A Brief Study On Swedges

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Great info, Thanks!

IMHO point #1 'eye appeal' is subjective- only applies if you like the look... (I, personally, think swedges are generally ugly..).

Although, I had never thought of them being there for clearance of blades... nifty!

G.
 
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Tony,

Is this the knife you refer to, or the advertisement Steve posted?


Anthony

That's it Anthony. If you don't swedge them the back of the blade remains too thick to pass each other. Doesnt matter what thickness you start with.
 
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Thanks for reviving this most interesting thread Kerry. Here is a good example of the above function.

28-04028.jpg

Are those asymmetrical swedges to allow clearance, or asymmetrically ground blades? Seems the main grind itself would have to be asymmetrical to allow clearance or else the tips would be on the same line. Is it the swedges giving clearance, or the actual grind itself? Got a pic of that open?
 

sunnyd

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.. If you don't swedge them the back of the blade remains too thick to pass each other. Doesnt matter what thickness you start with.

Yes Sir,

This I know and have known and understood for a long while..

I recon my point is, do you or anyone else know when(the earliest known example with swedge designs) was a pocket knife produced in Sheffield?

Sorry for any confusion I've caused in my questions thus far.


Anthony
 
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Yes Sir,

This I know and have known and understood for a long while..

I recon my point is, do you or anyone else know when(the earliest known example with swedge designs) was a pocket knife produced in Sheffield?

Sorry for any confusion I've caused in my questions thus far.


Anthony
That might be a question for Smiling Knife.
 

sunnyd

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That might be a question for Smiling Knife.

Thank you Tony. Good point.

Steve, if you have any info on this question it'd be appreciated..

That is, first 1st known pocket knife developed in Sheffield with the swedge--false edge design, circa??


Anthony
 
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Kerry,

Thanks for taking the time to start this thread! A really nice explanation and wonderful pictures! HMMMMM now if I can get em to be exactly the same on both sides of the blade:eek: ;)
 

waynorth

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Kerry,

Thanks for taking the time to start this thread! A really nice explanation and wonderful pictures! HMMMMM now if I can get em to be exactly the same on both sides of the blade:eek: ;)

I watched a guy at Queen cut darn nice swedges with one pass each on a wheel, one left handed, other side right handed:eek:!

Thanks again for this long-enduring thread Kerry!
 

Peregrin

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Very informative.Thanks for resurrecting the thread Kerry.
 
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Swedges are the finishing touch.That and crinks and blade "lay in" are my main criteria. Being hit with a hammer just makes them better.


P1010186-2.jpg
 
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Thanks for reviving this most interesting thread Kerry. Here is a good example of the above function.

28-04028.jpg



What am I looking at?
These are asymmetrically ground blades?
Can I see any swedgeing?

or am I getting my terms wrong....
 
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Hey, that's kind of neat. I never really thought much about swedges, besides that it's a fun word to say. It's kind of like saying smock. Smock smock smock smock smock.
 
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Suunyd and others I don't know when the first swedges appeared on Sheffield knives. If I find something I'll be sure to add it here. Here are pics of the knife shown earlier with the blades open as requested.

Needham2.jpg

Needham1.jpg
 
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I've only just found this excellent thread. Thanks, Kerry, for kicking it off in fine style.

My oldest Sheffield folder is 1836 & it has swedges. A photo in Tweedale shows Joseph Rodgers pen knives had them in 1775.

David
 
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sunnyd

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I've only just found this excellent thread. Thanks, Kerry, for kicking it off in fine style.

My oldest Sheffield folder is 1836 & it has swedges. A photo in Tweedale shows Joseph Rodgers pen knives had them in 1775.
David

David,

Much obliged for this information.

Can you kindly get a photograph or a scan and post here of both your 1836 Sheffield slip joint and the Tweedale photo showing JR penknife circa 1775?

Thanks,

Anthony
 

KnifeHead

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Suunyd and others I don't know when the first swedges appeared on Sheffield knives. If I find something I'll be sure to add it here. Here are pics of the knife shown earlier with the blades open as requested.

Needham2.jpg

Needham1.jpg

What am I looking at?
These are asymmetrically ground blades?
Can I see any swedgeing?

or am I getting my terms wrong....
Hey neeman, I'll attempt to explain what I'm seeing and if anybody else sees something different please jump on in.

First of all, I am assuming that very little of the blades spines stick up over the handle in their closed positions. The handle eases(notches) for nail nick access on both sides are the giveaway there. This makes the knife even more compact so primary blade grinds and swedging are crucial in helping the blades move in and out of the pockets. Since the nail nicks are on the outside of the blades on both sides of this knife, the swedges have no effect on them.

All of the blades are asymetrically ground so that there is room for its neighboring blade in the same pocket. Also significant on this knife is the fact that the primary bevels are "shouldered in" or plunged into and thru the spine of the blade, with the tip cutting manicure blade's plunge thru the spine being almost imperceptable. Here's the blade lineup based on the top-down shot of the blade spines in Steve's image:

Upper right - tip cutting manicure/file, cut swedge back side
Upper left - pen blade, cut swedge front side, drawn swedge back side


Notice how the neighboring cut swedges on the inside of these two blades give additional space, effectively thinning out the blades so that they have room to pass. The cut swedge on the pen blade(left) appears longer than it needs to be but keep in mind the desire to keep the blades thin but strong as possible for the purpose of cutting. It occurs to me just now that you wouldn't want a manicure file to be as thin so this may be why there isn't as much material, if any, taken off of it in the plunge.

Lower right - coping blade, drawn swedge front side, cut swedge back side
Lower left - master pen, drawn swedges both side


This is a bit different as the master pen blade is longer than its pocket buddy, the coping blade. The cutler could have put a cut swedge on the master blade as well but I believe the choice of dual drawn swedges on the master blade was a choice of asthetics. The plunge grinds on both sides of the coping blade, PLUS the cut swedge on the back(top) side is totally necessary to allow both of those blades to move in and out of the pocket. The coping blade yields to the master blade. :)
 
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Thanks for the very educational post Kerry. That was a most interesting analysis of swedging. I've also see the term 'swage' used in some books.
 

KnifeHead

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Thanks for the very educational post Kerry. That was a most interesting analysis of swedging. I've also see the term 'swage' used in some books.

Thank you, Steve.

This is my guess so somebody else feel free to correct me if I am wrong....

I believe "swedge" is a derivative of "swage" and comes from blacksmithing/bladesmithing. A "swage block" is used in the shaping of hot steel. The idea with bladesmithing was to get the piece being formed(by hammering) as close as possible to the final product before grinding. Swaging could have come from hammering the "swages" into the blades first. They would later be cleaned up by grinding but not as much material would wasted using this method. This could be how "swages" evolved to "swedges".

Today we take the availability of steels and cutting tools for granted but back then, it was necessary to shape the steel that they had to get the most out of it. Grinding away was/is wasteful and, back then, time consuming.
 
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David,

Much obliged for this information.

Can you kindly get a photograph or a scan and post here of both your 1836 Sheffield slip joint and the Tweedale photo showing JR penknife circa 1775?

Thanks,

Anthony

Anthony, here's my 1836 George Gill & Sons. (BHL is a mystery)

IMG_0034.jpg


Sorry, but I've no way of scanning in the picture from Tweedale. Perhaps some else can do so for you. It's on page 24.

David
 
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