View Full Version : Ok what went wrong

07-12-2011, 05:02 AM
I have a 1/4x12x2.5 blade made of w2. I heated in in the kiln to 1450 and let it soak for 10 min. I then removed it an immeditaly dipped it in the salt brine recipe from Buba-San. I dipped it for 3 sec. removed diped for another 3 sec. removed and dipped for another 3 sec and let it sit to water temp. I then removed it and put in the oven at 450 for 1 hr then let it air cool. I took it to the shop and ran a file across it to see if it would dig in and it dug in as if I had not done anything to it. What went wrong? Did I miss a step? Please help me?

John Barker
07-12-2011, 08:50 AM
I thought 1500 was what you needed to get non magnetic.

07-12-2011, 09:32 AM
Yes two reasons. 1st this steel did need 1500 but come to find out I had a different steel than I thought. I will aneal and try again.

07-12-2011, 09:34 AM
I think he may ( aldo) may have sent you some 1084 , W-2 should be orange on the end , I think you said it was blue ??? you should bring up to 1500 degrees. When quenching in water /salt brine I use a single 4 sec quench for w-2.......... Bubba

Josh Dabney
07-12-2011, 09:57 AM
Your procedure looks good to me. 1450 is enough heat to harden. IIRC steel will lose magnetism at approx. 1414 degrees.

3 seconds in brine should also be good for the initial quench IMO.

More info would help-
Did you grind in bevels ?
Clay coat?
What was your normalization procedure?

You file checked AFTER tempering ????? It would make sense for the file to cut with a little effort post temper.

Even without clay on a 1/4" cross section and an interrupted quench there's a good chance you ended up with a natural hamon and of course your file will easily cut any pearlite.

Just some FYI about file checking your blade-
-Check after the quench but wait about 5 minutes or so. 30 seconds after the quench the file will cut while the martinsite conversion is in process.
-Also if you get a bit of decarb you may need to clean that up to get an "accurate" assesment of the files cut becuase even though there's fully hardened steel underneath the file will still scrape off the decarbed steel.
-If you get your blade fully hardened and file check it before tempering not only will it "skate the file" but the file literally won't leave a scratch on it.

When using steels that typically produce hamon like W1 W2 and 1095 it's always a good idea to clean up your blade to say a half hearted effort at 220 grit after heat treating and then give it an etch in ferric to see exactly what you got. You may just find you got an unintended hamon or a hamon that is unsatisfactory. I actually do this after the quench and before tempering just in case I need/want to re-harden.


07-12-2011, 09:58 AM
Yes I talked to him. He made it right. He did send some 1084 but got me some more W2 in the mail. Yes I brought a test piece to 1500 and diped it while we were talking and them tempered it. It was nice and hard.

07-12-2011, 10:26 AM
Good I am glad you figured it out . sometimes its a learning curve . 1084 is a different animal . Lots of manganese , wont produce a killer hamon like W-2 , I think it will be fine if you clean up original piece a little as Josh and I suggested . Good luck .