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Forging A Knife

Discussion in 'H.I. Cantina' started by EricTheRedBeard, Jul 30, 2019.

  1. EricTheRedBeard

    EricTheRedBeard Basic Member Basic Member

    437
    May 17, 2018
    I have been working on forging my first knife. Per nDog's request, I am posting my progress. It is based off the Yakut knife design. It only has an edge bevel (convex) on one side of the blade. The other side of the blade is flat and has a fuller in the middle. It has a stick tang. I planned on peening it but ended up using epoxy and pounding it onto the handle. Handle is a piece of walnut, I think.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
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    Here it is after hardening.
    [​IMG]
    The tang was too hard. It broke. I put a file to the rest of it and it seemed okay. I decided to just epoxy it instead of peening it as I originally planned.
    [​IMG]
    Shaping the edge bevel.
    [​IMG]
    The fuller
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    I cut the tang hole in the handle to be pretty tight. It is rectangular shaped tang. I also filed little "teeth" into the tang so the 2 ton epoxy would get in there and hold tight. It took a few good pounds to get it seated in the handle. I don't plan on being really rough with this knife. It will be mostly for carving and slicing. Not baton-ing firewood or anything like that. Here's hoping it holds together.
    [​IMG]
    The epoxy has cured. Seems pretty solid. I'm going to leave the forging scale where it is.
    [​IMG]
    She slept by my side that night.
    [​IMG]
    Shaped the handle. When viewing it from the pommel it has an egg shape. The wood looks like walnut to me. It is definitely a hard wood. Correct me if you think it might be something else. I didn't use any stain. Just some Danish Oil (natural color). I still need to bring the edge bevel up closer to the spine and thin out the handle a bit. I will probably finish the handle with BLO after shaping it some more.
    [​IMG]
    There's the fuller after some polishing on the blade. I am leaving the forging scale in the fuller.

    I'm not as brave as nDog, so I'm not doing a bend test. I'll just test it out by using it and hope it never breaks. I will post more pictures when I finish her up and make a proper sheath.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2019
  2. davidf99

    davidf99 Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Sep 27, 2011
    Can't really tell the wood type from the pics, but walnut has a distinctive smell, more so than most woods. Hold the handle up to your nose and see if you can detect it. Must be done before you apply any finish coat.

    This is a nice job, especially for a first knife. It's great that you filed teeth into the tang to provide a mechanical connection with the epoxy. That important detail is often overlooked.

    Since the tang was hard enough to break, it would be tempting fate to try a bending test.
     
    EricTheRedBeard likes this.
  3. EricTheRedBeard

    EricTheRedBeard Basic Member Basic Member

    437
    May 17, 2018
    Thank you. When filing the teeth in the tang, it was easy to tell the tang gets softer toward the blade. Now I guess I understand why other people just quench the blade itself and not the tang. It must cool down too quick and harden up too much. Either that or my tempering was not good. I guess I will find out in time.
     
  4. pugs75

    pugs75 Gold Member Gold Member

    Oct 21, 2009
    Looks pretty dang good for your first, well done man. It should serve you well.
     
    EricTheRedBeard likes this.
  5. Bookie

    Bookie Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 25, 2014
    Nice try. After quenching to make it hard, did you heat it back up to temper the blade? Your next one will show improvement. Keep trying and good luck!
     
    EricTheRedBeard likes this.
  6. ndoghouse

    ndoghouse Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 26, 2010
    Dayum! Thats a fine Yakut Eric! This is so weird that you picked the Yakut! Ive been studying that knife in the last few weeks and wanted to make one myself. You mustta been reading my mind sir! Looks like you nailed it. They did run the convex edge most of the way to the spine to reduce the friction but yours looks just fine. Good job on the tang. They traditionally used Birch and burned in the tang from what i understand but walnut is very hard wood and would do the same as far as I know. Here is a video of one i thought id follow:

    He makes the traditional sheath and all. Great job Eric! Cant wait to see it done. You can torch the tang to soften it and it wont hurt a thing. Just watch the edge color and make sure it dont change. On my fish filet knife I tempered it by keeping the edge in wet sand slurry as I torched the spine. Keep it moving so the water vapor dont insulate the edge and it can dissipate the heat. Keep us updated.
     
    EricTheRedBeard likes this.
  7. EricTheRedBeard

    EricTheRedBeard Basic Member Basic Member

    437
    May 17, 2018
    I did heat up the blade with a torch to temper it after hardening it. But I only tempered the blade. Now I realize I should have tempered the tang too. Next time I will leave the tang out and just quench the blade. Thanks for the info. It works pretty well for carving. It may break one day, but hopefully I'll get a lot of use out of it first. Thanks Bookie.
    I think it will serve me well too. Thank you.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2019
  8. EricTheRedBeard

    EricTheRedBeard Basic Member Basic Member

    437
    May 17, 2018
    Thanks nDog. I would love to see yours too when you make one! I really enjoy watching Rune Malte Bertram Nielsen's videos. That is where I got the idea for the Yakut. I plan on extending the convex edge even higher up toward the spine. I think it will work a little better for slicing when I do. I am also going to do a little more finishing to the handle. I think that birch burl looks awesome. Maybe if this handle ever breaks or the blade comes loose I will try a birch handle. I really like this knife so far. I took the family out of town on a short vacation to visit my wife's family in Southeast Missouri. I needed a little project to keep my hands busy. Here are a few pictures of the sheath I made for it.

    [​IMG]
    I used the leather from this AK bowie sheath left over after Pugs made a gator sheath for it. (Thanks Pugs!)
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    I made the inner part of the sheath out of an oak branch that had fallen in the yard.
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    There is about half an inch of empty leather at the tip of the sheath under the wood insert. That makes it look a little longer than it really is. I will figure out a way to stich that up tight and remove excess material.
    [​IMG]
    I added a second layer around the top to make it a little more rigid where the knife is inserted and add a some strength to where the belt loop is tied.
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    Here is the belt loop. The strap wraps around the sheath and tightens up when hanging from a belt.
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    Stitching on the back. Have mercy on my poor skills. This is my first ever leather project.
    [​IMG]
    Inside.

    Once finished, it hung on my belt for the remainder of the trip. My wife's family already thinks I'm pretty weird but they don't have much room to talk.
    I will post more pictures of the finished knife and sheath when I have the handle looking pretty. Thanks for following.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2019
  9. Bawanna

    Bawanna Moderator Moderator

    Dec 19, 2012
    That turned out really swell. Like the looks of that a lot.

    Weird is to the eye of the beholder, one time somebody thought I was weird but I didn't let it bother me too much.
     
    EricTheRedBeard likes this.
  10. EricTheRedBeard

    EricTheRedBeard Basic Member Basic Member

    437
    May 17, 2018
    It doesn't bother me either. They are actually very nice people. In their defense, I am weird. In my defense, normal is boring. I am very happy how the knife is turning out too. Thanks Bawanna.
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2019
  11. pugs75

    pugs75 Gold Member Gold Member

    Oct 21, 2009
    That sheath looks great man, ya done good!! stitching looks good as well.
     
    EricTheRedBeard likes this.
  12. EricTheRedBeard

    EricTheRedBeard Basic Member Basic Member

    437
    May 17, 2018
    Thank you brother. That means a lot coming from you. The mother in law saw that I was doing leatherwork and sent me home with a bunch of leather. She had bought a half a cow hide and had someone reupholster an ottoman. I inherited all the leftovers. I am going to get a lot of leatherwork practice. Her trash was definitely my treasure. It kind of felt like being a little kid on Christmas morning.
     
  13. ndoghouse

    ndoghouse Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 26, 2010
    Very nice sheath Eric! I wouldnt do anything to that rig. I doubt you would ever break that knife unless maybe you dropped it from ten floors up on the concrete or something. Another reason to temper down the tang is if you need to drill holes in it to install slabs then it becomes almost impossible to drill that hard steel unless you use a carbide bit or grind a hole maybe.
    Cant have too much leather:thumbsup:
     
    EricTheRedBeard likes this.
  14. uraninite

    uraninite Basic Member Basic Member

    37
    Aug 21, 2019
    Very nice, I am glad to see that the yakut knife design is getting some love, as its one of my favorites. Excellent work on both the knife and the sheath.
     
    EricTheRedBeard likes this.
  15. EricTheRedBeard

    EricTheRedBeard Basic Member Basic Member

    437
    May 17, 2018
    Thanks Uraninite.

    I have finished up the handle with BLO and tightened the sheath. I also put a much more stout leather strap for the belt loop. I still want to take the edge bevel up a bit closer to the spine. I think I just got lucky that my first knife gets sharp, stays sharp and cuts well. Cant ask for much more than that. I've done quite a bit of carving with it and I am very happy with how it cuts. I will post more pictures when I can.
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2019

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