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Everything posted by TrevorWalsh

  1. Hello Everyone, I'm in the process of building a HT oven and am trying to decide which way the door should swing. A lot of the builds I see, and most of the commercial offerings have side swinging doors, but a down swinging door on the other hand could be weighted for automatic closing. I do wonder how much heat the door would be able to radiate at your hand while grabbing blades. Does anyone have any thoughts or practical experience with either door type? I've attached a rough model of my design with a down swinging door for reference.
  2. I found a large beat up one-man cross cut saw, this is what I did with it. I've always wanted a nakiri so after finishing a paring knife I set out to make a little more complicated handle, very thin veggie killer. The stock is .070" thick. The handle is a doweled Wa, but with a slot cut into the ferrule, so the dowel can't be seen. It's made of East Indian Rosewood, Ebony and and unknown tropical. G-Flex epoxy. Please give feedback, I would appreciate it. I can also take pictures of other details if anyone wants them.
  3. Hi, I stalled out on some other projects I began posting, but have attacked a new one with gusto. My fiancee has complained about us not having a pairing knife, I decided this would be a great exercise for my desire to make some Japanese cutlery. Here are three process pictures so far... The blade is ground out of Aldo's 1084, I'm going to attempt a hammon with it, I know it's not likely with that composition, but we'll see.
  4. I made a hardwood punch and a steel die for stamping Koshira blanks out the other day. I couldn't resist smacking some copper through to see what I'd get. I'm using bits of copper pipe or connectors flattened out, measures .060" thick or 1.52mm. These are my tools and results so far... In the first image you can see my tools and copper, I annealed all the copper before hammering through, one anneal one pass. The second shows how the die matches my punch. It's a little irregular, which I'm unhappy about, but I don't know how much it really effects things? I'm concerned that the radius of the die edge is too tight which causes the problem in the last image. I reshaped the punch because I didn't like the flat top of the first blank. For those of you that punch koshira, do you complete the punching in one anneal and one pass? Are my punch and die tolerances okay? Is the edge radius too tight? Any insight would be helpful.
  5. I've got a clay mix sitting to hydrate, but have one more question, what diameter do you have on the inside? I scratched out plans for a 12" diameter x 5" deep hearth, maybe a little deeper for more ash bed, does that seem right?
  6. If you have angle to the tuyere, that would mean that the depth of the melt has to increase a little bit to be out of the oxidizing zone right?
  7. Hi Mark, Just who I was hoping to hear from. Yes I've looked through your Picasa pages, the photo essay's were a great overview of what Evenstad was talking about, but there were a few more details that your response helps point me to the right direction. I don't have any bloom to work with, what about wrought? I have some of the old Globe elevator. But maybe that is best saved for some san mai or something of that nature. Time to get on with the clay digging!
  8. Thanks for holding my hand with this Dave, here is the photo of the blade in progress against the kata. There is a more pronounced taper than in the kata. I think I reground the profile because after the distal taper, and blade bevel tapers, the nikago-no-ha itself had a distal taper, which in your geometry primer say should be of parallel thickness. That seems a simple way to drive and constrain the various planes and tapers involved. So how am I doing?
  9. Hello Everyone, I'm been very excited to read a lot of what has been written about smelting, and remenlting on here, and I want to begin someplace. But after hearing Mark Green and a few others talk about the much more controlable results in carbon control with hearth refining, I think that would be a better rounte, my goal is to melt scrap mild, old nails and things down into orishigane for use in traditional style tantos and kitchen knives. I'd like the ability to influence the carbon so I can produce jacket steel or core steel. It's my understanding that the folding and welding will burn some carbon, so starting with something like C 1.5% would result in a forged bar of .6-.8%? After reading about the hearth method I think I've got some understanding, can anyone check/verify what I think I've read? Size in terms of floor area only seems to be important for size of material firings, and I'm assuming charcoal size (I seem to recall a figure of approx 8-10% of diameter), Height above tuyere I'm not sure about, The photos, show only a few inches? Tuyere angle in "Ancient Carburizing of Iron into steel" by Wagner siting Evenstad's research has 0 degrees from horizontal, for refining bloom into iron (slag removal and I'm guessing some decarburizing) the bottom is packed at 1 inch from the bottom of the tuyere. For the production of steel, it's packed at 2" from the tuyere. The deeper the floor under the tuyere, the more carbon uptake, up to a point where temperature drops below a certain amount? But that would start to result in cast iron rather than the desired outcome, right? There are of course a lot of variables other than that, but if air volume/pressure, charcoal size remained the same would that generally be what happens?
  10. I use hot vinegar with a little borax in it for copper jewelry work. it's very fast.
  11. Thanks Dave, alot of what I've been thinking of comes from the design articles on your site, your discussion of the Aizu Shintogo kata. I have some more photos I have to get up of this blade in progress... When you say "taper the tang profiles a bit" are you refering to the distal tapering from the habaki area to the end or from the nakago-no-mune to nakago-no-ha? Both?
  12. Here is the template for the adjusted edge on the ko-santuko Jarrod... And a link to the WIP thread for the knife I started making... WIP:Beech and Bone Ko-Tanto
  13. So I found out that the sculpture workshop I was going to start forging in will have to be delayed another week, Safety Orientation's fall the day after the open work days. It's a bummer, because I run a shop as my day job, and have given likely a similar safety talk several times a semester to the new students. Oh well, the idiosyncrasies of shops. Since I can't forge down the kitchen knife shapes I wanted I thought I'd start on a pair of the ko-tantos in the attached sketch. After reading Dave F.'s stuff on the Crossed Heart Forge website over and over, I think I know what I need to attempt. I made a brass kata, from some thin stock and used that to mark out the 1084. The two were adhered together temporarily, drilled, milled and profiled. I am doing this at work after hours, and as long as I had the mill it would be a quick way to rough the mune (spine), nikago (tang) planes parallel to one another and have a nice square munemachi (step down to nikago from the spine side). Finish profiling with the disk sander and separate. I cleaned up and flattened the faces on a 500 grit stone... Then began work on setting the iori-mune (house roof spine shape), tapering and roughing in the hira-zukuri (full flat grind) shape. And that's it for tonight. I'm bone tired and ready to go sleep.
  14. Thank you Wes, Jerrod, and James James, less time with the reading, more time studying as many different japanese kitchen knives as I could, and trying to find something in the utility/vegetable/petty range that would serve. Which is where the ko-santuko like thing (the last image that Jerrod seems to be talking about) came from. The full tang stuff just isn't nearly as appealing to me, and I have rehandled rather many wood chisels, carving tools and a very old japanese kitchen knife. That ability to remove the handle during resharpening is a major boon, and much easier than western bolstered blades(I'm usually the guy that brings waterstones to friends houses when we are cooking because I know I'll not find a sharp enough knife). Jarrod, that knife which I'm intending to be a ko-santuko is a toughy. I've seen some that seem to curve up a little more, and some more flat. I cut out a paperboard template with a slightly flatter trajectory towards the tip which might work out. Unfortunatly I don't have a camera on me today, but tomorrow in the shop I want to get a picture of the few things I've started on. Wes, I totally agree about drawing, there is no way to accuratly gauge your intentions without a drawing to follow.
  15. Not that I'm against the subject of making search tools for newbies easier, but I started a thread asking for feedback on drawings, got one relevant comment from Dave (thanks Dave) Then the rest of the thread has been about various ways of searching the forums, when I wasn't asking a general question in the first place. I was asking about specific comments to my work. I don't get it.
  16. I trained as a product designer, have built a fair amount of furniture, have taught introductory shop/model making and run a prototyping shop. I was and do train everyone I come into contact with to draw, it's not hard, the materials are simple to aquire pencil, eraser, paper and a straight edge or ruler of some sort for roughly sizing, getting the straight bits straight. Not to say that I completely disagree with the "everyone does it their own way" statement, but one learns quite a bit from drawing the shapes you are intending to make and fully understanding the geometry. The students that I teach aren't allowed to touch tool to material without a drawing of the intention. Reasons why I think it's a crucial step...One is understanding, oftentimes the idea in our heads isn't refined enough, when you are trying to pull that idea out at the forge (or anywhere else) you are making it up as you go with a feedback loop of how things are currently going. Two a drawing gives you a defined parameter to reach for, if you've drawn something "nice" or a blade has a specific edge profile, tip shape etc. you know have a hard line that says you've either got that shape or not. Third, economy. A sketchbook with several hundred pages costs less than a bar of plain high carbon steel. You could fill that thing with thousands of blade shapes (depending on the blade) without needing to fire anything up, hammer anything out or replace any abrasives. I'd rather draw 100 duds than physically make a few meh objects. I'm an analytical type person, and I was trained a certain way that makes a lot of sense to me, it allows a metric to judge the work after, rather than "yes this is about what I was thinking in my head." I draw a lot of whatever I'm going to build, I look at a lot of reference material, I make full size paterns or mock ups. That's how I've taught, that's what I do and that's what I'd advise, I'm sure there are plenty of people out there that have either done it enough at the forge or feel too artistically restraighed to limit themselves to a drawing (i've gotten that in class). Maybe it works, or works after a long while, or a lot of scrap/tweaking. http://www.bladesmithsforum.com/index.php?showtopic=30179 That has some of the drawings I've been working on the last few days..
  17. Hey Everyone, This seems like a great place and a little more homie than some of the other general forging forums I've found. I've been drawing a lot, after looking at a lot of blades and wanted to show some of my progress. I'd like some feedback on the patterns, and maybe some help in figuring out what to start on first. Thanks for looking.
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