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Old 02-16-2014, 04:45 PM
Ed Tipton Ed Tipton is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 352
The first knife I ever made was a crude little drop point with a maple handle. I had done all the work on it myself, and as you said ... I was very proud of the fact that I carried and used something that I had made. I used and abused that little knife for a full year...and it never failed to deliver the goods.
After that first year, I finally did a destructive test on it. By that time it had cut through many things, had been sharpened a few times, looked very rough, and was generally in such bad shape that I was no longer proud of it. It had passed every test I had ever given it with flying colors...so I fully expected it to pass the bend test as well.
I was wrong. It bent to about thirty degrees before it finally snapped. I was amazed at how much leverage it took to break that little knife. After it broke, I examined the knife closely and found that the knife had been overheated and that it had very coarse grain. In addition, the handle had popped off when I put the pipe over it because I had never pinned the scales onto the tang.
Had I never tested that knife, I would never have known about the scales or the application of too much heat.
What really impressed me was that even with these two faults, the knife had performed very well, and I thought about how much better it might have performed had I done everything correctly.
I have improved my techniques now....and I am making better knives...and I know that because it do test them.
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