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Donnerstag, 28. März 2013

Learning by failing:-/- three-layer laminate from wrought iron and 1.2842 that went not so good...

 On Saturday I made it to the smithy and had a go at some welding practice, and I had this piece of wrought iron Elmo once gave to me. Now Elmo wants a knife for her birthday present;-) and I thought I´d give it a go. Had little borax, but I thought I´d try it nonetheless.
 This is how I normally forge-weld. I forge a spatula, fold it back with the help of my hardy chisel and insert the first layer. Then it is a bit of a balancing act, but it usually works quite well. Harald Schmehl, my first blacksmithing teacher, taught this technique to me, and Viktor and Mielenko do it in the same manner. Normally, when I make damascus, I fold the steel several times, insert a new piece of high-carbon-steel and fold some more. The advantage is that you can get a damascus with high layers without too much loss of carbon content due to burnoff, it does not require many tools and it is good for your coordination skills;-). The definite disadvantage is that it requires a fair amount of eggdancing;-) to get the first layer done, and each time you insert a fresh piece of carbon steel. It welded okay, only in the fold there were some two or three millimetres. The shadow in the pic you can see is overlap. What I noticed, however, was that the wrought iron required an extremely high temperature to weld, and the 1.2842 was not amused;-).

Nonetheless, it came along quite nicely, and I forged this Kopis shape to the blade, nicely centered and all, and I was quite enthused, when I had ground the scale off and noticed the beautiful structure.

Then I put it in a vice to engrave it.

BUMMER! When I set the chisel to it, the blade broke in two, and I could see a structure of extremely coarse grain, visible even with a naked eye. I can tell, you, I got a mediocre tantrum!;-)

But it´s defeat also where I can learn. Simply got too hot... and I guess I´ll use more Borax next time. And the magic troll might get a beautiful awl... who knows...;-)


Now go on, discuss and rant and push my ego;-). As long as it´s a respectful message, every comment is welcome!

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