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Heat Treating and Metallurgy Discussion of heat treatment and metallurgy in knife making.

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Old 01-19-2015, 08:44 AM
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Naboyle Naboyle is offline
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Heat treating upgrade question?

My freon forge and 3/4 Venturi with a pyrometer isn't cutting it anymore. I use mostly 1075,1080,1084, 15n20 and 5160. Would you guys recommend an electric oven or high temp salt pots? I've been doin some research and I'm leaning towards salts. Any recommendations or suggestions would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 01-19-2015, 11:34 AM
Doug Lester Doug Lester is offline
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The electric oven would be the safer of the two. You do have to consider the risk of something, like water, getting into the pot and causing an eruption. Another managed to do that by mixing the wrong salts together. Then there is the matter of disposal when you have to change out the contaminated salts after a period of use.

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Old 01-19-2015, 12:02 PM
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I know of few that use salts. Of those, each has had at least one incident that could have been very dangerous. A mistake with an oven may ruin a blade but a mistake with salts may kill you.

The steels that you are using are not difficult to H/T and an oven will do you nicely for them.
I have used an Evenheat oven for years but were I to do it all over again, I would go with a Paragon.

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Old 01-19-2015, 08:37 PM
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Both Doug and Gary make excellent points concerning salts versus ovens.

Having said that.....and there a lot of "IFs" concerning salts, my personal choice is the salt tank. The main two reasons are the way the item(blade/steel) is heated (conduction versus convection), and the fact that I can take a blade to nearly final finish, and heat treat it without having to deal with the scale produced in an oven.

Wether oven or salt tanks, each has its own unique set of variables that must be understood and overcome. Along with advantages and disadvantages. In short, each is going to have a learning curve, so whichever way to decide, it will not be a "my problems are solved" thing. As with most things in Bladesmithing/knifemaking, time and experience will be needed to master either.


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1084, 5160, bee, blade, forge, heat, heat treat, knife, knifemaking, make, scale, steel


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