One further thought on me and grinding...

Sep 23, 1999
Thanks to the folks who helped me through my last grinding boo boo. I think that my problem was a combination of 3 factors:

1) It has been 8 months since I have used my grinder, and I have only used ot to make 2 knives so far, so I am out of practice.

2) I am inexperienced.

3) I am grinding knives too small.

With respect to #3, the last knife I finished was 1.5" wide and 4.5" long, so holding it against the platen to get a nice flat grind was easy. The knives I am working on now (my magic knot knives) are at most 1" wide, and 3/5" long. So, I think I'll switch to grinding some bigger pieces after I am done with these 3 magic knot knives. I wanted to do a traditional tanto, so now is an opportune time! Too bad I have a small stack of 1" wide, 1/16" thick 440-C ready for some kitchen knives! Now I have to track down some 3/16" ATS-34 and/or a good carbon steel.

With respect to #2, I have had the pleasure of visiting the shop of a knife maker near me in Warner, and he taught me a lot. I think I need to visit another knife maker. So, Robert, expect an e-mail in the next few days where I humbly beg you for a week-end visit!

Thanks again for all of your kind words. I wouldn't have made it this far without all of your words of encouragement and shop tips.

"Come What May..."
Just keep on Grinding and letting the sparks fly.We know that you can do it.I wouldn't know what to do witha blade that short myself,I had trouble with a 3 inch blade one time after about 4 10 inch Bowies in a row,That short blade just messed with my head....

Bruce Evans Handcrafted Knives
The soul of the Knife begins in the Fire!!!!!
Member of,AKTI#A000223 and The American Bladesmith Society
Your only 100 miles away. Like I told you before hop on your bike and start pedaling.
Hope to have my hydralic press and a new forge finished by month end. So if you want to make some damascus?????
Give me a weeks notice before you come over as I have a few knives that I have to get out and the shop looks like a bomb went off in it. I had to move everything around to set the press frame up yesterday.

Flat Land Knife Works
Hey Crayola, I'll be up in Lethbrigde May 19th. I can get 1084, 5160 locally. I'll pick some up if you want me to. Email me.

The Edge
Thanks to all who have replied.

Bruce: I am going to make some bigger knives once this small batch I have is done! I think a bowie like you make is a bit big for me yet, but I look forward to being able to make cool knives like you.

I am going to Robert's shop to MAKE damascus!!! WOHOO!!!!!!! YEHAW!!!! SWEET!!!!!! I am a little excited!

And exsanguinate, I jsut e-mailed you (hopefully in time.) I'm going to try to make a traditional styled tanto, so I hope you can pick me up some 1084. I hope this is a good choice for this project.

Does anyone know who will do a diff. heat treat for a newbie??

WOHOO!!! Crayolamascus!! I wonder what will happen if you toss a crayon or two in while folding the steel...

"Come What May..."
*still laughing about the crayon in the damascus*

I think you're on the right track. Too thin of steel is usually harder to grind in the beginning. For me it was easier to grind short stuff at first, but not too short.

I am sure you'll be grinding pro-stuff here shortly with some more practice. The knives I have seen of yours were outstandning...let alone for a guy that hasn't made anymore knives than you have.

Keep us posted on this tanto! I want to see it when it's done!

Thanks Nick! I have Reiki helping me tremeandously, and exsanguinate is bringing me some steel this week-end!

My experiments with wax crayons and forging have so far been fruitless, but once I discover the secret, I'll have some kick butt proprietary damascus!! Now whether or not it will cut will be a different thing alltogether!

"Come What May..."
crayola, you might go for 5/32s stock on the tanto. i find this thickness great for all around 4 to 5 1/2 blade hunters and other mid- size workers. it starts to get into heavy grinding at 3/16ths and 1/4" is a industrial grade job. lol. i have two special order bowies in the works with 1/4"th 12" bl and 9" handles so that you can chop canopy and split wood and skin a elk.those little knives sound good to me LOL. i felt like i ground a 1 lb of steel off each blank. these guys gave me the pattern. i am looking forward to the field results.

Laurence Segal
Thanks for the tip on the thickness! I can get that size of ATS-34 readily, so maybe I'll go with that thickness for my outdoorsy knives that IO'll be making in the future. They'll be 4.5-5.5" long, so I think I'll be in good shape!

exsanguinate is bringing me a 12" bar of 1/4" thick 5160 for my tanto project. THis will be a traditional tanto as best I can do, so I want the extra thickness. I think I'll have to pick up a few more belts though! It won't be a tanto for camping type knife, but rather a tanto for me to experience the japanese style. I'm even going to make a habaki, the copper collar on the front! THis project will likely take all summer, so I'll bring it up again much later!

I'll be grinding again this week-end most likely, so I'll take things slow on my small blades. Theya re going to be awesome, so taking my time and using fresh belts will be the key. Maybe a bit of filing at the end will help too!

"Come What May..."