|Since I was a boy I have been fascinated by knifes, but I never really pursued the interest.|
Every now and then I have bought myself a knife, both practical ones for hunting and for the kitchen, but also a few irrational ones.
In June 2001 I wanted to try making some knifes myself and joined a course in knifesmithing. Over three days, I made the three knifes shown below, complete from a raw piece of iron, some chuncks of wood and pieces of leather.
This is my very first knife. The finish may not be state-of-the-art, but we had only three days to learn the basics. They were long and wonderful days, but I simply didn't have time enough to the final polishing.
The blade is forged from tentor steel which is used to reinforce concrete. It is low carbon steel, hardened in water. The handle is made from elm and micarta.
My second knife is forged from a piece of old wagon spring. It has a higher carbon content and it was hardened in oil. The handle is brazilian kingwood with camel bone at the two ends. Sheeth is made from tanned leather.
Forging this one was really hard, so the blade got a little thicker that I wanted it to be. But all the more robust, I suppose.
My third knife was made out of inspiration from iron age old archeological blades (see also here). I didn't quite succeed, but considered my limited experience, I was quite happy with the result. It is very handy in use, even though the handle is a bit longer than necessary. With the relatively heavy blade it can be used as a (very small) axe when chopping off small branches from a stick.
The blade is forged from high carbon tool steel, and the handle is reindeer horn. The sheeth is tanned leather.
It was extremely rewarding doing something far from my ordinary office work. Forging was hard to the office arm.
I may not carry on with knife making, but I would recommend everybody trying to do it at least once.