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Eric Dennis

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Eric Dennis last won the day on August 17 2021

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    Smelting, Blacksmithing, Rock Climbing, Exploring!

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  1. I hear you about the broken parts of the internet. I myself only made a facebook account in the first place in order to join the iron smelting group. For me it was well worth it and I think one of the few "good" things about f-book are the super esoteric groups where information can be shared. For instance you can see another thread on this forum where I was looking for information about a Balinese Keris blade I was given. I probably could have tracked down the information in other places of time, but I was able to find a f-book group full of keris experts who were willing to tell me tons of information in the proper language. But that's just my experience obviously....
  2. Yes! I finally found a group on Fbook that is especially for world collectors and experts of Keris blades (apparently Kris is improper and denotes the iron aspect specifically). It was agreed that the blade is 19th century, but it is culturally expected that the "clothing" of the blade is be periodically replaced because "a proper Keris should always be well dressed". So it sounds the grip and possibly other adornments were re-crafted at some point. That said the previous owner of the blade purchased it about 30 years ago so it happened sometime before that. There is also a ton of symbolism, cultural meaning, and ritual surrounding almost every aspect of the blade. The number of waves in the blade corresponds to its level of power and the owner of such a blade should be someone who can match that intensity or else it might bring ill luck to their life. This one was thought to have 13 waves which corresponds to a fairly powerful one with male energy (odd vs even number). There is so much more, though much of the terminology was obviously not in English. I was able to track down an out of print book on keris blades that was recommend to me for a good price. The book has photographs of every smithing step and goes into detail about the various meanings and rituals and names the various parts. For what it's worth here is what one of the people who replied suggested for classifications: 1. dhapur (shape) : sengkelat 2. dress : Ladrang Surakarta (Solo, central Java), iras (made out of just one piece of wood, instead of assembled parts) 3. wood : gembol jati (teakwood burl) 4. mendhak (spacer) : widhengan type, looked like made out of silver 5. Pamor : classified as pulo tirto ? 6. age : 19th cent 7. hilt is nice, but doesn't seem to be made out of kemuning wood (orange jessamine), more akin to awar-awar wood (Ficus septica Burm.f) 8. forgot ... pendok (scabbard cover) : brass, blewah in modang style ? (Not really clear there) I feel quite fortunate to have this blade in my possession for the time being though I'm not entirely sure if I am of sufficient "power" to keep this keris from bringing ill energy, alas, I reckon the least I can do is show some respect by learning about these objects and crafting some kind of nice display.
  3. Thanks for the leads. I'll see what the folks on that other site have to say.
  4. If you haven't already I recommend checking out the "iron smelters of the world" facebook group. Lots of people from all over the world to throw questions at. I recommend keeping thorough notes during the smelt in terms of time, quantities, and observations. This will allow you to start narrowing variables after the first one.
  5. I was given a Balinese Kris as a gift that was purchased somewhere in Indonesia. I'm wondering if anyone knows who I could talk to for more information on the blade. I'm hoping find out if there are ways to date it based on design, etc. I can upload photos later on when I have a moment. Any Kris experts here? Or know someone I could get in touch with? Thanks, Eric
  6. First knife I've made in a long time. I made the material 5 years ago and it has been sitting around since then. The fit up left more than a little to be desired. After much frustration with a file I bit the bullet and ordered one of Bill Benhke's carbide file guides. I'm looking forward to using it on the next one and imagine it should save some serious headache not to mention time. Anyway, thanks for looking. Here's some specs: Blade length: 6" 1084 + bandsaw blades Nickel silver spacer + titanium pin "Maka" burl handle. (Honestly I don't know much about this wood. A knife maker who was active in the 70's gave me the block when I bought his old Bader-2 and all it said was "maka: $15.00. Sure is pretty though.)
  7. Thank you. Another one coming soon. I'm hoping each is better than the last.
  8. You got it- those are two epee blades butted together and welded. "TCA" for Triplette Competition Arms.
  9. I'd like to share two rapier hilts I've made during the past year. I practice historic Italian rapier (techniques of Capo Ferro primarily) and so it's a pleasure that these are being used in practice. I did not make the blades on either sword, however, I'm realizing I cannot find a blade that I am fully happy with and so am preparing to make one to my own specifications in the near future. Maybe I'll post here of my progress on that when I start. The grip on the first is Irish bog oak. On the second is ebony. The second hilt utilizes a few old fencing blades in the design as per the new owners desire. Note that since taking the photos the respective curves in the quillions of the second sword have been switched which is forward and which is back. Thanks for looking.
  10. Yeah, Alan said it already- the oxygen in the scale steals the carbon from the iron leaving behind more iron and producing more CO. There's no carbon in fire scale.
  11. I'm impressed you were able to hammer it up. It looks like on the verge of cast iron. A little sand and an occasional handful of firescale thrown into the remelt will help control the carbon.
  12. Also, even after roasting, it may still be non-magnetic yet still good to smelt. There may be some reduction during the roast and therefor some change in color.
  13. Forgive the fact that this isn't explicitly a topic on blades. I figured, however, that given the knowledge of many folks on this forum it might not be a poor place to ask. I've been commissioned to make a viking/norse style drinking horn stand from iron. I am wondering if anyone knows of where to look for historically accurate examples of such stands? Photos or otherwise that could be used for inspiration and/or replication. Many thanks, Eric
  14. I find this website to be more useful for finding locations as well as some information on past workings. The gps coordinates (at least in my area) are quite accurate: https://thediggings.com
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