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Bound and determined


Trevor Blackstone

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I am very new to the art of bladesmithing and I am slowly but surely figuring it out step by step. I'm still ages away from perfection and as of late have been making what I like to call "blade like objects " . Every day it seems to throw something new my way to learn from. ( or teach me a new curse word haha) like today I had the blade going smoothly actually doing what I planned on doing, that's an accomplishment of itself, and then I quenched the blade.... it didn't worp, awesome ! I started to clean up the blade and what do I find.... I nice unwelcome crack... dang. But hey happy to be here and I hope to learn lots form you all. 

Trevor 

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Along with what Wes said, how thick is that edge!! Thinner than a dime and it may crack! Some folks will wait till after HT to grind the edge!!!

C Craft Customs ~~~ With every custom knife I build I try to accomplish three things. I want that knife to look so good you just have to pick it up, feel so good in your hand you can't wait to try it, and once you use it, you never want to put it down ! If I capture those three factors in each knife I build, I am assured the knife will become a piece that is used and treasured by its owner! ~~~ C Craft

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54 minutes ago, Wes Detrick said:

What kind of steel and what did you use as a quenchant?

I'm currently trying out different types of metals all repurposed at the moment. This was an old wrench (not the best metal to work with but I figured good for practice) and for a quench I used old motor oil 

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22 minutes ago, C Craft said:

Along with what Wes said, how thick is that edge!! Thinner than a dime and it may crack! Some folks will wait till after HT to grind the edge!!!

Thanks for the advice. I'll make sure to try and keep the edge thicker next time and wait to put an edge on 

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29 minutes ago, Trevor Blackstone said:

I'm currently trying out different types of metals all repurposed at the moment. This was an old wrench (not the best metal to work with but I figured good for practice) and for a quench I used old motor oil 

Please do not use motor oil.  It's horrible as a quenchant, and it has all kinds of additives that are bad for your health.  Go get a gallon of canola oil at the store for 5 bucks.  Much much better, and it will smell like french fries.  
Using mystery steel is fraught with risk.  You can never be sure with what you are working with and how it will respond to the things you do to it.  

“In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer."  -Albert Camus

http://www.krakenforge.net/

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Hey French fry smell is a big plus, and if it works better even better! And I am so new that pretty much all steel is a mystery steel for me. Plus beggers can't be choosers when it comes to people donating steel items for a beginner like myself to work on. Thanks for the advice.

Trevor 

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Hello and welcome Trevor. Big +1 to the canola oil as a quenchant. Decent steel for blades is not really that expensive. Actually quench oil like parks will run you more than the steel your purchasing. Mystery steel is better suited for practicing your hammer techniques and getting comfortable moving steel. Good luck and welcome aboard.

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You are going to hear it over and over but a known steel can give you consistent results and in knife making that is what it is all about, getting good consistant results. You can buy knife steel in small quantities and then you know what to do with it!  Admiral Steel will sell it that way, http://www.admiralsteel.com/ As well Aldo from New Jersey Steel Baron,  http://newjerseysteelbaron.com/

The big thing is that with a known steel there is no guess work on how to handle it. So if it goes wrong it is all on your back for not doing one or more of the procedures correctly while making of the knife. 

The problem with a mystery steel is you don't know how to do it correctly because you don't know the given paramters of that particular steel you are using. It may be unhardenable or may contain contamints that cause problems, or it plain may not have enough carbon in it to make a knife blade. And if the last is the case all the work you put into your knife is all for nothing, because when you get done, all you end up with is a knife shaped object not a knife!

Also I agree with Wes, on the quench.

It takes a while to figure out what each facet of knife making has to do in reaching the final product. This what is called the learning curve and sometimes that can really be hard to get. When I first got started I figured well............ I really don't have to understand that part but, down the road you will find out.  YES I did need to know the why of it!! Good luck1

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C Craft Customs ~~~ With every custom knife I build I try to accomplish three things. I want that knife to look so good you just have to pick it up, feel so good in your hand you can't wait to try it, and once you use it, you never want to put it down ! If I capture those three factors in each knife I build, I am assured the knife will become a piece that is used and treasured by its owner! ~~~ C Craft

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Thank you for the steel sites. Now I will have to snoop around the forum to see what types of steel I should be purchasing. It is quite a learning curve and teaches me patients, and doesn't al3ays go my way but it's still fun and even more fun to learn and apply it to a knife.

 

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1 hour ago, Trevor Blackstone said:

Thank you for the steel sites. Now I will have to snoop around the forum to see what types of steel I should be purchasing. It is quite a learning curve and teaches me patients, and doesn't al3ays go my way but it's still fun and even more fun to learn and apply it to a knife.

10xx series of simple carbon steel are the easiest to heat treat. 1075, 1084 or 1095 are good blade steels. 1045 is probably too soft to be ideal.

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I started with 1095, 5160 and some old files. I felt I had the best results with the 1095 although for the most part I really like 5160 and find it extremely durable and not too difficult to move and heat treat

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I second the 10xx series steel, and 5160.  5160 is really easy and you have a few seconds to get it into the quench so you don't have to move super fast.  

“In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer."  -Albert Camus

http://www.krakenforge.net/

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Trevor, with just learning this sight is awesome, there is so many knowledgeable people on this forum. But for that help to be helpful they need to know the material you are using since all steels are different. The more information you can give to the forum the better they can help, and they will help, a lot. Good luck 

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I'd strongly recommend 1084 as a beginning steel! It's deep hardening and has a very forgiving cooling curve that works with a canola oil quench very well. On top of that, it holds a darn good edge and is very tough, suitable for all types of blades. 1095 and other shallow hardening steels may not be a great choice because of how much quicker they must be quenched and how much more precise your heat must be before the quench, in order to maximize their properties. Whatever you choose, best of luck!

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