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Nick Wheeler

pursuing the elusive hamon...

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Hey folks... I haven't posted much here in a long time because I simply didn't have anything to share.

 

There are a lot of folks here better at creating and bringing out a hamon than I am... None-the-less, I decided to share some simple snapshots I took in the shop while working on a clay hardened W2 blade. :)

(for whatever it's worth, I heat-treated this blade back in ~Jan 2007, but just finally got around to polishing it last week Aug 2010)

Sanding to a super clean 2500X

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2500 sure is shiny! ;)

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It's ALMOST clean enough...

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Okay.... it's clean

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Etching.... warmed up vinegar cut with dish soap. Application is a wad of paper towel.

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After 10 minutes of etching

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The finishing bench set up for this stuff

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First step of removing the oxides... I have really come to like Liquid Flitz... much more than the original blue paste form.

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Etch again...

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Polish... then etch again.....

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A temporary handle to make it easier to hang onto

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Some of you know I posted about a powdered abrasive applicator recently. Well here's one I came up with and like very much... It mimics my thumb, but saves my thumb a lot of grief!!! :D

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Some tools of the trade...

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I REALLY enjoy dedicated tools that were created for a specific task and exist just because of that need. Even simple ones like this little bench block... :)

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Polishing with the foam faced block and a slurry of 1500X SiC powder and either oil or Diamond compound thinner. I have yet to decide which one I like better.

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It seems it always comes down to just my thumb in the end afterall ;) I can feel what the slurry is doing... how it's cutting, is it too thick, too thin, etc... :)

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So after the course of about three days of full time work, what do I have to show for it???

 

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I think I'd be preaching to the choir here if I tried articulating all the reasoning for this. No??? ;)

 

But for the few here who might not know... A clay hardened blade is a thing of organic and elegant beauty (in my humble opinion!) There is something intangible about it... something about the way it dances around in the light as you move the blade here and there...

 

I have really bad ADD that forces me to approach my work in a very structured, organized manner... or my shop just becomes a mess of chaos in which nothing ever gets done. Because of that, I have come to rely on precision as a cornerstone of my shop practices. There is something unbelievably gratifying about integrating a refined and particular approach to work, and the art that is creating and bringing out a hamon.

 

Hands down, the number one man I have to thank for helping to send me along on that journey is Don Fogg.

 

THANK YOU DON!!! :)

 

Thanks for looking folks :)

Edited by Nick Wheeler

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Amazing! now I know what I was missing-------------insanity--------------just kidding.

Super nice work, that finish is top notch.

Thanks for sharing,

 

 

Peter

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beautiful - way to allow the steel to show the beauty that is within it. Released by fire and will.

 

thanks for sharing.

 

kc

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The bench block....I don't understand, you're not supposed to use the back heel sole of your shoe? lol.

 

that's a neat idea.

Blade looks fantastic.

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Great looking hamon! Excellent activity, and a fantastic polish. You should be proud.

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Thank you for showing.

It draws you in: your work inspires me to get back to my learning experiments in the borderlands of Hamon.

 

 

Impressive, dedicated and most of all beautiful.

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Beautiful, thanks for sharing Nick.

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Yeah Nick,biggrin.gif nice one!

I like your extra thumb too... it was fun to watch the Hamon apprear... no matter how many times you see it... Like oiling a piece of figured wood for the first time...

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Thanks everyone :)

 

This stuff is humbling :unsure: , frustrating :wacko: , and very rewarding :D all at the same time.

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Very nice!! especially the ashi..so well developed. AND you've the elusive Utsuri effect!

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