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A couple WIPs from Indo-Persia


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Hi all, it's been a long while since I posted any work. I suffered some unexpected health problems which put me out of action for a few months last Christmas. I had a lung collapse on me and had to refrain from to much physical work until the whole in my right air pump had healed.

I'm now all sorted and a couple months ago I got back out to the garage, which has now grown from a dark, damp block building with a forge, anvil and a couple basic tools in. It's now becoming a proper workshop although currently waiting for a more permanent electrical supply for a 2x48 belt grinder. 

Because of the lack of electric and grinding facilities I've been doing alot of forge work and it's really helped me learn my way around the hammer.

So here it is a couple pieces waiting to be ground which I've forged out this weekend.

A Kard inspired kitchen utility knife, going for the look of the one in the book, though it won't have a jade handle, or a wootz blade. Maybe in a few decades I will try and go for the wootz haha.

The Kard was actually a practice it came out of some round spring stock I had which happened to be the same size as some Damascus twist round stock I forged at a class with Owen bush, which for any beginners looking at getting into Damascus, who are in the UK ( or can afford the flights over) is an excellent way to start. I can't stress enough how brilliant a teacher he is and he helped me design and then guided me to get a more complex pattern than the usual random pattern he teaches, it involved an accordion cut and it went very well.

And then a Kukri ish chopper/fighter, I have some African blackwood for the handle on this one.

Apologies for the essay everyone any feedback welcome

 

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Edited by Byron studley
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Cool Byron and welcome back. Glad you’ve healed up. What book is that?

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Thanks Charles it's the illustrated worlds encyclopedia of knives swords spears and daggers, although it's pretty short on spears... 

https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/aw/d/0754831957/ref=mp_s_a_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1526976586&sr=8-1&pi=AC_SX236_SY340_FMwebp_QL65&keywords=knives+swords+spear+and+daggers&dpPl=1&dpID=51oV5L7AZ7L&ref=plSrch

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33 minutes ago, Charles du Preez said:

Thanks Byron. Just ordered a copy B)

No problem, it's a good book for a wide general overview of swords and knives from all over the world and a nice section on bayonets. It also has some really fine examples of the weapons the Author is writing about with length measurements where possible.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Quick update: I've finally got my new belt grinder up and running and managed to grind the Kukri ready for heat treat inbetween welding Damascus today. Just have to work out my pinholes and maybe a few extra to shed some weight in the handle as the balance is right on the plunge line already.

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I immediately think "taper the tang".

A great way to shed weight to offset the weight of the handle and, in a full tang, it is a noticeable touch that steps it up a notch.

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Thanks Vern, I have already tapered it, so I'll drill out some pin holes and a lanyard hole also and see how it is, I think maybe if it's still not right I'll lose a bit more thickness at the spine.

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Great. That is going to be an impressive blade

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Update: it's now drilled out, I'm going to rivet some large brass into the wholes then drill my final pin stock into that, I then am thinking I'll put a weight reducing fuller in the tang. Thoughts? It's also been hardened, I normalized it three times once again ( I did normalize after forging). I then quenched in veg oil and I must say it was the most successful quench I've done, no warps and it got hard first time straight away.IMG_20180619_202454.jpgIMG_20180619_225254.jpgIMG_20180619_225332.jpg

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Just eyeballing of course but with the tang tapered I don't think the weight of the handle end is going to be an issue. I can't say for sure bot it looks like the tang may be a smidgen wide, depending on the intent with the handle.

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Cheers Vern, I've actually been thinking the same thing last night and decided to to take the tang up where the index finger and middle finger sits, increasing the "height" of the choil, if that makes sense.  As I've been handling it and looking at it, that area wasn't quite right to my eye. I'm glad you think the same.IMG_20180620_171606.jpg

Here it is now it's been tempered and cleaned up, I tempered it in the oven for two cycles then used a torch to draw the spine back some more. 

Cleaned it up on the belt to 320 grit ready for hand sanding but I'm going to go back and relax shape the handle profile a bit.

Edited by Byron studley
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Great. I'm a bit of a rebel when it comes to the whole design/balance/ergonomics  thing. I think that. A lot of times, when people aren't happy with what they call "The balance" it is actually the ergonomics of the handle to blame. Since you are basically working with a unique design you shouldn't hesitate to make the handle work with the blade by doing exactly what you said, taking your time with it. If I were doing it I might even use wooden doweling to pin on some scrap wood and ""fiddle with it" until I got a shape that felt right. No sense in going to all the trouble to make a good blade just to stick on an awkward handle. "Form follows function".

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I have now reshaped the handle and it feels much better and I think looks much better, I'm halfway through hand sanding but heres an update pictureIMG_20180624_162034.jpg

I drilled large wholes in the tang and riveted in brass which I know isnt really necessary on a full tang but this knife is for me and it was more about learning a new skill. I'm going to use this technique on a hidden tang knife I have in the works.

Edited by Byron studley
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