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D-2 for blades

Discussion in 'Non-Firearm Weapons' started by boogieman, Oct 27, 2013.

  1. boogieman

    boogieman Well-Known Member

    Im a machinist for many years and I have ground my share of cutting tools and a knife or 2. I use D-2 for a variety of things like shear blades with great success. I am considering a 6" multi=purpose hunting knife. I would like to go with 3/32 D-2 for the blank. Ill machine the shape and taper the edge before hardening then grind the edge in with a belt machine after. Done a few from o-1 with fair results.
  2. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

    Sounds awfully thin to start.
  3. JShirley

    JShirley Administrator Staff Member

    Agree. Less than .10 is really, really thin to begin.
  4. Sam Cade

    Sam Cade Member

    Also, the high wear resistance of D-2 can be a good thing...or a bad thing.
  5. Sam Cade

    Sam Cade Member

    Slightly thicker than a Mora.
  6. Valkman

    Valkman Well-Known Member

    1/8" would be better, and 5/32 would be better yet for a 6" blade.
  7. herrwalther

    herrwalther Well-Known Member

    Most D2 steel blades that I know of start at .16" thick and work up from there.
  8. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

    Perhaps you should tell us what You mean when you say "multi-purpose hunting" so we're not putting out interpretations on what you're going to use it for.
  9. Zeke/PA

    Zeke/PA Well-Known Member

    I am a retired Toolmaker and in my working days I made a lot of tooling using D-2.
    The steel really shines when punching/cutting/slitting of all things ,paper, abrasive because of the glass content present. In my knifemaking days I used 3/16 thick material in both D-2 and O-1 for most sheath knives.
    I built tooling for a local firm to determine what steel they wished to use in their kitchen cutlery.
    D-2 ranked at the top of their choices but 154 CM (ATS-34) won out because of a better rust resistance
  10. boogieman

    boogieman Well-Known Member

    IMO this is one of the best multi purpose (gutting, skinning, rough butchering) knife designs. I am a big fan of Buck in general and carry a stockman daily.
    When making a knife I would work something very close to the link. I will likely make up a machined nylon sheath of some sort and also do the handle in nylon, acetal or some other plastic. D-2 has pretty good corrosion resistance for tool steels. Another design may be closer to the standard K-bar in short form.
    From what I am hearing here starting out with a 1/8 blank might be a little better. I love the damascus blades also, just dont have the time or determination to develop the skill to go that route
  11. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

    You can purchase damascus billets if you want to go that route.
  12. Kingcreek

    Kingcreek Well-Known Member

    I'm a big fan of D2 with a proper heat treat and I've got several hard use hunting knives. I'm not trying to tell anybody what they want but after hunting and cutting several truckloads of game from small to big for over 40 years, I've come to the conclusion that a drop point blade of about 3.5-4"is the best (at least for me) all around general purpose hunting knife.
  13. JTW Jr.

    JTW Jr. Well-Known Member

    I have been using a blade from D2 for 4+ years now , I made it , so I don't baby it , I use it for whatever needs cutting , cardboard , food , shingles , drywall , etc.

    Made from 1/8 D2 , HT by Paul Bos. Holds up fine , I love D2 , though I like CPM D2 a bit more.
  14. rcmodel

    rcmodel Member in memoriam

    I made some D-2 blades years ago and I was perfectly happy with them.

    I bought a Kershaw Leek with the D-2 combo edge a year ago, and I don't like it.

    The blade is harder then wood-pecker lips, and defies all attempts to put a fine slightly 'toothy' edge on it that will bite and not slide off certain materials.

    Sharpening so far has included use of Ceramic, Diamond, and Wash-ita (Thanks THR word nanny) stones.

    It shaves hair easily.
    But it won't bite & cut a 1/4" vine worth a darn.

  15. harvjr

    harvjr Well-Known Member

    I have used D2 for almost 20 years. most of the D2 is either 3/32", 1/8" or 5/32" thick. Here is a Comp II I just finished for a Customer.

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  16. Zeke/PA

    Zeke/PA Well-Known Member

    IMHO, D-2, because it's an Air -Hardening tool steel does not come into it's own unless PROPER heat treatment is employed. In plain words, the stuff don't work right when the "guy down he road" heat treats the product.
    YEP, it's more difficlult to grind and it demanded some SPECIAL attention ,(Grinding Wheels, process,) in a Tool Room enviorment.
    Real tough for me to be convinced that there's a better knife steel!
  17. 44-henry

    44-henry Well-Known Member

    D2 is a nice steel if you have the right equipment to heat treat it, but for larger work knives I prefer steels like 5160, 1095, or 01. I particularly like 5160 with a differential heat treatment for hard working knives. For someone working with basic equipment 5160 is excellent, low cost steel, that will make a really good knife and is very forgiving on the the heat treatment process.

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