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Anyone here make knives?

Discussion in 'Non-Firearm Weapons' started by Goneshoot'n, Jun 1, 2019.

  1. Goneshoot'n

    Goneshoot'n Member

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    Recently I found a knife that I had started making but never finished from a few years ago. It's ready for heat treat and a handle. I'd like to finish it, but I am stuck on the heat treat method. Problem is I live in an apartment. I don't have a place outside to run a forge, and I don't have the space to store one after I'm done with the project. I know I could make a really small one, but my reloading bench takes up all my available space. I mean ALL of it... It's a mess. I'm leaning towards the torch, but it's not ideal. I think it will work for the 1095 I'm using. . If I light up a big pile of briquettes in the bbq pit and stick the knife in the middle, (I have no way of getting air to it,) will that get it hot enough in a short enough time for a heat treat? Or will it take too long to heat, resulting in too much grain growth?
     
  2. frogfurr

    frogfurr Member

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    Most of the knife making suppliers these days will heat treat your blade for a nominal cost. A blade, when worked to the point of heat treating, is a whole lot of work. Not something to risk on the BBQ grill.
     
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  3. JohnKSa

    JohnKSa Moderator Staff Member

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    You can do an edge quench using a torch if you don't have a forge. Because I have never done it, I'm not going to try to explain how. Maybe someone here will do it, or, if not, you can almost certainly find the details on the internet.
     
  4. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

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    You can do it with MAP gas and a pan of peanut oil if you know what temp to reach, but as pointed out you can send it to a heat treater.
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2019
  5. KodeFore

    KodeFore Member

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    Why not find another knife maker in your area?
     
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  6. Slamfire

    Slamfire Member

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    Watch the TV series "Forged in Fire". Every so often a knife maker does an edge heat treatment using a blow torch. He just gets the edge hot and dunks it in oil.

    But, a professional heat treater is less likely to mess it up.
     
  7. Jesse Heywood

    Jesse Heywood Member

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    Or a blacksmith or farrier. In Iowa you should be able to find someone within a reasonable drive. Especially if there's an Amish community nearby.
     
  8. Goneshoot'n

    Goneshoot'n Member

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    Didn't cross my mind. I'll throw an ad up on Craigslist and Armslist. Unless anyone here is from Eastern Iowa?:) Otherwise I guess torch it is. Doesn't sound like a pile of coals is going to cut it
     
  9. frogfurr

    frogfurr Member

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    We have been dealing with farriers for over 40 years now and I think a lot of them. However making horseshoes and knives are not even close to being the same thing.

    There is a lot to hardening a blade over fire. It's not all that hard to do but much more difficult than making horseshoes. A blacksmith would be the better choice of the two. A blacksmith and farrier are not the same thing although those that watch western movies might think differently.
     
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  10. RA40

    RA40 Member

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    My suggestion would be to send it into a heat treater or find a heat treater locally. Prices vary from $7-$15/blade and any shipping involved. Makes this process much easier for you unless you want the learning experience to do more projects like this. You may take up more knife making projects. ;)
     
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  11. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

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    No, it ain't quite that simple.
     
  12. Slamfire

    Slamfire Member

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    The show is edited, but that's what I see.
     
  13. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

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    In addition to what you don't see is the fundamentals of what you don't understand about the "heats it up". There are specific temps that have to be achieved when they "heat it up" before they can quench. Also what they quench in matters and the temperature of what they quench in. Then there's normalization, which we see from time to time, and tempering, which we never see on the show. All that depends upon the steel used. As with most things if it looks simple there's probably more that has to be understood and done than meets the eye.
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2019
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  14. theotherwaldo

    theotherwaldo Member

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    Sometimes it's handy, being a potter.
    With a kiln that can reach a well-controlled 2500 degrees Fahrenheit and a good array of clays and slurrys, heat-treating and tempering is no big deal.
    I'm getting ready to build another two-brick forge come fall, as I have a number of projects in mind.
     
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  15. Elkins45

    Elkins45 Member

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    There are a number of knifemaking supply companies and companies that make knife kits. At least one of them used to do batch heat treatment for customers blades. I want to say maybe Texas Knifemakers or something like that. I’m sure a Google search would turn it up.

    I’ve done one 1095 knife that I tempered myself. I used hardwood charcoal (not briquettes) and a blower rigged from an old hairdryer to get it up to critical, then edge quenched in used motor oil. I tempered it in the kitchen oven. Yes, my wife was out of town that weekend. It is a crude, ugly knife but it cuts just as well as any of the 1095 knives I’ve purchased.

    EDIT: found it. $6.50 plus shipping. I paid that much for the bag of charcoal. http://www.texasknife.com/vcom/privacy.php#services
     
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