Smithworx Blog


Twin Hunter Project

A friend of mine asked me to make a couple of hunters to serve as camp knives for he and his son on their scouting forays.  We decided on 440c for the steel to ensure a low maintenance blade.  I made a pattern first to ensure that both knives would be identical, and I cut and matched the handle slabs from the same cocobolo plank to get a good match on the handle scales.  The resulting knife has nice balance, nice lines and a really nice feel - the index finger ring and the top fin for the thumb make a nice compliment for each other in holding and controlling the blade.

I'm very happy with this project and I'm now planning to make a damascus version.


Happy New year!!



Differential Heat treating


In this experiment, I used 1095 Carbon steel to produce the blade, following all of the normal steps to normalize and thermal cycle the blade to prepare it for hardening.  I used a small amount of refractory cement (mixed to the consistency of sour cream) to create the pattern along the back of the blade.  After letting the cement dry completely, I brought the blade up to critical temperature as usual and quenched in oil.  To make the Hamon pattern bright and visible, I brought the blade up to a mirror polish, and then hand buffed with WD40 and jeweller's rouge on a rag.  The guard in 416 stainless and the handle is Cocobolo rubbed with Tung Oil.


In a future experiment, I'm planning to prepare a blade using the same 1095 Carbon Steel, but this time from a billet composed of 300 layers, just to compare the eventual pattern.


Damascus Utility Knife

Over the summer, I had some time for some experimentation and in this case killed 3 birds with one stone!.  I used a small piece of twisted damascus (1095 and 15N20, about 30 layers) for the blade.  I turned the handle on a mini-lathe using purple heartwood.  Last of all, I was able to put my aunt's name in the leather sheath - I was after a particular font, so it was a little tricky to transfer the small characters from the printout to the leather.  


Mirror with Forged Border Pattern

I recently finished this piece with the intent of exploring the use of a jig to produce a border pattern on mild steel.  The effect turned out quite nicely producing irregular diamond impressions.  The mitred corners were a nice touch as well, even though the steel does not meet up exactly because of the forging process. 


Adding more content!

I'm still in the process of adding, updating and editing content for the site.  Added a page today that will showcase knife projects from past and present.  Nothing at the moment on sale, but that will come soon.