Monday, September 17, 2007

Viking Age Seax Two

I may have talked about this blade earlier in the year - back in the forging process. The knife is completed and now off to the customer.

The blade is a heavy tool knife pattern - most typical of Norse men's knives. (Note that the customer is a woman - but one who specifically wanted the heavy tool style instead of the more typical long triangle kitchen blade.)

The overall length of the blade is a bit over six inches (these images roughly life sized - sorry that they are not the most crisp). At its widest (just back of the false edge) the blade is roughly 1 1/4 inch wide. The hilt is a natural piece of caribou antler. The wire wrap is a feature the customer requested. I drilled two small holes that the wire ends tuck into, then the strands were soldered together at top and bottom. (This was a high tin solder to avoid burning the underlaying antler.)

The blade is made up of 209 layers. The starting block was 13 layers :
M = 1018 mild steel at 1/8"
L = L6 alloy (.5 nickel and .5 carbon) at 1/16"
H = 1095 carbon steel at 3/16"
The overall carbon content is lower, with the bulk of the material being supplied by the mild steel. The inclusion of L6 is to mimic meteoric iron.
This pile was welded and folded in three for a billet at 52 layers. That billet was drawn to a bar, with a third twisted right, a third twisted left. The last third was flattened and pulled out to twice that length, then welded to a second core of high carbon steel. The resulting bar was turned on its edge, and the two twisted segments welded into the final billet. This billet at 209 layers was forged out into the blade.

The finished blade is ground back at the edge to expose this high carbon steel cutting edge. This edge is hardened a bit more than normal for a plain mono block knife, as the layered back adds the required flexibility for the final blade.

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February 15 - May 15, 2012 : Supported by a Crafts Projects - Creation and Development Grant

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