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I started my first knife tonight, though I've had the design sketched out for awhile.  I finally got my workbench up and running.  Thank you to everyone who has posted in Beginners place for the helpful information and instruction, especially "BOLT EVERYTHING DOWN!".

20210701_221915 (2).jpg

 

 

Tonight I took my 1095 flat-bar, sketched out the outline and cut it out.  I'm still working on my grinding wheel, so I had to use my angle grinder, 1x30 belt grinder, and a sanding drum connected to my drill press, but I got my first blank mostly finished out.

20210701_221949 (2).jpg

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Posted (edited)

If anyone has a moment, I'd like some advice on my blank.  Here's what I am seeing so far:

 

  • It feels like I need to do something to part on the spine where the clip starts to drop... not sure, but it looks off?     
  • The finger choil feels a little too small, i was thinking of enlarging that just a bit by grinding it forwards to-wards the blade more.

If anyone has questions about my initial paper design as well, please ask. I'm still learning the questions I need to ask myself during this process.
It has been a blast so far, I've had a-lot of fun and I'm excited to keep learning.

Edited by Jason Burk
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If you're not liking the aesthetics of the clip, one thing you could think about trying would be to radius off the beginning of the clip to soften it.  Breaking that sharp corner may help to make it flow smoother to your eye.  Before doing it though, either scratch it into your bluing, or flip it over and use a sharpie to sketch out what you think you want to do.  With that type of modification, if you grind the material off and dont like it, it's too late to go back!  As far as the handle goes, absolutely adjust it to make it feel the way you want it to.  One of the great things about making your own knifes is that you can make the grip feel however you want. 

Looking good so far, keep it up!

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  • 1 month later...

Well, it's been a while since I posted, I have been working on this blade on and off for awhile, but I got it done on Friday 8/27.  I learned several dozen things not to do and they show up on the blade *sigh*, but it's my first knife and I'm proud of it.  I'm already planning my next one, and I'm excited to continue getting better.  It turned out to be a clip-point camp knife, I acid etched the blade, but accidentally put a big scratch on it, so I re-sanded the blade down which left some little waves here and there from the etch on the bevel which I really like.  the handle is black linen micarta with a blue G10 liner and stainless steel pins, sanded out to 600.  I realized after I finished that I should have buffed it with compound, but I don't have that setup yet.  The balance falls just behind the first pin from the blade, I think I kept the handle too wide and should have made it a little thinner.  I put a 25 degree edge on it and it shaves hair nicely.  Can't wait to get started on the next one!

 

20210826_013127.jpg

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Nice first knife :)

 

1095 is tricky to heat treat properly. Did the ferric etch reveal any oddity in the blade? Auto hamons are common 

Edited by Joël Mercier
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I just heated till non-magnetic and then a couple of seconds longer and took it straight to a canola oil quench.  skated a file just fine, there was a tiny warp, but I ground it out with no trouble.  I went for full strength muriatic acid, saw online that it was the same as 50% diluted ferric.  The only oddity I found were those little waves that I still love looking at.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 8/30/2021 at 4:29 PM, Joël Mercier said:

It's called "alloy banding". The alloy being only carbon for this particular steel. 

 

 

Thanks Joel, I'm glad that I can put a name to that now.

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Your first knife!  Now you've hurt my feelings.  For buffing until you can get a buffing machine, which are some of the most dangerous tools in the shop, you can get one of those buffing attachments for a power hand drill.  Pad the blade with something like scrap leather and clamp it in a vice then apply buffing compound to the buffing wheel and buff away until the handle looks right.

 

Doug

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On 8/30/2021 at 4:41 PM, Jason Burk said:

I went for full strength muriatic acid, saw online that it was the same as 50% diluted ferric.

 

I meant to address this when you first posted it: where did you see that?  It's totally incorrect.  Full strength muriatic acid is 30% diluted HCl.  You make ferric by dissolving iron in HCl until it won't take any more, leaving you with FeCl (the hydrogen bubbles away).  Ferric chloride is not actually an acid, it's a corrosive salt.  Minor technical quibble. But anyway, muriatic does etch, it just etches more uniformly.   FeCl being far weaker, it reveals patterns in damascus better.  

 

Despite the above, your choice of muriatic was inspired, because it will reveal alloy banding far better than ferric.  :)

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