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knife for a cancer raffle


Zeb Camper

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I have just been asked to make a knife for a raffle. The raffle is for this local girl who in spite of mental disabilities, has strived to be great, went to colledge, is a lifeguard, and a fitness trainer. But now she's battling cancer. I have about six weeks to have whatever knife I make totally done, and right now I'm trying to decide which design to use. I need to order steel too! I was thinking about doing another bowie like Rusty (see "Rusty" in show and tell), because it was super popular. What would you guys change in this design if you were making it? 

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I thought a light colored knife might actually be appropriate. Maybe even a lighter colored handle too. But I need it to be appealing to the southern rednecks, as well as the tactical crowd, and the country & western crowd the event will be held at a horse farm. 

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Speaking as a southern redneck (one who hates country/western, though), big is good.  Shiny or dark isn't as important, it just has to be impressively big and well made.  And it's your call, but personally "tactical tanto" doesn't do it.  I know lots of folks love them, though.

I think whatever design you choose, just do it to the best of your abilities and then some.  Think of the cause, not the object.

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Here it is after more forging and a rough grind. It looks good, but has some pitting in the ricasso on both sides and in the bevel of one side. Right now I'm thinking about making another one. It's either that, or just call it brute de forge.

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I think I went a little gung ho on this one. I decided I hated the knife today after grinding on it for a while. Ordered some of Aldo's 1075 after that. Hopefully it will be here soon. I absolutely need a hamon, which this steel did not yeild when I heat treated it. There's something about the blade I just don't like. I think its the curvature. The next one will be narrower with less of an arch. Tons of hamon, blade collar, spacers, sculpted handle, wrought guard and pommel, and possibly the finest blade I am capable of making in less than 6 weeks. I guess I will have 5 weeks if the steel gets here by the weekend. It's a scary thought. 

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Thanks Joel, I hope you're right. I'm gonna forge a backup blade tomarrow out of the rest of the spring I think. I'm gonna get this done. Hell or high water. No better motivation than the cause. I should do this type of thing more often. Someone should start some kind of movement like this. Call it knives for the needy. Maybe have a group of people willing to make and donate a knife sign up and have a date set that their knife is due, and every month have a raffle on a blade from a different smith. The biggest hurdle would be advertising. A lot of people would have to buy these raffles in order for it to be successful. 

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I'm from Virginia. I need to finish my profile. He's usually pretty quick on the shipping. I really like NJ steel baron for that. And They used to have websight issues, but now that they fixed that it's easy ordering too. I don't know of any other steel suppliers like this, who are in the USA, and only a few states away at that. So, for now they have my all my business :) I just wish they carried non ferrous so I could buy more than just steel and maybe save on shipping.

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I went to the shop today, looking to make a blade out of the leaf spring. Then I saw my big ol' piece of 3x 3/8" piece of 1075 I had been using as a sanding block. Needless to say I no longer have a sanding block. This one somehow ended up looking almost exactly like rusty. It's just about an inch longer and a bit wider. It should do I think. I have big plans for the fit & finish part of it. 

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Thats a good looking knife Zeb, and looks like a mean chopper.  I love forward curves like that.  Always aggressive looking.

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

http://www.krakenforge.net/

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Thanks Wes, while I was forging it I had my mind on classic clip point bowie. I just wanted a flat-ish edge. Then I was beating the edge on and it kind of made a upward sweep, so I wasn't liking that at all. Then I got it straight. A voice in the back of my mind was screaming more, MORE, MOOOORRE!!!! 

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Uhm,,,well,,,,,not knowing the people who are going to be buying the raffle tickets I might want to save such a,,,spectacular design for either a custom order for a specific customer or for known art/fantasy crowds. Not that it isn't an eye-catching design but it tends to seem to limit the functionality of the excellent blade design. A bit too much for the purpose (".....for the purpose. Ya, that's the ticket:).

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Thanks Vern! you could've just said "I hate it". I was thinking it would look pretty cool in the 3rd demention. I was thinking along the lines of "eye catching" I will probably go with something more simple. I just hope the reaction won't be "eehhh, I've seen better"

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Thanks Wes, I value your opinion (and everyone else's). I think it would look cool too, but I have asked freinds, family, and co-workers and feedback is about 50/50. People either love it or hate it. So, my thoughts now are maybe do an S guard, but dialed back a little? And I was thinking about a copper blade collar for a little color, and probably texture it. I drew it on with sharpie, but I'm thinking dial that back too. Just have it cover 1/4 of the ricasso in a square shape. For the blade finish I think a high polish with the hamon and a darker spine. Maybe black walnut handle?  The wrought I think I would finish out in with a black rust blue. If I ever find my colored pencils I'll sketch it up Thoughts? 

Edited by Zeb Camper
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If you want to dial it back, make a double branch guard, and then slightly S it.  It will be more "tasteful" and maybe scratch both itches.  Remember, as you have said, this is going to "Rednecks" and they may appreciate an art knife, but may not want to use one.  They also may not like things that deviate to much from traditional bowie/camp knife shapes.  About 50% of your audience already didn't like the aggressive S-Guard, so how many would appreciate habakis and hamons?  I am sure that a few would, but in the end, you might be explaining what a hamon is to a bunch of people that have never seen one.  Not saying not to do those things, but just give it a thought, and consider your audience.  

As far as materials, wrought iron and walnut would be good.  Wrought iron is always popular when you tell people it came from a wagon wheel or a chain from 1800s.  People get off on that stuff.  And walnut is popular, and pretty.  

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

http://www.krakenforge.net/

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Now you're talking, hamon and habaki. I noted your sketch had a sectioned handle? How about matching that up with the collar? Maybe  tsuba.

MusashiBowie

 

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