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What did you do in your shop today?


Joshua States

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Underhelming to be sure, but I put those baby tongs I recently made to good use. Forged out some tangs on the charcoal chopper project. I'm really just copying what I see as I've taken no blade class nor purchased any bladesmithing books.

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I tried two tang shapes in the forging. Of course, one was much easier to make than the other. Perhaps next time I will draw out the tang before I  peen out the blade.

 

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I continue to love my charcoal forge, and I must say these shorter tongs (10 inches) are much more pleasant to use than the 20 inch monsters I first made. Scraped the bottom of my charcoal bucket and had to burn the fire down to nubbins but still had enough heat to make my first blacksmith knife out of some random piece of spring steel. At least I hope it was spring steel!

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I thought I would try playing with the few hand-gravers I got about 5 years ago and never really did anything with..

I used annealed brass as the base and copper as the inlay, and I undercut the lines to hopefully hold it all in.:ph34r:

 

I just wanted to try like a grass or wheat design, simple lines with maybe a curve,lol!

lil curly-esque-cue with my massively nasty carving,lol!

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After the copper was set and some filing....

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and after some sanding..

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Fun stuff, I'd like to keep playing with it!

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I tried to forge a small integral from 1/2" round 440C.  Kind of like cold-forging 1018.  Stuff does NOT move under the hammer.  

It was an afterthought, I lit the forge to make a handle for a copper ladle bowl I got a while back, and after I finished that I thought I would see how far I could take it in half an hour.  Not far, it turns out. :lol:

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Family responsibility & beer drinking weekend.

My cousin got a job in Fiji (pilot) and I had to collect him at the airport coming home from Angola.

 

Did manage use Saturday morning to get my original gas forge going again, considering all the time, money and effort that gone into my ribbon burner forge it was a bit disgusting how easy it was to get it running and do a few tweaks to a 52100 blade I forged out last weekend.

 

The Rugby world cup and my general disinterest in ball sports has really made social interactions uncomfortable/embarrassing recently. 
Am I alone in this? :lol: 

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8 minutes ago, Alan Longmire said:

 

Nope!  Can't abide watching sports in general. Never saw the point. Playing, sure.  Watching? Why in the world would I care? :P

When I seriously got into fly fishing I used to get up 5am to watch the fishing shows on ESPN, realised how stupid that was and rather got up early and went fishing.

Stopped wasting hours on F1 races, now I watch Drive to Survive on Netflix, get a good summary of the season complete with swearing :lol:
I do watch UFC religiously and dream about being 20-30 years younger.  Let's just say at the heavyweight limit I look skinny, no belly flab or love handles, head is thick enough so I can take a hit, just need some technique :blink: 

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I have never made a hammer or any hafted tool for that matter before but was asked to make one along with a few other things meant as christmas gifts.

 

Was kinda fun though I will definitely make some better thought out drifts in the future, preferably some that won't burn my hand from being so short :lol:

 

Even though it was forged almost completely to shape it also needed to be sanded completely smooth as it also happens to be damascus :lol:

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On 10/21/2023 at 2:52 PM, Alan Longmire said:

I tried to forge a small integral from 1/2" round 440C.  Kind of like cold-forging 1018.  Stuff does NOT move under the hammer.  

It was an afterthought, I lit the forge to make a handle for a copper ladle bowl I got a while back, and after I finished that I thought I would see how far I could take it in half an hour.  Not far, it turns out. :lol:

I would think it would help get it extra hot and soak it for a bit first.  There are primary M7C3 carbides in there (meaning they form during solidification - right from the liquid), which are pretty big (comparatively speaking); they're long and skinny.  You have to soak at pretty high temp to dissolve them, then the steel will move easier under the hammer and you will get smaller carbides forming at the end.  The steel may have already done this from the mill, but perhaps not.  ASM Heat Treater's guide says the forging range is 1905-2150 F, and I would say you should be closer to the top end.  When done forging, do a soak at about 1200F to ensure carbides re-precipitate.  Then HT as normal.  Of course, you should absolutely test the results of this procedure to ensure it ends up doing what you want it to do for you.  

 

Note: Kevin Cashen recommends never dissolving carbides to a point you get more than 0.8% C in your matrix, but that is qualified with having small and dispersed carbides to begin with.  If your carbides are big to begin with, then you need to dissolved them and create new smaller ones.  It is certainly easier to not mess with the carbides if you don't need to.  

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Thanks for that, Jerrod!

 

I was trying to keep it in that range, and I can attest that it won't move at all below 1900 F!  I did a short soak at around 2200F as judged by incandescence (coal forge and my nice Omega thermocouple probe shall not mix!), basically what I'd call a full welding heat on wrought.  That was after I tried starting to forge at around 1900 and having the hammer bounce back hard without leaving much of a dent.

 

The stock is 1/2" round 440C from MSCdirect, sold as annealed, but polished.  

 

On my next attempt I'll hold it at high heat longer before I start forging.  I've done A2 and H13 before, and I forgot how much I don't like forging a steel that air hardens...  :rolleyes:  It may be that I do not start a line of stainless integrals after all.  :lol:  Gotta do the one, though, just because I started it.  

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So, no smash, make flat, Alan?

 

Knife making just might be way to hard for me. I'm not as swift as I used to be. I had to google "one molar solution" so I could mix up a batch of acid to remove scale from my charcoal chopper project, and I WAS A WET CHEMIST!

 

And why am I making blacksmithing knives for practice? I thought I was going to be a hobby blacksmith.

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More like "Smash, make little dent, repeat," on that 440C. :rolleyes:

 

What acid were you trying to mix to a one molar solution?  That's a new one on me, and I do a bunch of odd chemistry stuff.  I mean, I remember what molar weight is and all that from chemistry class, but in practice I just do ratios of acid to distilled water (always add acid to the water, not the other way around!) and if needed, like for ferric nitrate, I just slowly add iron filings/steel wool until it can't eat any more.

 

To remove scale I just soak in white vinegar overnight.  I've heard that swimming pool chemicals like Ph-down do it faster and better, I've just not tried that.

 

With ferric chloride for etching damascus I just get the concentrated liquid for etching circuit boards and dilute with four parts distilled water.  

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Not today, but last week. Two mortise chisels (old oval bolstered for scale), both forged out of round stock and then ground. Longer of the two is O1, shorter is 52100 - both driven to as high as I can get hardness without bloating grain. 63 for O1 with two 400F tempers, and 64 for 52100. 

 

both work well in hardwood for their intended purpose - mortising. 

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Wasn't initially sure if the 1/2: square-ish cross section of the bigger one would get high hardness through and through in brine. But 52100, even at high hardness, is probably better for a mortise chisel than O1.  A professional woodworker wouldn't break either, but if I provide something like this to amateurs, it has to be made with someone over-assuming what "levering" means in mortising. They are differentially hardened to some extent, though. they're not unhardened near the bolster but they are probably closer to 55/60, which with at least the 52100 chisel means a break will end at the business end. Still would ruin the experience, though. 

 

I did hammer one out of round rod in about 15 minutes at lunch yesterday, and another one today. The brown handled one I like enough to make myself a set of 5.

 

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if you feel like aesthetics could be improved near the bolster, you're right - it could be tidied up, but there's no real precedent in tools for something like that. Mid to late 1800s would be a little less neat in most cases. 

 

Fair to say that I would neither measure up to a bladesmith or a real blacksmith, either. And probably never will have the skill to do either of those with the focus being on tools. 

Edited by David Weaver
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I haven't posted on this forum in a while, but I plan to change that:lol: . I'm almost done with making my first real knife. And I have someone who wants to buy it as my first commission. I just need to fit the handle, finish sanding the guard and blade, and harden the knife. Not in that order, of course.

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Those are very nice chisels, David!

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