Thread: 15n20 or L6
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Old 09-08-2001, 12:50 AM
Posts: n/a

Hi Bill,

I have been learning to forge weld. I started with low carbon steel strapping and a coal forge. I got a propane forge because I live in town and don't want to impose coal smoke on the neighbors. With propane I seem to be able to control the heat better and am having better luck with my forge welding. Once I got pallet strapping to stick together so I could grind a blade I started using higher carbon steel.
I started with tempered spring stock, 1095 at .002" thickness mixed with steel strapping. It worked ok but I had to work it kind of slow on my belt sander or the .002 would heat up and delaminate. Probably me doing something wrong on the weld.
I guess I should explain why I try to start with as thin stock as possible. I don't have a power hammer and after I hit the stuff a bunch of times I get tired. My thinking is that if I start with very thin stock, I can start with more layers = less hammering.
I have decided that 1095 is way too spendy. And 1084 at .01" thickness represents a good compromise. Also, the pallet strappping is about 1018 as near as I can figure. So I tried alternating one piece of 1084 at .01" then a piece of steel strapping, then another piece of 1084, then a piece of .065" 5N20. I repeated this three times to make the starting stack. It seemed to weld up ok. Then I ground it to a uniform 1/8". I haven't made a blade out of it or tried etching to see how it will look. That's my weekend project. I didn't fold this one so I should get a bland that shows a dozen layers.
Right now I am getting my 15N20 from Admiral in .065" in sheets. Problem is that my Harbor Freight bandsaw doesn't like cutting it. I scored a sheet with a body grinder and took it to work. One of the guys at work tried to cut it on the shear. It wouldn't budge. So we took the sheet to the break and clamped on the score lines and just snapped off pieces. Not a very good way to go.
I think I am going to have to start with a thinner stack and fold it more often. My goal is around 100 layers.
Anyway Bill, that is what I am trying to accomplish. Any advise is appreciated. I am constantly amazed by the amount of really solid information that is made available by this group of guys.

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