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Help with my new toy....LG25


Arthur
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I just bought a rebuilt Little Giant 25#. I have a Tommy McNabb press for making Damascus and want to use the LG for forging blades..Anyone know of any vidos,Books or links to this topic or any words of advice would be appreciated.Right now I'm flattening rebar and trying to put points on it...I'm improving but see no need to reinvent the wheel....Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." — Mark Twain

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Don Hanson has a nice set of photos on his site of forging some blades on both his 25# and 100# LG's :)

Found it Nick,many thanks ..He sure makes it look easy

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." — Mark Twain

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Thanks Nick! Arthur, that series of photos on my site is missing a few steps. I need to update it. Here's a thread I posted here a while back. Not really how to forge blades, but how to forge large stock with a 25.

 

http://www.bladesmithsforum.com/index.php?showtopic=11732

 

Hope it helps,

Edited by Don Hanson

Don Hanson lll My Webpage

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When I first got my 25 little giant I had to make new dies. A bladesmith from centralia Illinois recommended making matching planishing dies top and bottom. All four corners matched. There was a slight radius of approx. 1/4 inch from the center of the dies where they met in the middle and they radiused in a slight arc center to front and center to back on the top and the bottom dies. When you put a blade in the jaws to forge the beginning of the cutting edge at the ricasso, I butt up my tongs right up to the bottom die and start forging gently. I let the hammer do the work and gradually pull the blade away from the center causing the edge to become thinner. This is pinching that sharp choil area making a nice sharp pull down that looks so good. I like the edge of the blade to be right up next to the ricasso. Some times I will leave the hammer hit several times right in the same spot gradually turning the handle or what will be the tang of the knife towards the hammer. For instance. I have a three foot piece of 1 inch X 1/4 inch piece of tool steel, lets say 1080. I forged a point with a gradual taper. It is now time to pull down the edge, or as some call it start forging the shoulder . I hold the cold handle of the 3 ft. section with my left hand. I heat up to a high orange or slightly yellow heat about 6 inches of the steel and clamp my single pick up tongs at the ricasso area. If you want a 4 inch blade with a 1 inch ricasso I clamp the tong right where the 5 inch begins. I am holding the tongs in my right hand, and lay the hot steel almost in the center of the dies right where they crest. I butt the tong up against the bottom die and begin pressing the foot control lever with my right foot. As the hammer is striking the hot steel the steel is going to want to be squeezed back toward the operator. I control this by resting my tongs against my side giving some resistance. As the hammer is cycling and hitting the same spot I want there to be only one hammer mark where the top and bottom die hit together. I spend a lot of time making sure these dies are perfectly matched on this side so there is a crisp hammer line pulling the edge down forming a nice choil. Some times , it may be on a second heat or on a first heat if I can , I will take my left hand and roll , or push this hand toward the back of the hammer. This causes the hammer to curve the edge back toward the tang. I will then put the bottom part of the ricasso on the anvil and strike down on the spine of the knife . This hammer blow is half on and half off of the anvil. When I put the bottom of the ricasso over on the edge of the anvil I pull the shoulder or edge that I have just pulled up against the side of the anvil. What I am doing with this hammer blow is setting this choil area good and crisp. This will also cause the thickness of the ricasso to widden assisting you if a slight false blow has strayed onto your ricasso, a flatter can be used to square up this shoulder area. Well that was a lot said, I hope I made sense. It is better demonstrating it.

 

Practice , practice, practice. There is no substitute for time at the hammer and anvil.

 

Timothy

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When I first got my 25 little giant I had to make new dies. A bladesmith from centralia Illinois recommended making matching planishing dies top and bottom. All four corners matched. There was a slight radius of approx. 1/4 inch from the center of the dies where they met in the middle and they radiused in a slight arc center to front and center to back on the top and the bottom dies. When you put a blade in the jaws to forge the beginning of the cutting edge at the ricasso, I butt up my tongs right up to the bottom die and start forging gently. I let the hammer do the work and gradually pull the blade away from the center causing the edge to become thinner. This is pinching that sharp choil area making a nice sharp pull down that looks so good. I like the edge of the blade to be right up next to the ricasso. Some times I will leave the hammer hit several times right in the same spot gradually turning the handle or what will be the tang of the knife towards the hammer. For instance. I have a three foot piece of 1 inch X 1/4 inch piece of tool steel, lets say 1080. I forged a point with a gradual taper. It is now time to pull down the edge, or as some call it start forging the shoulder . I hold the cold handle of the 3 ft. section with my left hand. I heat up to a high orange or slightly yellow heat about 6 inches of the steel and clamp my single pick up tongs at the ricasso area. If you want a 4 inch blade with a 1 inch ricasso I clamp the tong right where the 5 inch begins. I am holding the tongs in my right hand, and lay the hot steel almost in the center of the dies right where they crest. I butt the tong up against the bottom die and begin pressing the foot control lever with my right foot. As the hammer is striking the hot steel the steel is going to want to be squeezed back toward the operator. I control this by resting my tongs against my side giving some resistance. As the hammer is cycling and hitting the same spot I want there to be only one hammer mark where the top and bottom die hit together. I spend a lot of time making sure these dies are perfectly matched on this side so there is a crisp hammer line pulling the edge down forming a nice choil. Some times , it may be on a second heat or on a first heat if I can , I will take my left hand and roll , or push this hand toward the back of the hammer. This causes the hammer to curve the edge back toward the tang. I will then put the bottom part of the ricasso on the anvil and strike down on the spine of the knife . This hammer blow is half on and half off of the anvil. When I put the bottom of the ricasso over on the edge of the anvil I pull the shoulder or edge that I have just pulled up against the side of the anvil. What I am doing with this hammer blow is setting this choil area good and crisp. This will also cause the thickness of the ricasso to widden assisting you if a slight false blow has strayed onto your ricasso, a flatter can be used to square up this shoulder area. Well that was a lot said, I hope I made sense. It is better demonstrating it.

 

Practice , practice, practice. There is no substitute for time at the hammer and anvil.

 

Timothy

Thanks Tim ,That's alot of useful information to digest..I wish I could see you Demonstrate,,,After watching you at the Nov. Hammer-In,I went home and forged one of your hatchets out of Damascus and It came out great..Your tutoral in Blade also helped alot

 

Tim, I appreciate your reply and all the help you've given to the knife community...Arthur Lynn

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." — Mark Twain

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