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First knife

Discussion in 'Fixed Blades' started by Jackson, Jan 5, 2015.

  1. Jackson

    Jackson New Member

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    This is my first knife build from scratch and I could use some advice. I plan to build 4 chef knives with 6 or 7" blades at the same time. Thay are going to be presents for my Kids and one for my Wife. I'm going to use 1084 steel as advised by Mythtaken but I'm not sure about blade thickness. I understand a thin blade slices better but what thickness would be optimal ? Also, I'm wondering about protecting the blades from rust. I don't have a problem myself with carbon steel blades but my kids maybe a different story. What are some blade treatments that I can do at home ?
     
  2. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    Hi Jackson,

    For a Chef's knives, I have made a few out of 3/32" and a few out of 1/8" (technically 0.130").
    The 1/8" ones had 8" blades and weighed in between 260 and 300 grams finished, so weight can become a factor with the thicker steel.
    Blades were ground with flat grinds and tapered to the point.
    I finished the cutting edges at around 20°and honed them shaving sharp.
    They handle slicing jobs with ease and at 20 degrees they can take a fair bit of abuse.

    Want it to really impress on the slicing front? Grind the cutting edge at 10 to 15°, but be prepared to have to touch up the edge more often.

    We'd love to see how it's coming along.

    Good luck.

    Dan
     
  3. Jackson

    Jackson New Member

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    Thanks Dan, which would you recommend of the two ? I guess the thinner would slice better and the thicker would be a bit sturdier. One of my daughters has a set of Rachel Ray knives that I thought had a really cool handle design for a smaller hand that I plan to copy. Any thoughts on improving the finish for corrosion ? The only thing I know is "Bluing" which is OK, but I suspect there are better choices.
     
  4. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    I think it depends on the size of the blade and the user/usages to determine the ideal thickness. The 1/8" (300 gram) knife went to a hulk of a guy who likes a heavy knife and wanted some mass for hacking squash and turnips apart. My Mom thought it was "too heavy." The knives made from 3/32" we're better to wield for longer periods and still had enough mass to behave like a Chef's knife. So my choice would be 3/32" for my own use.

    Sorry I can't help with the corrosion protection on carbon steel as I have only made stainless knives. Perhaps someone can comment on a forced patina option?

    Dan
     
  5. Jackson

    Jackson New Member

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    Thanks Dan, I think I'll go with the 3/32" blade. Couple years ago I finished a blade my Dad started many years ago. He told me it was a industrial band saw blade. He passed away before he had a chance to finish it. When I was a teen I took it to high school and broke a bunch of drill bits. Number of years later I took it to a gunsmith I knew to get him to drill the holes for the handle. He was the one that broke the tang and then welded it. More years passed, finally I figured it was time to do it. I reshaped the blade and made purple heart wood handles and epoxied them on with the tang in set. I didn't polish the blade it because I think that's the way my Dad would of done it. Or maybe I tried and it was too hard. :rolleyes: [​IMG] [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
     
  6. Jackson

    Jackson New Member

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    Am I blind or Is there no edit option on the above post ? [​IMG]
     
  7. Grayzer86

    Grayzer86 Active Member

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    I would probably run with 3/32 for the lower weight and better slicing geometry. I did a hand rubbed finish on some 1084 for the kitchen and it was terrible to care for. I have not had near as much trouble with the ones i polished. The higher the polish the less corrosion issues you will likely have. I would not advise the gun blue as i have heard that it can cause an odd taste in the food it cuts.
     
  8. Jackson

    Jackson New Member

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    That's interesting about the bluing giving a odd taste. I bought a "Peasant Knife" from Lee Valley Tools that is a high carbon of some type that I blued. I noticed the blue coming off for the first while and I think it may of had a metallic taste. I haven't noticed it lately. I think polishing the blade seals it some how or makes it less likely to hold moisture. Won't help if it's left in the sink.
     
  9. Jake1911

    Jake1911 New Member

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    You can give the blades a patina in white vinegar, actually anything that's acidic, just make sure you degrease them very well. It will make the blades dark grey and in my experience they seem to be more rust resistant but they will still need oil.
     
  10. Jackson

    Jackson New Member

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    Does the vinegar give a uniform colour ? I think gun blue is a acid too.
     
  11. Jake1911

    Jake1911 New Member

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    Yes, but you have to make sure there are no oils or grease on the blade, even finger prints!. I've had spots before and I used fine steel wool to blend everything, it would be wise to use a test piece of 1084 with a few different different finishes like matte on one side and polished on the other. Just leave it in overnight.
     
  12. Rob W

    Rob W Active Member

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    experiment with scrap til you find the finish you like
     
  13. Mythtaken

    Mythtaken Staff Member CKM Staff

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    To give an even patina, you can try the vinegar, but I prefer an orange juice bath. Put it in a pan (or stand it in a jar) and cover with orange juice. Leave it until it has a look you like.
    As everyone else said, make sure you clean any oil or grease from the blade first. Good old dish washing liquid is pretty good at that.

    A patina will help protect the blade from rust, but there is still a bit of user maintenance required. It shouldn't be left in a sink or put in the dishwasher (nor should any quality kitchen knife!). After it's washed and dried, rub it down with a drop of cooking oil on a paper towel. That's all it takes.
     
  14. Jackson

    Jackson New Member

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    I just remembered something from the past. I don't have the equipment, but IIRC powder coating is done at 400* F or so. I would think that powder coating and tempering could be combined if that temp. works for the the temperature that one wants. I'll have to do a bit a research
     
  15. Jackson

    Jackson New Member

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  16. Jake1911

    Jake1911 New Member

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    That's an interesting idea, a few guys on CGN have been powder coating their bullets instead of using lube so I'm sure it would work fine as a blade coating too. Powder365.ca is where a lot of them get their supplies.
     
  17. Jackson

    Jackson New Member

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    Doesn't seem very practical for bullets, but a HC. knife I'm thinking, yes !!!
     
  18. Jake1911

    Jake1911 New Member

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    Yeah, I can't wait to see pics of your finished knives. Pictures of rounds that had been fired into berms still had a decent coating. They leave less leading in the bore then standard lubed bullets, and they look really cool before firing.
     
  19. Jackson

    Jackson New Member

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    I've been pretty busy lately and haven't even had time to order the metal. I stripped the handle off a old shop knife that I want to try and harden with a tiger torch just to see if I can get away without building a forge. I found a place locally that powder coats. If the price is reasonable I'll get them to do them..other wise I may just buy a powder coating gun. I don't think they would be much over $150
     

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