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Hello All,

I finally have the video together of the students working during the five day wootz class I taught at the New England School of Metalworking in October, 2010.

It was a good class with six students and most made two ingots.

The goal was not to make blades, but explore how wootz is made and forged.

 

They all did a very fine job of it.

 

http://www.doorcountyforgeworks.com/Wootz.html

 

 

Ric

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Thanks for sharing, Ric!

I did put the link into my german thread on messerforum.net

it is a nice way to bring others nearer to crucible steel,

 

by the way, did you notice any differences in the achieved bandings, when using power hammers or hand hammers?

I am still collecting infos on that special part, and the effect of "fullering" the edges, too

 

being more into the handhammering after I have seen probs when the machine hammering was done too fast or too hard...

 

Greetzes

Edited by Jokke
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Thanks for sharing, Ric!

I did put the link into my german thread on messerforum.net

it is a nice way to bring others nearer to crucible steel,

 

by the way, did you notice any differences in the achieved bandings, when using power hammers or hand hammers?

I am still collecting infos on that special part, and the effect of "fullering" the edges, too

 

being more into the handhammering after I have seen probs when the machine hammering was done too fast or too hard...

 

Greetzes

Please tell the folk at "Messerforum" I say hello and I have it in mind to seek a table at one of the German shows if there is space in 2012 (any help would be appreciated). It has been 20 years since I was in Germany and at the time I did not visit the Solingen Klingenmuseum..which I would like very much to do.

 

Most everything seems to matter at some point..the hammer shape can cause a change in pattern (same as in pattern-welding) and if you hit with e hammer the size of the billet then the pattern is "less" than if you worked the entire billet with just a small ball peen. To be sure temperature and time have effects as well.

However, I am 40 and my arm tendons are going (I believe I was always gripping the hammer too hard and over the years I have done damage) so I will use any and all power tools I can get.... provided they do the work the way it needs to get done.

I still enjoy making things without electricity, but this is not the way I normally work nor is it a method I can continue into old age.

 

Ric

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Ric, very cool, thanks. You cut out the bit where we all ran through the shop in our teddies :lol: Yeah, I don't remember that either.

 

To put a face to *that* picture, I'm the very handsome guy that talks about wootz being like women :lol:

 

A very enjoyable class, do it if you can.

 

Adriaan

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i think Ric is wisely onto something there with the powertools... too much of the hand hammering wootz and you'll break down over the years.... i'd rather be forging swords than breaking down ingots to barstock... i can personally say that the breaking down of the ingots is exhausting... not much gas left in the tank for forging blades after...

 

- the steel will usually tell you when your going too fast ... so method shouldn't matter so much

 

 

nice video... ! any pictures of final pattern ?

 

personally i prefer 8 to 10lbs hammers with lots of crown to start breaking down the ingot, then smaller once it reaches 1/4 bar

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Greg,

I do not have any photos of the patterns made other than what I showed, but perhaps the students will post some.

The furthest along was the blade by Jon, but I am not sure he has had time to do much with it.

 

Maybe Adrian can post something?

 

Ric

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Greg,

I do not have any photos of the patterns made other than what I showed, but perhaps the students will post some.

The furthest along was the blade by Jon, but I am not sure he has had time to do much with it.

 

Maybe Adrian can post something?

 

Ric

 

I have been trying to see any kind of patterning on the bar I made in class but have not been able to. It is featureless, even sanding to 1000 grit and etching lightly with ferric chloride. When I cut through the initial cake and etched it there was a clear pattern. I had around 70 heating cycles. What could have happened and what can I do to get the pattern back, if anything?

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when hand sanding.. did you use abit of mineral oil on it at the higher grits.. sometimes you can burnish the bar abit.. if too much cuttings are on your paper..

 

often you can easily see the pattern without the etch ... usually at close to 120 grit on the belt sander with a fresh belt..

 

I'm sure Ric will be by in abit...to sort it out..

 

wootz already confounded me once today... don't want my bad luck to spread.. :unsure:

 

 

Greg

 

 

ps.. don't worry.. the etch can be a pita (especially Indian armour :angry:

 

 

 

 

 

I have been trying to see any kind of patterning on the bar I made in class but have not been able to. It is featureless, even sanding to 1000 grit and etching lightly with ferric chloride. When I cut through the initial cake and etched it there was a clear pattern. I had around 70 heating cycles. What could have happened and what can I do to get the pattern back, if anything?

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I have been trying to see any kind of patterning on the bar I made in class but have not been able to. It is featureless, even sanding to 1000 grit and etching lightly with ferric chloride. When I cut through the initial cake and etched it there was a clear pattern. I had around 70 heating cycles. What could have happened and what can I do to get the pattern back, if anything?

 

If I recall you had etched the bar at the class and it showed some outer decarb as well as a bit of pattern.

I suggest you clean back to 600 grit with new paper using ferric as the lube. wipe clean, re-apply the ferric and rinse with water. The ferric should be diluted to a shadow of its bottle strength...three water to one acid.

 

If you still get nothing then clean and etch the end of the bar or grind an angle cut on the end...60 degree so as to cut through any surface issues. You may not be deep enough yet.

 

The first blade I made many a year ago was forged to shape and I did not remove the surface decarb...the pattern was buried.

 

Ric

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If I recall you had etched the bar at the class and it showed some outer decarb as well as a bit of pattern.

I suggest you clean back to 600 grit with new paper using ferric as the lube. wipe clean, re-apply the ferric and rinse with water. The ferric should be diluted to a shadow of its bottle strength...three water to one acid.

 

If you still get nothing then clean and etch the end of the bar or grind an angle cut on the end...60 degree so as to cut through any surface issues. You may not be deep enough yet.

 

The first blade I made many a year ago was forged to shape and I did not remove the surface decarb...the pattern was buried.

 

Ric

 

I'll try the 60 degree cut. Real life took over right after the class ended so I have not been able to spend any time figuring it out. I just left a $1000 bar of wootz standing against the wall :lol:

 

You also mentioned heating the steel once to the max safe temp. to "re-instate" the pattern if it had somehow gotten lost?

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I did the 60 degree cut and went up to 2000 grit and I would not call the pattern visible, very tiny grainy little things is what I would call it. I had cut a corner off the original ingot and the pattern there is very bold. I took apart a microscope and hand-checked the pattern on the cake with that and you can see the bright carbides clearly.

 

As a complete beginner, I would tend to think that in the process of breaking down the dendrites, the pattern could get too small and diffuse. If we're breaking down the carbides, I assume we could go too far? Is this possible and how to recover from that?

 

Again, I know nothing so I tend to talk about "thingies" a bit :lol:

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  • 1 month later...

Ric, I hope you received the wootz piece. Any ideas on getting the pattern to show?

 

Thanks for taking the time to look at it,

Adriaan

 

Yep..got it...thought I sent you a message.

I'll work on in a little bit....got a demo to give this weekend and some work to get out the door next week.

 

Ric

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  • 1 month later...

Thanks for sharing some footage of your class, it looks like a good time was had by all. It is good to see the know how being shared around. Keep up the good work.

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