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Rail clip tanto, first attempt with this steel.


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Forged this from an old rail clip I aquired some years ago. This steel has been on my list of "want to trys" for a while but given the quasi unknown composition of the steel I have put it off in fear of not getting the desired results for the amount of work. Decided to give it a go finally and wow was I surprised at the result. The hamon turned out nice and whispy, skated my 65 hrc file, no warps or cracks. Now to take this pleasant surprise and finish it off, really was not expecting to get a desirable blade from it. Here are a couple pics.

20190208_215753.jpg

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That is very nice, I have a few rail clips in my scrap pile, maybe I should use them for blades and see if I can get a hamon as pretty as the one on your tanto.

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I used one that was literally stamped "5160" if I recall correctly. It seemed to be relatively new, I picked it up while hiking in northern CA. Never got around to finishing / heat treating it though, I tried making a chefs's knife with a integral bolster (I think that is what you call it?) Anyway, nice job, it looks great!

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7 hours ago, Pieter-Paul Derks said:

That is very nice, I have a few rail clips in my scrap pile, maybe I should use them for blades and see if I can get a hamon as pretty as the one on your tanto.

I would go for it. Another post here on the forums pointed out the possibility of micro fractures being present in these clips due to the fact they have a pretty hard life before us smiths get them (usually). Aside from that, good normalization practices and attention to your quench heat should give you something nice. I would like to see what you get from it!

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