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Lost Island Tanto


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I posted this in Show and Tell but I think I'm better off here since I want criticism! As I pointed out this tanto is a product of a bit of experimental heat treating on my part. In particular I want to know what anyone thinks of the inadvertant island of pearlite near the tip (hence the "Lost Island Tanto" :lol: ). Good, bad, ugly? In any case I am learning much about polishing and etching. I'll work on better pictures but here's the caption from the Show and Tell thread:

 

Well, I have finally gotten back to working on a tanto made from 1084 I started in the last Ice Age. I was messing around with odd heat treatments again, first attempt at hardening this tanto failed but this is the second attempt after tweaking the heat treatment regimen with advice from Jesse Frank. This tanto design originally had a ridgline but I suspected the hamon had moved up the blade quit a bit so I just did away with said shinogi. Anyway, here it is, basic 1000 grit polish, simple swabbing with diluted ferric for an etch, and some experimental polishing with specks of Fliz with lots of mineral oil on round cosmetic applicators and fine pumice ground finer. Pretty hamfisted polish just to see what the box of choclats had in it. Didn't expect it to harden nearly to the spine near the tip! That's a big hmmm, not sure I like that, but I'm not sure it warrants a third heat treat either. Many thanks to Don Fogg and Brian Vanspeybroeck for tips in variuos posts on polishing, I think I have a good arsenal to experiment with when I redo the polish (the edge is still a bit thick here and there which needs correcting). There is a lot of activity I haven't captured yet, there is a 1/4 inch wide frosty area above the hamon and also a ghostly 1/4 inch wide area below the hamon. I may have lost some ashi line activity as I had to regrind the blade quite a bit after heat treat. I think I'll try Brian's vinegar etch while I'm working on this too.

 

LostIslandtanto.jpg

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Nice looking blade! It may not be what you were trying for, but it sure has character. I would be tempted to keep it as-is, but just my 2c.

 

~ Justin

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Nice looking blade! It may not be what you were trying for, but it sure has character. I would be tempted to keep it as-is, but just my 2c.

 

~ Justin

 

Thanks Justin, I imagine I will finish this out as is and go to work on new blades instead. It's got some interesting things going on with it and will still be learning challenge to polish it out in an atractive manner not to mention what I have to learn making fittings for it as well.

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Thanks Glenn! I'm trying valiantly to make more shop time, I think it will help my sanity.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Thanks for the feedback guys, I'm having a great, if frustrating time messing around with the various polishes and backings and how they each remove the oxides in a different manner in different concentrations, sometimes insufferably slow and other times too much in a flash. It's actually nice having something to do indoors at the kitchen table this time of year (96+ degrees F out with 80% and higher humidity).

 

I picked up some Tru Bamboo cutting board conditioner yesterday at the grocery store when I realized it was pure white mineral oil with nothing else added. It is much thinner than the medicinal grade oil I was using which is much thicker. Hmmm... I may have to find a small bottle of clove oil to add a drop or two to it. I think I'm also going to need to add some cutting oil and some free abrasives other than pumice to the arsenal before it's over.

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