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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The blades are made from pick up truck leaf springs which are 4820 steel. The 48 is the hardness & the 20 is 20 parts per million carbon which is a high carbon steel. The guards are flat bar stock. The blades are stright before tempering but curve slightly in the process. I try to get the cutting edge to 54-56 & keep the back to 46-48. Gives a hard cutting edge & a soft backstrap which will flex some if needed. Make the entire knife too hard & its brittle & can easily snap. And I have made them too brittle.

To get a good temper on a high carbon steel blade you need atleast 2500 degrees F. I use a double jet NC Tool Company forge which can go in excess of 3000 degrees & will melt about any steel. Fuel source is LP gas & cost about $500. 2 minutes after turning it on ready to work steel which sure beats my old old coal rivet forge which I gave to a friend.

The guards are mild steel welded onto the knife from the handle end. That is done before tempering the blade because of the heat of welding. I use a cheap little stick welder. People are use to copper or brass guards but that tradition comes from the days when those metals weren't as valuable as the steel.


The handles are full meaning they are the same size as the blade. Alot of knives from the guard back there is 1/3 of the metal cut off the top & another 1/3 off the bottom & leather washers slid on as a grip. Nothing wrong with that as long as the knife is only used for combat. But try to chop with it & it will most likely snap at the guard which is the weakest point. I make my knives for survival & at the guard is the strongest point of the knife.

I've been making knives over 15 years & seriously doing it the past 10 years since retiring from the military. I've made in excess of 100 knives this year.
HH
 

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Sounds like you are really into it. My buddy has the coal type forge withthe pump billows to keep the coals hot. I love watching him hammer stuff on the anvil. He makes all sorts of things. Fire forks, fire cooking grates, Knives and alot of other 18-19 century stuff. He is really into the frontiersmen time periods adn travels to a lot of rendezvous making and selling his stuff. I wish I could still do that stuff too. Lack of money and no lack of kids makes other things a priority. I think my throwing knife is probably leaf spring as well. I will try and get a pick and post it. I really am impressed with your knives. I am not trying to be a critic since I am not an expert or even an amature for that matter. But, is it hard to get a sharper angle on the tip of the blade? Just looks as though it would be harder to stab with those points as flat as they are. Or are they that flat for strength? Don't really know if there is a science behind the strength of the angle on a tanto.
 

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Rest in Peace
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
If you bring the leading edge too far back you end up weaking the tip of the blade. The style I make is called an armour piercing point & work fine as I have driven them into washing machine panels with a hammer with no ill affect to the blade.
These are designed & built as a survival knife. Above all else, they must not break.
HH
 
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