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The Newbies Arena Are you new to knife making? Here is all the help you will need.

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  #1  
Old 10-21-2017, 03:49 AM
Rocajr Rocajr is offline
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Lightbulb My First Project

Hello guys! i a newbie to knife making, looking forward to learning a lot about this hobby we share. I have currently drawn a simple sketch of a survival knife i would like to make for myself (link for photo: https://www.reddit.com/r/knifemaking...KM&sh=6b63aa2f). I would like some suggestions regarding the sketch(how to improve it), handle material (i am thinkg of bone/antlers or wood, something accessible and easy to process) and suggestions about the blade metal (i was thinking about x96crmov12 or 1095). Thank you very much .

Last edited by Rocajr; 10-21-2017 at 03:54 AM.
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  #2  
Old 10-21-2017, 06:17 AM
Doug Lester Doug Lester is offline
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It would help if we knew where you were writing from so that we knew what your local limitations, or steel codes are. I have no idea what that first steel is like so I can't really say about it. 1095 is not really a beginner's steel. It can be a little tricky to heat treat.

Try to find a steel that has about 0.80% carbon in it along with some manganese and maybe just a touch or chromium and maybe some vanadium. Here in the US that would be 80CrV2. It doesn't need a long soak to get the carbon into solution. The chromium will give a little depth of hardening and the vanadium will put a drag on the grain growth so over heating will not be quite as much of a problem. The ~0.80% carbon content will give just about full solution of carbon in the iron without having so much that you will form retained austenite as with higher carbon steels, such as the 1095.

As far as the handle material goes I would forget about bone or antler scales if you are intending to baton the blade through wood. Wood would be a better choice as it's less likely to break. I would favor something dense and maybe even oily. Dense and oily would be the rosewood family. The would be things like coco bolo, kingwood, African blackwood, and, of course, the various species known as rosewood. The down side is that the rosewood family is coming under harvesting and shipping restrictions. Lignum vitae is also a dense oily wood. It's so dense that it' won't float in water. The New World variety is under restrictions but the Old World genus is not restricted. You could also try Desert Ironwood or Osage Orange, either the North American or South American varieties. Also, don't overlook the synthetics such as Micarta or G-10.

As far as the design goes, it looks pretty good. A couple of suggestions would be to drop the saber grind and take the primary bevel up the the spine of the blade. I think that you would find that the full flat grind will slice better. If you want a little more strength behind the edge for chopping duties you cold give the secondary bevel a convex contour by grinding it on a slack belt. Also do away with the fuller. They really serve no purpose on a knife that size.

As far as the handle design goes goes I would do away with the finger notches. If you are worrying about your hand slipping up onto the blade while you are using it try installing a single guard on the knife. It's not that hard of a job and will stop your hand a lot better than the notches. Also if you shape your handle with a palm swell in the middle it will be a lot more comfortable than flat scales.

Doug


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  #3  
Old 10-21-2017, 08:35 AM
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Ray Rogers Ray Rogers is offline
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What Doug has told you is golden. I'd add that you should read the Sticky Threads at the top of this forum, especially the one titled Before You Heat Treat Your First Knife. You're making the same decisions and mistakes that nearly every new knife maker makes and the info in those Stickies might save you some pain and disappointment ...


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  #4  
Old 10-21-2017, 02:32 PM
epicfail48 epicfail48 is offline
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Not a bad looking design, though I do agree with most of Doug's points. The finger grooves should definitely be toned down, they look cool on paper but in practice they usually end up horribly uncomfortable to hold, especially when it comes to different grip styles (choking up on the blade, reverse grip, sharp edge up, etc). I'd also do away with the little spiky area on the spine side of the tang, looks good on paper but will dig into the heel of your hand in practice.

I do also agree that the Fuller is pretty pointless, although in my argument they aren't good on anything that isn't a sword anyway. Too much time and effort trying to out one in without much tangible benefit. I've done one, and it took longer putting the Fuller in than it did to polish the knife (to say nothing of how long it took to polish the Fuller!).

For the blade metal, I'd suggest either O1 or 1084. Both of those are incredibly easy to work and heat treat, they're the quintessential examples of a "heat and dunk" steel. All you have to do is heat the steel to about 1450-1500f and dunk in oil, and neither is picky about the oil used. It's really hard to screw up either of those steels. In contrast to that, 1095 is a lot pickier about both temperature and quenchant. A little too low on temperature and it doesn't hardened, too high and you start to see grain grown. It also requires an extremely fast quench, and unless you're wanting to shell out $150 on a commercial quenchant that means water, which means a cracked blade 2/5 times. The other you mentioned requires a much higher hardening temperature at about 2100f, which is hard to get to and hold precisely in most home shops. Going off the composition it seems pretty close to D2 steel, which isn't exactly known for being easy to work.

And lastly, I wouldn't stress too much about handle materials. Pretty much anything will work, and nearly all handle materials are easy to work with. For a first knife, I'd recommend looking into G10. Now, I'm a wood-prefering kinda guy, but G10 does have the advantages of being dimensionally stable, being near impervious to just about everything, doesn't require any complicated finishing work, is readily available in nearly any size you could want, and is amazing easy to work. You do need to wear a respirator when working with the stuff, and it is a little abrasive to saw blades, but it still takes shape incredibly easy when grinded or sanded.
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  #5  
Old 10-21-2017, 03:55 PM
Doug Lester Doug Lester is offline
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One thing that I forgot to mention about working bone and maybe antler. It stinks to high heaven when you sand it to shape on a belt sander. I cut some elk leg bones into scales and power sanded them to shape and it took days to get the smell out of the house.

Doug


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  #6  
Old 10-21-2017, 04:01 PM
Rasmus Kristens Rasmus Kristens is offline
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Good luck with the project and welcome :-)
Where are you from?

There are some mighty keen guys here with a lot of tips and tricks, I have benifited a lot from the forum already.

I bought some 1095 for my first blade, almost quit the hobby right then and there... I just coudn't get it to harden proper. I then bought some 15N20 and made my first working knife. I can recomnend 15N20 for your first knives. It often come in thinner dimensions, but its very forgiving and makes a nice blade.

Lately i have been working with 80crv2 and O2 steel. Both are also easy to work with when using simple HT remedies.

About the design. Personally I don't really like the straight vertical line of the handle at the ricasso, but thats just taste my taste :-) I made my 2nd knife with large finger grooves, didn't work and looks clumsy when finished.

You have some pin holes at the rear and the front, take care they dont get to close to the edge of the handle. I damaged a wood handle this way on one of my knives.

Last edited by Rasmus Kristens; 10-21-2017 at 04:07 PM.
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  #7  
Old 10-21-2017, 04:12 PM
Rasmus Kristens Rasmus Kristens is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by epicfail48 View Post
...You do need to wear a respirator when working with the stuff, and it is a little abrasive to saw blades, but it still takes shape incredibly easy when grinded or sanded.
Don't we need the respirator alwayse? ;-)
I recently read some horro stories concerning cocobolo and the rest of the rosewood family.
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  #8  
Old 10-21-2017, 05:22 PM
epicfail48 epicfail48 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rasmus Kristens View Post
Don't we need the respirator alwayse? ;-)
I recently read some horro stories concerning cocobolo and the rest of the rosewood family.
Some people think that because wood is natural its safe to breathe. Some people also get lung cancer. I try to make a point of reminding people to wear a respirator when aerosolizing any material I recommend
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  #9  
Old 10-22-2017, 04:59 AM
Rocajr Rocajr is offline
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Thank you a lot guys! I really appreciate all the tips you have given me. I am from Romania by the way, sorry for not mentioning it before.
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  #10  
Old 10-22-2017, 07:26 AM
dtec1 dtec1 is offline
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SO yeh my 2 cents. AND I DONT FOLLOW MY OWN ADVICE ALL THE TIME but I would say all steels have a different heat treat so pick a steel in my opinion 1084 would be the best for a beginner...learn to heat treat that steel.....this will take some experimenting including making a couple blades and also some coupons (coupons are simple squar or rectangle pieces of the steel 2.5 x 1.25 inch....since you will have to break a couple pieces of steel in half to check how the grain looks its better to break a coupon than a blade....also you didn't mention how do you plan on heat treating do you have a propane forge?
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  #11  
Old 10-22-2017, 11:34 AM
jimmontg jimmontg is offline
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Rocajr; Go to, Knife.Makers.Romania on Facebook

Rocajr when you get there they have a list of Romania knife makers. See if there are any near you and call them and ask if they wouldn't mind helping you or at least advising you.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/Knif...omania/photos/


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  #12  
Old 10-22-2017, 11:56 AM
Jerry M Jerry M is offline
 
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0-1 was my first blade steel. Pretty easy to work with. You'll have nice tough knife from it, if you heat treat it right. Be careful of some heat treating advice and look everything up on your steel heat treatment. Use quenchent instead of oil if you can. Try not to be disappointed if your don't get it right the first time - be in this for the long haul. Something simple like a wharncliffe for your first might serve your purposes. I really like the flat grind (if you have a belt grinder w/ platen) with a convex edge a lot. 1084 is also a great choice, and it's cheaper! I really don't know anything about the steel you can get in Romania though. I wouldn't spend alot of money on knife materials at first. When you can consistently turn out some beauties, then you can invest in better materials. My advice and $3.50 will buy you coffee st the diner though, so follow your heart. I've only made for family and friends, so listen to the experienced. Best of luck! Post some pictures!

Last edited by Jerry M; 10-22-2017 at 12:00 PM.
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  #13  
Old 12-20-2017, 05:01 AM
Country_boy Country_boy is offline
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Handle

Hey guys, im a kiwi livig in southern chile and a couple of weeks ago i lost my knife on a hunt so i thought id make one instead of shelling out for a new one, ive spebt alot of time making sure the knife is done properly (ill put up some pictures later). Problem is i went into town various times to look for a decent epoxy or anything to glue my handle.....nothing, so i ordered off amazon and it got confiscated 😠, i looked everywhere and none has anything that can work with wood and metal, closest thing was no more nails, is there any other way to mount a handle without glue or can i use pine pitch or something?? Please help, i have no power tools so i have done this whole knife by hand....so many hours work...
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  #14  
Old 12-20-2017, 05:13 AM
dtec1 dtec1 is offline
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I would sugest making a new topic instead of posting in this old one youll get more responses
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  #15  
Old 12-20-2017, 05:52 AM
Country_boy Country_boy is offline
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Im not sure how to start a new post, just joines this morning
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