15121Re: Zen and the Art of Knifemaking
- Nov 5, 2006I sent a post but I don't know where (your account is set up not to
receive e-mail), so at the risk of repeating myself and generally
being totally off-topic:
- About the smell, it pays to wear a respirator. The particulates in
the air can be themselves harmful, little sharp shards of steel that
you don't want moving and grooving in your lungs when you cough.
Then there's the chemical aspect, e.g. cocobolo is toxic and other
natural materials may be allergens. And since you're working with
bone from (presumably) overseas, it would be hard to completely
discount the possibility of inhaling microorganisms/spores.
- I see you're using 1095, a very good steel, but if you're getting
a little "boomerang" in the quench, you might want to give O-1 a
stab (so to speak). I love O-1, so forgiving and can be
differentially drawn. For the quench, get a coffee can full of auto
tranny fluid, heat it to 125 F (by sticking a bar of hot steel and a
candy thermometer in it).
- 5160 is cheaper; it's (as the name says) nominally 0.60% carbon
but it also has 0.2% silicon and 0.7% chromium. A little tougher and
can be hardened up near the 60s. I'm in the Tidewater Virginia area
and if you live nearby (you don't want to pay shipping) I have a few
pounds (maybe something like 30 feet in 3 or 3.5 foot lengths) of
1/4 x 1" 5160 I can give you free.
PS my favorite meditational incense is sweet coal smoke, see if the
library has books by Alexander Weygers, he explains how to make your
own forge from a coffee can and anvil from a piece of railroad
track, and gives instruction on beating hot steel.
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