Shop Floor Talk  

Go Back   Shop Floor Talk > Welding and Metalworking Forums > Fabrication

SFT Search:   
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 02-18-2019, 12:44 PM
Matt Shade's Avatar
Matt Shade Matt Shade is offline
Made From Scratch
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Ohio
Posts: 2,656
Default Making a Small Belt Knife

I stuck this here instead of blacksmithing as I didn't get any pics of the forging part of it. I have quite a few pictures of the rest of the process, from start to finish though.

To start off this one is made with leaf spring steel again. The first picture shows what I started with and how far I took it with the hammer. The 2nd picture shows the profile. I got a little bit of a fish mouth at the tip, but left myself material there to grind off.

After forging the blank gets a date with an angle grinder. Forging scale is harder than the hinges on the gates to hell and wears grinding belts out in short order. Starting out with a hard wheel on an angle grinder saves time and money.

The 4th pic shows me putting the choil or sharpening notch in the blade. I use a chainsaw file. This defines where the cutting edge will end, and facilitates sharpening as you don't have to fight with a shoulder right there with your sharpening stones.

Last pic shows blank with the profile done and the choil filed in. After a little layout it will be ready to shape on the belt grinder.

Edit: I screwed up the pics, but the number names are in order.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	C003-DSCF1104.jpg
Views:	85
Size:	206.7 KB
ID:	149425   Click image for larger version

Name:	C005-DSCF1106.jpg
Views:	88
Size:	200.6 KB
ID:	149427   Click image for larger version

Name:	C006-DSCF1107.jpg
Views:	87
Size:	152.1 KB
ID:	149428   Click image for larger version

Name:	C007-DSCF1108.jpg
Views:	87
Size:	205.7 KB
ID:	149429   Click image for larger version

Name:	C002-DSCF1103.jpg
Views:	83
Size:	207.7 KB
ID:	149508  

__________________
Handcrafted Leather

Last edited by Matt Shade; 02-18-2019 at 02:40 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 02-18-2019, 12:53 PM
Matt Shade's Avatar
Matt Shade Matt Shade is offline
Made From Scratch
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Ohio
Posts: 2,656
Default

The first step on the belt grinder is to flatten the whole blank. A surface grinder would be really nice but I have to settle for a 36 grit belt and some burnt fingers. This isn't highly critical on a fixed blade knife, but I try to get the blank flat and an even thickness with parallel edges.

Next I drill the holes for the handle pins, as well as a bunch of lightening holes in the tang. The idea here is to adjust the balance point of the knife. Its very subtle on a knife this size, but I like to have them balance right at the index finger when you grip them. The larger the knife the more noticeable the balance becomes.

The black line is drawn on both sides and is a reference for the plunge line (the beginning of the grind). Having the plunge lines even on both sides is not only a mark of quality but also reduces the chances of warping in heat treat.

The last 2 pics show the roughed in grind on both sides. This knife is being ground on the platen and will have a nearly full height flat grind.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	C008-DSCF1109.jpg
Views:	70
Size:	204.3 KB
ID:	149430   Click image for larger version

Name:	C010-DSCF1111.jpg
Views:	70
Size:	208.3 KB
ID:	149431   Click image for larger version

Name:	C011-DSCF1112.jpg
Views:	70
Size:	197.5 KB
ID:	149432   Click image for larger version

Name:	C012-DSCF1113.jpg
Views:	71
Size:	207.3 KB
ID:	149433   Click image for larger version

Name:	C013-DSCF1114.jpg
Views:	75
Size:	203.7 KB
ID:	149434  

__________________
Handcrafted Leather
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 02-18-2019, 01:02 PM
Matt Shade's Avatar
Matt Shade Matt Shade is offline
Made From Scratch
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Ohio
Posts: 2,656
Default

Continuing the grinding, this shot shows the cutting edge. You can see where the plunge lines line up, and hopefully you can see how if these weren't even it could cause problems with heat treating.

Here the blade is about ready for heat treat. I don't like to take them super thin as it increases the risk of cracking and warping and also leaves me less material to work with if I need to grind out a wobble in the blade. I'd say the edge is about .040" at this point, maybe a little thicker.

Before heat treat I put my makers mark on the edge of the tang. If I try to do this after heat treating it will most likely be too hard to cut with a file, or will at the very least ruin the file and take a long time to do. I lay the lettering out in pencil and start off making the straight cuts with a thin wheel on a dremel. The mark is my last name, with the S and the E turned on their sides.

You have to hold very steady and commit to each cut with a definite plunge. If you hesitate it will skate around and make a wide cut on the surface. I try to do this in an area that won't see much stress, and I only cut deep enough to get good definition.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	C015-DSCF1116.jpg
Views:	64
Size:	204.2 KB
ID:	149435   Click image for larger version

Name:	C017-DSCF1118.jpg
Views:	63
Size:	200.9 KB
ID:	149436   Click image for larger version

Name:	C021-DSCF1122.jpg
Views:	63
Size:	160.2 KB
ID:	149437   Click image for larger version

Name:	C022-DSCF1123.jpg
Views:	71
Size:	139.4 KB
ID:	149438   Click image for larger version

Name:	C023-DSCF1124.jpg
Views:	70
Size:	144.7 KB
ID:	149439  

__________________
Handcrafted Leather
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 02-18-2019, 01:09 PM
Matt Shade's Avatar
Matt Shade Matt Shade is offline
Made From Scratch
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Ohio
Posts: 2,656
Default

After the straight cuts are done, I do the curves with a miniature rat tail file, and a mini half round rat tail file.

The interior cut on the A and the D were done with a diamond burr in the dremel. Sometimes I use a center punch instead, just depends on the blade and the mood I'm in I guess.

I skipped taking pics of the heat treat. I had some other stuff going on in the forge and didn't get pics of it. My camera battery is not a fan of 20 degree days in the shop either. The basic process was to normalize 3 times and then quench in warmed oil, followed by 2 hours in the oven at 400 degrees. This is something that changes with the steel and the equipment you are using so you will have to experiment on your own.

After heat treat its time to clean it up on the grinder and finish shaping the blade.

Couple pics here show the blade after going to a finer belt. You can see how the blade tapers towards the point. This is called distal taper.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	C025-DSCF1126.jpg
Views:	67
Size:	127.8 KB
ID:	149440   Click image for larger version

Name:	C027-DSCF1128.jpg
Views:	69
Size:	169.6 KB
ID:	149441   Click image for larger version

Name:	C028-DSCF1129.jpg
Views:	60
Size:	174.2 KB
ID:	149442   Click image for larger version

Name:	C029-DSCF1130.jpg
Views:	66
Size:	153.1 KB
ID:	149443   Click image for larger version

Name:	c030-DSCF1131.jpg
Views:	62
Size:	193.1 KB
ID:	149444  

__________________
Handcrafted Leather
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 02-18-2019, 01:19 PM
Matt Shade's Avatar
Matt Shade Matt Shade is offline
Made From Scratch
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Ohio
Posts: 2,656
Default

This is something I wanted to really make a point of. I think it is where most beginner knifemakers get themselves into trouble. If you use a good quality steel and do a proper heat treat you don't have to leave the blade as thick as a crow bar. The cutting edge should be super thin.

On a larger hard use or chopping type knife I might use a different grind to give the blade more cross section, the cutting edge is still going to be thin. You have to cater the grind to the type of use but most people leave them too thick. If you want it to cut like a hatchet, then give it an edge profile like one. If you want a paper slicing razor blade, it needs to be ground like one.

That is a 1/4" washer I am using for comparison. I didn't mic it at this point, but this is where I take the blade before polishing it. It will be thinner before final sharpening.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	c031-DSCF1132.jpg
Views:	55
Size:	141.7 KB
ID:	149445   Click image for larger version

Name:	c032-DSCF1133.jpg
Views:	59
Size:	136.1 KB
ID:	149446   Click image for larger version

Name:	c034-DSCF1135.jpg
Views:	57
Size:	171.8 KB
ID:	149447   Click image for larger version

Name:	c036-DSCF1137.jpg
Views:	59
Size:	129.8 KB
ID:	149448  
__________________
Handcrafted Leather
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 02-18-2019, 01:36 PM
Matt Shade's Avatar
Matt Shade Matt Shade is offline
Made From Scratch
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Ohio
Posts: 2,656
Default

I like to polish my blades by hand, and I like to finish them lengthwise. This gives you a nice finish, that takes out any wobbles from the grinder and also can't be mistaken for something done on a machine.

I always step back in grit to start. This blade was taken to 400 grit on the grinder, so I am starting with 220 grit by hand. I use a leather backer and just sand from end to end, flattening the blade and getting the grinder marks out.

I progress my way up through the grits and usually stop at either 400 or 600 depending on the blade. On this one I took it to 600 but probably didn't completely get all the 400 grit lines out.

In the final grit you want to start at the plunge line and goes towards the tip with each stroke so that you get straight lines in the polish. Using a scrubbing motion will leave little hooks and swirls in your finish.

You can see that at 600 I have the blade very flat and it is nearly a mirror finish.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	c037-DSCF1138.jpg
Views:	52
Size:	107.7 KB
ID:	149454   Click image for larger version

Name:	c038-DSCF1139.jpg
Views:	53
Size:	166.9 KB
ID:	149455   Click image for larger version

Name:	c040-DSCF1141.jpg
Views:	53
Size:	155.4 KB
ID:	149456   Click image for larger version

Name:	c041-DSCF1142.jpg
Views:	51
Size:	195.6 KB
ID:	149457   Click image for larger version

Name:	c042-DSCF1143.jpg
Views:	54
Size:	179.4 KB
ID:	149458  

__________________
Handcrafted Leather
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 02-18-2019, 01:45 PM
Matt Shade's Avatar
Matt Shade Matt Shade is offline
Made From Scratch
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Ohio
Posts: 2,656
Default

After polishing it needs a handle.

For this knife I am using a piece of curly maple I've had laying around. It is left over from a rifle stock I made.

I want to bookmatch these scales so I am going to split this lengthwise to end up with 2 scales that have matching grain.

After the scales are split I mark them to keep the grain lined up and then flatten the insides.

Next I drill the pin holes and dry fit one scale to the blade and cut around it, then do the same for the other side.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	c051-DSCF1175.jpg
Views:	49
Size:	166.9 KB
ID:	149459   Click image for larger version

Name:	c052-DSCF1176.jpg
Views:	48
Size:	178.4 KB
ID:	149460   Click image for larger version

Name:	c053-DSCF1177.jpg
Views:	50
Size:	196.1 KB
ID:	149461   Click image for larger version

Name:	c056-DSCF1180.jpg
Views:	50
Size:	199.0 KB
ID:	149462   Click image for larger version

Name:	c058-DSCF1182.jpg
Views:	53
Size:	184.1 KB
ID:	149463  

__________________
Handcrafted Leather
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 02-18-2019, 01:54 PM
Matt Shade's Avatar
Matt Shade Matt Shade is offline
Made From Scratch
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Ohio
Posts: 2,656
Default

Next I shape and finish the front edge of the scales as you cant do that after they are attached without scratching your blade back up.

This shows how the grain is lined up and and how they are sanded to the final finish on the font edges.

After that I go ahead and attach them to the knife using epoxy.

If this were a large chopping knife I would also plan on peening the pins, and would have rough shaped the scales before attaching them, but as it is just a little guy the pins and epoxy are strong enough on their own.

I cleaned the tang with rubbing alcohol, roughed up the inside of the scales with 40 grit sandpaper, and then assemble everything with a good coat of epoxy and clamp it all together. Be sure to take some rubbing alcohol and wipe down the font edge of the scales so that you don't have epoxy squeezing out of this joint.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	c060-DSCF1184.jpg
Views:	47
Size:	185.8 KB
ID:	149464   Click image for larger version

Name:	c062-DSCF1186.JPG
Views:	53
Size:	69.6 KB
ID:	149465   Click image for larger version

Name:	c063-DSCF1187.jpg
Views:	51
Size:	124.7 KB
ID:	149466   Click image for larger version

Name:	c064-DSCF1188.jpg
Views:	54
Size:	189.0 KB
ID:	149467   Click image for larger version

Name:	c065-DSCF1189.jpg
Views:	54
Size:	151.6 KB
ID:	149468  

__________________
Handcrafted Leather
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 02-18-2019, 01:59 PM
Matt Shade's Avatar
Matt Shade Matt Shade is offline
Made From Scratch
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Ohio
Posts: 2,656
Default

The handle needs a very serious diet at this point, so back to the belt sander and belt grinder it goes.

I tend to bounce back and forth between these 2 machines. The belt grinder will remove material much faster but the wheel on it is 10" in diameter so I can't shape small radius on it. The 4x36 is slower but the 2" idler wheel lets me do a lot of contouring on the handle. The large flat platen is also useful.

Basically you just start whittling it away until it feels good in your hand.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	c086-DSCF1191.jpg
Views:	48
Size:	164.7 KB
ID:	149469   Click image for larger version

Name:	c087-DSCF1192.jpg
Views:	47
Size:	192.8 KB
ID:	149470   Click image for larger version

Name:	c088-DSCF1193.jpg
Views:	48
Size:	193.5 KB
ID:	149471   Click image for larger version

Name:	c089-DSCF1194.jpg
Views:	49
Size:	177.4 KB
ID:	149472   Click image for larger version

Name:	c091-DSCF1196.jpg
Views:	59
Size:	140.1 KB
ID:	149473  

__________________
Handcrafted Leather
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 02-18-2019, 02:03 PM
Matt Shade's Avatar
Matt Shade Matt Shade is offline
Made From Scratch
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Ohio
Posts: 2,656
Default

These pictures just show the progression of the handle. This is one of my favorite parts of the process as it is where the knife really starts to feel like a knife, and you can really set it apart from cookie cutter factory knives. I think most makers are too shy about taking enough off and leave their handles very blocky and flat.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	c092-DSCF1197.jpg
Views:	55
Size:	127.1 KB
ID:	149474   Click image for larger version

Name:	c094-DSCF1199.jpg
Views:	58
Size:	103.2 KB
ID:	149475   Click image for larger version

Name:	c095-DSCF1200.jpg
Views:	53
Size:	121.8 KB
ID:	149476   Click image for larger version

Name:	c097-DSCF1202.jpg
Views:	53
Size:	103.6 KB
ID:	149477   Click image for larger version

Name:	c102-DSCF1207.jpg
Views:	59
Size:	147.4 KB
ID:	149478  

__________________
Handcrafted Leather
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

Web Search:

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:32 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions Inc.