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J.S.Voutilainen

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I have noticed that there seems to be some confusion and/or questions concerning the basics of forging a puukko. I thought it would benefit some of you to see at least one way of achieving the ‘traditional’ blade geometry of a puukko-knife.

 

This might not be the best way to do it, but, it works for me and for many others. Furthermore, this is by no means meant to be a complete or detailed guide.

 

A brief explanation and a quick sketch of each major step of the process:

 

1.


I usually start with about 4mm x 22mm x enough-not-to-burn-my-fingers flat barstock, like this;

 

IMG_3884.jpg

 

When I use a steel that is only available in round bar I go for 11mm or 12 mm in diameter, and flatten it first.

 

2.

Use a suitable corner of the anvil to make one shoulder

 

IMG_3885.jpg

 

3.

Stretch out the tang. Forge meticulously, so that the thickest part is at the shoulder and there is a smooth taper towards the tip (of the tang)

 

IMG_3886.jpg

 

4.

Cut & remove burr - a bit shorter than the intended blade lenght. Like so;

 

IMG_3887.jpg

 

5.

Form the spine. Thickest part is where the shoulder is. Again there is a taper toward the tip. However, this time the taper need not be as pronounced, because you need material for the tip of the blade. Part B of the picture shows you what you should be aiming for.

 

IMG_3888.jpg

 

6.

Hammer the edge bevel. I start from the tang and work towards the tip. The piece starts to curve noticeably. Work both sides symmetrically

 

IMG_3889.jpg

 

7.

When making the edge bevel you can keep the blade straighter by simultanously hammering a bevel into the spine. Like so;

 

IMG_3890.jpg

 

This is where you get the 'diamond' cross section.

 

To get a good result you will probably have to alternate between step 6. and 7., and also, straighten the blade by hitting the edge gently, the spine against the anvil.

 

8.

Refine the shape of the blade until you get something like this

 

IMG_3891.jpg

 

9.

Make the other shoulder* just like the first, and at the same time straighten the tang. Notice the angle of the tang!

 

*difficult to get this step right - It is often necessary to adjust the shoulders afterwards (grinding, filing)

 

IMG_3892.jpg

 

10.

Bevel & stretch the tang

 

IMG_3893.jpg

 

11.

Refine the tang until you reach something like this

 

IMG_3894.jpg

 

12.

Add makers mark, straighten, normalize..... etc. etc.

 

If everything went well there should be relatively little grinding work to be done, and it should be easy to fit bolsters. If you are making a puukko with a birch bark handle make the tang as broad as you can.

Edited by J.S.Voutilainen
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Wow, this is one of the best forging tutorials I have ever seen. Very clear and easy to follow. When I start on my kith I will forge it like this.

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Kiitos!

 

Man, I really needed to see that! Great drawings also!

You should illustrate a book on forging Puukos.

 

-Gabriel

 

now I just need the weather to get closer to -5°c... 23°f

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Thank you!! I might just join this KITH

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Very well presented! Thank you for your efforts in creating this. It may lead me to make another entry for this years KITH and have the better -in my eyes- be submitted.

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Admins, can we please pin this!

 

DITTO !!!! :D

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And just to make sure I still can..

 

taosteos.jpg

 

It's not the best I've ever made. At least I got my makers mark aligned well this time. Shoulders are good enough also, except for the hump.

 

Let's call it acceptable :P

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Oh, almost forgot. Here it is from above, so that you can see the taper + the twist I had to correct.

 

Ylap.jpg

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I have noticed that there seems to be some confusion and/or questions concerning the basics of forging a puukko. I thought it would benefit some of you to see at least one way of achieving the ‘traditional’ blade geometry of a puukko-knife.

.......................

 

That is an excellent tutorial. If you scroll down rather quickly it looks almost like an animation ;)

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