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Well I am new around here, but have been making knives for a short while.

 

I love making integrals and have a nice little stash of some of Don Hanson's W2....that I now covet for special projects.

 

So I scored some W1 from Aldo Bruno.

I have some round, square and rectangular stock that I like.

 

>>>...however the first two pieces I heat treated out of it had that fine and really

difficult "frosty decarb" that sometimes can occur in W2.

 

I sanded for what seemed like forever & just could not get through it.

 

So I am curious what others have to say, experiences, and tips.

 

Thanks a million.

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Firescale is just as hard or harder than the average abrasive. It will quickly dull files, so be advised. You can soak the piece in an acid, vinegar has been used for this purpose for centuries but, can take a while to get it all. You can use throwaway abrasives to remove it, something like an angle grinder with a flap wheel or cup stone. Another option is to wirebrush it off but, that involves the danger that you will catch the piece and throw it.

 

~Bruce~

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I found using a angle grinder with a good head on it can take off most scale, you just have to be careful in the angle you hold it or you will end up reshaping your blade....as well as the heat generated while doing it...

Edited by WmHorus
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Thanks guys...but I was talking about the frosty coating underneath the fire scale.

 

As you probably know, Decarb can often look like little round pools on some steels like 1095 & 1084.

....usually I do not get that happening much since I do lots of chef knife blades that do not require such a long soak & I also keep the atmosphere rich & use a muffle furnace for HT..

......but the W1 pieces were integrals & they needed more time to get up to temp near the choil & integral bolster before quench.

 

What I got looked like a fine array of small circles (basically pure carbon) decarb that was very tough to get off so that I could get a clean etch to show the quench-lines.

 

Thanks.

 

-DON:)

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Ah, I get it now. Those little blister thingys. They are the result of overheating or holding too long at heat, and you're right, sanding does not make them go away. They're actually carbide segregation, which is why they are so hard.

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ive never had any of these decarb or carbide problems with W1 or any high carbon steels. if you take it up to a sub austenite temp and hold it the best you can ever once in a while removing allowing the thinner area to cool it helps with blades of varying thickness to reach an even temp while helping prevent the carbides. After that take it all up to temp and quench. this is how i do it, no warps or other bad things to happen. B)

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Thanks guys....and yes Alan...those little blister thingys....what a drag!

 

I'll program that approach that Steven mentioned next time....still can be difficult on the integrals but I think doable too!

 

Always more to learn.

 

-DON:)

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its very do-able with a forge that can be adjusted. if you can, slap a very thin clay was on also, and then soak the blade a little bit after you reach temp, if you have trouble keeping an even temp, just remove the blade and cool it a bit. i use W1 and W2 almost exclusively, with the exception of a few times, and have done this a fair amount of times, a few with an attempt at a hamon, and have been so far pretty lucky at avoiding decarb and such with this "method". im not an expert however, so id listen to alan or the more experienced smiths. just my .02 cents

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