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Ed Caffrey's Workshop Talk to Ed Caffrey ... The Montana Bladesmith! Tips, tricks and more from an ABS Mastersmith.

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  #1  
Old 04-24-2006, 09:04 PM
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blacksmith101 blacksmith101 is offline
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Eds Classes

Greetings from Montana. Ed Caffrey is willing and able to share knowledge. I had some vacation coming to me so I took the 1550 miles to Ed's shop. Tell you what folks, it is well worth the drive. The scenery on the way out was great. Today Ed abused me all day. I figure that a day with Ed in his well set- up shop will cut at least 3 years off the knife making learning curve. Ed doesn't beat around the bush with the details. He will help straighten out all your kinks in short order. It is great to have someone so willing to teach and share knowledge. If anyone needs help, I strongly suggest that you give Ed a call. I'll be out here all week so I'll keep you folks posted with updates. M.L. Rush
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  #2  
Old 04-25-2006, 03:40 AM
Lawrence Kemp Lawrence Kemp is offline
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Merle,

I know you are having a ball! Sure wish I could be there. I had a GREAT time with you both at GRS last summer. Make sure you get Ed to show you all the hot and sweaty things four or five times. Wag your head a little and say" Gee Ed, can you show me once more?" Ahh never mind, I don't think there's any way to wear him out, and I don't guess its a good idea to him mad. Have fun my friend, I think you are learning from one of the best.


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  #3  
Old 04-25-2006, 05:33 PM
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Ed Caffrey Ed Caffrey is offline
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Merle,

Thanks for the kind words.....but I'm learning just as much from you, as you are me!
Ya know it's a great day when your working with someone and you look at the clock in the morning, and it's 8am....then the next time you look up it's already quitting time for the day....we're having way too much fun!

It's a real pleasure to have Merle in the shop. Never have to tell him something more than once, and since he's already a Bladesmith, he knows all the terminology and has the capacity to look forward through the process...which makes my job super easy!! I'm gona hate to see him head back east.


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Old 04-25-2006, 07:38 PM
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Day # 2

It was a good day today. Ed attempted to straighten out my thought processes, and change my machinist thoughts to knife maker thoughts. Ed is persistant. We traded ideas back and forth untill we came up with something that would work. We played with High temperature salt and the processes. Ed showed me a quick, efficient way of grinding blades from start to finish. The idea of going from a 50 grit belt right to a 400 grit belt blew my mind. I had no idea that it would do such a fine job of finishing up a blade finish. Guess i'll have a lot of belts to use for other purposes. Blade 1 is ready for some final hand sanding. The other 3 are going into heat treat tomorrow. I will keep you folks posted tomorrow on all the updates. Merle Rush.
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Old 04-25-2006, 08:07 PM
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For those looking for a class, I can attest to Ed's classes. He is a natural teacher and a joy to learn from. Good choice Merle.

--Carl


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Old 04-25-2006, 09:03 PM
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I want him to bring his new air hammer to Texas and let me play with it!


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  #7  
Old 04-25-2006, 09:39 PM
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Air Hammer

Tell you guys what, Ive used a few air hammers but have yet to seen one that operates as well as this one. I thought I was going to have to give Ed my first born in order to play with it. He hovered REAL close to make sure that I didnt HURT it. When I got done he handed me a towel and said "Wax on---Wax off". It was totaly AWESOME!!!!!!.
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Old 04-26-2006, 08:20 AM
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Dana Hackney Dana Hackney is offline
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Thumbs up I will attest to Ed's prowess as a teacher!

I took a 4 day class from Ed this February and I learned a ton of stuff that would have taken me
years to figure out on my own. It was, indeed, $ well spent.

Ed was thorough and, as you said blacksmith101, right to the point - no messing around! By the end of each
day I went back to my motel and crashed. My hands were sore and blistered and my head was full of
more information than I could retain. I had to keep a notepad handy!

Best regards,
Dana Hackney
Monument, CO
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Old 04-26-2006, 09:36 PM
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Day #3 The Saga Continues--------

We had a good day today. I think Im wearing down Ed. Completed fitting a stainless guard onto the completed blade and fit up and glued a blackwood handle to the assembly. The acid etch really shows up the heat treat lines. Tomorrow will finish up the first knife. The other 3 knives will be finished in heat treat. Ed showed me the uses and tricks of Kydex. I really think Ed is getting tired of the word WHY. By the end of this week I feel that ED will be thinking like a MACHINIST. Yes, the dreaded M word. More to follow tomorrow. Merle Rush.
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  #10  
Old 04-26-2006, 11:33 PM
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After today, and from henceforth, Merle will be know and acknowledged as "WD-40 Machinist Boy"! Not only did he I discover that he missed a spot when he was waxing the air hammer, but I'm pretty sure he has an addiction to one of the ingriedinets in WD-40....he used it on/in everything except his coffee!! I have a suspicion that somewhere along the line someone told him that in order to activate sandpaper, whatever your using it on MUST be drenched with WD-40 first! Then, of all things, to imply that I'll be thinking like a machinist before the end of the week..... I just don't know what to say to something like that!


OK, enough of being silly.... I'm having a blast! I told Merle that I was going to learn just as much from him this week, as he would from me...and he looked at me like I was on crack...today was proof. He showed me how to rig up some tooling holders, and made me look at some things in a manner which I never have before...see Merle... sometimes I do get as much, or more out of these classes than the student does!


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Old 04-27-2006, 07:23 PM
plain ol Bill plain ol Bill is offline
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Merle, Ed uses a tape measure or framing square to measure thousandth's. Show him which one of them little marks on a 16' tape measure is .001.


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Old 04-27-2006, 08:08 PM
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Day #4

You may be right Bill, but tell you what, he has the knife making skills mastered. Today I finished up a journeyman quality knife. Some of the processes he put me through made me wonder as to his sanity, but it all came out as planned. This afternoon he took me on a fact finding field trip. (Tool Sale). Tomorrow----I think its on to Damascus, Ed Caffrey style. I'm going to have to stop by an supply house tonight and pick up some WD40. Ed claims i'm putting him over budget and hid his can. I had to struggle all afternoon without any. More to follow tomorrow.
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  #13  
Old 04-27-2006, 09:37 PM
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Now you went and done it Merle! Now everybody who shows up here for a class is gona expect to go on a "Field Trip"!

It's been a clash of styles all week..... WD-40 Machinist Boy... who has to have a centerline and protractor to start anything.....and me yelling "Just eyeball the darn thing!" I know Merle thinks I'm a couple of sandwiches shy of a picnic... but we are having a great time...I'm gona hate to see him leave.

Tomorrow I'm gona blow his mind......are you listening Merle.....you'll just have to wait to see how!


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  #14  
Old 04-28-2006, 10:42 PM
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Day #5

Today was a good day in the shop. Ed explained how to overcome welding nickel to nickel problems. Made up some 1080/15n20 damascus billets to take home. Ed demo'd several types of mosaic damascus patterns and we ended up forging out a bunch of 51200 billets. It was a hot time in the old forge. I have a important note for all you knifemakers with a quest.

IF YOU ARE TIRED OF GOING TO A KNIFEMAKING CLASS THAT IS OVERBOOKED, LACKING QUALITY EQUIPMENT THAT WORKS, LACKING SUPPLIES THAT YOU NEED, AND LEAVE AT THE END OF THE CLASS WITH VERY LITTLE USABLE KNOWLEDGE, WONDERING HOW YOU COULD OF PAID SO MUCH FOR SO LITTLE, YOU SHOULD GIVE ED A CALL. FOR AROUND THE SAME MONEY YOU CAN GET 1 ON 1 ATTENTION CONCERNING YOUR PERSONAL KNIFEMAKING PROBLEMS. HE WILL AND CAN STRAIGHTEN OUT YOUR ISSUES. THE BEST PART IS IF YOU SCREW UP, NO ONE BUT ED WILL KNOW. AND FOR A MINOR FEE YOU CAN EVEN BE THE TEACHERS PET.

Tomorrow its off to Illinois and back to work. GREAT VACATION!!!!!!
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