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Low layer twist pattern weld

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This will be my first attempt at pattern welded steel. I’ve made a few SanMai blades with good success. I’m using 15 layers total of 1084 & 15n20. My original stack was 5”L x 1.25”W x 3”H. I welded it up and forged it down to 8”L x 1.5”W x 1.5”H, then crushed in the corners to take the edges off. 

Now the twist... is it reasonable to expect to be able to put 3 or 4 twists in this 1.5” billet by hand ?  I’m wanting to forge a cleaver or modified cleaver so I don’t want to take the billet down any smaller than I have to.

 

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You can certainly get 3 or 4 twists in the 8" length.  Whether or not you can do it by hand will depend on you.  I'm a pretty small guy, and find twisting something that large to be a big challenge.  Just for reference data, my twisting wrench only has about 9" handles, and I don't have a great vice setup for holding the bar so I'm not exactly stacking the deck in my favor.  If you are a strong guy, adn have a good twisting setup, it may not be a problem at all.

I'll be interested to see how you make out.  I'd like to be able to do some wider blades with a single twist bar. 

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I regularly twist material of about that size by hand for damascus rings, it is not easy but certainly possible.

It is important to have a sturdy vise and tongs, I use a pipe wrench with an extra handle welded on.

the big trick is to take your time and only twist when the material is at a white heat, I sometimes get only half a revolution per heat, but this is better than shearing the bar or your own back.:blink:

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Twisting at the proper heat without tearing the billet is my concern. I have a heavy vice and a solid work table. 

I am going to a hammer in this weekend and am trying to get ahead as much as I can but certainly don’t want to take 5 steps back. I’ll touch base with the shop owner and see how he feels about twisting it there.

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For what it’s worth here is a cross section of the end of the billet:

 

D4801639-D9D1-45E8-85EC-5C0129CCDFDC.jpeg

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