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does this even make sense?


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Hello all,

 

I was just told by a local renfair blacksmith fellow that we are supposed to forge our blades from east to west then quench them from north to south...it as he says makes superior crystalline structure than any other direction.

 

Personally I have never heard of this sort of thing from any of my metals classes/ hammerins/ chats with other smiths or anything of the sort. So naturally I am Intensely skeptical of this persons claims.

 

can anyone else dispel or validate this said claim?

Gnáthamh na hoibre an t-eólas

(Knowledge comes through practice)

 

Iron is full of impurities that weaken it; through the forging fire, it becomes steel and is transformed into a razor-sharp sword. Human beings develop in the same fashion. - Morihei Ueshiba

 

my site: http://lfcforgeworks.webs.com/

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Hello all,

 

I was just told by a local renfair blacksmith fellow that we are supposed to forge our blades from east to west then quench them from north to south...it as he says makes superior crystalline structure than any other direction.

 

Personally I have never heard of this sort of thing from any of my metals classes/ hammerins/ chats with other smiths or anything of the sort. So naturally I am Intensely skeptical of this persons claims.

 

can anyone else dispel or validate this said claim?

 

Yes mate he is pulling your leg its a typicle tradesman to apprentice joke , like a carpenter sending his apprentice out for a lefthanded hammer or lead tack's or a glass hammer eather that or he is a compleat prat

 

tell

Terence.........(today started off perfect now --- watch sombody come and stuff it up ]

 

if it aint broke dont fix it

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yea tahts what I suspected.. I talked to Ric about it too and he said something similar.. that the guy could be a very good smith and not understand the metallurgy of what hes doing.

 

I find this sort of info to be a amusement as well as a problem because people will believe a fantastic tale over the truth of what is really happening. Misinformation is one of those things that just bugs me to no end.

Gnáthamh na hoibre an t-eólas

(Knowledge comes through practice)

 

Iron is full of impurities that weaken it; through the forging fire, it becomes steel and is transformed into a razor-sharp sword. Human beings develop in the same fashion. - Morihei Ueshiba

 

my site: http://lfcforgeworks.webs.com/

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current thing is he can use this special method to make tomahawks cut other hawk blades... to me this is simply a matter of the steel of each hawk, the HT or lack thereof of each .. .say a L6 or S7 hawk made and HT properly will always cut into a hawk blade made of mild steel, normalized 1050 so something similar. Hes also said that he along with 3 other pple are the only ones besides NASA that know how to do this. seems rather like a excalibur story to me meant to up sales than be factual... sad thing is my friend who is running our metalwork business is dead set that this guy knows the best way and that Im rejecting it because nobody else in the custom blade world does it.

 

up till about 6 months ago my friend thought u could harden mild steel the same way as carbon steel so Im rather annoyed that hes beleiving everyhting this undocumented and unproven ren fair smith is saying rather than listen to the experiance myself and the people on this forum have that say it doesnt matter on direction and whatnot..

 

 

excuse the rant...Next thing Im expecting to hear is that this smith is immortal and forged excalibur for king arthur and was formerly known as merlin or something

Gnáthamh na hoibre an t-eólas

(Knowledge comes through practice)

 

Iron is full of impurities that weaken it; through the forging fire, it becomes steel and is transformed into a razor-sharp sword. Human beings develop in the same fashion. - Morihei Ueshiba

 

my site: http://lfcforgeworks.webs.com/

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Hey Pat what that guy is doing is a very old trick, the Japanese would do the same thing, inorder to sell a blade they would say they only quench in water from such and such lake, and only quench when the moon is full and the color of hot steel. None of that was true they just wanted to add to the mystery that is called steel.

 

So go back to him and say i heard that if you hold hot steel in your right hand while facing north will not burn you as bad as ifyou were holding te steel in your left hand facing south. key word is holding hot steel in your hand, see if he gets it.

John W Smith
www.smith-forge.org

Fire and wind come from the sky, from the gods of the sky. But Crom is your god, Crom and he lives in the earth. Once, giants lived in the Earth, Conan. And in the darkness of chaos, they fooled Crom, and they took from him the enigma of steel. Crom was angered. And the Earth shook. Fire and wind struck down these giants, and they threw their bodies into the waters, but in their rage, the gods forgot the secret of steel and left it on the battlefield. We who found it are just men. Not gods. Not giants. Just men. The secret of steel has always carried with it a mystery. You must learn its riddle, Conan. You must learn its discipline. For no one - no one in this world can you trust. Not men, not women, not beasts.

[Points to sword]

This you can trust

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John,

 

first off thats exactly what I told my friend... its a story to up the sales.. and haha I will have to do that< Im going to try to go see the smith longer and see what else hes up to oddly.

 

I called my metals manufacturing tech major friend and told him this story.. he actually fell off his seat laughing mid meal with his family.

 

as I said earlier.. this is a tie between it amusign me and irritating me because its misinformation at a supposedly historic recreation. that and my friend is trying to get me to redo my forge set up so I can follow this guys secret method and make better blades.

Gnáthamh na hoibre an t-eólas

(Knowledge comes through practice)

 

Iron is full of impurities that weaken it; through the forging fire, it becomes steel and is transformed into a razor-sharp sword. Human beings develop in the same fashion. - Morihei Ueshiba

 

my site: http://lfcforgeworks.webs.com/

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lol I was actually thinking about taking Rics idea of asking him to come demo at the local university, Id place him in a room where he doesnt know which way is north then ask him to make a blade to show that theres no difference in the performance if you have a good HT. Although Johns idea has me amused enough to propose that to him too haha

Gnáthamh na hoibre an t-eólas

(Knowledge comes through practice)

 

Iron is full of impurities that weaken it; through the forging fire, it becomes steel and is transformed into a razor-sharp sword. Human beings develop in the same fashion. - Morihei Ueshiba

 

my site: http://lfcforgeworks.webs.com/

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there is a rather popular gentleman who i ran into a long time ago.

he was claiming similar things ..

(makes me wonder if it is the same gentleman) ...

he also came out with some wild and wonderful claims.

 

and he had quite a following of people - like, and i kid not, a cult of worshippers.

 

it was not harmful in itself, but it did get to be when these people had found my website and started telling people that the blades therein were of sub-quality because i did not do these strange rituals that this smith had claimed were the key to bladesmithing.

 

im not one to comment on peoples beliefs .. and i know i have some strange ideas when it comes to smithing as well ..

but i think some of this sort of thing that starts as a mere joke .. ends up becoming gospel .. and soon people who want to be 'in the know' will start to adopt it and all manner of hell breaks loose.

its not anyones fault .. it just seems to happen with some people.

 

Pat - if your friend is the friend i know about.. just tell him that you arent going to be changing your workshop around, because you are trying to find an even better way to make blades and that how it sits right now, your anvil catches the moons powerful bladesmithing rays in just the right way. ;)

deeDWF4.jpg

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there is a rather popular gentleman who i ran into a long time ago.

he was claiming similar things ..

(makes me wonder if it is the same gentleman) ...

he also came out with some wild and wonderful claims.

 

and he had quite a following of people - like, and i kid not, a cult of worshippers.

 

it was not harmful in itself, but it did get to be when these people had found my website and started telling people that the blades therein were of sub-quality because i did not do these strange rituals that this smith had claimed were the key to bladesmithing.

 

im not one to comment on peoples beliefs .. and i know i have some strange ideas when it comes to smithing as well ..

but i think some of this sort of thing that starts as a mere joke .. ends up becoming gospel .. and soon people who want to be 'in the know' will start to adopt it and all manner of hell breaks loose.

its not anyones fault .. it just seems to happen with some people.

 

Pat - if your friend is the friend i know about.. just tell him that you arent going to be changing your workshop around, because you are trying to find an even better way to make blades and that how it sits right now, your anvil catches the moons powerful bladesmithing rays in just the right way. ;)

 

 

are we thinking of the same southwestern united states self proclaimed master bladesmith?

Let not the swords of good and free men be reforged into plowshares, but may they rest in a place of honor; ready, well oiled and God willing unused. For if the price of peace becomes licking the boots of tyrants, then "To Arms!" I say, and may the fortunes of war smile upon patriots

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lol

 

I had a guy at the local faire tell me that the rebar he was using was special stuff they make in China. Apparently they put it in a huge centrifuge to spin out the impurities while they add carbon....then it goes on racks to "dry". My wife and I nearly died laughing after we got far enough away not to offend.

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Alot of the Bunk that gets put out there by the Renn Fairy folks is that Bunnies and Light Wannabe Pagan ( no offense to the local pagans, not meaning to offend but describe these folks ) ijits to sell their stuff. They will say they forge special blades under the full moon light and what not during the Dark Moon. I heard all sorts of Bunk like that while laughing my ass off around Renn Faires while I was younger. Scary thing is some of them really believe in it, and thats well and good for them, but when you run into the SCA folks, I mean the into the real history side of the SCA not the Fairy comic-con folks around the bend, they know what they are doing blacksmith wise and blade forging. I used to know some really skilled armor smiths when I lived back east.

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just use common sense.......dude your boned

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Dee, yes it is. and so far my idea is to tell him that if he wishes to beleive that guys BS hes more than welcome to but if hes going to continue to insult me everytime he hears of this superior new method to do things that is better than what i already do without any sort of evidence ill just refuse to make anything haha. if he wants to have a test of this method vs the method i use then I will make 2 as close to identical blades as possible, same grind, same steel, same HT, same thickness, same length and Ill destructive test them both. im sure they will both show to be equal barring any subsurface flaws

Gnáthamh na hoibre an t-eólas

(Knowledge comes through practice)

 

Iron is full of impurities that weaken it; through the forging fire, it becomes steel and is transformed into a razor-sharp sword. Human beings develop in the same fashion. - Morihei Ueshiba

 

my site: http://lfcforgeworks.webs.com/

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I've been hearing the "directional heat-treating" theory (or voodoo) for a while, I can't say I ever heard the part about forging in an east-west axis, though. I myself prefer to forge facing east/northeast, and quench in whatever direction the bucket happens to be facing ;).

 

Maybe I'd sell more blades if I made up a better story..."this blade is quenched in the pee of a goat who ate ferns, as described in ancient texts"...:D)

My hand-forged knives and tools at Etsy.com: http://www.etsy.com/shop/oldschooltools

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Hey don't knock the goat pee, :angry: but the real secret is too give the goat a salt block to munch on and that way you get a brine/pee solution. Of course the afore mentioned goat pee can only be collected on the third night of a full moon! It must be a full moon and not a new moon phase or the collection coud get you kicked by the goat! :ph34r::lol::wacko:

C Craft Customs ~~~ With every custom knife I build I try to accomplish three things. I want that knife to look so good you just have to pick it up, feel so good in your hand you can't wait to try it, and once you use it, you never want to put it down ! If I capture those three factors in each knife I build, I am assured the knife will become a piece that is used and treasured by its owner! ~~~ C Craft

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Lions blood anyone? i hear it makes a fierce sword that kills opponents for you!! its been used for centuries by ninja to achieve a much quieter blade and one that can cut through stone!!

Gnáthamh na hoibre an t-eólas

(Knowledge comes through practice)

 

Iron is full of impurities that weaken it; through the forging fire, it becomes steel and is transformed into a razor-sharp sword. Human beings develop in the same fashion. - Morihei Ueshiba

 

my site: http://lfcforgeworks.webs.com/

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I'm partial to monk's urine for quenching. It's not quite as good as a virgin's urine but it's a lot easier to come by ;) .

 

Doug Lester (bad bladesmith, VERY bad bladesmith)

HELP...I'm a twenty year old trapped in the body of an old man!!!

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That's right Doug. I tried to get a virgin to give me sum pee and it did not end well. I had to marrie her. That was my first wife though :angry:

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I got his email from his card asking him to detail this directional method for me and explain how it works so I might better understand...and he has not replied to me, I told him I was a blade maker of 5 years and was interested in hearing more of his method. interesting how he wont reply eh??

Gnáthamh na hoibre an t-eólas

(Knowledge comes through practice)

 

Iron is full of impurities that weaken it; through the forging fire, it becomes steel and is transformed into a razor-sharp sword. Human beings develop in the same fashion. - Morihei Ueshiba

 

my site: http://lfcforgeworks.webs.com/

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Its all part of the show :)

 

One thing that might hold true however is.. the confidence thing in your own work bringing about a successful ht..

Maybe this guy quenches in water, and believes solidly that quenching facing a certain direction is the key to a more powerful blade.. so Hes all amped up and optimistic.. Anyway, it seems like when your in this sort of a mood things just go better.

 

I've had a lot of failed quenches and welds when I was sort of half thinking it was going to fail.. Never know :)

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this is true, ive messed up my fair share of blades doing experiments..often really dumb ones i was told would break a blade but I had to do it to see how much of a break would result from it.. whole visual and hands on learning type.

 

When people use a knife I make I tell them that It will perform how they want it to and that it wont break. however I always get the one smart@ss who makes the a comment of will it cut a tank?? or something outlandish..to which I reply, well I dont keep spare tanks around to test that so if it does let me know. haha

 

but yes I do definitely agree with you that if you get in that blade mood where your sure that all will go well and it does you just get more and more into it.

Gnáthamh na hoibre an t-eólas

(Knowledge comes through practice)

 

Iron is full of impurities that weaken it; through the forging fire, it becomes steel and is transformed into a razor-sharp sword. Human beings develop in the same fashion. - Morihei Ueshiba

 

my site: http://lfcforgeworks.webs.com/

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  • 4 weeks later...

I like this topic. One thing for sure is he is holding true to history. That sort of method is simply branding and salesmanship. Sort of in the nature of snake oil sales. It does seem to take on a life of it's own, but that's the nature of things especially in blacksmithing. How many times have your heard about lost arts in swordmaking and how even today we cannot equal the swords of yesteryear? I saw a show on the science channel, I think it was How do they do it? or something like that on sword making. This smith claimed his swords had the same structure as ancient swords and the method had been lost, until he discovered it and wonder of wonders he is the only one doing it. Of course he cryo quenched his blades. I did not know the ancients had cryo tanks. Cool, learn something new everyday.

Edited by mross
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I like this topic. One thing for sure is he is holding true to history. That sort of method is simply branding and salesmanship. Sort of in the nature of snake oil sales. It does seem to take on a life of it's own, but that's the nature of things especially in blacksmithing. How many times have your heard about lost arts in swordmaking and how even today we cannot equal the swords of yesteryear? I saw a show on the science channel, I think it was How do they do it? or something like that on sword making. This smith claimed his swords had the same structure as ancient swords and the method had been lost, until he discovered it and wonder of wonders he is the only one doing it. Of course he cryo quenched his blades. I did not now the ancients had cryo tanks. Cool, learn something new everyday.

 

Haha! I saw that, He also used the cross peen on the edges so that the "grain" would swirl around and make the blade harder. He wasn't using steel that had that sort of grain. It was like 1095 or so... what I was wondering is how'd he gotten so out of the loop as to believe this stuff. He claimed to know so much but you could just Google some of this stuff and find it wasn't true from wikipedia or something. It's weird. Like he just made it up or something.

“Then something Tookish woke up inside him, and he wished to go and see the great mountains, and hear the pine-trees and the waterfalls, and explore the caves, and wear a sword instead of a walking-stick.”

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