Mistake with cable damascus?

Dec 16, 1998
I have probably screwed up, the question is how badly. I was forging a small knife from welded cable and just thinking I should get a better grip with the tongs when I lost control. The blade parted company with the tongs, bounced hit the tail of the anvil and did a half gainer into the slack tub sending up a small mushroom cloud of steam. I stuck the tongs in fished out the blade and threw it into the forge as quickly as I could and kept going, I need the practice forging anyway. Have I terribly messed up the blade for heat treating? I didn't hear the dreaded ping, didn't notice any separations or weld failures as I kept forging and the blade was rapidly loosing color when it took its unscheduled swim.

Don't sweat it.

I don't think you have done any damage. when you heat treat you shove hot metal into water or oil to cool it down, that is all you have done. Some blokes tripple quench all their blades so your only on number 2 when you heat treat.

I have seen blades made very thin give a horrible tink or ping as they are heat treated a horible crack is usualy found when you here the tink.

Time will tell.
I have a friend that quenches randomly between heats. He says that another maker does that to help work the grain. We'll see if that has any effect on the strength of the blade.
Reg and im2smrt4u, thanks for the feedback. I was hoping that since it didn't twist into a pretzel, crack, or otherwise come unglued when I kept working that it would be OK. I went out and ground it to shape this afternoon and hopefully can give heat treating a try tomorrow.

Don't forget to normalize it before you heat treat it, should do it a couple of times. Helps it relax and gets rid of the stresses you have put into it. Anybody that has done any forging has done the disappearing blade trick, I usually locate mine from the smoke. If you had done any damage to it you would have see something before you got to this point......Ray