more force for a full setting. Try this: Do exactly what you did before, but then take it back
  4. Hi all: Michael is doing his magic and recompiling (or whatever you call it) the videos from the DVD's generously loaned by Alan. So far we have Don's hand finishing techniques, Peter's sword construction, and my crushed W's pattern welding video. You can find them on his channel or the Arctic Fire website. Thanks Michael! Dave https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCONxF6KdMJN9ymPa2pT5S6A/videos http://www.arcticfire.org/videos.html
  5. Excellent. I'll add the videos back to the Articfire.org site and post youtube links here when done.
  6. Thanks Alan! Thanks also, John for the backup. I am very relieved we can get these pieces back online. Cheers! Dave
  7. I presume it was just out of insane jealousy of my charisma, talent, and rugged masculinity. Haters gonna hate. Right? (;
  8. That would be great, Alan. I'll DM you my mailing address. Thanks! Dave
  9. Our Arctic Fire youtube channel and Facebook page has been hacked or vandalized or whatever you call it. All the videos were deleted. I had a copy of the AF 2013 event on a local computer, so I was able to re-upload it to http://www.ArcticFire.org, and Michael Bergstrom, luckily, hosts the 2016 videos on his channel, but I have no access to our old 2012 videos. As you know, some of these are pretty popular and have significant historic/sentimental value for some of us because Don Fogg was one of the presenters. Does anyone have a copy of the 2012 DVD? If so, can we "b
  10. That is really cool to hear, David! I do think there will be another AF in the next couple of years. I am going to be moving my shop to a warehouse in Anchorage so there will be more room for equipment. For a build against the clock AF like 2013 we will need multiple work stations. Dave
  11. Great lines. Well executed, elegant piece.
  12. Hi Matthew: Glad you liked them! We sure worked hard to produce them. The last AF was in 2016. If you haven't seen the videos you can find them here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCONxF6KdMJN9ymPa2pT5S6A/videos I spoke to Michael Bergstrom (who did the video work for AF 2016) a while ago and asked if he would be up for producing a future AF, and his response was something like: "Abso-F***ing-lutely!" So, I hope we can produce another one someday. If we do another one, I think it will be more like AF 2013: An ambitious build collab with only a
  13. Enormously impressive and inspiring, Matt! I absolutely love the inset pattern welding in the pommel. Also, the complex W's PW center bar designed to align with the fuller is a very clever move, indeed. I may be stealing some of these ideas if I can ever get time in the shop again. Thanks for posting this! Dave
  14. I've never worked with Olive wood, but have you tried just buffing it? I've never used any oil or sealant on my handles. I just sand to a fine grit and buff with a fine pink or white rouge. Sometimes I put a coat of floor wax on the grip after, but not often. This only works with hard, dense, oily woods of course. Ironwood, ebony, blackwood, cocobolo, all look pretty good with this technique. Dave
  15. Update: Here's a shot of it on the new custom trailer (the old one was falling apart). This boat wasn't really designed to be trailered, so it required cutting custom bunks to conform to the hull. Also, some shots of the old engine being lifted out in preparation for the new engine install. The engine is a 110 HP Yanmar. Link below. New transmission, cutlass bearing, and dripless shaft seal are also being installed. https://www.yanmarmarine.com/Products/Sailboat-and-small-craft-engines/4JH110-391/ Note
  16. For what it's worth, I think the coolest KITH ever was the one where you had to make a functional/beautiful blade with nothing but stuff you could buy at a local, generic hardware store. I think the best challenges come with somewhat arbitrary constraints.
  17. I have a set for my hydraulic press. I wouldn't bother. The heat gets sucked out of a thin edge so quickly by the dies it's not really worthwhile.
  18. Fantastic work. The step-by-step on the scabbard is really great. Thanks for doing it.
  19. I hate to sound discouraging, but from my experience and that of others, I say these machines are more of a foe than friend to new bladesmiths. If a proper 2x72 grinder is not in the cards, it's hard to beat the combination of a 4" angle grinder, files, and a random orbit sander. Forge to shape, heavy grind with the 4", refine grind with files (look up "draw filing"), and then polish with the random orbit and hand sanding. You can get a surprising amount of control with a 4" grinder because you can watch as the material is removed, and the random orbit sander is a very
  20. I love the coloring of this piece. It's like a living artifact from a black and white picture. And the PW imitation of inlay is perhaps the best idea I've seen in damascus since Mick's explosion patterns. I agree with Alan, I think the ancient smiths would have approved and then stolen that idea.
  21. The whole thing is gooey. The belt seemed fine, but it was torn when the wheel exploded. That cup (long gone) was just filled with water to dip the blade in while grinding a fuller. Nothing is stored below the grinder.
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