Frost Mora Material Question

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Aug 25, 2004
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I bought three of the Frost Moras that Ragweed Forge lists as having "Laminated" Carbon Steel blades. These are the only Frost Moras I have ever owned and I really wanted the softer blade metal for striking sparks from natural flint (stones) but these seem almost as hard to strike a spark with as a cheap stainless steel knife. Is the laminated steel harder? Should I buy a "regular" Frost Mora? Whats the difference, if any in the blades?

Also, does anyone have experience striking a spark with their knife? What do you use?

Thanks!
 
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Brian6244 said:
I really wanted the softer blade metal for striking sparks from natural flint (stones) but these seem almost as hard to strike a spark with as a cheap stainless steel knife.

I'm no expert at this (never actually struck a flint-and-steel fire myself), but I'm pretty sure most outdoorsy-type people want _harder_ steel for striking flint. I could be mistaken.

If I'm right, though, it'd explain why the soft outer layers on the laminated Mora don't work for you. In that case, the unlaminated would work better (same hardness, edge to spine).
 
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Scandinavians have long used laminated blades.I guess it goes back to the days when good high carbon steels were expensive .Today the advantages are that using a hard wear resistant core gives you a good cutting edge, While the softer outer layer produces a tougher blade. Also with the typical scandinavian grind where you sharpen the whole bevel [not just a secondary bevel] it's easier to sharpen.
 

MelancholyMutt

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You need a good right angle (or more acute) to strike a spark off a ferrocerrium rod. Knives with rounded spines cannot throw a spark (with the spine of course)
 
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It's not the knife, it's the sharp edge on the spine. Don't use the edge unless you like to sharpen often
 
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here's the deal on lamination.
core = hard, high-carbon steel.
outer layer = softer steel, sometimes stainless.
purpose = harder core is exposed at the cutting edge of the blade, while the soft outer layer protects the very rust-able carbon steel, and adds strength. sort of like differential heat treating, where the spine is softer than the edge to keep the entire blade from being too brittle. the softer outer coating on a laminated blade will help to prevent the blade from snapping (as high-carbon steel is more prone to do). basically allows a super-sharp, super-durable blade that can be made pretty small/thin and still not break.
peace.
 
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I think the question was about striking a spark from steel with natural flint, and there too hard OR TOO SOFT steel defeats the purpose. The flint can't peel off particles of steel if the steel is HARDER THAN THE STONE. IF THE STEEL IS TOO SOFT, NOT ENOUGH HEAT IS GENERATED IN STRIKING PIECES OFF. There is an optimal hardness range.

BACK TO ADD: Boy is there a lack of specific info. Lot's of "right hardness" and "correct hardness." Flint (also chert) is said to be 7 on the Mohs' Scale of hardness (tac = 1; diamond = 10). OnE poster opined RC 59 was good.
Stainless, while fine with a "firesteel" (ferrocerum [cerium?]) if sharply edged, apparently does not work with natural flint. Sounds like the carbon steel Mora is the choice.
 

Esav Benyamin

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That's why it may be a good idea to carry a striker with your rod or flint. Ragnar used to sell small viking style strikers.
 
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Thomas Linton said:
I think the question was about striking a spark from steel with natural flint
You are correct. The question is about natural flint and not ferrocerium. I can strike ferrocerium with anything sharp... even a piece of broken glass.
Thomas Linton said:
Flint (also chert) is said to be 7 on the Mohs' Scale of hardness (tac = 1; diamond = 10). OnE poster opined RC 59 was good.
That's the most specific information I have heard so far...thanks.
Thomas Linton said:
Sounds like the carbon steel Mora is the choice
When you say "carbon steel Mora" are you referring to the "laminated carbon steel Mora" like what I bought from Ragnar's Ragweed Forge or are you referring to something else? Thanks!!!
 
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Laminated or not, carbon steel seems to be the choice for striking sparks with natural flint.

I would only be concerned that the outer layers of laminated stock might be softer than optimum since they are intended to supply toughness to supprt the harder central layer. Ask Ragnar. He's a good guy and something of an expert on this aspect of fire by flint-and-steel. He makes fire steels.
 
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Try the unlaminated carbon steel Moras. The outside of a laminated Mora may be down under 50 RC. An unlaminated Mora is something like 58-60 RC throughout. One test you could try is to see if you can strike a spark using the edge of your laminated Mora. The edge should be somewhere around 60+ RC I believe. If the core material strikes a decent spark there is more hope for the backside of an unlaminated model working.
 
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You maybe want to check with ragnar but I belive "laminate steel " is STAINLESS not plain carbon- both outside layers and core.
He sells differential tempered carbon steel from Frost, I cannot remember the number but there is a differentialy temper blade version of the Swedish army knife (black handle not green).
Martin
 
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Thanks, I'll send Ragnar an email and will also try striking on the blade edge as a test as well.
 
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I don't know what varieties Ragnar supplies, but I have a recent Mora knife with a laminated carbon steel blade. It has a simple red oval wood handle.
 
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They have been making laminated carbon steel knife blades in Scandinavia for generations. I'd be surprised if knives made in the Mora region don't come with such blades.
 
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martin j said:
Sorry my mistake ,I think you must be refering to the #S-1 here which is carbon: http://www.ragweedforge.com/SwedishKnifeCatalog.html
Yes the #S-1 is what I have. I actually have a pair of the #S-1 knives and one of the #137 knives but the #S-1 is the knife that I am unsuccessfully attempting to strike a spark with. I have struck a spark with natural flint on plenty of other metals so I am confident that my technique is adequet. I simply cannot get any of my knives to strike a spark. I suppose I could try an Opinel but I would much rather find a fixed blade knife that would work.
 
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