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 Knifemaking as a hobby…

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  • #45219
    wickededge
    Keymaster
    • Topics: 123
    • Replies: 2936

    Tom – have you considered an induction coil forge?

    -Clay

    #45220
    tcmeyer
    Participant
    • Topics: 38
    • Replies: 2077

    Tom – have you considered an induction coil forge?

    No I hadn’t, but I’ve been looking at a bunch of youtube videos on it.  Looks interesting.  Thanks.

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    #45243
    tcmeyer
    Participant
    • Topics: 38
    • Replies: 2077

    I spent a few hours reading about and watching videos on induction heating.  If not for the dollar outlay, it would be really attractive for me.  I picked up something that was really interesting.  Something about using it in an inert gas environment to prevent oxidation.  Seems to me that one could build a simple box (four sides) around it and drop in a cake of dry ice.  After a while, you do the manipulatin’ from above.  I’m not absolutely sure that CO2 is really inert, but it’s heavier that air and sounds simple.

    Both the gas forge and the induction heater are subject to the oxidation problem.  You need to see the color to judge temperature.  In an electrical furnace, you use stainless foil to wrap the blade in what is more or less an airtight package and depend on the furnace controls to reach and maintain the right temperature.

    I’m thinking I might do four or five blades per year and I’m not planning to go that many more years, so cost is a factor.  I’m still buying green bananas, but I ain’t no fool either.  That bein’ said, I do succumb to the occasional letch for a new toy.

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    #45259
    tcmeyer
    Participant
    • Topics: 38
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    As promised earlier in this thread, here’s a photo of the new knife, which is just another version of the prior one.  This one has a short, hidden tang, which is pinned with a 1/4″ brass rod, whereas the other has a full tang.  The material is Jantz’s Black Paper Micarta, in a solid block as opposed to scales,  which turned out to be a bitch to work on the sanders.  I’ll take a wag at it and say that the wood-based Micartas took half as long to rough-shape the handle.  Finishing also took much longer and needed the entire progression of sandpapers: 220, 320, 400, 500 and 800 before going to the buffing wheel with “pink scratchless” compound.

    As you’d expect – especially if you’ve been to exposed to painting cars – black is the most difficult color to work with as it shows every hint of a scratch or irregular surface lines.  I’ve got two more blocks of Black Micarta in my collection and don’t plan to ever buy any more of the stuff.

    IMG_0642 Compressed

    This is the blade I had in my junk drawer because it was all corroded.  Apparently I had silver-soldered it and was distracted, only to find later that the blade was badly corroded.  It turn out that the el-cheapo 1 X 30 sander from Harbor Freight was the answer and I was able to resurrect it.  Here’s a photo I took in Jan 2014 when I was trying to use shim cut from a Pepsi can to hold it upright in my Gen 1 vise.  Check out the rust.

    IMG_0389 Compressed

    If I recall correctly, I used a friend’s acetylene torch to harden it.  It seems to be a bit harder than my new efforts – which makes me wonder if I got them hard enough.

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    #46425
    MarcH
    Moderator
    • Topics: 66
    • Replies: 2622

    I just got this add in the mail.  Here is the link to the website.  Looks like an inexpensive way to dabble in a new experience.  They offer a nice selection of knife shapes.  I can’t speak for the steel quality or hardness.

    Marc
    (MarcH's Rack-Its)

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    #46432
    tcmeyer
    Participant
    • Topics: 38
    • Replies: 2077

    Hi Marc:

    I’ve done several knives which I’ve bought from Woodcraft: the  3-1/2″ Damascus Zhen paring knife; the 8″ Zhen Damascus chef’s knife and the Sarge 3-1/4″ Liner-lock folder.  All turned out very nicely, using Honduran Rosewood without a finish (sanded and polished).  The handles on the Zhen knives seemed really small, but are very comfortable to use.  The chef’s knife is probably the most enjoyable to use of our collection of kitchen knives.

    I also have a black ceramic Santoku from Woodcraft, but never got around to finishing it.  Maybe sometime before I turn eighty.  That’s close enough to give me the willies.

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