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nabiul

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Currently I've been using files to make knives, so far my first two broke from being too brittle, thanks to a freezing water quench. Yesterday I tried a warmed oil quench and this time it seems that the metal is wayy too soft and I still can't get a hamon to show. Does any one know what kind of steel is used to make files and what kind of quenchant to use? I'm interested in knowing what the s curve of this metal is. To add to the confusion, my first two were made using good nicholson files, my new one is made from a cheap jobmate file which is probably skimpy on the carbon.

Edited by nabiul
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Most files are Quite good steel for blades but the freezing water would not help

bring it up in temp to lukewarm and i also think you had the blade way too hot ( cracking in Quench )

also revise your clay application if the blade is too hot it will explode off the blade too fast ,to do its job

get it to none magnetic go to just above this pull it out wait 3 to 4 seconds then Quench

cheap files are the best thing next to usless the older the file the better

With the oil Quench you can get the blade a bit hotter than the above (with water ) and then quench

i have found that with the oil Quench it needs to be hotter than the water Quench

BUT NOT AT MELTING POINT LOL

 

hope this is of some help

 

tell , ;) ,

Edited by tell

Terence.........(today started off perfect now --- watch sombody come and stuff it up ]

 

if it aint broke dont fix it

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Ok thanks, the knives didnt break from the quench, my attemp to 'test' them using my hands snapped them cleanly in half.

I guess I will go shovel out the snow and try a water quench right now. Oil doesn't seem to be doing it.

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dont forget to re heat after the Quench there are topics on here about doing this most stick them in the wifes oven on 250 for about an hr some longer thats why they snapped you did not do this normaly the higher the carbon the chances are you will have to relive the stress

 

cheers tell

Terence.........(today started off perfect now --- watch sombody come and stuff it up ]

 

if it aint broke dont fix it

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I tried tempering the second one at 350 for a few min then at 250 for about an hour, it was more flexible than the first one but no dice. The guys at anvilfire said that I had let the steel get too hot since the crystals in the metal were really large grained.

 

EDIT: It looks like I'm in luck tonight, in my kind of blacksmithing, for everything that goes wrong something always goes right. My entire backyard is covered with snow, but so is my 'anvil', there won't be any ringing ears tonight. The air is still, it's relatively warm and the night sky is somewhat bright, perfect for some winter forging.

Edited by nabiul
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yes that could be the logical explination but are you forge hammering the blade to shape or stock removal ?

because if you do stock removal then the grain will be large it get's denser with hammering and forging this compact's the grain's if you explain to them the exact method you use im sure they will have the answer at anvilfire those guy's are great

cheers tell ,

 

 

you can have the snow mate we dont get it here in Tropical Queensland

may your anvil ring like slay bells happy new year mate

Edited by tell

Terence.........(today started off perfect now --- watch sombody come and stuff it up ]

 

if it aint broke dont fix it

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Heh, happy new year to you as well.

 

I'm doing anvil forging for all my work. And I pretty much cursed my self when I posted that, the wind kicked up and the temp dropped a few degrees.

 

During the quench with hot water, the clay coating or should I say drywall compound on the whole blade portion of the knife blew off, it looks like everything except the tang turned into martensite, I will sand it and post some pics tomorrow. Strangest thing, water blows off the coating while oil seems to reinforce it. While I was treating this one, I grabbed another file and thinned out a couple of centimetres on one edge, I'm going to use stock removal on this one to make a small hunting style knife.

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AH HA the light dawns you are not using a refactory morter the drywall cememt is not keeping the top

half of the blade cool so all the blade is cooling at the same rate IE through hardening its not a heat barrier so no hamon :rolleyes:

you need to get i think you call it SATANITE in the states a good refactory outlet will have it

or there may be a link on this forum

go here ask for Darren Ellis THIS IS IN THE STATES and ask for satanite tell him what you need it for and mention Don

 

http://refractory.elliscustomknifeworks.com/

 

http://orders.elliscustomknifeworks.com/

 

http://forgegallery.elliscustomknifeworks.com/

 

 

 

now were cookin mate

 

cheers tell

 

 

thats why you are having all the problems mate

 

let me know how you go

Terence.........(today started off perfect now --- watch sombody come and stuff it up ]

 

if it aint broke dont fix it

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Heard of the stuff, but I'm in Canada and dont know where to get it/ probably can't afford it. Right now I'm just going to finish it as it is and make a new one next spring, I really don't want to go outside again. I do have access to similar stuff however, the grey furnace cement I can usually get at a hardware store.

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You can get furnace cement, it'll work as well, but I wouldn't think drywall compound would work too well.

I'd use that rather than the furnace cement. When I was using it, I would mix it with some water to get it a little easier to apply.

 

Be sure to normalize your blade a few times, I usually do it 3 times, bring up to nonmagnetic and let it air cool to ambient.

 

Nicholson files are 1095, which I think I'd go with a oil quench on, but it can be done with water at the right temps and such.

I'd like to get some of the fast oils like toughquench or parks for attempting more active hamon without having to go to water.

 

"Ok thanks, the knives didnt break from the quench, my attemp to 'test' them using my hands snapped them cleanly in half."

 

That kinda makes me think they weren't tempered as well as they could have been.

I'd have tempered the blade higher than the 250o. The Complete Bladesmith lists 1095 tempering range at 300-500o

On the file knives I've done I tend to go 375-425o.

I usually do all three tempering rounds one hour each at the same temp.

 

"the grain will be large[,] it get's denser with hammering and forging this compact's the grain's"

 

You can't compact steel. From what I understand the forging can help break up the grains, but I think also part of it is the cycling of the steel above and below the critical point. A good place to read on some of that is over on Kevin Cashen's site, if I remember correctly he's got some interesting info.

 

I'd just be sure to normalize your blades around 3 times, which will help get smaller grain size.

Harden it, and then do three rounds of tempering at one hour each. Cooling to ambient (room temp) in between.

If your blade still is brittle after doing that, temper at a little higher temperature.

Beau Erwin

www.ErwinKnives.com

Custom knives

Bcarta Composites

Stabilized Woods

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You can get furnace cement, it'll work as well, but I wouldn't think drywall compound would work too well.

I'd use that rather than the furnace cement. When I was using it, I would mix it with some water to get it a little easier to apply.

 

Be sure to normalize your blade a few times, I usually do it 3 times, bring up to nonmagnetic and let it air cool to ambient.

 

Nicholson files are 1095, which I think I'd go with a oil quench on, but it can be done with water at the right temps and such.

I'd like to get some of the fast oils like toughquench or parks for attempting more active hamon without having to go to water.

 

"Ok thanks, the knives didnt break from the quench, my attemp to 'test' them using my hands snapped them cleanly in half."

 

That kinda makes me think they weren't tempered as well as they could have been.

I'd have tempered the blade higher than the 250o. The Complete Bladesmith lists 1095 tempering range at 300-500o

On the file knives I've done I tend to go 375-425o.

I usually do all three tempering rounds one hour each at the same temp.

 

"the grain will be large[,] it get's denser with hammering and forging this compact's the grain's"

 

You can't compact steel. From what I understand the forging can help break up the grains, but I think also part of it is the cycling of the steel above and below the critical point. A good place to read on some of that is over on Kevin Cashen's site, if I remember correctly he's got some interesting info.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

maybe the word compact was a bad choice IE heat will EXPAND STEEL COLD WILL CONTRACT STEEL

so in effect the steel is re sorting the grain molicules pounding hot steel has something like the same effect

but even the japanese bladesmiths books they say they fold and hammer to compact the grain and make it a denser grain ????

who am i to argue with them :excl: I aint no steel expert

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

I'd just be sure to normalize your blades around 3 times, which will help get smaller grain size.

Harden it, and then do three rounds of tempering at one hour each. Cooling to ambient (room temp) in between.

If your blade still is brittle after doing that, temper at a little higher temperature.

Terence.........(today started off perfect now --- watch sombody come and stuff it up ]

 

if it aint broke dont fix it

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If you get the latest Blade magazine, the one with the Rambo knife on the front, it has an article about blade steels in it which also deals with heat treating a little bit. Normalizing does help releave stress in a blade and I always do it but it can be overdone. It is possible to end up with a blade with such fine grain that it will be one tough so-and-so but will be impossible to put and edge on. This makes me wonder if this is behind some of the complaints about not being able to get 1095 hard enough to hold an edge; the steel is coming from the supplier with super fine grain.

 

I agree with Edgar that your tempering temps are a little low. I usually start at 400 degrees cycling twice for three hours.

 

I can understand packing it in as far a forging goes for the winter if you live up in Canada, especially if you have an outdoor forge. Why don't you use your down time to do a little study on metalurgy?

 

Doug Lester

HELP...I'm a twenty year old trapped in the body of an old man!!!

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This is what it looks like after being roughly sanded. It's going to be an incredible pain in the ass to grind the concave hammer marks on each bevel flat with a water stone. I marked out on the top file what I'm going to grind it into.

 

pregrindey7.jpg

 

 

Oh I seemed to have gotten the hardening right, my old knives which were hardened in freezing water can scratch this one but just barely.

Edited by nabiul
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"maybe the word compact was a bad choice IE heat will EXPAND STEEL COLD WILL CONTRACT STEEL

so in effect the steel is re sorting the grain molicules pounding hot steel has something like the same effect

but even the japanese bladesmiths books they say they fold and hammer to compact the grain and make it a denser grain ????

who am i to argue with them excl.gif I aint no steel expert "

 

*nods* For the japanese bit, in a way they are kind of compacting it, as their initial steel is full of voids, so part of the forging and folding is to work the voids out of the steel. Working the bloom down into a solid bar.

 

I know Cashen's website had a fair bit of info on similar topics, but it's been a while since I read them.

Beau Erwin

www.ErwinKnives.com

Custom knives

Bcarta Composites

Stabilized Woods

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Yah steel is funny shit to work with just when you think you have it right the manufacturers

change the mix so many times from batch to batch trying to improve the product unless you buy in bulk

variations do happen even if very small ,

 

all we poor mortals can do is give it our best shot

the main thing is never give up and the old Aussie saying sheell be right mate :rolleyes:

 

cheers tell

 

one i just did in 1075 a double hamon gonna be a bugger to polish

 

4_Hamon_005_1.jpg

Terence.........(today started off perfect now --- watch sombody come and stuff it up ]

 

if it aint broke dont fix it

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Very nice but double edged?

 

 

Thanks the double edge is only for the first 6 inch tip to approx center then just a reduced mune so i could get the resulting hamon ,, it was for a guy who found this

supposedely rare form of tanto on the net ? he was paying so i dont argue lol, and he was happy with the result

so far

 

cheers tell :lol:

Terence.........(today started off perfect now --- watch sombody come and stuff it up ]

 

if it aint broke dont fix it

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Ooo boy, I really did it this time. I re hardened the blade during the daytime when I couldn't judge the colour properly, this time I put some vermiculite along the spine to see if it would help, the martensite and ferrite seems to have made 'puddles' all over the blade and I think I'm getting what people call nie crystals. It would have been an ok quench except for the fact that there are a million microscopic cracks along the blade that are 'flowing' everywhere. I'll get some more pic's up tomorrow. I really need to make a proper forge that can get an even heat instead of a sideblast.

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Oh shit iv been there mate a real pisser those cracks i have a slab of steel 3ft long with 4 1ich holes in it and 6 1/4 inch around them then car exaust with more comming in halfway down going to 4 old car blower fans all linked to a 3 speed controler out of the car all 12 volt run from two battery chargers through a 12 volt battery and seperat on/ off for each fan this way i can controle the area and the air volume to every blower i will try to get pics for you then i use the special light concreat blocks on each side called HEBLE BLOCKS

 

cheers tell

 

the_coke_forge.jpg

 

 

forge_blower_i_made_005.jpg

 

 

fire_with_new_blower_on_003.jpg

 

 

new_blower_i_made_003.jpg

 

hope this gives you some idear the shed is just a lean too i put up 12ft x12ft nothin special

 

cheers tell

Terence.........(today started off perfect now --- watch sombody come and stuff it up ]

 

if it aint broke dont fix it

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Damn that looks like it could handle a full size sword. My problem is that I can't find good blowers anywhere, and I don't know of any junkyards. I'm just using a hairdryer fan right now but a real impeller would be nice.

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There must be some car scrap yards around look in the phone book mate the old ford heater blower is the best i found the base of the forge is 3/4 plate but yah it can handle a full blade if needed and can get up to welding temps

even to the melting point so you have to be carefull :blink:

 

the pipe is 2inch on the bottom i put slides with a draw rod so i can keep dumping the crap out when i stir up the coke

it drop's into a steel drum with water in the bottom

 

i think the whole setup cost me about $50 aust and has earnd in blades about $3,000 so far

so its the way to go mate cheap but it works

 

and my motto is if it work's dont fix it :D

 

hope this has been of some help to you

 

new_Katana_002.jpg

this was a custom katana i did burgundy shirasaya dragonfly in reeds painted on the saya

 

 

this is a typical car blower from a ford

 

blower_2_speed.jpg

Terence.........(today started off perfect now --- watch sombody come and stuff it up ]

 

if it aint broke dont fix it

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I'm still trying to polish the blade and it's not going anywhere fast enough to take a pic of. I need to get a hand sander.

I found an auto wrecking yard north of where I am, I'm not sure on what they would charge for a part like a blower but I'll check it out next spring.

 

That is a sweet katana.

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Dryers have great blowers in them, I salvaged one, and I've used it for a good long while now, plenty of air. A lot of things work, if it moves air, use it somehow, be inventive.

 

 

if it moves air use it huh sound like a job for the Mother in law to me if you dont mind hot air lol,

 

cheers tell

Terence.........(today started off perfect now --- watch sombody come and stuff it up ]

 

if it aint broke dont fix it

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About that katana, is it double beveled or just a single bevel on the edge? I see a lot of non traditional katana's being made with a fuller and a single bevel, but what's confusing me is this blade supposedly made by masamune which looks like it's got a single bevel from the spine to the edge.

 

http://filmswords.com/highlander/masamuneart.htm

 

My next project is going to be a wakizashi that is composed of an inner and outer layer of steel like the traditional katana's, going to have my first try at forge welding soon.

Edited by nabiul
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