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DMW

Help with pin holes

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Hey guys, I forged a blade out of a 3” x 1/2” piece of coil spring. It hasn’t been heat treated yet and the problem I’m having is that I can’t get the pin holes for the handle drilled. I’ve tried iron oxide, titanium and cobalt drill bits with no luck. I got one hole drilled half way with the titanium bit then it stopped. I tried the second hole with the cobalt bit and it just made a small dimple. I’m at a loss on how to get it done. I’m thinking about trying to heat the blade then allowing it to cool overnight in the wood ashes I have in my annealing bucket. Do you guys have any other suggestions?  Thank you guys for any help.

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36 minutes ago, DMW said:

 I’m thinking about trying to heat the blade then allowing it to cool overnight in the wood ashes I have in my annealing bucket.

Wouldn't hurt to try. Hard to say with an unknown steel. Simply normalizing it might help.

Are you using a drill press or a hand drill?

Sharp bits, slow speed, pressure, lubrication... you need all four.

Sometimes you might come across a tough alloy that requires a carbide bit.

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Thanks for responding Don. I’m using all four and a drill press. A carbide bit was my next choice. This is some hard steel and I didn’t want to crank too hard with my press and snap the bit. These are brand new bits. 

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you want a proper 3x normalisation at descending temps, followed by a sub-critical anneal, aka super temper. Heat to just below critical and let it air cool. A wood ash/vermiculite anneal will likely do more harm than good by setting up lamellar carbides...

Edited by jake cleland

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2 hours ago, jake cleland said:

you want a proper 3x normalisation at descending temps, followed by a sub-critical anneal, aka super temper. Heat to just below critical and let it air cool. A wood ash/vermiculite anneal will likely do more harm than good by setting up lamellar carbides...

This^^^

Also, you could put the blade in the ash/vermiculite after the sub-critical anneal if you want.  Just don't do it from above critical.  

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