Friday, March 30, 2018

Parangs and bolos

I recently forged out four choppers for inventory for the Blade Show, two parangs and two bolos.  A couple of customers came along and laid claim to one of each design, so now I have one parang and one bolo for Blade.  Better get hammering!

They were all forged from 3/16" 80CrV2 steel and came out light and fast in the hand.

The parangs ended up with hemp cord wraps and paracord Turk's head knots.  All of them got Boltaron sheaths.

The bolos got paracord wraps and fully sharpened top edges.  The one claimed by a customer got a "rattler" pattern camo paracord per the customer's request, as well as a shoulder sling.

Both customers were happy with their blades.  The fellow who got the parang sent some pictures of it being used for yard work, along with a blade from my buddy Tobin Nieto.

Always glad to see my blades put to work.  :)

Monday, March 26, 2018

Biohazard Outbreak Response Blade, Short

I've made a number of bush swords down through the years inspired by a certain blade in a zombie-killing video game.  They typically are around 15" blades.  Here's the first of this basic style to be made, back in 2015:
I recently made a shorter blade that is essentially the Biohazard Outbreak Response Blade scaled down to a 9 3/4" blade.  I really dig it!
This was the fastest knife to sell that I've done.  I had forged and trimmed to the rough shape, posted a picture on Instagram, and it was laid claim to within three minutes!  :D
Here's the initial picture:

It was finished out with a thick false edge, aggressifying the aesthetics but not coming close to a cutting edge.  The customer wanted a hemp cord wrap, and I topped it off with a three-strand Turk's head knot in paracord.

The sheath has my first-ever molded drainage hole at the tip, again per the customer's request.

Feels great in the hand!

In comparison with a tanto with an 8 7/8" blade.  Similar lengths, totally different knives!

The customer's response upon getting it was, "What is this damn monstrosity!"  In a good way.    :D

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Smaller knives, tantos and rooster spurs

I like making big knives, but of course make small ones too.  It's actually more difficult for me to make a 4" blade than a 12" blade.  Here are some littler ones that recently left the shop for new homes.  All are 80CrV2 steel with marine epoxy-impregnated wraps.

Two tantos.  The long, slim one has an 8 7/8" long blade.  The little kwaiken is a 4" blade, 4" handle, with hemp cord for the underlay on the wrap and paracord on top. 

And two rooster spurs.  The top one has a 5 1/2" blade, the bottom a 4" like the original.  Both have fully sharpened top edges.  This was a his-and-hers set, hence the pink camo cord on the bottom one.  :D

Donation knives and culinary knives

I can't afford to give away too many knives, but I do the occasional donation piece.  I *always* make sure to donate a blade to Knife Rights for their Ultimate Steel fundraiser (currently forged out), but these two are not for that.

The first is for a fundraiser at my old high school, raising money for teachers whose projects for their students go beyond the allotted budget.  I never have and never will have any school spirit, but I have a lot of respect for certain individual teachers because it was their efforts in conjunction with mine and not necessarily the institution itself that made a difference in my education.  I was approached by an old classmate to make a knife for the fundraiser and agreed to help the teachers going above and beyond the requirements.  I used a black and gold wrap because those are the school colors, of course.  :D  I demonstrated the wrap as a class I taught at Johnny Stout's Guadalupe Forge Hammer-in.

The second one is for WISH, a women's and children's shelter in Muskogee, Oklahoma.  As there was no requirement for a particular color scheme, I went with a subdued black-over-olive drab wrap.  I used this one to demonstrate making sheaths at the same Hammer-in, though I ran long with the wrap class and ended up having to finish out the sheath in a piecemeal fashion the rest of the day after molding.

The two together.  No reason for the difference in length, that's just how they ended up.  :D

And something well outside my usual wheelhouse, a couple of cooking knives ordered up for wedding gifts.  This is the first pair of a series of wedding gift knives since apparently everyone the customer knows is getting married.  The customer wanted a 3" paring knife and a 6" chef knife.  Handles are red G10 with black G10 liners and black G10 with red G10 liners.

 I have made a small handful of cooking knives in the past and never really been happy with them.  I've had a lot of trouble with warping due to the thinness of the blades, so in this case I didn't forge the blades at all but cut them from 1/8" 80CrV2 and heat treated them at full thickness.  That, of course, meant grinding the bevels carefully so as not to ruin the temper.  The VFD controller on my new AmeriBrade grinder helped a lot in that department.  The customer wanted a 3" paring knife and a 6" chef knife.

He picked them up in person.  Good guy!  Not the first knife nor the last he'll be getting from me.  The finish on these is a machine finish with a Scothbrite belt, with the handles buffed on a fine Scotchbrite ball.  They're coated in butcher's block mineral oil (contents: mineral oil).

Monday, March 12, 2018

Rooster Spur bodyguard knife

A guy who does bodyguard work for rock stars approached me about doing a short, cord wrapped knife for him.  It seemed like an interesting project, so I took it.  He wanted a 4" blade (about as short as I ever make) and 4" handle (shorter than I usually do), sharpened top edge, cord wrapped handle, but left the rest of it up to me.  I took a few tips I've picked up from Ed Calderon and a bit of Spanish navaja influence, some pikal design, and came up with the Rooster Spur.

It's forged from 80CrV2 steel, with a hemp cord wrap over the bare steel of the tang.

It has a narrow little point for easy penetration.  A two-strand Turk's head provides a mechanical lock for the hand to keep it in place when stabbing.

As mentioned above, it was designed with pikal techniques in mind, and the handle works well with a thumb anchor grip.

And, of course, a Kydex sheath for carry.

It's garnered enough attention that I'm strongly considering a mid-tech version once I have the process all sorted out.  :)

The customer described it as "a tank with a razor edge".  :D