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Aiden CC

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Everything posted by Aiden CC

  1. The way I've done this in the past is by completely finishing the profile of the handle while firmly pinnec before glue up, then etching the knife. Then during the glue up, I make sure to clean all of the squeezed out epoxy off the profile with a solvent (I personally like acetone). You probably already do this on the top edge of the scales anyways with full tang knives, though it is more challenging to go all the way around. I think some people also use petroleum jelly to keep epoxy from sticking to surfaces on knives, so that could work here too.
  2. Thanks Rob! I definitely have a long way to go with forging these and I think it will serve as a good way to branch out beyond the "flat and pointy" that has made up most of what I've forged. Ah, that makes sense. I've seen a lot of old axes/hatchets with eyes full of steel wedges, nails, and screws to try and address that shortcoming. I guess forging top tools are sometimes hung with a single taper and no wedge, since the abuse they see would likely lead to rattling if not for some quick way to re-tighten them. Also, on the note of handles, I found some pictures of
  3. The snake head wedge is pretty neat! I can definitely see a no-wedge fit developing enough friction to keep an axe head on, especially with a more gradual taper multiplying the force pressing out on the eye. That kind of friction can transfer a lot of torque in machine tools, and even take some axial loading. The thing I would find worrying is that unlike an hourglass, where the expanding force increases as you pull on the head, or an un-tapered fit (like a chuck or a collet) where the force stays the same until the two are pulled apart, this kind of taper loses holding force as the pieces sli
  4. A small update: Handle fitting is progressing pretty well. I’m now at the point where a “normal” axe this size would be done, but there’s still a bit to go. The “waist” of the hourglass in the eye might me a bit too low, but the eye is far from perfect generally, and it should be serviceable. So far I’m enjoying the draw knife experience, though we’ll see if that’s true after shaping and slimming down the handle.
  5. I’ve been going a little slow on this recently, but I’m still working on it. The axe is actually ground, but I don’t have a picture of it and it’s all packed up now. I’ll be away from my shop for a while, but I made a draw knife and will be hanging and finishing this one out by hand, which I’ve actually wanted to try for a while.
  6. As per Jake's suggestion, I forged the bit down a little more. Looking at my example, it does look like the edge has been sharpened back a ways from where it started out, especially in the toe (which seems a common point of damage for all axes, including the one I usually take to the woods). In the process the pole popped off, which set me back a bit. I had a hard time getting it to stay tacked on for the first welding heat (I'm certainly no welder, but the poor penetration from my $70 flux core machine is probably also part of it), so the remnants of the bead I ran around it before forge weld
  7. Got the poll and bit welded in, and I think the forging is done! There was a tense moment when I dropped the whole head in my water bucket, but it seems like it's ok . The edge bit and poll are 1075, and the whole thing is pretty heavy, so that may have saved it. I'm going to grind the profile a little bit to check the welds, I thing that line coming from the eye is just there because I didn't blend the weld there as well as on the bottom/bit area. The polls on these seem to have lines chiseled around them, though I may do that with a grinder and file. The plan is to do a bir
  8. Thanks @Alan Longmire! It’s good to know that even a good weld would split there with mild. I used the drift to open up the weld more, put some flux with iron dust in it in the opening, closed it with the drift in there, then took a few welding heats. I also welded up the collar, which appears to be good. I started opening up the edge for the bit, and of course that part is welded solid! Would it be cheating to use and angle grinder ? Maybe it’s how hot my shop was, but it was feeling like a lot of work with a chisel! I’ll take better pictures later after I cool off a bit.
  9. Forged another this morning, but failed in essentially the same way. made the preform more like the James Austin carpenter’s axe, was fairly happy with it. Folding took a good bit of force, probably due to the collar. This is where I had the problem. The eye ended up pretty closed to closing and when I went to drift it open, the weld split in the front of the eye. Does anyone have advice on this? I may try splitting this all the way open, cleaning the inside with an angle grinder, then re-welding it. I have enough steel (and possibly time/patience) left for one more, but if
  10. Ah, looking at James Austin's method, and the original piece, I can see where the the over-definition of the collar got me. It wasn't what caused me to scrap the head, but it would have eventually. It looks like the only "sharp" lines on the preform should be surrounding the rectangle isolated for the pole, and in the front of the eye. Another mistake I realized was that the edge of the collar should actually extend a bit past the step for the front of the eye, on my preform they trailed it a little bit. Also, the material I isolated for the pole was a little too big, which made the eye wonky.
  11. It’s probably the most complicated thing I’ve forged. On that note, there were some problems... Things were going pretty well, until a small portion of the inside of the eye welded to itself. I hadn’t finished the drift yet, so the eye kept getting more and more squashed. I went to open it up with a chisel, and opened up the eye weld, then heard a *ping* which turned out to be a crack starting out at the weld line and veering off through the bit. I think my preform wasn’t quite the right shape which caused its own problems, so I’ll restart this and try and set myself up
  12. You could also take some off of the profile on the half towards the tip so that the handle angles up from the cutting board slightly when the edge is resting on the board, if that makes sense. I tend to like chef's knives to be sort of triangle shaped and somewhat narrow towards the tip, so it could also be my personal preference coming through (though that shape does have some advantages like giving more board clearance for the same width at the heel).
  13. I recently have taken up an interest in Swedish collared axes, and have some time now to take a crack at making one. After a lot of searching and a bit of luck/patience I was also able to find an original in my price range, which will be the rough inspiration for this project (though mine will end up being a little lighter). So far so good for my first wrapped axe I would say (though I still need to weld it ). Not shown are the drift and bit I forged as well. I think I may not have as much meat as I want for the blade, though I'll deal with that when I get there. My plan is t
  14. Lots of good advice here! One thing I might add is that an important feature of a chef's knife is how the knife stops at the end of a chop. Some of this is up to taste, but I've found that with the wrong geometry in the area close to the handle, you can get a situation where the blade doesn't have a good "stop" at the end of each chop and you can end up rocking your knuckles into the cutting board. It's hard to tell from pictures, but with a mostly curved edge like your knife it might be a possibility. I would definitely recommend rocking the knife back and forth on a flat surface to see if th
  15. I think that could be feasible, though it's hard to see exactly what the bar he's welding on looks like. It seems like the edges of the bit would need to be tapered so they blend nicely to the body without shearing through it. Definitely agreed on the control while doing the hot cut, it seems like it would be really easy to tear the two pieces apart, especially given how heavy one of them is. It seems like his first welding pass was more to tack the two pieces together than anything and he welded/wrapped the bit around with the second heat. I think it I do it this way myself, I might bend the
  16. It looks like I'll have some time for bladesmithing soon and I think I'm going to attempt a swedish style collared axe. When doing a bit of internet research I found the video below showing one of these axes being forged by someone who has clearly made quite a few: There is a lot of interesting welding going on, but one thing that stood out to me was the way he welded on the bit (around 4:06). It sees like he is essentially just welding a piece of flat bar stock onto the end of the body of the axe, almost like you would the edge bar of a multibar knife blade. Does that se
  17. I let the lacquer dry for a week before the final polishing, I think it will be a month or more before it's entirely finished drying. I made the mekugi from a small scrap of ebony, and now it is officially done. The knife is inspired by a midwinter night when the snow catches the light from a head lamp, streetlight, or the moon through a thin veil of clouds, gently sifting down and blown by the occasional icy flurry. Taking out the blade reveals the thin layer of fallen snow in the suguha hamon with a few storm clouds lingering near the tip. My g
  18. Between online finals, my KITH knife, and a commission for a handful of knives, I kind of fell off of this project for the time being, but I did get the handle on the small Sakha knife shaped and treated with tar. I’m really happy with how this piece of wood turned out with the tar. I’m going to be away from my shop for at least three months, but I have a list of all the supplies I want to order and a reminder of the projects I’m working on. It may be in a while, but I do plan on coming back around to make sheaths for these knives and probably making a few more.
  19. Yeah, the geometry doesn't really have the wiggle room to go digging for a cleaner hamon and I've definitely improved a few knives to death so I'll leave it other than maybe the gentle application of some SiC. I need to figure out the right lighting to capture it in a picture, but the hamon does have the snowy look I wanted.
  20. I ended up switching from Brass-o to a different polishing compound and did three more etches with particular attention near the tip. I think there are some very shallow hardened spots up there, and it was generally a challenge to get good definition. I ordered some loose Si carbide which I may apply to the hamon to try and crisp things up just a little more. I just got it to where you can see the turn-around of the main hamon in the right light: Part of me wants to try and grind through those spots, but there’s no telling how deep they are and I should probably leave well
  21. I got most of the polishing done today. Decided to try lemon juice for the etch, I like the results, though I may go for a few more cycles. There is some funny stuff going on at he kissaki, with the hamon getting a bit washed out. I was going for a blanket of fallen snow, but it seems like some storm clouds may have rolled in too . I say this when I did a test etch too and I'm convinced now that it's in the steel and not the polish. Also, these are super hard to photograph! I may try waiting for a cloudy day and taking better pictures then also possibly trying a better camera than my phone. Th
  22. Thanks! I was worried for a bit that it was too subtle. I’m using spray can lacquer from the hardware store for this, looking at the specs online I believe it is acrylic. It drys fairly fast, which is nice as well. I guess I could’ve saved some masking/cleanup and brushed on the black, but my plan for later requires something sprayable, so I just went with it for everything.
  23. I haven't done anything with this specific alloy, but my job last summer involved working with other Ni alloys and I've done a bit with other gas-turbine blade alloys (casting and metallography though, no forming). Forging any alloy like this is going to be a challenge because they were explicitly designed to resist deformation at high temperatures, some even having ranges where their yield strength increases with temperature. I'm not sure about this alloy, but work hardening is something that might also be in play. Also, just looking at a data sheet, it seems like working above th
  24. @Emiliano Carrillo, I'll give the high grit before etch a shot. I may or may not be able to get loose abrasive in the time window I want to work on this, so I'll first try with what I have (Brass-o and some kind of automotive polish) and see if I can get he effect I want. I also may try some red/black oxide mixed with oil to darken above the hamon. Anyways, I got some more done on this: The tsuka and saya are both made from a piece of alder, which I've heard is a decent analog for the wood traditionally used for this. It carved alright with my ugly saya nomi. Right now, the
  25. The habaki is basically done now, though it's still a bit snug and I may make it a bit shorter. The base is currently 27mm with a height of 24mm, so a bit less than 1:1 like Jake was talking about. This is the finish off of a sharp 120 grit belt. I may leave it there unless I get some stroke of inspiration for a way to decorate it that fits the theme. I have done some deeper etched hamons for western style knives (~5 minutes in dilute ferric chloride), but that seems like a bit much for this? The picture in my first post shows the results of alternating between swabbing with FeC
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