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Greg Agresta

New to Knife Making

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My son and I are just getting into knife making. We are in the process of setting up a shop and getting the equipment we need. Up to this point, we have only made knives from purchased and cut 1095 flats and are using propane torches to heat and quench. A small forge is on the way and once we start actually pounding out a blade, I'm thinking our little Harbor Freight 1x30 belt grinder will not be up to the task of grinding a forged blade. Any suggestions on a 2x72 grinder that won't break the bank? I've seen comments about making one but we don't weld so that's not an option. Any suggestions or other helpful info would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

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Posted (edited)

https://usaknifemaker.com/plans-for-the-no-weld-grinder-sander-nearly-50-pages.html

Not too hard to build if you have some basic tooling.   Good luck on the forging adventure :)

I've seen plenty of guys on youtube making similar ones simple enough.   The biggest expense is the contact wheels and the motor.  VFD's are nice, but I use a coote belt grinder with 3-step pulley's on the motor and contact wheel shafts for variable speed.  Works just great.

But if you are just starting out, you can get real far with some good files and some patience.  Motorized tools let one mess up faster :)    Just make sure your steel is properly annealed or at least normalized.   File guides are easy enough to make as well.  Also, if you are forging, it is a good idea to knock off all the scale from the blade with an angle grinder, or an overnight vinegar soak.   Scale will dull your files, saws and belts in no time flat.

 

Edited by Bruno

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I used my 1x30 from HF for about 3 years to grind my blades, Its not as fast as the guys on YouTube with the 2x72's but it certainly can do the job.  I still use my 1x30 for a lot of the handle grinding and shaping. 

And I second the part about files, you can remove quite a lot of material from a knife blade with a good file. There is a video by Gough custom knives where he shows how to build a simple jig for beveling a blade, with a couple minor tweaks and a good file you can bevel a blade much faster then you think with that jig. 

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You could make a 2x72 if you have proper tools to do it.  You can order the idler wheels and platen.  I bought mine off ebay for around 700 bucks so it wasnt total price gouger.  I've had pretty decent luck with the Das Toobinator from ebay.  Forge wise are you planning on using propane or coal?  Coal is quite forgiving from my experience with it.  I haven't been forging that long at all.  This is my set up on the forge though.  I only forge outside as well.  Id also suggest taking a few classes.  I haven't because I really can't afford it.  But I've been learning the processes the hard way everybody here on the forums is pretty danged helpful with things.  But if you wanted to build your own 2x72 if you have access to a welder and a drill press it can be done.  Best of luck on getting started.

IMG_20190404_125006240.jpg

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I recently picked up a grizzly for around 700.00 if I remember right. It was the best priced one I could find.

Welcome to the madness......

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I have a grizzly 2"x72" for the money, it is a nice machine....just add a couple winds of electrical tape around the center of the tracking wheel, but be careful, it only has one speed (really fast) so you can mess up a knife or a finger in a heartbeat if you get careless. Good luck and have fun with your son!

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You could also look at the Coote grinder.  It's a bit more expensive than the Grizzly but it's also a little more flexible.

Doug

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