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  1. Heikki

    W2 and hamons - Normalizing/Grain Refinement Question...

    I'm going to heat treat some W-2 tonight, weather permitting, and plan on doing some hamons. I was wondering if having clay on the blades during the normalizing and grain refinement steps will be a problem, or should I apply the clay after I've done those steps? Will it have any negative impact?
  2. Heikki

    Heat Treat Ovens, Looking for Input

    I'm thinking this is the year that I'll be purchasing a heat treat oven. Hoping to get some input on details and options that others have found important or useful. I have a small space to work with and it's not wired for 240v, though I would consider putting a line in if necessary. I would...
  3. Heikki

    Curly Maple for ax handle?

    I recently came into several nice pieces of curly Maple a guy was giving away that I'd like to use for an ax handle. I know people use it for tomahawks and such, just wondering about grain orientation and if there's anything along those lines I would need to pay attention to. They are nice...
  4. Heikki

    Antler handle for hidden tang

    I've got some Elk antler I'm using for the handle on a hidden tang. I'm wondering how people finish the raw butt end of the knife? What options are there if you're not doing a through tang? Looking for ideas.
  5. Heikki

    Hidden Tang WIP

    So, I'm going to attempt a sort of WIP for my first hidden tang knife. Mostly so I have a place to ask questions and get advice. This is where I'm at so far: I have the blade profiled and pre-heat treat ground to 120. Steel is 1084. I plan to use steel and copper for the spacers, and Koa for...
  6. Heikki

    Scratches or cracks?

    A friend just sent me a photo of a knife I made him a couple years ago with what look like sanding scratches in the tip. Haven’t seen something like this show up before, and am concerned they could be cracks. I know they weren’t there when I gave it to him, at least not that obvious. Any ideas?
  7. Heikki

    Barn wood scales...anyone done it?

    So here's the situation. The 125 year old barn on my Grandfather's farm is finally coming down. I'd like to make my father and his brothers all knives using this wood for handle scales after getting it stabilized. My thought is if I cut the pieces thin enough, I may be able to keep the...
  8. Heikki

    Finishing up a batch of knives, hit #100

    I was able to get some pics today of the latest group going through the shop. I have a bunch of sheath work to do next. This group takes me to my 100th knife since I started this hobby. I've been numbering all my knives, so every # will be entered in a giveaway drawing for #100. I haven't...
  9. Heikki

    New tool in the shop

    I just received my portable hardness tester today. It's the Chinese version of the Ames tester. Seems to test a point high. I'm hoping it will help me tighten up my process a bit.
  10. Heikki

    Question on portable hardness tester..

    So, I'm just about ready to pull the trigger on a portable hardness tester, most likely the PHR-1 model. I'm finding prices all over the map, from $600-$1200 for what looks like the same thing, and they all appear to come from China. Anyone have this model, and is the quality good? I don't have...
  11. Heikki

    Scale removal- Vinegar soak question...

    I'm trying vinegar to ease the pain of removing scale on some blanks. What I've read says to leave it overnight after heat treating. Is there a minimum time for decent results? I just put em in this morning and was hoping it wouldn't take all day. Guess I'm being impatient.
  12. Heikki

    Maker retiring, equipment available

    I've been in contact with Dan Freda of DF Custom Knives and have his permission to share this information. He is retiring and will be selling all his knife making equipment: belt and disc grinders, oven, even a mill. It's pick up only in Red Creek, NY (Finger Lakes area). You can get details and...
  13. Heikki

    Repurposing "scrap" materials

    So, I have this tendency to save all the off cuts and leftover pieces of material in the knife making process: pieces of handle material, pieces of steel, bits of leather. I'm always thinking "hey, I can find something to do with this", but really I'm just tracking to become a hoarder. Recently...
  14. Heikki

    What Is This Called?

    I'm going to try to make 2 more of these soon, but I'm not entirely sure what they're called. I've done some searching and come up with different variations. I've seen them called "curly Qs" or "pig tails". Is there an actual blacksmith or knife term for the curled steel at the end of the...
  15. Heikki

    Hello From Pennsylvania

    My name is Tim, and I've been doing stock removal knives for almost 3 years now. I've been frequenting this forum as a guest for awhile now and decided it was time to join. I started with hand files and a HF 1X30 and this year upgraded to a 2X72. I love to experiment and learn new things. I have...
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