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Old 09-27-2016, 09:41 AM
jimmontg jimmontg is offline
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: Now live in Las Cruces NM.
Posts: 1,252
Having cut out knives by hand with a hacksaw he will need to get a good vise or heavy clamps and it is pure drudgery. I can't afford a steel cutting band saw, but I do have an 4 1/2 angle grinder with cut off wheels. It is also great for getting the outline close to finished and is great for starting the bevels and then finish with a file. The AG is great for that and saves some time for sure. I even glue 220 grit wet-dry sandpaper to worn out discs to get the decarb off of my knives I do in the forge. Heck if you don't want to make kit knives then hand files sandpaper and a decent drill press and an angle grinder with variable speed (very important) will get you started. If you start with 1080 steel or 1080+ from Alpha knife supply you would need a forge and now you see why we said try a kit knife and see if you even like it. If you get a kit knife get one with a flat grind and put a linear grain hand finish with sandpaper to 600 or 800 grit. The sandpaper would have to be on blocks, I use 1/4' by 1 1/2" by 10" piece of dymondwood to do it. You can buy fine grit paper at paint stores and auto parts stores.

The least expensive professional heat treaters I know don't do oil quench steels, I use a forge at the college near me as they have blacksmithing classes from time to time (I live in an apt that forbids propane barbeques) and you can build a forge easily enough, but it gets complicated doing your own HT to start. I would suggest that you use an air quench steel like A2 or 154 CM if you want to make a knife from scratch and send it to Texas knifemakers Supply, link. Alex their HT guy aims for a RC hardness of 60 which is where you want to be for most applications for a knife.They charge $6.50 per knife under 10" and add in $4 if you want a quench in liquid nitrogen. and so for $20 plus shipping you would have yourself a couple of superb blades.

I've glued 600 grit sandpaper to my angle grinder discs as well and hand finished from there. I've worked in metal industry since the 70s as a welder and sheetmetal man and if you scribe your lines onto the knife's profile you can get remarkably accurate with the AG. Makes superb plunge lines too. So actually for about $200 you could get a fair setup with less some of the handwork which even with the 2x72 you will still have some anyway. All my knives get hand finished, it's what I spend the most time at usually. Don't want to get into sheaths right
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