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Logan D.

Blade Metals and Where to buy them?

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I'm new to blade making and unfortunately I don't know where to buy metal. I'm looking to try knife-making, with grinder and drill and all. I want to make them out of 9260 spring steel, carbon steel and maybe T1, but the only issue is I don't know where to buy the steel. Does anyone know where I could buy the metal online or around Greenville, South Carolina?

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Logan,

You can do a lot with scrap steel. Automotive leaf springs are typically somewhere in the 5160 range and old files or farrier's rasps often behave like 1095 or W-2. You can buy stock online from Admiral Steel, Aldo (the New Jersey Steel Baron) or Kelly Cupples.

Good luck!

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The only source for small amounts of 9260 that I know of is Admiral Steel and they sell it in only two widths. The only other place that I found that could supply it had a $2K minimum order. Admiral lists it with their 5160 steel. If you pull up their list of 5160 on their list of on-line blade steels and read down it you will notice the two sizes of 9260 listed in with them.

 

One question, what is your thinking behind using T1 for a knife?

 

Doug

Edited by Doug Lester

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Didn't Kelly sell Ellis recently and its now in someonelses hands?

 

Darren Ellis sold his opperation to these folks:

 

http://www.hightemptools.com/ link

 

They still have a link to Kelly Cupples steel supply.

 

http://www.hightemptools.com/steel.html

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Don't know about T1. Personally the hot hardness of T1 or any of the highspeed steels would keep me from playing with it in a forge environment, and as a 20 year machinist unless you have a fully annealed piece and one wickedly ridgid setup with flood coolant your not gonna drill it either. Just saying. Any way dont know where to get 9260, but for the carbon steels I go through Kelly if he has what i need at the time or use Jantz Supply Jantz supply. Some of Jantz's stuff is a bit chinsy but the steel is good, cheap, and you can get it in small orders closer to size. Good luck to you and hope to see your work sometime.

Bret

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For good cheap practice stock, find a local spring shop (look in the yellow pages under automotive springs) and see if you can buy some of thier drops from new stock. IF you're lucky, the code on the springs will have the magic numbers 5160 or 9260, but usually it won't. In that case you can treat them like 5160 and you won't be too far from wrong, but you still won't know for sure. The really heavy truck springs from dump trucks, etc, the ones that are about an inch thick in the middle, can be 6150, which while a good steel will wear you out under the hammer. Be warned the guys at the shop will look at you funny if you ask what kind of steel they have. To them it's just spring steel. If you're really lucky the manager might have an analysis of any given batch, but that's unlikely. They don't do the HT on 'em there, as spring stock comes pre-heat-treated for spring duty. They just cold-press them and send 'em out.

 

Only take the new stock. Used springs (especially if they're in the dumpster at a spring shop!) often have fatigue cracks that won't show up until the final polish after hardening and tempering.

 

For the ultimate in user-friendly steel get some of Aldo's 1084. It's cheap for what it is, easy to deal with, and makes a quality blade. Avoid the higher alloys like T1, M2, etc. until you really know what you're doing. For instance, I avoid them myself. ;)

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He might be thinking of T-1 low-alloy abrasion resistant plate. Not really suitable for a knife either.

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