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  #1  
Old 07-02-2015, 10:56 AM
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Hunter10139 Hunter10139 is offline
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Making hamon question

Has anyone ever clay quenched a blank BEFORE grinding bevels? I've got to where I prefer to heat treat prior to bevel grinding and I was curious to see if anyone has done a clay quench prior to grinding the bevels.


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Old 07-02-2015, 12:58 PM
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Of course. That's the only way I would do it personally. Much easier to keep the hamon line where you want it that way . Besides, I do all my grinding post HT anyway and see no reason why clay coating should change that ...


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Old 07-02-2015, 02:35 PM
Doug Adams Doug Adams is offline
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Hey Ray, What kind of belts do you use and what grits do you use?
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Doug
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Old 07-02-2015, 02:46 PM
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Awesome, thanks Ray.


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Old 07-02-2015, 03:40 PM
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Doug,

I use VSM 60 grit ceramic, 120 & 220 Norton (blue zirconia), and 400 Hermes. All from Tru-Grit.

I use the VSM because they are the best bang for the buck in ceramic belts. Blaze may out perform them slightly but they cost about twice as much.

I use one fresh 60 grit per blade after knocking the sharp edge off the profile with an old belt (you can see this in my Shop Chef video). The other belts can usually be used on more than one blade. I like to stop at 400 so I always use a fresh 400 as the last step, maybe two of them if the blade is larger. Of course, you can continue on to a finer finish by hand or with finer belts if you choose to.

Depending on the blade, I might use a medium ScotchBrite belt after the 400 grit.

These belt choices are the result of many years of buying and testing every type of belt I could find. You may not decide to stay with this set of belts but they are certainly a good place to start ....


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Old 07-03-2015, 02:51 PM
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One thing to consider... hamons generally only show up on shallow hardening steels. Shallow hardening steels, as their name suggests, do not usually harden very deeply. The interesting part of the hamon tends to not run very deep into the blade. By grinding the bevel after the blade is heat-treated, you could very well grind away most of your hardened steel in the process, and will likely loose most of the interesting part of the hamon. You could try it as an experiment, but I have my doubts about it....


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Old 07-03-2015, 05:04 PM
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That's interesting. I have done it a number of times and always had a good visible line. Could it have been better if I did the grinding first? I don't know, never tried it and was happy with what I had. But, pretty much all the blades I did that way were 3/32" stock so maybe I was just lucky ...


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Old 07-03-2015, 06:20 PM
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Well GHezell, I've had good success quenching in water with 1084. Do you think since I am using such a fast quenchant the hamon will penetrate deeply enough? I'll still try it as an experiment but if I don't need to get my hopes up I'd like to know now.


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Old 07-03-2015, 07:03 PM
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Hmmm, 1084 is not really classed as a shallow-hardening steel, with .8% manganese.... In that case, you should be ok, as long as the blade is under 1/2" thick...


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Old 07-03-2015, 07:51 PM
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Ok thanks, yeah it's under half an inch lol. I'm still looking forward to coming down to athens to meet some of y'all.


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Old 08-11-2015, 11:03 AM
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Just thought I'd update this thread. I heat treated 2 knives this way and have ground the bevels on the smaller one. If there was a hamon, it was way higher than where I had it and not on the bevel. I kinda expected this result when I hardness tested just above and below the clay line and got a rockwell of 59 with both tests. The bigger blade yielded a hardness of 59 below the line but 56 above it so I'm hopeful I get a better result with it.


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Old 08-11-2015, 01:30 PM
Doug Lester Doug Lester is offline
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Hunter, your success is probably going to depend on where you got your 1084 from. The 1084 from the New Jersey Steel Baron also contains some chromium which will increase the hardenability. I don't do much in the way of hamons but I've found Aldo's 1084 a bit difficult to get one where I want it.

Doug


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Old 08-11-2015, 08:40 PM
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Yep thats exactly where I got it. Thanks for the info Doug, I did not know that. If I see one on the big knife I expect it to be much higher than I intended.


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Old 01-11-2016, 05:55 PM
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Hey guys, I have an updated question for this thread. I didn't have success getting a hamon with 1084, heat treating before grinding bevels. I'm going to attempt this experiment again, this time with 1095. Anyone have experience with this? Am I wasting my time?


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Old 01-11-2016, 08:06 PM
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You can get a hamon with either steel but a lot depends on your method. Personally, I clay the back of the blade and quench the entire blade at once. Some prefer to edge quench. Neither is foolproof. With clay you need to use the right amount. With edge quenching you need to hold the edge in the oil until the spine cools enough to be about spring hardness when you let the rest of the blade into the oil.

Assuming you get a good quench, the rest of getting a hamon will depend on how you finish the blade. But, that is a huge subject with many different solutions. You might want to look at Bob Engnath's website, he has a very nice description of the finishing process he used for developing a hamon ...


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