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Wesley Alberson

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Posts posted by Wesley Alberson

  1. I have started on this knife, but I might still make the knife I had already planned on before. I forged out a seax blade for a Dwemer-inspired knife and made some fittings. The dwemer art style has a lot of square shapes, brass, and rivets.


    I also tried out a guard making technique that looks very promising.  3 holes were drilled, the webbing was cut away with a cold chisel, then a punch was driven all the way through. The punch is then inserted 80% of the way and then hammered on the sides, focusing the blows towards the face of the guard. This closes up the face of the guard while leaving the rest oversized to the tang. This allows the guard to be fitted more easily because there is less material to deform when fitting. With iron or copper I could probably punch the hole, and because the bolster on the anvil side gets wider from the punching, it is the perfect side to hammer that excess back in.


    • Like 2
  2. I have some friction folders that I'm selling on Etsy, all of the matte black powder coat handled ones are gone, so all that is left are the bronze powder coat and the bare aluminum. Here is the link: https://www.etsy.com/listing/619110173/aluminum-handle-friction-folder-edc-hand?ref=shop_home_active_1

    These are inspired by the Japanese higonokami design with the folded handle. I also emulated the cut point look, but I found that making the blade a broken back seax-like shape is visually pleasing, rather than keeping the blade about the same width all the way down. The aluminum handles are cut from a sheet, annealed, textured, bent, and formed with a wooden mallet on a stump to preserve the texture. The aluminum stock is fairly thick, so it fills your hand much like regular linerlock blades and doesn't take up too much pocket space.

    $115 for bare aluminum

    $125 for powder coat

    1095 blade

    aluminum handle

    steel pivot

    301 stainless pocket clip

    nylon washers

    Some pictures:

    These were really fun to make, it was a learning process to shape the blades and handles.



    This one reminds me of some sort of Spanish knife


    I use different hammers and texturing tools to create all kinds of unique patterns in the aluminum


    A texture that is just my touchmark repeating


    This texture looks a lot like tree bark. It would lose a lot of detail if I powder coated it


    This is a bronze powder coat with a clear layer on top. Apparently the bronze flakes oxidize over time if it is just left without a clear coat.


    A freaky caterpillar-looking texture. Made with a rusty hammer eye punch


    There is something about this knife in particular that makes it feel good, like a full size fighter that fits into your pocket



    • Like 1
  3. 7 hours ago, Zeb Camper said:

    That handle is somethin else! I have always liked the way you leave some uniformly forged texture. You've got a style all your own. 

    Thanks Zeb! I always like a little bit of forge finish on the spine, the tiny pits and details left behind from forging give the blade a totally random and unique texture. Smooth forge texture looks like smooth black leather to me.

  4. I forged a pretty thin blade out of some 1095 a while back, and in the past couple of weeks I have made some good progress on it. The blade has a rhombic cross section like a puukko, but it is long enough to be considered a short wakizashi length. The blade had a curve before the quench, but it got straightened out from quenching in oil. I made the fittings simple, a wrought iron bolster, habaki, and a groovy handle that I got from AK Designs. The tapered peg in the handle is made from some micarta rod.



    I am also making a scabbard out of some leftover bamboo flooring. I'll have to apply a grey stain to match the scabbard to the handle, the bamboo is too yellow.



    I'm also making some aluminum handle friction folders in preparation for Blade Show. Working aluminum is finicky, but as long as you have some bar soap, it's easy to anneal the stuff in a coal forge. The pocket clips are made from cold-worked stainless. It is some nice and springy material, and can be bent and drilled easily.


  5. I love the first puukko picture, that little radius on the end of the handle is iconic. I think that the modern puukko look is possibly due to modern finishing standards/technology. I think that there is a lot less sheet metal/soldering work on modern knives, too.

    I love the puukkos you make, especially the maasepän ones. Do all maasepän puukkos have the 2 wedges driven in the front of then handle?

  6. I am slowly gearing up for blade show, making some wedge tenon knives, as well as some folders and knives with regular pins. I'm getting a bit better with my leather work. I am making the sheaths so they can be worn on either side horizontally or vertically.


    • Like 2
  7. Cool! That must be pretty hard to figure out. I think that a professional taffy/hard candy maker would be really good at creating damascus patterns. Also, why don't you sketch a blade, draw a pattern on the blade, and then make a damascus pattern for that instead? You could go for a more specific look for a blade that way.

  8. I have made broaches that cut the width of the tang in the handle hole, but it is frustrating when I have to cut the thickness. I end up using the same broach at an angle to expand the side walls, and it isn't very neat.  Is it possible to make broaches that can cut the thickness of the tang? It would have to be thin, so it would be hard to make the teeth as aggressive as a broach. I'm thinking that this file making method might work.


  9. In this video around the 4:06 mark, you can see the grinder posture with the smaller wheel, which is a lot like a 2x72 grinder, except sitting down. Now, he is using his arms to move the work, rather than locking his arms and using his body, so it isn't as stable as swaying in front of a 2x72. However, at the 6:12 mark with the grinder pulling the work away from you, your arms are being pulled and it creates some stability because your arms can't be pulled out any further. I used to use a harbor freight belt sander to grind my knives, and I had it in a similar setup where my arms were almost fully extended, and it was a pretty comfortable position, and I felt like I had control on the work. It seems like sit down grinders are a matter of compromise between an uncomfortable leaning posture and intense pressure, and a comfortable upright posture and weak pressure. I would want a comfortable posture over a back-breaking posture. 36 grit is really fast even with low pressure. 

  10. That is some solid advice. When I started out, my main inspiration came from Dave Friesen's work and the videos that he made of forging a tanto. I must have watched the video about 10 times before I made my first knife. I tried to emulate some of his work, and it helped me figure out what I like. A lot of my knives today have no plunge line and a take-apart system because that is what I learned from studying his knives. From studying the puukko knives that Aiden CC and Lauri make, I like to add a forged bevel to the spine of my blades. Everyone on this forum has inspired me to adopt design elements of their knives, and sometimes it is unconscious.

  11. I was thinking about the benefits of different grinders like the common 2x72 platen/wheel setup and the large stone grinding wheels that are common in Japanese/European cutlery factories and shops. It seems to me that the stone wheel setups are more stable and ergonomic, and many of the stone wheel setups have the user sitting down with the wheel rotating away from them.

    Why don't we do this with belt grinders? I know that in order to use some types of jigs, you need a 90 degree surface for the jig to slide on, but jigs can be made for the other style, too. The grinder that I had in mind would use a 3" or 2" by 132" belt with the largest wheel size possible (and platen, too). Essentially a regular grinder that has been rotated 90 degrees so the arm is vertical. It could be mounted in some sort of box so that it could be water cooled, and a seat mounted in front. The bench design is great because it doesn't take up much shop space, but if shop space is not an issue, and for many people the grinder is the most important piece of equipment, I wonder if it is a good idea to make a grinder this way?

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