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A Destruction Test Knife WIP

P. McKinley Sep 20, 2011

  1. P. McKinley

    P. McKinley knifemaker formerly known as "Dacks" Knife Maker or Craftsman

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    This will be the third of my knives to be subjected to the rigors of the ABS JS testing criteria. I did the first test on a 5"-bladed hunter 3 years ago and it failed the bend test.... achieving only a 25 degree bend until cracks appeared along the sharpened edge extending approx 1/3 into the blade. The second was also a hunter style blade, 5", that managed an almost 40 degree bend before similar cracks appeared near tip. I know I can do better.

    This time I'm building a 8 1/4"-bladed, harpoon-tip chopper that will be built to my usual standards of fit and finish. The blade is Aldo's 1084FG, forged to shape with a distal taper and forged bevels. I plan on an fitting the blade with a mild steel s-guard, copper spacers, and a Red Oak handle.

    So away we go:

    Yesterday I forged the blade:

    Initial heat:
    [​IMG]

    Almost there:
    [​IMG]

    The blade is shaped, but not the tang....... yet. I'm getting there.
    [​IMG]

    I'm having issues with my computer/camera interface. More progress photos when I figure this out.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 29, 2011
    Mr.LaBella likes this.
  2. P. McKinley

    P. McKinley knifemaker formerly known as "Dacks" Knife Maker or Craftsman

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    Well, after some highly technical remediation(restarted the computer), I have more photos, but I seem to have lost several shots of the tang forging and final shaping process.

    Its pretty clear I had too much tea last night resulting in jittery, blurry photos. Yup, must have been the tea. :ssmile:

    Post heat treat/temper. The blade was heated to 1500 degrees F and soaked for 5 minutes, then quenched in 130 degree canola oil. Tempering was done at 400 degrees for 2 hrs x 2.
    [​IMG]

    Sanded with 220 to remove all the crap:
    [​IMG]

    Sanded to 400 with copper maker's mark plate roughly shaped:
    [​IMG]

    Here's where I stand this morning. Today I'll get the blade sanded to 2000 grit and hopefully get the guard started:
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 21, 2011
  3. P. McKinley

    P. McKinley knifemaker formerly known as "Dacks" Knife Maker or Craftsman

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    Here's one side of the blade at being worked with 1000 grit:
    [​IMG]

    I thought I'd post some shots of my shop and equipment for a bit of context.

    These are my hand sanding implements:
    [​IMG]

    Grinding and drilling:
    [​IMG]

    My grinder set-up:
    [​IMG]

    Clean work station for design and leather work:
    [​IMG]

    Work bench:
    [​IMG]

    Hand sanding set-up:
    [​IMG]

    More this evening hopefully.
     
  4. Soup_Monger

    Soup_Monger Should be a custom title here

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    Good stuff, Peter.

    Nice to see where the 1X30 magic happens.

    Hope you still talk to us when you have a KMG.

    :cheers:
     
  5. P. McKinley

    P. McKinley knifemaker formerly known as "Dacks" Knife Maker or Craftsman

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    Thanks Soup. I'm saving my pennies. Soon I hope.
     
  6. P. McKinley

    P. McKinley knifemaker formerly known as "Dacks" Knife Maker or Craftsman

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    The blade is now hand sanded to 1000 grit.
    However, I ran into some "issues".

    I've also drawn back the spine to spring temper(blue). I don't do this very often and I hate the process - likely because there has to be a better way. I take the blade to 800 or 1000 grit, then submerge the edge in water, heat to blue with the propane torch, clean up surface rust, then finish the sanding.

    Last night I began the heating at the choil and started moving forward. Then I ran out of propane!! After taking the time to refit a new bottle and finish the job, I was left with a substantial line in the blade at the waterline.

    So, back to 400 grit and begin the process all over again. :ssad: I finished up at 1500 grit last night at 1:45am.

    If there's a better way, please advise.

    This is one blade to 1500 grit....the first time!!
    [​IMG]

    Set up for drawing the spine:
    [​IMG]

    This is when I ran out of propane:
    [​IMG]

    I'm working on the guard now. More later.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 21, 2011
  7. Stabber

    Stabber Stabber's Steel Connection Knife Maker or Craftsman

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    Nice WIP!:madaddy:
     
  8. GEEZER

    GEEZER Beware The Ides of March Brigade Member

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    Nice! Thanks for the pix...
     
  9. P. McKinley

    P. McKinley knifemaker formerly known as "Dacks" Knife Maker or Craftsman

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    The blade is sanded to 1500 grit and the mild steel guard is shaped and dry fitted. I made this guard several weeks ago as a practice piece and just needed to adjust the profile a bit and file the tang slot to size. It looks a bit sloppy, but the fit is tight.

    This is it for the night. Tomorrow I'll form a copper or brass(haven't decided yet) spacer as well as pre-shape and dry fit the Oak handle.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 21, 2011
  10. Rio

    Rio Como un angel JDBA Official Member Knife Maker or Craftsman Brigade Member

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    Sweet deal:madaddy::devil1:
     
  11. P. McKinley

    P. McKinley knifemaker formerly known as "Dacks" Knife Maker or Craftsman

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    I just finished the copper spacer for this knife. Here's my process:

    This backyard shed is where I keep my forge:
    [​IMG]

    My Chili Habenero forge:
    [​IMG]

    Anvil and canola oil quench tank:
    [​IMG]

    I'm using a piece of an old boat propeller shaft for this spacer:
    [​IMG]

    I'll use the small piece on the right:
    [​IMG]

    Showing promise:
    [​IMG]

    Forging is completed:
    [​IMG]

    I just need a small portion of this plate:
    [​IMG]

    I'll flatten on the belt sander:
    [​IMG]

    Refining the surfaces and getting a consistent thickness:
    [​IMG]

    All these little vertical scratches need to vanish:
    [​IMG]

    Rough shaping is done:
    [​IMG]

    Marked and drilled for the tang slot:
    [​IMG]

    Filing one hole big enough to fit my saw:
    [​IMG]

    Sawing out the remaining material:
    [​IMG]

    The spacer has been filed and cleaned up a bit. It is now completed and ready for assembly:
    [​IMG]

    That's all for now folks.

    More to come...........
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 22, 2011
    Soup_Monger likes this.
  12. Soup_Monger

    Soup_Monger Should be a custom title here

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    Excellent WIP thread, Peter.

    Nice wee forge set up too.
     
  13. P. McKinley

    P. McKinley knifemaker formerly known as "Dacks" Knife Maker or Craftsman

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    Thanks Soupy.
     
  14. Winter

    Winter Rampaging Sausage Knife Maker or Craftsman

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    Love it.

    Don't most folks do a duct tape handle on the torture pieces?

    You're going all out for a U shaped blade. I admire that dedication.

    It may end up the coolest crook knife ever.
     
  15. P. McKinley

    P. McKinley knifemaker formerly known as "Dacks" Knife Maker or Craftsman

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    Here's today's work:

    To this point everything has been rough shaped and fitted. And it shows. So, the first thing is to clean up the blade/guard/spacer fit.

    The shoulders need to be refined and radiused, and the adjoining guard slot needs to be fine tuned to accept the radiused shoulders.
    There can be no light showing from this angle as well as from head on, and the fit will be tight and solid.
    [​IMG]

    The next step is to refine the guard/spacer fit. This will entail removing a bit of stock from the contoured handle-side face.... essentially extending the length of the flat contact surface.
    [​IMG]

    AFTER the guard/spacer fit is perfect, I can move on to the handle. I have a template from a previous project, that will work just fine for this knife:
    [​IMG]

    Mind you, I will need to do this layout again after the fitting session described again, but......
    Handle profile is transferred to the block and the tang is positioned appropriately. I then extend those lines to the end surface and layout the dimensions and position for the tang slot. ** keen eyes will detect that I'm using a block of fairly plain Cherry, rather than the Maple I earlier mentioned**
    [​IMG]

    The blade, at the ricasso, is 3/16", so I'll use a 5/32" bit to drill the slot holes and then carefully refine the fit with broaches and files.
    [​IMG]

    Being that the drill bit is only "so" long, this determines the depth of the hole I can drill and somewhat correspondingly, the length of the tang.
    [​IMG]

    So, block and tang are marked with reference lines and work can begin. Again, I need to do this part of the layout again after guard/spacer fitting to get a more accurate layout.
    [​IMG]

    So, there's today's work. I'll take photos of the process along the way.

    Thanks for putting up with my decidedly poor photography.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 23, 2011
  16. P. McKinley

    P. McKinley knifemaker formerly known as "Dacks" Knife Maker or Craftsman

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    Progress!

    I managed to get everything fit and nearly ready for final assembly.

    I still need to check the joinery - yet again, cut the handle block more to shape, give the guard and spacer a final shaping, and give the blade final polish and cleaning. I might get it glued it up later tonight..... we'll see.

    Anyway, this was my day:
    Start with a reference line for the shoulders. I don't have a file guide so I do this by eye and feel.
    [​IMG]

    Here's my mark:
    [​IMG]

    Check for square:
    [​IMG]

    I'm using a warn 120 grit:
    [​IMG]

    Finished on the grinder:
    Spine shoulder -
    [​IMG]

    Lower shoulder -
    [​IMG]

    Fitted with the guard. I needed to contour the lower shoulder to the slight curve of the guard.
    [​IMG]

    NOW I can give the blade a good cleaning and wrap it with paper towels and tape:
    [​IMG]

    To fit the spacer I need to extend the surface area just the bit. So I set up my Rube Goldbergian jig on the drill press with sanding wheels and faired in a longer flat.
    [​IMG]

    Just a check to see where I'm grinding:
    [​IMG]

    Tape up a piece of 220 and smooth things out a bit:
    [​IMG]

    I'll accept this for now:
    [​IMG]

    I redrew the tang and handle layout to the new profile and marked the drill holes:
    [​IMG]

    Check for square:
    [​IMG]

    Drilled out. I used dummy bits in the previous holes so the active bit didn't drift into the adjacent hole:
    [​IMG]

    I made up a bunch of broaches to clean out handle slots. These are old T-shank jig saw blades that I soldered together and ground to shape. I have singles, doubles and one triple. I've used these for years and they work fairly well.
    [​IMG]

    I use these two the most:
    [​IMG]

    Drill holes connected:
    [​IMG]

    I also midified this rasp to fit into the slot and clean up the sides:
    [​IMG]

    I coat the tang with red marker to indicate high spots and just keep filing and fitting, filing and fitting....
    [​IMG]

    Cleaned up a bit:
    [​IMG]

    To get rid of any slop from overzealous digging, I use two small strips of bloodwood vaneer.
    [​IMG]

    These will be attached to the sides of the slot with quick setting epoxy using the tang to press then into place. The tang will be removed just as it tacks up.:
    [​IMG]

    Here's the block face and tang slot all cleaned up:
    [​IMG]

    All contact surfaces have been cleaned up and the joints checked for fit.
    [​IMG]

    This is where I stop for dinner:
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 23, 2011
  17. P. McKinley

    P. McKinley knifemaker formerly known as "Dacks" Knife Maker or Craftsman

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    I managed to get the guard and handle glued up and curing for the night. I was hoping to get this done by 10:00am this morning, but.......... I "chose" to spend most of the day installing a new toilet and bathroom floor instead.

    I did spend about two hours this morning (pre-bathroom reno) fine tuning all joinery. Then, just for shits and giggles, I blued the guard with some Birchwood Casey Perma Blue that I was given by a hunting guide who lives up the road. I've never tried blueing and I like the look, so........the guard was sanded to 800 then given two successive coats of blueing, then polished to a nice luster.

    I started the day with a young, but determined helper in the shop:
    [​IMG]

    Shaping the spacer:
    [​IMG]

    Its a bit more "oval" than I wanted, but its a good shape and there's plenty of contact surface.
    [​IMG]

    Cut away some stock:
    [​IMG]

    Shape on the drill press:
    [​IMG]

    Checking the fit.... yet again. Just a nice perspective to detect if everything's flush as it approached contact:
    [​IMG]

    Contact:
    [​IMG]

    The tang was sanded clean with 180 grit, then textured with a file. Everything was then deburred and given a good cleaning with acetone to await assembly:
    [​IMG]

    The blade was given a final polish at 1000, as well were the spine and ricasso, then cleaned well and re-wrapped for gluing:
    [​IMG]

    Here's what I use. I build and repair canoes, so I usually have System Three around the shop. Its a good epoxy and I'm used to working with it.
    [​IMG]

    The tang is coated with epoxy steel and the guard lowered into place:
    [​IMG]

    The same is done with the spacer, then the handle block is fitted and press firmly in place. The handle block is then clamped in place until the epoxy steel is set. After ten minutes, the handle block is removed and the faces cleaned well.
    [​IMG]

    I start by cleaning away the excess with a sharp copper wedge.
    [​IMG]

    I'm looking for a nice smooth seam. I remove most of the bulk with the wedge, then use q-tips and acetone to clean it up. This side is almost there:
    [​IMG]

    After I scuff up the inside of the tang slot with a broach and then clean it out well, I pour in some epoxy. Using a stir stict, I'll mash the epoxy about to get it into cracks and such, then pour in more. I use a bamboo skewer to poke around and get out any bubbles. I'll let that settle for a minute or so before inserting the tang. I also give the block face a coating of epoxy.
    [​IMG]

    The tang and spacer face are slathered with epoxy being sure all the notches and crevices are filled in, leaving no air bubbles:
    [​IMG]

    The tang is fully seated and the excess epoxy has been quickly wiped away. I don't mind leaving a small bead of epoxy around the handle/spacer seam. I just don't want any epoxy left to dry on the guard, so I go to lengths to get it good and clean:
    [​IMG]

    And, finally.... after everything has been checked, and double for alignment.... its time for my gluing jig.
    I'll leave as is it to cure overnight.
    [​IMG]

    Have a great night,

    Peter
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 25, 2011
  18. Winter

    Winter Rampaging Sausage Knife Maker or Craftsman

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    Good stuff. That glueing jig is very McGyverish.
     
  19. P. McKinley

    P. McKinley knifemaker formerly known as "Dacks" Knife Maker or Craftsman

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    Winter - My entire shop is basically a Rube Goldberg wet dream.

    I took Sunday off and went canoeing with the wife and daughter. Great day on the water!!
    Today I'd like to get the handle pretty well finished. That means pins and pin holes are prepared first, then layout lines need to be drawn to guide handle shaping.

    Later..............
     
  20. Soup_Monger

    Soup_Monger Should be a custom title here

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    I don't think I have seen a more detailed WIP thread.

    Great stuff.

    :thumbsup:
     

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