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PW Seax WIP (wrought / bloom)


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Got my annual post Christmas forge day today, went in with no plan, other than to patternweld something! ^_^

 

I had a variety of bits and bobs of interesting material knocking about, so just went at it, with no real plan. ( well, actually the plan was for something a bit longer than this, but the wrought iron laminate really did not like being twisted!)

 

I had a lump of wrought iron 'damascus' left over from cladding material for the chefs knifes, I think its wrought / mild / possibly a hint of shiny metal in there. It had 90 layers chalked on it, it looks low layer in the twists though. I managed to pull this material out into a long bar, and did a bit of twisting, and left a bit as straight laminate. could not twist any tighter than I did, as it snapped if I tried.

 

The edge steel is bloom that I got from Owen when he did a demo smelt at a blacksmiths event 5 years ago. It sparked up high carbon. I tried to work the bloom steel into a bar, but lack of experience showed, and it was not looking great, so I cheated, and welded the bloom steel either side of a piece of W2 'san mai' style. The held it all together enough to get a solid (ish) piece of material. I will be amazed if the edge on the finished blade is without problems though!

 

Welded the 4 bars together, and have forged them into a rough seax shape. I could feel my forging getting scrappy, so stopped at this point. The whole piece is around 6mm thick still, so I have got a good bit of scope to stretch it on the final forge, when I put the tang in. 

 

The finished pattern will be pretty subtle. Felt good to just be doing some 'go with the flow' forging again!

 

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Thanks for the encouragement! ^_^

 

Im away from the forge for a few days, so have had a good bit of time to look at where I am at with this, and I think I can see where I am going with it now. Might be as well I stopped with it where I did on the first forging.

 

Been looking at seax profiles for rather longer than is healthy, and remembered I joined a seax group on F-B, where I see a few familiar names, and lots of very solid information.

 

I think another decent forging session can make it longer, thicker at the spine, and a nice profile. Hopefully if it goes as I envisage it will be sort of 'Seax of Beagnoth' in profile, but with a tiny hint more of a 'clip' and a smidge more belly to the blade.

 

Wish me luck!  :blink:

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Forging day on this lump tomorrow, after a forced week off, drinking and fishing, and thinking about forging ! 

 

There is no way the smiths of old would have sacrificed as much material to the grinder as I was intending to on this, for the weight of the preform (aka, the blade as it is now), it should be 50% longer, and I hope to make it so :) - will try and get some pictures of 'glory, or scrap pile' :blink: in progress!

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Had a nice chilled last day of the holidays before back to work 'proper' tomorrow.

 

I just went with the flow on the forging, and it came out not too bad. Few weld defects here and there, but nothing I was not expecting. Using old material of variable consistency, and bloom steel does not help!

 

Blade has come out 19" long, plus the handle. Its 7 mm at the beak, with a little bit of 'reverse' distal taper to the tang.

 

The first two photos are 100% as forged, no grinding at all.

 

The second 'in the vice' photo is after I knocked some weight off it on the grinder, touched the profile a touch, then gave it a gentle reforge to set the tang better, and true everything up. 

 

Its had a couple of normalisations, and has lost nearly enough weight for heat treating, its about 1/8" at the edge. Gave it a quick vanity etch to see where im up to :)

 

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1 hour ago, Alan Longmire said:

Lovely!  Nice forging, too!  

thanks @Alan ! I managed to get a few historically accurate weld defects in there for you :rolleyes:<_<

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2 hours ago, Alan Longmire said:

Gotta love the historically accurate weld flaws! :lol:

And the Kentish notch! :P

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For a piece of go with the flow forging that looks reasonably Beagnothesque to me. Really liking the look of this John, can't wait to see the finished article.

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11 hours ago, Sam Ecroyd said:

For a piece of go with the flow forging that looks reasonably Beagnothesque to me. Really liking the look of this John, can't wait to see the finished article.

 hey big sam ! hope your well ! - still down under ? The cows in the UK have felt a lot safer recently :D 

 

4 hours ago, Zeb Camper said:

I do like the "kentish notch" I know I've paid my respects on FB, but seriously looking cool! Gives me itchy hands. 

 

Thanks! - this will be historically inaccurate, but I will have fun finishing it ! 

Edited by John N
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1 hour ago, John N said:

Thanks! - this will be historically inaccurate, but I will have fun finishing it ! 

What do you mean by that? The notch is a thing! A few seaxs (< whatever the plural version) have such pronounced dips at the break. Looks accurate enough to me!

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10 hours ago, John N said:

 hey big sam ! hope your well ! - still down under ? The cows in the UK have felt a lot safer recently :D

Aye, still down in NZ. Having a great time but it's a bit frustrating not having a workshop - I've got loads of antler and keep finding odds and ends of steel and wrought but have no forge or gear to make anything! I'll be back in time for Owen"s forge in though so hopefully see you then?

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16 hours ago, Zeb Camper said:

What do you mean by that? The notch is a thing! A few seaxs (< whatever the plural version) have such pronounced dips at the break. Looks accurate enough to me!

 

Im happy with the shape, but following a bit more research the construction of the patternweld is a bit off!

 

7 hours ago, Sam Ecroyd said:

Aye, still down in NZ. Having a great time but it's a bit frustrating not having a workshop - I've got loads of antler and keep finding odds and ends of steel and wrought but have no forge or gear to make anything! I'll be back in time for Owen"s forge in though so hopefully see you then?

 

Yeah, will be at owens :D

 

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11 minutes ago, John N said:

following a bit more research the construction of the patternweld is a bit off!

 

Remember, we haven't seen all that existed!  ;)

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9 hours ago, Alan Longmire said:

 

Remember, we haven't seen all that existed!  ;)

Nor have we seen all that should have been. :)

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