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  #1  
Old 08-28-2017, 01:40 PM
firstcapfirearm firstcapfirearm is offline
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Quench Tank

I am in the process of buying / gathering up supplies to make knives. I would like to know what would be good for a quench tank. I am wanting something deep for Katana blades and they can be on the longer side. I have seen people online use PVC pipe. Would this work? I would be afraid that it would get too hot and melt.

Any suggestions or comments is greatly appreciated.

Thanks

Mark

www.firstcapitalfirearms.com
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  #2  
Old 08-28-2017, 05:09 PM
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Ray Rogers Ray Rogers is offline
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Have you never made a knife before? If the answer to that is 'no' then trying to start with a katana is a monumentally bad idea. This is still true if you happen to be a gunsmith or a blacksmith already. Nonetheless, I imagine you will do what you will do.

I agree, PVC pipe is a terrible idea although it can work. My tank is a 3ft section of 4" steel pipe that I welded a bottom on, it holds about 3 gallons - which is minimal - and has a heating element built into it. Traditionally, I believe katanas were quenched in shallow horizontal tanks. Even for regular knives many makers today prefer horizontal tanks. Any metal container that holds 3 gallons or more and has a cover that fits well enough to smother a fire can be used....


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  #3  
Old 08-28-2017, 05:40 PM
firstcapfirearm firstcapfirearm is offline
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I have not made a knife yet and was not going to start with a katana. I am the type of person who would rather get a big enough tank for quenching for a sword than have to buy it later.

I did not think pvc would be a good idea. I believe I could use a bluing tank and I have been told a mortar ammo can works great as well.

I appreciate your advice and anyone's advice for that matter.

Thanks
Mark
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  #4  
Old 08-28-2017, 06:12 PM
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Ed Caffrey Ed Caffrey is offline
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Ray's right.....PVC= bad joo-joo for a quench tank. Just too many things that can go wrong.


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Old 08-29-2017, 07:09 AM
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WHat ever you use, make sure you have a solid base or secure mount. You do not want a tippable quench tank. Watched a newbie "can'tbetold" set his hole deck on fire with a tipped over flaming quench bucket. He was warned repeatedly, but stupid can't be fixed. I like metal pipe or tank with good lid as Ray has mentioned. You will find that you will eventually have more than one quench tank set up of differing sizes if you stay at this long.


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  #6  
Old 08-29-2017, 09:44 AM
epicfail48 epicfail48 is offline
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Its already been said but it can't be said enough, PVC is a bad idea for a quench tank. The last thing you want is an errant movement melting a while and dumping a few gallons of (possibly flaming) quenchant on your shop floor.

I also agree with the idea that jumping right into making a katana isn't the best way to get into bladesmithing. There's a lot to learn beforehand, and katanas are definitely on the top end of the skill ladder.
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  #7  
Old 08-29-2017, 02:08 PM
dtec1 dtec1 is offline
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ok so for a while I was incredibley stupid...I ordered 5 gal of parks 50....it came in a plastic 5 gal bucket I just used It in the plastic bucket....yeh I know stupid if I would have droped the knife could have burned right though the bottom of the bucket...but hey it is what it is just don't drop the knife....sicne then I have found a metal bucket but its simply a 5gal metal bucket so you cant do real long blades I have poured it into a tall and wide pvc pipe to do long blades before...
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Old 08-29-2017, 02:32 PM
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J. Oliver J. Oliver is offline
 
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I have as a tank for the oil a steel structural tube. It has measures of 120x120mm and a length of 40cm. The base is welded a wider plate for stability and on the top a lid of the same measure with hinges.
So you have a cooling tank for life.
A greeting.
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  #9  
Old 08-29-2017, 07:28 PM
epicfail48 epicfail48 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dtec1 View Post
ok so for a while I was incredibley stupid...I ordered 5 gal of parks 50....it came in a plastic 5 gal bucket I just used It in the plastic bucket....yeh I know stupid if I would have droped the knife could have burned right though the bottom of the bucket...but hey it is what it is just don't drop the knife....sicne then I have found a metal bucket but its simply a 5gal metal bucket so you cant do real long blades I have poured it into a tall and wide pvc pipe to do long blades before...
I do the same thing with a bucket of parks. I know its hypocritical of me, but for the size of knives I do I've got a good 3 or 4 inches of clearance in all directions, so there's a lot less risk of melting through when compared to a 3 or 4 inch diameter piece of pvc
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Old 08-30-2017, 05:07 AM
dtec1 dtec1 is offline
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Yeh I have done knives pretty much as big as that bucket will fit....regardless of the size if you drop it when its still hot it will burn right through....if you can get a metal one. Oh and the plastic bucket is much thinner than pvc pipe so it will burn through very very quick if you drop it. I just got lucky and never droped it but eventually I did get a metal one. I don't do very long knives much usually the logest just fit in a 5gal bucket but when I have done long knives I used a pvc pipe
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  #11  
Old 08-30-2017, 08:25 AM
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Biggest issue with Parks 50 still in the bucket........you burn a hole in the bucket, you burned a much bigger hole in your wallet. Just not smart on all levels.


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  #12  
Old 08-30-2017, 09:27 AM
dtec1 dtec1 is offline
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Oh yeh that is why I said right up front it was stupid .....and carl your scenario is the bast case if it flares upa and leaking all over the floor.....lets just say a new house cost a whole lot more than a bucket of parks 50
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  #13  
Old 08-30-2017, 10:04 AM
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Quench oil and the hazards that using it presents need to be carefully considered. It was only a couple of years ago that we had a Bladesmith who burnt is shop literally to the ground because of a quench tank that caught fire during a quench, and in an attempt to put out the flames, the quench tank got knocked over, spilling flaming oil all over the shop.

As with much of what we do in Blademsmithing/Knifemaking, thinking ahead of what could go wrong, and taking steps to prevent those things is the key to staying safe....for both you, and your property.


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Old 08-30-2017, 02:00 PM
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Ray Rogers Ray Rogers is offline
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Good advice. My tank is bolted to the floor and there is a fire extinguisher a few feet away...


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  #15  
Old 08-30-2017, 03:01 PM
jimmontg jimmontg is offline
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I always used a long metal tank with a lid in the half closed position. I also HT machined parts and that lid was an absolute necessity. A large part can flash fire the whole tank. I worked with a metallurgist who had that precise thing happen to him and he got burned bad over 30% of his body he told me. I never forgot what he said or the scars on his hands and face and this was before I ever thought about making knives. Like Ray also said a good fire extinguisher right there where it's handy. No excuse to have an out of control fire with parts as small as knives.
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