Engraving and Heat Treat

#1
I asked this question on the heat treat thread but got no answer, so will try here. Engraving has to be done on an annealed blade (folder). Are there any precautions or special steps to be taken when heat treating after engraving? Do some steels offer an advantage......any tricks or tips to observe??? Thanks for your response. Charlie
 

D.Douglas

Well-Known Member
#2
Most steel can be engraverd in its anealed state. I would say try and keep the oxidation to a mininum during and after heat treat so only some minor sanding and finishing is needed to clean up the blade and the engraving. Stainless might be best for keeping the oxidation low with a special oxygen free oven or stainless foil. I am only speaking from a couple experiances i had with 440c. They turned out very well as i only had to do some light sanding before assembly.
Doug
 
#4
Doug"s got it right. Get as good a finnish as you can on the blade before engraving and heat treat to minimize the finishing after engraving.
so keeping this in mind you should have a great bade when done.
Darren
 

gaelic forge

Well-Known Member
#7
Have received a commision for a couple ceremonial knives with silver inlay requested on the blades. I always want to stretch my skill level but am beginning to crawfish a bit on these knives. I can do the silver inlay on the handles, since all the design will be linear. I will use U shaped silver wire and will tap in place. The inlay on the blade is spooking me a bit. Has anyone done this before? Would using silver solder be a better idea on the blade using heat to set and flux, or should I attempt silver wire? Suggestions? Words of wisdom? Yeah, I know. I am nuts for doing this.
 

GHEzell

Well-Known Member
#8
I've never attempted inlay on a blade before, but I've been wanting to try it on some of the seaxes I've been making lately since they did a lot of it back in the day.

Plan A: Edge-quenched W2 or similar steel, cut the channels for inlay after heat-treating and hope the spine stayed soft...
Plan B: A wrought iron blade, with a steel edge, no chance of hitting hard steel as long as the welding and forging is right.
Plan C: Cut the inlay channels first, quench the blade using anti-scale compound, clean and insert inlay after tempering.
Plan D: Some combination of the above...

The channels will need to be undercut and the silver hammered flush so it expands to fill the undercut in order for it to stay when the blade is used...
This thread over at Don's forum might be useful...http://forums.dfoggknives.com/index.php?showtopic=15809&view=findpost&p=164839
 

D.Douglas

Well-Known Member
#9
I like plan c. I would recomend a test pc if time alows. Use fine silver not sterling silver. Get some diemakers stones for working down the inlay flat after the metal is inlayed. I have no experiance in wood but as george stated you will have to undercut the channel for the silver to lock down in the metal blade.
 
#10
To further this discussion, I have heard differential heat treating mentioned at times. Would someone explain this techinique as it would apply to this topic. As I understand it, basically, the edge is hardened while the spine or the area that is engraved, is kept in an annealed state.......right, wrong...???
 

GHEzell

Well-Known Member
#11
To further this discussion, I have heard differential heat treating mentioned at times. Would someone explain this techinique as it would apply to this topic. As I understand it, basically, the edge is hardened while the spine or the area that is engraved, is kept in an annealed state.......right, wrong...???
That's it, basically. With shallow hardening steels it is easy to control how much of the blade achieves full hardness by quenching only the edge, about 1/3 of the way up the blade. This makes for a blade that will bend easier than a fully hardened blade, but is very, very difficult to break. A search on 'edge quenching' will give you more information.

The back of an edge-quenched blade is not fully annealed, however, just soft, as in normalized. It can still give you some difficulty in cutting with metal tools, but not nearly as much as fully hardened steel. The blade is often etched to show the quench line, and it would not be a bad idea to lightly etch the blade after heat-treating so you can see exactly what part of the blade is soft if you are going to be engraving, filing, or cutting the steel with steel in any way.
 

Danae

Active Member
#12
I have heard some other engravers talking about inlaying into blades and I know gold is absolutely fine to put in before heat treat. I hope silver would be fine, planning to try it soon. You have to cut and undercut the inlay channels before heat treat. You can undercut by either removing metal in the sidewalls which means you don't have to sand it back down flat or displace metal by tapping a point like a hard small sharp screwdriver into the sidewalls shoving the metal over and up which you will have to sand off... both methods are very popular.
 
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