Knife making without the forging

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Ragzork
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Knife making without the forging

Post by Ragzork » Thu May 02, 2013 11:43 pm

Does anybody know what kind of materials I can use to make a knife other than old circular sawblades or putty knives?

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Re: Knife making without the forging

Post by jamoni » Fri May 03, 2013 12:26 am

http://www.texasknife.com/vcom/index.php?cPath=87_924" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
JoergS wrote:Realistically, I think I can launch a nine pound chain saw at 50 fps from a shoulder mounted rubber powered bazooka...
squinty wrote:I reserve the right to yell "Dookyhole!" - or it's Hebrew equivalent if such a thing exists - whilst dispensing a barrage of palm strikes at my opponent.

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Re: Knife making without the forging

Post by Ragzork » Fri May 03, 2013 12:38 am

I meant around your house but thanks nonetheless!

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Re: Knife making without the forging

Post by lowjohn19 » Fri May 03, 2013 12:43 am


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Re: Knife making without the forging

Post by Manliest » Fri May 03, 2013 12:50 am

Band stock is available at most hardware stores and will make a serviceable blade.
Pry bars can be converted.

Depends what kind of knife you're trying to make....

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Re: Knife making without the forging

Post by jamoni » Fri May 03, 2013 2:14 am

You can smash a toilet or sink and knap the shards into some pretty badass edginess.
Old files can be used.
JoergS wrote:Realistically, I think I can launch a nine pound chain saw at 50 fps from a shoulder mounted rubber powered bazooka...
squinty wrote:I reserve the right to yell "Dookyhole!" - or it's Hebrew equivalent if such a thing exists - whilst dispensing a barrage of palm strikes at my opponent.

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Re: Knife making without the forging

Post by maldon007 » Fri May 03, 2013 5:40 am

Stuff I have used- Lawn mower blades, files, prybars, other knives (cut dow/reshape), blade from tile remover tool, saber saw blade, edger blade (that one wouldn't harden).

But if your not going to harden the finished knife (as in, you don't plan on heating it to non-magnetic & quenching), I would say use stainless... The advantage of carbon steel is the hardness that holds the edge (once you hardened it). So if you can't/won't harden it, you're just making a sharp thing that dulls quickly either way. Find an old butcher knife and reshape it/rehandle it.

Some stainless HAS been hardened to a degree, so when reshaping a stainless knife, try to keep it cool, especially as you get near finish... If it turns dark/blue/any other color, you have certainly de-hardened that area (if it was hardened at all).

So what I do is cut the shape with a thin-blade angle grinder & leave room to spare. Then work back to the new edge slowly, while keeping the metal cool (dipping in water between quick/light grinds), getting rid of the discolored metal. BUT this is time consuming for sure, doing the same thing with carbon steel, even counting hardening time, is quicker for the same size piece.

Anyway, good luck!
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Re: Knife making without the forging

Post by Fugglesby » Sat May 04, 2013 9:00 pm

One that hasn't been mentioned yet is disc brakes off a bicycle/motorbike.
On the whole however, I agree with Maldon, the potential benefits from these scavenged high carbon steels are pretty much lost if you can't heat treat stuff without a forge, so stainless would be fine.
Something to keep in mind however, is that just because your knife won't be able to get as sharp or stay as sharp as a high carbon knife, doesn't mean it can't cut up stuff like a demon.
The key to this is through smart blade design. Many food prep knives are practically blunt but still do a great job, like a plastic lettuce knife or bread knife. These knives make use of an edge of sorts and serrations.
Serrations don't need to be as sharp to cut well as they function due to a whole different set of parameters apart from just edge sharpness.
If you've got a big, wide flat and relatively thin piece of stainless, I'd suggest putting big gentle serrations onto it like what you'd see on a bread knife or meat carver. I think you'll be very surprised with how well the resulting blade works.
As for smaller knives you'd probably do best to imitate the kind of serrations that you see on a high performance serrated knife of your choice. Spyderedges work great and aren't very difficult, even steak knife serrations will make a piece of metal tear through softer material like there's no tomorrow.
As a personal example of what can be achieved on non blade steels through nothing but edge design, around inner city melbourne I EDC a fork.
That's right, a fork. It has a shortened handle so it can fit into my pocket easier, a steep chisel bevel on one side and some slightly gentle Veff serrations on the other side. the chisel bevel is pretty useless but the veff serrations are fantastic. They make the fork cut like a cheap steak knife and are excellent for food prep, actual eating, opening packets and cutting cardboard. Pretty much everything I would use a knife for but I won't get arrested for carrying it.
The best part is, because the serrations are so blunt, you don't have to worry about sharpening them and you can still use it as a fork. The inside of your mouth won't get cut up.

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Re: Knife making without the forging

Post by jamoni » Sun May 05, 2013 9:43 am

If you want to do it right, you have to heat treat. There are places that will do it for you, but it ain't hard or expensive.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qOqgVfgpvH0" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qlKwhIuMdrM" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
JoergS wrote:Realistically, I think I can launch a nine pound chain saw at 50 fps from a shoulder mounted rubber powered bazooka...
squinty wrote:I reserve the right to yell "Dookyhole!" - or it's Hebrew equivalent if such a thing exists - whilst dispensing a barrage of palm strikes at my opponent.

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Re: Knife making without the forging

Post by Valarius » Wed May 08, 2013 6:48 pm

jamoni wrote:If you want to do it right, you have to heat treat. There are places that will do it for you, but it ain't hard or expensive.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qOqgVfgpvH0" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qlKwhIuMdrM" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

:shock:


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Re: Knife making without the forging

Post by mr_slappy75 » Tue May 20, 2014 9:05 pm

So, this is not really a heat treating or knife making question per-se (and since I have not taken the time yet to get a membership in Bladeforums) I must pick the ZS hive mind, well at least that of our resident knife makers and tinkerers. *glances over at Stormcrow, Maine1 and SteveCA* :mrgreen:

For a while I have been wanting a heavy, carbon steel, field/bush craft knife with a polished -rather than coated- blade. I already have 3 powder coated and 1 or 2 Parkerized or TiN coated ones.

So I recently purchased this:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/ONTARIO-RANGER- ... true&rt=nc

The price was right and aesthetic appeal notwithstanding, I had some practical reasons for wanting to try a polished blade: Lower friction on cutting tasks, ease of cleaning, no ‘flavor retention’ if called upon to perform chef duties… that last one is not probable but it is nice to have the option if need be.

That it can still be used it as a signaling device is a bonus, ultimately as a civilian living in CONUS I am not likely to be in situations where the need for a non-glare stealth tool will be an OpSec issue.

It fits my hand very well, however when I went to ‘choke up’ on the blade, the lack of traction on the thumb rise and the spine area was a little off-putting. With the original textured finish on other knives of the Ontario RD line, I imagine this is not a big concern but mine is snot-on-a-doorknob slick.

Therefore, I want to try my hand at jimping…looking around the interwebs, I have found folks use anything from checkering files, round files, diamond jeweler files, knife making belt sanders and Dremel tools.

This is the thread I came across on Bushcraft USA: http://bushcraftusa.com/forum/archive/i ... 37887.html

The fellow I saw in YouTube using the belt sander, was explaining that the reason he was doing it that way is because he had forgotten to put in the jimping before hardening the knife he had been working on and according to him “The only way to get this done once you have heat treated your knife is to use a power tool” here:


Based on the various snippets I’ve come across, it seems that since I already own a Dremel clone (B&D RTX) this may be the most viable way for me to go; Indeed, while looking around youtube, I saw that everyone’s favorite guy to dislike ‘NuttinFancy’ had taken Dremel to a Benchmade folder with sub par looking results:



Now towards the very bottom on the Bushcraft USA thread, someone mentioned that the cut off disks on a rotary tool, could be stacked on the arbor, separated by spacer washers in order to attain a uniform, professional looking result.


Question: Has anyone here seen or done this?

I have looked all over and read other references to this method, one post on Bladeforums indicated that “3 fiber-reinforced cut-off disks can be stacked…” but I have not found any footage or illustration of this being done.

I mean, it makes logical sense and I think, I could go to my local hardware store with one of my stock arbors, find a slightly longer ( ¼”? ½”?) screw that fits the threads, along with a couple of 1/8” or 1/16” thick nylon or Delrin washers if I cannot find rubber ones and stack 3 cut off wheels.

I have a flex-shaft attachment which I can make a jig for so that the knife can be brought in on a perpendicular plane to the disks while supporting it with a small table, this way diminishing the ‘freehand’ part of the process as much as possible without getting into serious machinist-level equipment.

I can see how using 2 or more disks would enable for even spacing as after the first three jimp-cuts, the next set would be of only two, matching up the trailing edge disk on the arbor to the last of the existing cuts, the next series should come out evenly spaced.


Does anyone have any observations, advise, warnings or suggestions for this endeavor? I am already set to take the precautions of wearing both gloves and eye/face gear, keeping a ‘cooling bucket’ on hand to avoid overheating the blade, masking the knife edge with some taped-on card stock so that even if it happen for some fluke to ‘kick back’ it won’t slice me open and letting the tool do the work while stopping often to allow cooling of the disks.

Am I forgetting anything?
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Re: Knife making without the forging

Post by maine1 » Tue May 20, 2014 9:53 pm

For a larger heavy knife, try to find an old cleaver to cut down. use a cutoff wheel, and go slow, keep the steel a bit wet- spray bottle is ok, dip in a bucket ocasionally is better.

For thinner knives, cutting down a good machete is a good way to go, or a butcher knife as has been mentioned.

A thinner leaf spring is not a bad choice.

It might be useful to know what you are thinking of making, and what tools and skills you have access to. Don't think you NEED a belt grinder, drill press ect to make a blade or two. I made many serviceable ( read that UGLY as hell), rugged knives in my youth with next to nothing: a vice, hacksaw with old blades, dull files, and a small bench grinder. Frustrating? YUP! Builds character, and if you keep at it...you might be a knifemaker. Also teaches the value of good tools. Solid vice or way to hold the steel ( Becker workmate in my old apartment) good files and hacksaw- Lennox blades are good- and you are in buisiness. Learn to draw file, and file square. Just gotta WANT that knife.

When I got old enough to realize that they sold NEW files, and what you could DO with a sharp file...WOW!

We are in the golden age of knifemaking today- ANYONE with access to the net can learn to make a blade, nearly effortlessly by reading and watching a few videos.

Don't overcomplicate it, don't overthink it, ( GUILTY!) just get in and do, and you'll figure it out.
Our society throws away, literally, TONS of superior knife steel. If the smiths of old had access to a stack of leafspring, well...we might not have pattern welded steel today, the Japanese sword would be completely different. Or, at least there would be many more.

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Re: Knife making without the forging

Post by maldon007 » Fri Jul 18, 2014 8:05 pm

mr_slappy75 wrote:So, this is not really a heat treating or knife making question per-se (and since I have not taken the time yet to get a membership in Bladeforums) I must pick the ZS hive mind, well at least that of our resident knife makers and tinkerers. *glances over at Stormcrow, Maine1 and SteveCA* :mrgreen:

For a while I have been wanting a heavy, carbon steel, field/bush craft knife with a polished -rather than coated- blade. I already have 3 powder coated and 1 or 2 Parkerized or TiN coated ones.

So I recently purchased this:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/ONTARIO-RANGER- ... true&rt=nc

The price was right and aesthetic appeal notwithstanding, I had some practical reasons for wanting to try a polished blade: Lower friction on cutting tasks, ease of cleaning, no ‘flavor retention’ if called upon to perform chef duties… that last one is not probable but it is nice to have the option if need be.

That it can still be used it as a signaling device is a bonus, ultimately as a civilian living in CONUS I am not likely to be in situations where the need for a non-glare stealth tool will be an OpSec issue.

It fits my hand very well, however when I went to ‘choke up’ on the blade, the lack of traction on the thumb rise and the spine area was a little off-putting. With the original textured finish on other knives of the Ontario RD line, I imagine this is not a big concern but mine is snot-on-a-doorknob slick.

Therefore, I want to try my hand at jimping…looking around the interwebs, I have found folks use anything from checkering files, round files, diamond jeweler files, knife making belt sanders and Dremel tools.

This is the thread I came across on Bushcraft USA: http://bushcraftusa.com/forum/archive/i ... 37887.html

The fellow I saw in YouTube using the belt sander, was explaining that the reason he was doing it that way is because he had forgotten to put in the jimping before hardening the knife he had been working on and according to him “The only way to get this done once you have heat treated your knife is to use a power tool” here:


Based on the various snippets I’ve come across, it seems that since I already own a Dremel clone (B&D RTX) this may be the most viable way for me to go; Indeed, while looking around youtube, I saw that everyone’s favorite guy to dislike ‘NuttinFancy’ had taken Dremel to a Benchmade folder with sub par looking results:



Now towards the very bottom on the Bushcraft USA thread, someone mentioned that the cut off disks on a rotary tool, could be stacked on the arbor, separated by spacer washers in order to attain a uniform, professional looking result.


Question: Has anyone here seen or done this?

I have looked all over and read other references to this method, one post on Bladeforums indicated that “3 fiber-reinforced cut-off disks can be stacked…” but I have not found any footage or illustration of this being done.

I mean, it makes logical sense and I think, I could go to my local hardware store with one of my stock arbors, find a slightly longer ( ¼”? ½”?) screw that fits the threads, along with a couple of 1/8” or 1/16” thick nylon or Delrin washers if I cannot find rubber ones and stack 3 cut off wheels.

I have a flex-shaft attachment which I can make a jig for so that the knife can be brought in on a perpendicular plane to the disks while supporting it with a small table, this way diminishing the ‘freehand’ part of the process as much as possible without getting into serious machinist-level equipment.

I can see how using 2 or more disks would enable for even spacing as after the first three jimp-cuts, the next set would be of only two, matching up the trailing edge disk on the arbor to the last of the existing cuts, the next series should come out evenly spaced.


Does anyone have any observations, advise, warnings or suggestions for this endeavor? I am already set to take the precautions of wearing both gloves and eye/face gear, keeping a ‘cooling bucket’ on hand to avoid overheating the blade, masking the knife edge with some taped-on card stock so that even if it happen for some fluke to ‘kick back’ it won’t slice me open and letting the tool do the work while stopping often to allow cooling of the disks.

Am I forgetting anything?

....How did this turn out? Pics please!!!
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Re: Knife making without the forging

Post by Fugglesby » Sat Jul 26, 2014 11:14 pm

It seems like Mr Slappy didn't get his questions answered before.
I know it's pretty late, but I'll go for it anyway.
Ultimately you don't need to use a power tool at all. While the increased hardness of the knife steel means that it will cut more slowly, the big issue is that it means that it can't be cut by the majority of cutting tools out there, like files and hacksaws. The hardnesses of both tool and medium will be so similar that the work will be agonisingly slow or the tool simply won't cut. For this reason, a cutting device which utilises very hard material like diamond, aluminium oxide, or tungsten carbide would be far superior. There are hand tools available that utilise all these materials.
In the past I've done it with a dremel or with a jeweller's saw with no worries at all. As for the stacked cut off wheels, it sounds like an intersting idea. However, I'd warn you to be very careful that you're not bending the cutoff discs. These dremel ones snap very easily and quickly in my experience and send thin chunks of discs flying at your face. The situation you're talking about sounds like one that is going to make this happen many, many times. The issue is that when you say "the next set would be of only two, matching up the trailing edge disk on the arbor to the last of the existing cuts, the next series should come out evenly spaced." you're still pretty much guessing. The trailing disc isn't actually in the previous slot, just lined up with it. This is because the other disc hasn't got a slot to sit in yet. Then you go ahead and start cutting into the metal and it turns out that the two slots aren't quite parrallel or one is angled slightly and you end up with the trailing disc getting forced into a slot at an angle, with the side bending and doing cutting. This is when they shatter. In my opinion, you'd be much better off marking a set of even lines against the spine of your knife and then doing it freehand. It might not be 100% perfect, but the other method won't be either.

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