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Stephen Asay

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About Stephen Asay

  • Birthday 07/03/1997

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Clemson SC, (Currently Seattle WA)
  • Interests
    God, Family, Country, That spattered look of a blade right after a good quench, A job well done.
  1. Stephen Asay

    Wip: Kephart Inspired Hunter

    Thanks! Yeah I decided to go with about 10 degrees on each side figuring my setup was not too precise. I am really liking the utility of the blade, much better for working in the yard than a convex or full flat grind.
  2. Stephen Asay

    Wip: Kephart Inspired Hunter

    Thanks, yeah I am also probably going to try building my own kiln at some point. I am worried that this blade and the one other I heat treated are way oversize on grain because of the unknown factor. The other blade I did has a little warp in the tang, I will try to bend it a little more straight, and if it breaks then we will know for sure. I wouldn't feel good selling a knife at handmade prices if it does not perform at least better than a $30 factory knife. Anyway, here are some finished pictures: Blade: 1075, 4.5" long, 1/8" thick, 20 degree scandi grind polished/ sharpened to 3000 grit (imperfectly). Left as quenched. Handle: Dense black mesquite with brass pins, T-88 epoxy, finished with two coats of tung oil. Hand sanded to 150 grit then polished with fine steel wool. Other notes, -I ground off the scale and wiped the tang with acetone before epoxy up to ensure a good bond, I realize now that I forgot to wipe down the pins, shouldn't be a huge deal but definitely going to in the future. -Because I shaped the scales before epoxying I ended up with some mismatches, You can see in photo #2 the shine of the tang where it extends about 1 mm out from the wood. Going to start only shaping the ends and rough profile of scales before epoxy. -The shape is not perfect, the original I think had the widest part of the blade closer to the tip and a much more abrupt and steep drop point. -As I said before their are some gaps in the fit up, I need to get better at that, to the eye it looked perfectly flat, but it clearly was not. Overall this knife took a lot of time, maybe about 15-20 hours of work, which is ridiculous considering that is not even counting the sheath. I hope to get to the point where I can make a 'simple' knife complete in one day. Anyone have any input on materials, design, execution? I would sure appreciate it.
  3. Stephen Asay

    Wip: Kephart Inspired Hunter

    I initially put a handle on it with no epoxy to test the blade. was staying sharp but chipping too easy against hard things. I tried the brass Rod test, was chipping about .25 mm off of the edge (initial temper was only 1 hour at 375) . The hardening was done in water, I was not getting a good harden in oil. Since making this I have forged several more, one of which snapped in the water quench and warped like crazy, so I am making sure to leave the blades a little thick going into the HT. Today I got around to tempering it again (an hour at 425) Now the edge flexes instead of chipping, if flexed past about 30 degrees it sets, which I actually much prefer over chipping as it opens the possibility of stropping/steeling the blade whereas if it chips the only option is to take more material off.I might try 400 degrees for the next blades, I really need to figure out my HT first though. The one that cracked was way overheated I figured out. If it is kept from being overheated warping/cracking shouldn't be a problem. I am thinking about investing in a high temp IR thermometer for about $75. I also got around to properly fixing the handle, I used T-88 and brass pins, which were left a little long to be peened on the ends, which are applying a mechanical bond from being upset. The fit up is not perfect, about a .5 mm gap in some places, I am going o spend more time on flattening the tang in the future, also may get a disc sander after I sell a knife.
  4. Stephen Asay

    Wip: Kephart Inspired Hunter

    Here is today's progress, it is ending up with more of a spear point, I don't know if it would look better with a more straight drop point. Overall I am pleased with the scandi grind, it is really flat and is about 20 degrees, still a couple of mm on edge for the heat treating, which I have to wait for until I get my cobalt drill bits in the mail for pin holes.
  5. Stephen Asay

    Wip: Kephart Inspired Hunter

    Thanks! Yeah, I might grind down to about 1/32 edge thickness before the HT. It would be really cool to see some hamon activity, but the goal is just to end up with a nice, hard use knife.
  6. Stephen Asay

    Wip: Kephart Inspired Hunter

    Hello everyone, I just got started with my first knife in over two years, a friend of mine saw my facebook post on the tongs I made for bladesmithing and he commented he'll take a kephart styled with a scandi grind. I had never heard of them before to be honest. I drew up a design based off an article with pictures, and got through forging. The material is 1075 high carbon steel. Because it is going to be a scandi style grind I did not forge any bevels, but as it stands right now the entire blade is about 5/32 thick, going to be grinding to about 1/8". Should I do the entire primary bevel after heat treating, or should I do some before?.
  7. Stephen Asay

    Massive picture post: whole lotta forged blades

    Wow, I really could see any of those being carried with pride by professionals in rough environments! A no frills, not afraid to be used- line of knives for sure!
  8. Stephen Asay

    Yakut knives

    That is really cool, I am noticing how clean and neat that leather working is! I like the look of those blades too, really cool style.
  9. Stephen Asay

    Reforging an old Scythe?

    Thanks, Sadly Alan was right, As I tried to forge the blade it became apparent that cracks ran an inch deep along a lot of the blade. I might try getting my hands on some 1045 and forging one someday.
  10. Stephen Asay

    Reforging an old Scythe?

    I have been working on "restoring" an old rusty scythe we picked up from an antique store for $20. It was still fairly sharp, so I don't think that it was abused in it's day. It does however get pretty thick in the middle from being sharpened steeply, there is a bevel on both sides of the blade, steep enough in the middle to be an axe grind. I in my eagerness to sharpen it began tapping it cold, but I guess that it is not that type of scythe, because I took a nice little chip out of it right in the middle. Everything else about the tool seems to fit nice, I just need to know how I should get a usable edge on it. I am thinking about heating it up in the forge, cross peening out the edge a little, then re-normalizing. Should I try to heat treat it? Was it ever a work hardening scythe meant to be peened, or just ground with stones? Any input would be appreciated, thanks.\
  11. Stephen Asay

    Rail clip tanto, first attempt with this steel.

    I used one that was literally stamped "5160" if I recall correctly. It seemed to be relatively new, I picked it up while hiking in northern CA. Never got around to finishing / heat treating it though, I tried making a chefs's knife with a integral bolster (I think that is what you call it?) Anyway, nice job, it looks great!
  12. Stephen Asay

    White Balance

    I guess the idea is that the white balance will always be the same, so you could have a preset balance that will always look consistent.
  13. Stephen Asay

    White Balance

    (I am a photographer noob) I always resorted to just using all manual settings, setting white balance, exposure, iso, f-stop based on the picture I was taking.
  14. Stephen Asay

    Possible anvil goldmine

    So just as a follow up, I did pay a visit to Osteen's. He does still have anvils, post vices, tongs, and other blacksmith tools, he even has hand crank drill presses, and wood stoves. He also has blacksmith coal, pea sized bituminous coal. When I was there is was $12 for a 40lbs bag so I got two. I will be going back to get more soon! I highly recommend paying a visit if you are ever in the area, really cool place! I ended up getting a pretty good deal on this vice:
  15. I NEVER have enough books, Anvilfire has a half dozen that I 'need' to read just to get started, and based on the quality of that tutorial I should find those books by Mark. I was just thinking too how I could really use a good book about what tools to make and when to start. I was gifted a book by JPH from my family when I first wanted to get into bladesmithing, and I read half of Verhoeven's a long time ago. Basically it seems like I should spend more time reading right now than actually forging.
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