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Stock removal with hand tools


Joël Mercier

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Now time to finish the peaked spine. Edit: it has been done by drawfiling with a mill bastard file. I then placed a 220 grit sandpaper under the file for smoother finish. I will polish with a Waterstone at the final finish. I've got small stones I plan to tie wrap on the jig pretty much the same way. My guess is it's gonna work just fine.

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Edited by Joël Mercier
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The bloodwood was easier to work with than I thought. It is very hard but a bit brittle so light rasp and sanding is required.

I used a band saw to cut the contour. Heard that Zeb? :P

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Edited by Joël Mercier
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I quenched the blade today. I used a thermocouple screwed inside a 2.5" pipe caped on one end. I tried to watch the decalescence but I'm afraid my newbie eyes are not experienced enough. Anyways, the thermocouple worked great! I had to turn the pressure down to around 2 psi in order to obtain a somewhat stable temperature of 1510°f. I put the knife in and waited around 5 mins and quenched it in 130°f canola oil. No visible warp and my Nicholson files skated on the edge. In fact I'm afraid I dulled the file :blink:.

It's now in the toaster oven for the tempering. I did set the temp on the lowish 375. I will eyeball the color of the blade and adjust accordingly.

V_20170911_152210.mp4

Edited by Joël Mercier
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2 hours ago, Joël Mercier said:

I quenched the blade today. I used a thermocouple screwed inside a 2.5" pipe caped on one end. I tried to watch the decalescence but I'm afraid my newbie eyes are not experienced enough. Anyways, the thermocouple worked great! I had to turn the pressure down to around 2 psi in order to obtain a somewhat stable temperature of 1510°f. I put the knife in and waited around 5 mins and quenched it in 130°f canola oil. No visible warp and my Nicholson files skated on the edge. In fact I'm afraid I dulled the file :blink:.

It's now in the toaster oven for the tempering. I did set the temp on the lowish 375. I will eyeball the color of the blade and adjust accordingly.

V_20170911_152210.mp4

Don't trust the colors on the blade, trust the thermometer.  Get 2.  There could be residual oil on the blade that could affect the colors or a million other things.  

But otherwise, hooray!  Glad the knife hardened up good.   

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After the first cycle, the blade was light straw with some darker spots which I presume are contaminants(although I had cleaned the blade with brake cleaner and sand paper).

I sanded again and put them back in. 

I totally agree I should by another thermometer though. It's on the list :lol:

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1 hour ago, Wes Detrick said:

Don't trust the colors on the blade, trust the thermometer.  

Thank you Wes.  This can't be shared enough.  I hate that so many people rely on it when it is so inaccurate.  It is right there with checking austenitic with a magnet, not really what you are checking with a majority of steels (pretty much just 1070 to 1084) since Curie point comes before austenite on so many of them.  BTW, while I bring it up, the Curie point is when it turns paramagnetic (slightly magnetic), not non-magnetic.  

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I started grinding the edge yesterday and the geometry looks weird. I sharpened at a 20 degree angle per side and the bevel is around 1/8'' wide. I am beginning to wonder if a 1/16'' thick edge was too much...and there is no way i can file the bevels now that it's hardened. will post a pic this evening. I may have to anneal the blade to fix this :huh:.

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1 hour ago, Joël Mercier said:

I started grinding the edge yesterday and the geometry looks weird. I sharpened at a 20 degree angle per side and the bevel is around 1/8'' wide. I am beginning to wonder if a 1/16'' thick edge was too much...and there is no way i can file the bevels now that it's hardened. will post a pic this evening. I may have to anneal the blade to fix this :huh:.

It's good to leave the edge a little thick as it helps it survive the heat-treatment, but afterwards it needs to be thinned down.  You can use a coarse stone or sandpaper... I would suggest 60 grit.  

A method I've been using for a very long time now is to convex the blade at this point, just enough to thin the edge down to a proper thickness... For me, I take the edge down to nothing, I want a burr along the edge, but that might be too extreme for some...

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That's the nice thing about a convex grind, it doesn't require any special equipment.  See that ridge where the primary and secondary bevels meet?  Sand it into a facet.  Now you have two new ridges either side of that facet... Make them facets.  And again.  And again.  Now blend.  Wah lah, you have a convex geometry.

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George Ezell, bladesmith

" How much useful knowledge is lost by the scattered forms in which it is ushered to the world! How many solitary students spend half their lives in making discoveries which had been perfected a century before their time, for want of a condensed exhibition of what is known."
Buffon


view some of my work

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I'm not saying a convex edge would make a bade knife, but.... It's a 4" blade. It needs to cut because it can't let it's weight do the work. Realistically a flat grind will out perform a convex In a cutting test any day. Plus nothing beats the look of a hamon on a perfectly flat blade. Now, one thing you might try is some 40 grit sandpaper clamped to a hard surface. A board or a piece of steel will work perfect. It's pretty much a slow speed belt grinder. You'll get it done faster than you think.

1 hour ago, Joël Mercier said:

Thank you guys for the tips. I will think this through.

You have come this far with no compromises of quality, keep up the good work!

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And, I just looked back through, you're getting some stuff done! I like the handle. A good rule of thumb for handle size is the thickness should be about 1/2 of the width. So, lets say the butt of your handle is 1 1/2" wide; at that same point it should be around 3/4" thick. It might then be 1" wide at the ricasso; it would be around 1/2" thick at that point. See what I'm sayin'?

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7 minutes ago, Zeb Camper said:

I'm not saying a convex edge would make a bade knife, but.... It's a 4" blade. It needs to cut because it can't let it's weight do the work. Realistically a flat grind will out perform a convex In a cutting test any day. Plus nothing beats the look of a hamon on a perfectly flat blade. Now, one thing you might try is some 40 grit sandpaper clamped to a hard surface. A board or a piece of steel will work perfect. It's pretty much a slow speed belt grinder. You'll get it done faster than you think.

You have come this far with no compromises of quality, keep up the good work!

I've got a bar of 3/16x2x24" 80crv2 that I could clamp to my file rig.  You are definitely right, I will not compromise. 

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