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AJ Chalifoux

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    Swords, Knives, Polearms, Daggers, Western Martial Arts, Over-Engineering Stuff...

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  1. AJ Chalifoux

    5160 forge weld Q

    Sounds like you're using 5/16 stock, which is generally what I start with too. You'd be surprised how easily it bends. Try to keep the heat local as much as you can, and hit it off-center of the anvil horn/face edge and use a heavy, flat, wide-faced hammer. It'll move.
  2. AJ Chalifoux

    5160 forge weld Q

    5160 (and any other high Cr/Ni steel) won't really forge weld to itself due to the ridiculous oxidation. Anti-scale might work, but I've never tried it. It's also a pretty tricky weld to make and I don't know how well it'll work out. Are you sure you don't want to just wait two days for a bar of 5160 to be delivered from McMaster-Carr and just try forging the bend in? I suppose you could Frankenstein a weld by taking some 10-series steel and putting it in the V, but you'd need to make sure it overlaps both sides of the V (meaning make the 10-series V oversized and split both ends along the edge, then bevel both edges of the 5160 V so the whole thing overlaps and sandwiches together, if that makes sense).
  3. AJ Chalifoux

    Power Hammer or Mill?

    You can also get a decent mill off Craigslist for $1500, depending on your location. Heck, I got my South Bend mill (about the size of a Bridgeport) for $600 and the ways still have their frosting on them. It's all about knowing what to look for...
  4. AJ Chalifoux

    A fuller scraping tool...almost! Troubleshooting?

    Grind-your-own lathe tool blanks are also available and come pre-hardened. They're made for nearly this exact purpose.
  5. AJ Chalifoux

    Power hammer build questions

    Eh, might as well use my engineering degree.
  6. AJ Chalifoux

    Power hammer build questions

    I attached some rough calculations I did this morning (since now I'm doubting myself). I'm thankful I did because it turns out I need to up-size the springs slightly to these: https://www.mcmaster.com/#9732K25 If these are still not big enough (or too big), there are plenty of other sizes I can use. Edited to add: there will be some energy lost due to friction, but I'm choosing to ignore that.
  7. AJ Chalifoux

    Power hammer build questions

    Yep! Did a few calculations and arrived at this: https://www.mcmaster.com/#9732k18/=1a15229 The thing is it won't be able to hit the arms. The spring mounts would crash first. Given the arm lengths I don't even know if it would be possible for the ram to crash even without springs there to stop it, but I'd have to sketch that up again.
  8. AJ Chalifoux

    Power hammer build questions

    Bradleys were the basis for the ram design I came up with for my (to be built) power hammer. The black pieces are rubber compression springs, and the caps on the outsides will be held in place by threaded rods that pass through the springs and into a center block that does not move with the arms. I had to sketch the up position to make sure I didn't crash the ram into anything.
  9. AJ Chalifoux

    Power hammer build questions

    Just a thought; if you can make rubber fastener-mount compression springs work I'd seriously consider it. Probably less of a chance of exploding than a regular spring, and McMaster carries ultra-high-load ones.
  10. AJ Chalifoux

    What Do Y'all Think?

    I'm doing an elvish sword for a customer that has a forge welded pommel. The welding was tricky as you have to put the guard on first and the guard wouldn't allow me to stick the tang all the way into the forge for welding. That part I made work. I just heat treated yesterday and I had the same problem, however. No matter what I couldn't get the base of the blade hot enough to quench. I gave it a go anyway, and the entire blade hardened except the first 2 inches from the tang shoulders and, here's the kicker, I had no warping! I tempered like normal and the blade flexes beautifully. The unhardened section is 1/4" thick X 2" wide, so it's substantial enough to not see any flexes, but I wanted to get other parties' input. Does anyone think it's worth it to re-harden for those last two inches?
  11. AJ Chalifoux

    Following the manufacture of the latest longsword project

    Absolutely stellar. Thanks for sharing!
  12. AJ Chalifoux

    Lathe and milling machine ?

    Abene and Deckel were made relatively close to your neck of the woods, and are supposed to be some of the best mills ever made. You may be able to find some for a decent price (not sure what they go for near you). The important things for any mill are: 1. All spindle speeds and power feeds (if it has power feed) work without any grinding, binding, or tightness 2. The table moves freely without much backlash 3. There are no broken castings, bearings, anything like that 4. There are no funny sounds when the machine is powered up 5. The ways are all in good shape 6. The spindle has little or no play 7. It comes with tooling (because that's often as expensive as the machine itself) 8. The motor is the right voltage and isn't too big for you to power Lathes are much the same as far as testing. I personally have never looked at a machinery dealer unless it's industrial surplus, as they charge insane amounts for stuff I can get on Craigslist for 1/3 the price. Spend some time on Practical Machinist and you'll learn a lot.
  13. AJ Chalifoux

    Hear ye,hear ye I have been perusing

    This one got me.
  14. AJ Chalifoux

    My first real sword! Type XVa longsword complete

    Love the shape on that!
  15. AJ Chalifoux

    Straightening Long Blades

    I'm thinking I'll have to take it one step at a time with a vise and torch/localized heat, but I just want to know if there's any neat tricks anybody picked up along the way to make the process less tedious. I haven't been brave enough to straighten directly after quench while it's still hot. How long is the blade submerged in oil before you pull it out? I generally just let it go and take the warps out during tempering with a propane torch, a heavy vise, a steel tube, and a foul mouth. Worst I've tried to take out was sabering of a longsword. The worst I've actually been able to take out was excessive waviness on the edge of a messer by clamping the spine in a vise, heating the edge to blue/purple, and attacking it with pliers and my full body weight. Never could get it all out, though...