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Mike Ward

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Everything posted by Mike Ward

  1. @Geoff Keyes thank you!! I was finally able to make a visit home and opened your KITH knife. The curly maple looks really good.
  2. It’s all good Geoff. I can’t wait to open it! Glad you like what I made.
  3. Been awhile but I got them heat treated and finish ground. The big chef and the carving both warped at their tips but I got them out with the shim and temper method. These are at only 120 grit with a quick sneak peak etch.
  4. Sorry I missed the drawing. Senior year of engineering school has been kicking my butt . I might be able to finish it next weekend if Geoff wants it
  5. And the full set. I finished grinding this morning and then normalized them all 3x. Now I got problems. The chef, carving and utility knives all warped and I stupidly did not leave enough meat to grind them out. I think my best bet is either shim and temper or pull out in the quench and clamp between two boards. What do you think?
  6. My sister is getting married in January and for a wedding present I’m making them a full 6 piece knife set. Kinda doing all this work just because I can, practice and I need a long project for the school year. A few weeks ago, I went over to another bladesmiths shop and made a bar of ~180 layer random pattern Damascus. We were able to get ~1.25x.25x.24. I’m planning on a chef, carving, utility, paring and 2 steak knives. I made a few drawing of each type of knife as a reference to go off of. The end pieces are probably gonna look similar but not exact. My sister and her fiancé liked all of the drawings on the bottom. It’s kinda helped that he has made knives before and knows what I’m talking about when discussing shapes and whatnot while my sister is befuddled. Dim: ~7.5”x2” Dim: ~7”x1.25” Dim: 5”x1.5” They like the middle paring one. Dim: 3”x1” Dim: 4”x1” Last weekend, I forged and ground the chef knife and utility. For the chef knife, I cut out the drawing and used that as a template to go off of. The tang I set first before cutting off the bar, cut it off at 4.25” from the heel then broke the edges on the point. That amount of material is enough to give a 7.5x2x~1/8 forged blade. If you’re braver than I, you could probably could get more length. From there, lengthened it by drawing down the width and thickness to a distal taper. Once the bar is tapered, I went back to the heel and used my more rounded hammer and my cross pein to draw down the heel. With the cross pein, I drew material from the middle of the blade back into the heel to get more height. From there, I bananaed the blade down and did beveling and profile adjustments. With the utility knife, I again set the tang before cutting 3” off the bar from the heel. The amount of material is a guesstimate based off of other projects and it seems to be working out. I did the same basic process as the chef knife on this one too. Right now these are ready for heat treatment for which I’m going to send out so that they’re done properly in a temp controlled oven. They are both at .115” on the spine and about .05” on the edge. The chef knife is at 7.5” by 1 7/8” at the heel which is perfect. The utility is 5.25” long and 1.5” at the heel. This is basically a big opportunity for me to do stuff I’ve never done before for some people I care about. Plus, therapy for my senior year of college when I need to get away. What do y’all think? Anything wrong or off?
  7. Mike Ward

    School fun

    Naw it’s Trine University. Idk if WMU even has a foundry, I live close to Kalamazoo and I haven’t heard anything. And I don’t know haha I’m hoping I can make at least billets of Damascus or break down large pieces bc there’s a no weapons making policy. I’ve already tried the “cutlery” loophole with no luck.
  8. Mike Ward

    School fun

    So the university that I go to has finally bought a pneumatic power hammer, press, and forge that they’ve been talking about for the past 3 years. My prof and the lab technician were firing it up last Friday and invited me to suit up and test it all out. And I found that I REALLY REALLY REALLY like power hammers . I used the power hammer to flatten a 3/8 rebar piece in one heat. Bc it’s pneumatic, I had a ton of control over how hard it hit. They were thinking of making a little club type thing for hitting metal every week.
  9. Yes!!! Please!! Sorry for hijacking. But yes, a drawing tutorial would be fantastic.
  10. Finished a ~8.5” chefs knife for my brother. It’s 1 7/8” at the heel, ~.135 at the spine with a distal taper down to the tip. Grinding it, I got the edge down to about .015” and then convexed it down to about .001-.003”. The handle is Birdseye maple with a copper spacer. It’s thicker than I would like personally but his fingers are about an inch longer. He specifically told me to make it heavier towards the heel and heavier in general than the cheap knives. I tested it out and it cuts and feels fantastic to me. I think for the next knife it could be a bit thinner at the spine, probably .115-.125” I think. What do y’all think?
  11. Mike Ward


    Diced and glued together. Ready for a cleanup and start drilling holes
  12. Mike Ward


    For my KITH knife I’m going with an edc style blade. I had forged and heat treated this a while back and started handsanding it before I set aside for other projects. The handle is maple, Padauk and walnut that I’ve cut into slats and then glued together. Next I’m going to cut that block up width ways to make tabs which I will alternate and glue together again.
  13. I forged out a big 8.5” long and 1 7/8” wide chef knife for my brother if he likes it. Started out with 6.5” of 80crv2 and did most of the forging Saturday evening, began to grind and realized it was about twice the thickness all the way around. Finished it up Sunday morning and did all the rough grinding. and the belated start of my KITH knife. I’m in no way, shape or form any where close to alright enough to make a folder so a little ~3 in fixed blade is what I got going. I am going to mix it up the handle by using different kinds of wood. Thinking about laminating strips of maple, walnut, and Padauk then cutting those into disks and stacking them in a spiral. What do you think?
  14. Nearly all finished! I got the handle all shapes and finished, then did a single coat of tung oil for now. I’m going to apply more coats for the next couple of days then give it to my boss on Friday. Mustard! Applied with the textured side of paper towel and a very small amount. And some finish pics. What do you think?
  15. Here it is mostly shaped, just some final hand sanding, making my mark, and applying the patina left.
  16. Bryan, I punched it before I drilled it and when I was trying to drill through it. I think there was a flake of carbide on the side of the hole that was messing all it up because the punch was denting just fine the middle of the hole.
  17. So I did a combo of everything and it eventually worked. The drill press is actually variable speed with a pulley system, I just didn’t look closely enough. Slowed it down to its lowest setting at 250 rpm. I also bought more bits and cutting fluid. I tried to drill it with the low speed and barely anything happened. Over tempered it again and put a new bit on and it very slowly started to get through. Then it started to bite pretty good and got through. I’m betting there was a layer of carbide in the middle that was stopping me. Its gluing right now and should ready to shape later. thanks for the help.
  18. Does anyone have a suggestion on how to drill through this? I tried tempering it back but no luck. It’s about halfway through, I’m using 5/32 cobalt bits and I’ve gone through two of them. Drill press isn’t variable either.
  19. Ok, here’s the verdict. Dark mustard patina with the natural maple and copper pins. Thanks for the suggestions!
  20. I got a commission from my boss for a edc/hunting knife. I drew up some designs and he picked the one he liked and made a couple of adjustments. I messed up the first try in grinding by thinning the spine too much, but the second one is going well. The blade is ~4.25” and 8.5” overall by about .140” thick at the ricasso with a distal taper going both ways. The steel is 1084 and the wood scales are tiger striped maple. I left the ricasso open for adjustment post heat treat. The grind is a full flat with a convex taking it down to .02”. I’m going to take it down about another .005”. What kind of pins do you think would look good, brass or copper? Anything look odd to your eye?
  21. Last night I forged a hunting knife for my boss and ground it today. Made a template of the drawing he liked, then forged pretty close to shape. And I rehandled the chef knife I made in a class because it was off center from the blade.
  22. Thanks man! I can’t draw worth a turd so that’s really useful.
  23. Forgiven, I would much rather have this than beat around the bush and misunderstand what you’re saying. I did not have a full written plan to follow, but had a good picture in my brain that I wanted to make. It’s one of the things I struggle with, drawing on paper the full design. Plus, it’s the first one of this style and guard piece, so that’s probably where these oddities come from. Still am thankful for the support and suggestions. I’ll round the heel some to soften it and blend the handle. And on the guard would you suggest a thinner elliptical going down the bevel? Right now I think its at about .5” wide. I did think about that but decided against it. You’re right, a copper spacer would have helped justify the copper pin. Thank you!! A picture is worth a thousand words indeed. I’m definitely going to round the butt and top back. Can I steal that drawing for reference later?
  24. What gap are you talking about? Between the ricasso or between the handle? I tried to peen the guard tight but wasn’t able to get one spot all the way. And the handle transition, I rounded the joint a little. And what would you do to the handle shape? I appreciate the criticism, thank you!
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