Thursday, January 2, 2014

IWG week 14 & 15 - Knife forging

Skipping few weeks between, but I wanted to post this Knife making weeks so here you go!

As for wilderness guide and all the traditional woods craft enthusiasts, you really should know well about a knife as a tool. To learn about it, what would be the better way than to make one all by by yourself from scratch? It give you very intimate understanding on what makes a Knife and at same time, you get to learn metal, wood and leather craft basics.

Because of this reason (... or I am guessing that it is...) we have had forging a basic knife week at school.

we have started off with basic theory lessons of what involves in knife making. then design one. I have had very clear Idea of what I can do in time and what I wish to make. It is a small version of IWG leuku. the idea of it is to test new ideas and solution of the IWG leuku design. also I wanted smaller more agile knife.

Forging and grinding completed.

Not many new things on overall process, but I got to see and learn details which makes the forging process easier and better. This was very beneficial for me as I never had anyone taught me of how to forge anything.

About the forging process, one difference I have noticed was the use of water. The one I have experienced on this week was what I could call a "dry forging". basically, throughout the forging, there was absence of water around. My usual forging method uses water for cooling tang to descaling of work. but at this class, there was not even tang cooling. Perhaps it was just because the facility did not have the availability of water, but got me bit interested in.

basically, I was the only person with some blacksmith experience but on the end of the week, every one has got some usable knife. Some went  after the traditional, some went wild with imagination and all are great looking knives.

however, here is what I came up on the end.

I will call this a "IWG Puukko" as contrast to my other one "IWG Leuku"

It is same design but shorter and the blade shape is much closer to puukko.

Blade length :8cm
blade thickness: little less than 4mm
diamond profile with scandi flat / convex hybrid.
Wood: Rowan

Here are the 2 knives next to each others. I have also changed the blade shape a bit. much closer to Puukko because I wanted it to have more pointy tip. 
The cutting edge line is continuous curve, this was a idea I got from Mors Kochanski's knife.

Here I am trying out different method of knot on making loop. One I used on leuku looked nice and smart, but was not strong enough. So far, this seems to be doing well.

Here is other experimental change I have added on the sheath. left is from Leuku and the Right one is of Puukko.
Notice the puukko's sheath has thickened edge. This was intentionally made, so can use finger to push the sheath. like thumb push on some of kydex sheath.
I have noticed that when the handle or the sheath is wet, time to time the leather sticks to handle causing difficulty of releasing knife. It is not much of a issue because if using 2 hands, then it comes out. but I found that quite annoying, so this is the solution for it.