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Al Willis

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About Al Willis

  • Birthday 12/29/1992

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Close-to-Houston, Texas (Which sounds a lot cooler than League City, yes?)
  • Interests
    Hunting and fishing, history, anthropology, archaeology, and causing mass mayhem and destruction.
  1. Thanks Alan! I'll have to give both a shot later this weekend. The stain is fairly bold though, so I'm not going to hold my breath.
  2. While sorting through some old boxes of my father's things, I found an ivory knife handle that would look great on a bowie that I've been working on. However, the box that it had been sitting in also contained a large amount of brass casings which had oxidized and stained a patch of the handle green. Is there any way of leaching the color out or otherwise removing it?
  3. Al Willis

    What a haul!

    Several days ago, I was watching Craigslist for new tools as I always do, when an interesting post caught my eye. Someone was selling an old blower, a pipe vise, and some tongs for a more than reasonable price. Several emails and a 30 minute drive later, I was talking with the seller about the items and she happens to mention that there are a few more things that I may be interested in. A Midway spiral-gear blower that turns smooth as can be, despite not having been touched in 45+ years, a Toledo 3" pipe vise in similarly awesome condition, 4 pairs of tongs, a small Trenton anvil with 85-90% rebound, and 3 100lb. bags of coke. Oh, and she says that she and her husband will call me first if they find any more old tools in one of the several barns on their property. Total cost: $100.
  4. Thank you Jerrod! I'll have to take a look when I get off work.
  5. I've been looking into making my own steel recently, but unfortunately, due to my new job, I don't have the time to construct/operate a stack. Luckily, I have several close friends who are more than proficient machinists and electricians. So, would anyone happen to have a link to a set of blueprints for a decent induction furnace? Thanks in advance, Al
  6. Thanks Sam. That's about what I had expected, but some of the pieces of the heartwood that I have seem unusually hard and dense for Spanish Cedar, almost as much as the Red Oak I have. -Al Willis
  7. Hello everyone. A friend of mine owns a cigar shop and has given me quite a few pieces of nicely quilted or otherwise figured Spanish Cedar. Has anyone used this stuff for handles? And if so, how well does it work? -Al Willis
  8. Al Willis


    As I was walking to work this morning, I just happened to notice a large, green, steel box on the side of the road. Being unable to turn down free metal at ant time, I walked over to take a look. Cool box huh? I called one of my friends to help me get it to my house and decided to take a look through the other stuff these people were throwing out and found the REAL good stuff. A bunch of fairly large drill bits, wood bits, an adjustable Irwin wood bit, Stanley wood chisels, and some Proto cold chisels. Amazing the things people throw away these days.
  9. Hey everyone, I've been lurking around here for quite a while but due to my working 6-day weeks and having unpleasantly long work days, I haven't had much time to get out to the forge and make anything to post. Business has finally slowed down a bit and I had time to get a few blades started. The specs of these "blades in progress" are: Langsax-ish Thing- Material/ old Nicholson file OAL/ 13.5" Blade/ 8.85" Tang/ 4.75" Width/ 1" Spine/ .125" Pukko-like Knife- Material/ another old Nicholson file OAL/ 7.25" Blade/ 3" Tang/ 4.25" Width/ .75"-1" Spine/ .125" Sorta-Santoku Blade- Material/ old mower blade (Usually not the best material in the world, but the batch I have seem to be decent stuff.) OAL/ 9" Blade/ 5.5" Tang/ 3.5" Width/ .5"(Tang)-1.75"(Blade) Spine/ .215 Now all I need to do is convince my boss to let me take the next few weekends off to finish forging, grinding, heat-treating, handling, and polishing these things.
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