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Emiliano Carrillo

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Everything posted by Emiliano Carrillo

  1. Hey guys! I played around with my camera and phone the other day and got some shots I quite liked of some recent and semi recent work. Hope you guys like it! IMG_1595.mov -Emiliano
  2. Hey Zeb! Check out this thread if you haven't already, it may have some helpful stuff in it! As far as forging the pattern around the tip I would recommend doing the 45 degree cut and forge, in order to make the pattern flow nicely with the lines of the edge. Cutting a more acute or obtuse triangle from the end will give you different effects as well. EDIT: I actually just realized you changed your mind and will likely be doing a double edged sword instead! and I had just gotten out my reference on some original single edged swords and everything! My advice for pattern flow is the following though: decide what you want to do bar wise first, and then whether you want to deal with a 6 foot or longer edge bar when you do a wrap around weld, or whether you want to use two bars you meet in the middle. Alan said everything that I was going to say above, damn that guy! In all seriousness though, you'll be fine, it's not so much that it is hard as you just have to do the steps in the right order. You clearly have forge welding down and all it entails is a few forge welds in a particular order, weld the core bars first, nice and flat and parallel and then prep the edge bar. I almost always do a full wrap around because I like the look better aesthetically, but it is a pain in the ass, you have to get a very long bar perfectly square all the way through, bend it around your core and then clean everything well enough that you can forge weld back together. I don't clamp or tie anything when I'm doing this operation, much like when the Japanese stuff is concerned I hate having foreign material in there, so I will try to avoid welding or adding wire that can get welded to the blade. I just hold it, pound the billet straight down to set the tip weld and then begin to chase the weld back towards the tang end. I think the best advice I can give is don't be afraid to tear apart your welds if you need to. I've had sword blades where I've developed a problem with the welding when the bars weren't squared, and I bent the offending bar outwards, let it all cool, took a file to the inside of the bar to make it parallel again, and then heated and forge welded again. Works like a charm every time! There is a lot you can salvage, but be prepared to build this sword in your mind before you go to do it in real life. Everything I make I plan ahead in my mind in order to make sure I won't be surprised by a technique or problem I'm not prepared for. The less surprises you make for yourself the better!
  3. I've done some experimenting with my oroshigane in this vein. This one is a failed katana blade that was cut up and re purposed, the tip section was used as practice to better my control over the color and my eye. It has a powerful habuchi with very tight choji/hitatsura hamon reminiscent of ichimonji work, as well as slanted ashi near the tip based on the angle that the blade was quenched into the water. If I remember right this was a very quick interrupted quench, as in a quenched for about a half second, took it out of the water for a split second, and then straight back in for the rest. This allows the hitatsura to form, islands of hardening all over the blade, that have an interesting shape based on the vapor jacket coming off the blade in the water. I have gotten double and triple layered hamon from doing a very quick succession of interrupted quenchings in this steel before as well. I have had limited success doing that particular technique in modern steel. At any rate you're absolutely right that these things just want to take hamon in ultra shallow hardening steels! I have photos of a seax blade I made from bloom and hearth material that took hamon. I can't find the photos but I'll attach a video I did find. And the seax. I've posted it here before but it has been repolished with the techniques I outlined above in this thread for polishing japanese blades. The two videos are out of order and I can't fix it, but at any rate the seax is first and the tanto second. IMG_9129.MOV IMG_9951.MOV
  4. Did you order the material recently from the NJSB? There's a recent batch of 1075 that has high manganese content which promotes through hardening and therefore is not good for hamon. I have had this stuff harden beautifully but take no hamon. What it sounds like is the water quench was fast enough to cool it differentially but the cracks are obviously a no go. I did some more experiments with water quenching a 1075 piece today and had three fold success, though this was the low manganese 1075. I would try to order some new material and make sure it is low in manganese. When water quenching I make sure to very carefully watch and keep mental note of what the colors in the steel are and what I am seeing in the shadow. You can make vibrant hamon from carefully controlling the heat at the edge, with propane as well as coal or charcoal. If you're using clay a lot of the difficulty is taken out. My advice is to know the steel and your temps. While non magnetic isn't something to go by on its own, it can be a useful tool to know you are in the range of 1420F (I believe) and you can adjust slightly hotter from there.
  5. That should help! Search Amazon and eBay, that's where I have had the best luck, never found any locally!
  6. My method for bringing out hamon is to bring it to 2000-2500 and etch lightly in diluted ferric, then under running water you can wet sand with 3000 grit paper or anything that will very gently remove the oxides. I use 3K silicon carbide powder now to do this instead. If you are going to do a lot of hamon I would say definitely get some of the fine powder and use it like finger stones with light oil and a cotton pad for backing. This helps to whiten the hamon and show any other activities in the steel in the case of bloom/pattern weld. IMG_9216.m4v
  7. So as I understand it the reason is indeed the same as kesho polish. A burnished shinoji looks more crisp even if the polishing lines are themselves not sharp. The actual meeting of lines between shinoji and ji is a very important point in the polish and can be rounded out and softened easily. The reasoning I have heard for kesho is that smiths were at that point making rather uninspired swords and they needed a way to spice up the 800 year old blades that had been polished down almost to nothing over the years as well as make the newer swords look stronger and more virile. I imagine burnishing would be the same, a way to gloss up the blade and add more interest visually. As I understand it, burnishing was not done in older periods, and blades themselves were probably not 'art polished' like they are nowadays. A tool for using ends up with damages, and having a very costly polish damaged every time you went into battle would just have the average samurai in the poorhouse trying to maintain their sword properly. I have done a fair bit of burnishing on my own work and also on nihonto, and it does not require much force, instead it is a gentle work. It would not help to harden the surface by any amount I think. The nihonto I have in my collection all have between 58-62 RC for the edges, with the spines being too soft for my chisels to get an accurate reading on them.
  8. Humility is the reason I think I've advanced quickly! I am always a student in any room I'm in, even if it's technically in the capacity of a teacher. There's so much inspiration to see in everyone's work, all you have to is be open to it and let that energy flow into new work! Thanks for the kind words I'm so happy to be able to give some inspiration!
  9. I wish! I started in January of 14! Otherwise I'm sure I would have been there. My only exposure to this world before then had been Jake Pownings website which I landed on by accident once in high school
  10. Thanks Gerhard! Thanks so much Pieter! Yes I certainly agree, they are both stuck in time as it were but I believe the way the Japanese pieces are finished may not have been far off from some of the higher end Medieval pieces! I have done my faux Japanese style polish on some of my Viking Age pattern welded pieces and they look fantastic with that treatment. The tachi was definitely stressful, but it worked well and nothing was damaged! It was a good sign to continue work in this tradition! As for water quenching, I water quench anything made from oroshigane, it just is the only way! Some of the pieces I have made get quite hard, and may possibly harden well in oil, but some of the hataraki (activities) in the hamon just don't look the same if hardened in water, so it is the only way! I am not scared of it, and have not had any cracked blades yet! Thank you for the kind words, they mean quite a lot and I am happy to be able to provide some inspiration! It is all practice after all! The last five years have taught me that only you stand in the way of your own progress! Jesus especially is a big reason why I am down this rabbit hole! Mark Green introduced me to the process of hearth melting almost five years ago now and while I didn't do it right away I knew that some day my path would lead me here! I'm 24 now! I feel like an old man, or at least my body does sometimes! And thank you, I really appreciate that! While I'm certainly not a master yet, it is humbling to progress at the rate I have because it shows me just how much further there is to go! The antique work is fun now! Not as stressful as the first time It is nice to care for something old and give it some new duds, be it habaki or the whole nine yards. As for the quenching is it low manganese 1075? I have had some very odd pieces recently that have reacted in all sorts of weird ways to oil and water quenches. I would try again and undershoot the temp while making sure the spine isn't as hot if possible! the 1075 blade up above is the one I was referring to last time btw Thank you Brian! I was just telling someone the other day about the indecent with the moonshine and the taser spear! That was a fantastic Ashokan, I can't wait for the next sword year, maybe I'll have to make something special for it That was a great one, I met Owen and Jake and Peter for the first time there! That was a whirlwind for sure, but I got great feedback and managed to meet a lot of the people I have wanted to for a long time, yourself included! Thanks Alan, I appreciate it! Thanks James! That one is special to me, gonna get mounted up some day when I am good enough for it! Thanks brother Thank you! I appreciate it! Thank you Doug! I was kind of nervous choosing the name at first, but as I keep working in this style it feels more and more like it fits! Thank you Lars! Thats exactly the term! Thanks Charles! The folding has been the most interesting part for me, I alternate the folding direction every three folds until the very end which is were some of the experimentation happens. Depends on the number of folds! I've done up to 18 folds so far and ended up with this fantastic super fine grain, and also done 11 folds and ended up with a very lazy wide woodgrain pattern, so it's nice to know I can more or less shoot for whatever complexity of pattern I want to achieve! Here's one of the pieces from this evenings polishing session: IMG_9181.MOV
  11. Thanks! Thanks Charles Thanks Owen! I'm glad it all came together like it did! Nice cohesive package! Thanks Pieter That was an inspired bit of lunacy at the end there, but as these things usually go, the last day was when all the craziness came to a head and then it was over! Thanks Joshua! Yes I did! I like to have the leather supported by the blade, and I'm not tooling too deep so I can't scratch the blade. I leave it to dry with the blade outside of the sheath for about two days after the tooling is done to make sure all the moisture is gone! Thanks John! Yeah you remember that place we went right before picking up Luke from the airport? I moved into that shop with my buddy Kamil! You are always welcome brother, the sooner the better This one had a loose plan! The handle is the only thing I really sketched up at the beginning for the client to give the go ahead, everything after was kind of a free form odyssey! I hit some serious creative blocks on the scabbard till I did some more looking historical pieces and was able to chart a course I liked! So I managed to get some pro shots of this piece done before it was time to ship it off! Here they are. Shot by a guy named Charley in New Hampshire! I really love the way he shoots knives and swords and he has taken some photos for Zack Jonas, Peter Johnsson, Dakota Slack and a few others that have a very noticeable style.
  12. Hey everyone! I was looking at a piece I had made a few months ago today and realized I don't think I've ever shared any of my Japanese style work on the forum before. My fascination with swords and smithing started when I was young just like most of us here. I started doing research on our ancient computer and learned about clay heat treating and 'natural hamon' and the proper ways to take care of a sword. I then convinced my parents to let me buy a $200 katana at some nearby martial arts/fantasy weapons sort of store, and cared for that thing for years before I even thought about the possibility of putting hammer to anvil. I began making almost exactly five years ago now and knew right away that the Japanese style work was too advanced for my skill level, and I should leave it for a later time if at all. I had a ww2 blade that I got from a friend that I had polished up and made a habaki for that gave me an idea of what this sort of work could entail. I made the mune/spine fit incorrectly and the habaki is too thick near the front, otherwise this was a good start! Meeting an extremely knowledgeable collector of Nihonto and starting to practice Iaido made me take another look, this time more seriously into the Japanese work. He was extremely generous in letting me bring home pieces from his collection to study every time I went over to see him, and little by little I began to seriously entertain the idea of moving into that style of work. He asked me to make a habaki for a 500 year old tachi he owns, which certainly made the stakes higher. After that project was under my belt I began to think seriously about using an antique blade for Iaido, instead of the aluminum bladed Iaito that I had been using previously. With some help on the saya from our own Matt Venier I made a mounting for a sword from the early 1500's to use in practice. This was the first real attempt at tsukamaki after my cursory practice with shoe string to re tie my old crappy katana when the wrap came apart when I was young. I used old tosogu to create the koshirae, using a rather wide tsuba and shishi dog menuki with grass and butterfly fuchi and kashira. I started getting a little more into the mounting work after that first success and did some collaborations with Matt which were a lot of fun (and less stressful than working on old blades!) Aikuchi style koshirae for an osoraku-zukuri tanto Matt forged. A mounting job I did for my collector friend who wanted a beautiful tanto he has mounted in these excellent mino-goto fittings. IMG_6815.m4v Later I took a more recent (maybe 250 year old) Sukesada that I took a real liking to and gave it the full treatment, with a really beautifully matched set of peony fittings. The tsukamaki work in this photo is still unfinished, it is in place but not adjusted and tightened yet. I played around with some modern steel here and there but didn't really see the point. The stuff I am captivated by was all made from tamahagane, so I knew one day the journey would lead me there. I think I have done two blades I am happy with in modern steel with hamon. This is the first! Some mystery high carbon steel forge welded to some iron that I quenched in water. Next I made a few more habaki for various projects, playing with styles and finish a little, but sticking to copper. IMG_0355.m4v I went and visited Mark Green and we made some oroshigane which became the starting stock for these two knives I sent to a gallery last year or the year before for an exhibition. Both are from the same bar, folded 11 times and quenched in water. IMG_0008.MOV It was around this time I decided to get off my ass and start using the hearth steel/oroshigane I had been making for my Viking work and use it for Japanese style work as well. In the past few months I have moved almost exclusively to using it for Japanese work. I chose the name Ame Mistu 天光, which translates roughly to Heaven's Light, which sounds awfully lofty, but is the closest I could get to Sun and Stars, which is my regular smithing handle. Swordmiths art names were generally not even directly related to their own names, but often taking a kanji from their teacher and adding one they liked. So I decided using the moniker I have been going under and porting over to the Japanese tradition made the most sense! I also did my due diligence and throughly researched, it appears no smith ever signed this particular way before. A yanone made from oroshigane as a test of the form and also to see how small I can do my signature! Here's where things start to get a little more interesting/complicated! I began to make blades from the oroshigane to see how far I could take it and how close I could get to traditional Japanese work. By rough estimation maybe 20% of the blades have been successes. The rest have been lacking in carbon, because of the high levels of phosphorous in the material I was using for the melts. That coupled with the repeated folding and decarb left me with very little usable material. There were several blades like this one, that had excellent hada but very low hamon, that took some diligence to bring out in the polish. IMG_2724.m4v I started experimenting with different ways of folding and refining the material to achieve different hada, mine is on the left, and an antique on the right. Some of the hamon were rather weak, indicative of perhaps .4% carbon or even lower, though still high enough to create a delineation between hard and soft steel. I experimented with making a two piece habaki, which is great because it is all of the work of a one piece habaki, that you then have to cut into and mess with, loads of fun! A few of them came out pretty well, in shape and in terms of the hamon. While I was frustrated when I found the root of the troubles, it was nice to build the practice folding and working the steel. Each blade was folded roughly between 11-18 times to achieve the final hada. I forged a particularly nice piece of steel and while it was cooling and the clay drying, I used some old 1075 from Aldo and water quenched it to see what it could do, and ended up with a beautiful extremely wispy hamon. This is the second modern steel piece I've been happy with to date! I then did another experiment, this time a little longer. I am aiming to one day make katana or even tachi, but that is a long way off! This tanto has a beautiful open hada with an active hamon. I did a slow motion shot of it going into the water. IMG_7798.TRIM.m4v A video as polished IMG_7955.mp4 And a still shot A tiny beautiful kogatana made from steel folded 18 times. The chunk next to it in the video is some of the raw oroshigane it came from. IMG_8679.m4v And the crowning achievement thus far for me is this next blade. While the look of the kogatana is almost indistinguishable from traditionally made blades I have seen, this tanto is my personal favorite. It also astonished me by reaching over 64 RC during hardening. The hada is a tight mokume mixed with itame with a powerful habuchi and wonderfully wispy hamon. Right at the kaeri there are sprays of nie, which are crystals of martensite you can see scattered throughout the hamon. IMG_5541.m4v IMG_8468.m4v Anyway! Hope you guys like what I've been up to for the last while! -Emiliano
  13. Looks like I forgot the photo... This is really high carbon oroshigane that made great hamon on a piece, I ended up with somewhere around 1% carbon I believe, but I haven't checked properly yet, that is based on the hardness as quenched. As far as contrast goes I've done a few pieces with refined steel and then higher P iron that was from my earlier attempts at hearth refining. I find that if the source of the iron is different the two pucks will look sufficiently different with an etch. I have also twisted bars that are the same material and seen contrast. I'll attach some of those here as well. This first one was low refined steel and iron folded together, the sources were similar iron, the only real difference was the iron was refined more and is the silvery lines you see. This one was all iron, but it was layered up from pieces I had refined separately and drawn and twisted, hence the faint pattern but the areas where you can see it are bright. This one is very subtle, this was just iron I had folded then twisted, for a very subdued pattern. And this one is a lot more recent, but was an experiment with iron that had three bands in it, that I folded into three pieces, to end up with basically seven layers for the twists. This one is certainly a little more out there in terms of the twists we are used to seeing in modern steel.
  14. Hey I just saw this, sorry for the late reply! I've found that tuyere angle is less important as long as the blast isn't directly on the puck, but when you have more material, the air blast will have to be higher to account for it! I usually do 2 lbs or 2.5 because I've found that is what I get the most consistency with, I very rarely end up with larger runs that are all homogenous as far as carbon content goes. If I can make a few observations from what I see right here that might help make your results better, I would suggest chopping the charcoal smaller, you want pieces around 1-1.5 inch in size for even heat, and I would make the charge with the iron wire as close to 2 lbs as possible. Once the fire is really going and you can tell it is at beyond a welding heat just below the tuyere, you can begin the charging, but for such small stuff like the wire you will probably want about 3 minutes between each run, also I like how you're binding the wire together like that, that is a very smart move and likely why the puck came out as together as it did! What are the sparks of that puck like? Is there any really high carbon in there? From what I see it looks like the stuff is fairly low to medium carbon. I'll attach a photo of a piece I made recently that broke off the larger puck, it's nearly cast iron. As far as phosphorous goes, in my experiments I have noticed that phosphorous does not really melt out of steel in this process. I have found it inhibits carbon uptake and increases decarb, leaving you with nearly iron after just a few folds. I have been making mostly Japanese style pieces with this steel so I am folding a minimum of 11 times and as much as 18 recently, so if the materials isn't top notch then I end up with very low carbon at the end. If you buy nails from the Old Globe elevator for instance, or use high p iron to begin with, you can remelt and add a small amount of carbon, but in my experience it really wasn't worth the effort to make hearth steel from phosphoric iron. I hope that helps some! If there's anything I didn't explain well or doesn't make sense I'll do my best to help!
  15. When you said you were making ten I thought 'damn he's gone mad!' You and Sam pulled off some intense work in creating not just one multi bar pattern welded, bronze cast handle component, tooled leather and rune carved seax, but TEN! I'm seriously in awe, hats off to both of you and I'm again seriously impressed by the work you've done. Taking new and old forms and putting them together the way you guys did is pretty hard to do in a cohesive way, and again you prevailed there! Alan is generally the one who does this but I personally think theres smoke in the air, do I hear a second?
  16. So after the initial tooling was finished it was time to look at the half moon and grip sections of the sheath tooling! I did some thinking and contacted my buddy Luke Shearer for some advice on how to go about creating the correct theme for the carvings. I like the carving and motifs to be full of meaning, and so the final idea was to use the half moon shape to act both as the moon itself and bear the name of this seax. The carving on that portion of the sheath reads "I am Silverlight" in Old Norse. From there I wanted the sheath to evoke reflection and the power that lies in the moons ability to reflect and seemingly create this beautiful silver light that has always mesmerized humans. I chose to mirror the top section of the main sheath and write runes backwards in Old Norse, as if they were written and could only be seen in a reflection. Obvious nods to Jake Powning and J.R.R Tolkien as well as the old craftspeople that came long before us! The runes tell who made the seax, the name, and for whom it was made! I really like this shot as it shows the carving in progress, I wanted to find and define the depth quickly on this part of the carving. And here's the tooling finished! And the morning after! I cut a small section off a sponge, got some gloves on and went to town with some black water based leather dye! IMG_8366.m4v Now its time to take those fancy little U shaped pieces of silver and get them to be a shape I like. After a little bit of gentle persuasion with a piece of leather and a soft plastic mallet I was ready to begin drilling. I borrowed a small jewelry bench top drill press from a friend and cleaned it up nicely so I wouldn't get any unsavory oils or dirt onto the sheath while I worked. I drilled a few holes and the wiped off the chips and bits of leather. It's pretty stressful worrying about whether you'll damage the carving by accident at this point in the game. I fit the top piece and scribed and drilled the holes, using brass escutcheon pins as my place holder rivets to keep everything perfectly aligned during my work. This was all done before the belt grinder at the new shop was hooked up, so I used the jewelers saw to cut the silver slightly oversized and filed the rest. Once all the filing and polishing was done I carefully marked where my lines and holes would be and used a carbide tipped scribe to cut my decorative lines in. I began to make paper templates for the ring holders also. I did the chape the same way, carefully annealed then bent around the tip of the scabbard with some gentle taps. So then calamity hit! I had scoured the entire (virtual) globe for sterling silver rivets but when I finally found them and they came in they were slightly undersized. Just enough to make them buckle with the softest hammering. I went to visit my good friend and fellow forumite Matt Berry and he advised me that the easiest and best way forward would actually be to cast the rivets and then clean them up. We had a less than perfect turn out, which isn't surprising when each of them has a stem thats just over a millimeter in diameter. We had 84 successful rivets I believe which was great because I needed 79! A margin of five is plenty of room for error right? I did a loooot of careful filing and buffing to clean up each individual rivet head. Matt made a beautiful little riveting tool for supporting the front of the rivet while I finish the back. In action! Matt is always prepared, and when I contacted him about making the suspension rings I was thinking about for this seax, it turned out he had already carved the waxes and made the molds a few months ago, so it was an easy task! While we had the rivets in the investment getting ready for the casting I spent a day cleaning and polishing the rings as well as making the suspension plates. With some careful cutting I made a recess for the ring to sit beneath the front plate of the sheath. I have struggled with this detail in the past, but this seems like the most efficient and clean way to make the lines of the piece flow smoothly. Just before the top plate goes on! You can see the silver strap is flush with the surface of the leather. I also had to bend the suspension plates into a roll in order to fit the ring through, and in the flattening they relaxed a bit and took some denting, so I used a piece of wood and a file to come back to flat and then polish up again. Here I'm working to remove everything that isn't flat silver. It was a fairly stressful two days trying to finish everything while not compromising quality, but I think it was pretty successful! Seeing the pieces coming together like I had planned was the icing on the cake, and just before it started getting dark I was able to wax the leather, polish the silver, and call it a day, but not before some quick photos! Hope you guys enjoy! I'll be updating the thread with better photos when I have a moment to take them. Hope everyone has a great finish to 2018 and an even better 2019!
  17. Thanks! I hope I did it justice! Finished photos will be going up momentarily! Thanks! It certainly does! I use Titebond original which I have never had problems with! I've used contact glue several times in the past and I was not happy with it. The wood glue penetrates the grain of the leather very nicely and creates a strong bond after a very short amount of time, maybe 10-15 minutes of working the seam by hand and it is ready to be left alone to dry! I used a small part of the ornamentation as inspiration and modified and complicated it a little to get the look I was going for! I honestly don't have any really good advice other than look at a lot of original art and borrow motifs and ideas where necessary! This sheath was certainly my best knot work to date, but it doesn't come naturally to me as it seems to Petr or Jake. Hey brother! I'm sure there's plenty of good sites for seeing if your recent instagram posts are anything to go by! I'm excited to see what ruby related goodness you have in store! I'm excited to hear all about your travels when you're back on our soil Thanks buddy!
  18. So this is a sort of WIP now that I am working on the sheath in earnest. I did the forming of the leather in 8oz veg tanned leather I got from Tandy and did the gluing and 'clamping' all with my hands. I generally use Titebond original to do my glued seams and one of the advantages is that it sets rather quickly, allowing me to do the work with just clean hands and no real clamps. The following morning I was greeted by this: Next was finding the elements I needed for the sheath. Following the moonlight theme we had established so far, the client and I decided to go with silver fittings for the sheath. I then set about finding the correct pieces. I found a 'waffle pattern' piece of silver which was the perfect thing. I am basing most of the work for this sheath off of Gotlandic style pieces so I had to create the little U shaped pieces somehow, and when close to 50 of them are involved, I decided my time would be best spent doing something other than chiseling them one by one. I bought 18 inches of the stuff, and though expensive it is far cheaper than me spending the time to chisel each and every line in. So I began with my trusty jewelers saw and began to cut all 50 of these pieces loose. The belt grinder wasn't wired yet and so I had to do all of the clean up by hand with some sand paper, which was odious work. Thankfully though it looks great! These little things worked out better than I could have hoped. I bent each one carefully around a round file that happened to be the right diameter for the thickness of my leather. Tha So now that my gamble with the silver patterned sheet had paid off, it was time to begin the tooling! I took inspiration form the Bamburg Casket and adapted some of the design work seen on the casket for leather. Once I had a rough sketch I sent it to the client for approval and we were off to the races! I started the leather work the way I generally do, which is with the frame for the work to fall into, and then with a light tracing of all of the details. I used the drawing which was 1:1 to trace the lines onto the leather. Here you can see I've actually begun to do some of the detail work near the bottom. And here are the tools I used for the whole thing. A small metal burnishing tool and a dot punch. I do all of my tooling with that burnishing tool, having taught myself how to do the work with it. I'm sure there are better tools for that sort of work, but why fix something unbroken? Little by little the work progressed. I began to measure my progress in terms of episodes of Frasier watched. This is something like 6 episodes in. And this is where I'll leave it for now! This week I will finish the tooling, including the section where the grip goes, dye the leather, and begin to fit the silver pieces into place permanently. Hope you all enjoy!
  19. Bog oak and silver is of course a classic! The pommel is a good touch, I've seen it on a few originals and it blew me away! I also really enjoyed meeting you at Owens by the way Thank you for the kind words Wes Next time you gotta come out to Blade show in Atlanta! Or maybe I can convince you to come out this way for Fire and Brimstone or the like We'll figure something out! Every once in a while I get something good! Thank you Dave! The edge bar is certainly one of my favorite parts of this, actually forged by a good friend of mine as I was running out of time to prep the billet and had no PW on hand! It has been left dark for now but it has an evil sort of look to it, which goes very well with the bog oak! Haha one might say! I'm still surprised when I see this thing that it turned out the way it did! It's funny, the billet was about 8 inches long when I forge welded it together which is odd for me, and then I drew it out 3 times its original length, so imagine how tight the twists would have been had I left it at original length! I was originally going to try for garnet as that seemed a little more Viking Age to me, but these rubies are excellent! I miss you brother, next time you're anywhere nearby you gotta come to the shop again and we'll get up to no good Thank you so much! I'm no where near a master yet, but the journey has just begun! I actually tucked the silver back in on itself. After the last bit of the silver was wrapped I took a pair of pliers, bent the silver inwards a little and basically stuck it under the rest of the wrap where it would be very tight! Thanks so much! I hope the rest of this project will live up to that! Thanks Sam! I'm glad to see you and James pulled off such righteous work by the way, sooner or later it'll have to end up on the forum Gracias! Me alegra que te ha gustado! The first step is just starting! I have to admit at this point in the game I very much wish I was at the onset of this project! There are sometimes effortless works, and sometimes projects that stretch what you think you are capable of, and sometimes those growths are not without pain. Thank you! I have been following the work you both are up to down south, post photos of that wakizashi!
  20. Awesome! I love what you did with the wrought and 1095, that is very clearly a very clean forging! The grain in the iron is very satisfying in the blade. You did really clean work with the habaki and fuchi kashira, one word of advice I would give is that the habaki nearly never have such a drastic slant to them, instead being nearly flat or evenly curved at the top lip. Also another note is that the habaki never is totally flush with the mune machi, and always sticks out a slight amount. I thought it was sloppiness at first when I saw it but every sword I have seen is like that. I love the size and proportions of the piece! Very clean work in general, I'm very happy to see this!
  21. Sometimes it can be hard to translate what a rusted museum piece and a 'new' seax have in common. I recommend checking out George Ezell, Jeff Helmes, Owen Bush, and Jeroens presentation which was linked above! They all make work that is very authentic, and will give you many ideas about what your end goal may look like if you want to make a seax. I'm working on a large war knife type seax similar to what you described in your post a while back as well. I base everything I make on study of the old stuff! There's a plethora of modern makers that can inlay and pattern weld like no ones business, but there seems to be a lack of people who really want to research the old blades before making what they call a seax. You're making your own steel for this experiment, and I think you'll regret it if you don't do more research to come up with something that you really like first! Then again, you can make a modern fantasy knife just as easily, it depends on what you want to make! But I would urge you to research heavily if you want to make a real seax!
  22. I'm not really following what you mean in your last few posts , but either way you should check out Kevin Cashens recent video on shear steel. The man is a real asset to the community and outlines the beginning of an experiment with shear steel in the video. He uses 1850 as a temp for carburizing. Remember that carbon content and melting point are inverse, and cast iron will melt readily at low heats. By that token iron will melt only at much higher heats because of the lack of carbon. As you start adding carbon your material will melt. The last time I tried to carburize in a very hot forge fire I ended up only with a tip and tang of a beautiful tanto I wanted to carburize, but instead I turned it into tiny blobs of cast iron.
  23. Cheers Charles! I'm glad you enjoyed Thanks Alan! Yes! My first experiments have been with wrought iron! It takes a hotter fire to melt properly, but with a bit of careful modulation of the fire you can melt and carburize anything, or decor for that matter! I've taken pure iron and made it into very high carbon steel and taken cast iron and turned it into really nice steel as well! This little furnace is the workhorse of furnaces in my opinion! We did our best attempt at it at that point everyone had enjoyed a lot of libations and even some of the moonshine you may or may not have brought! But that sucker turned into a four foot bar of hearth steel without any cracks so I think it was a success!
  24. You can make oroghigane from pretty much anything as long as the alloying elements are appropriate for what you hope to get out of it. There's a video in the multimedia section where I do a demo on this. One of the last pieces I made using this process hit over 64 rc, based on the hardest chisel in a set staking over the surface like glass. I've never sanded steel before that the paper glossed over without biting. Also I was the guy who made a sword from nails! It's a thread called A Sword Fit for a King if you're interested. Naegling, a sword whose name literally means 'from nails' I've seen people make shear steel by leaving wrought at the bottom of a charcoal fire for a long time while it's thin. But again, the alloying elements make a big difference. In my experience material with a high amount of phosphorous especially is very hard to carburize effectively and has a harder time hardening than low phosphorous material. So my advice would be build a fire in charcoal and burn it slowly, high heat and high speed are not your friend unless you want to melt your iron. Low temp and long soak are key. I would put the thin iron in a can and add some charcoal, then let soak in a low (1500 ish) fire for an hour, open the can and see what you have, compare to an unaltered piece of the same material, and use the sparks to determine how far you still have to go. Steel making is a finicky pursuit but is certainly worth the trouble and heartache. I like the grain you got by mixing the 1095 and wrought by the way! It looks very authentic though more contrast than you might expect from folded and refined shear steel. The real visual trick of that material is the way the homogenous nature of it plays with the weld lines. In an ideal world the material looks uniform over its entire length and the lines are just an artifact of the refining process. It is a very subtle contrast that you can begin to approximate using modern materials, but they have to be folded and manipulated in what you may see as odd ways coming from a modern steel background. The folding method and types or type of steel makes a big difference. I use 1075 folded on itself, as well as other 'lower' carbon 10xx steels in order to replicate the look of bloom. Here is a blade made of oroshigane highlighting my points, very homogenous low contrast material, but the grain is made up of the fold lines and small amounts of silica left in the material. This is a very important look for the Japanese and Viking Age pieces, but you can approximate the grain through proper manipulation of modern material. If you want to achieve a similar look with modern steel and not 'waste' the wrought iron then I suggest you use 1075 and fold it on itself ~12 times or the equivalent of that many layers and make a piece out of it. You may be happily surprised with the result!
  25. Hey everyone! Recently I've had the opportunity to do some work with Hurswtic near Worcester MA. They had an interest in iron making to explore Viking Age arms in a slightly more in depth way, and as soon as I found out I was very keen to be a part of it. We did a smelt recently that made 16lbs of iron which I cut and forged into small biscuits that we were then able to remelt. I have learned a huge amount from friends both on and off this forum who have stoked my interest in learning and experimenting with this process. Without that I would be more lost than I am now! Here is a link to some of the write up on Viking Age iron done by Hurstwic: http://www.hurstwic.org/history/articles/manufacturing/text/bog_iron.htm And the video that Bill shot and edited together of a presentation I did with them to teach how to create hearth steel from iron. Hope you guys enjoy!
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