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Thread: clay type

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
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    clay type

    hey guys,im new to smithing and im having a hard time figuring out what kind of clay should be used for differential hardening,someone please point me in the right direction,any tips would be appreciated

  2. #2
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    the same stuff you use in making your forge... refractory clay...
    "Please look in the encyclopedia and make a brief memorandum for me concerning the life of Correggio."
    Elbert Hubbard

    Nakamura Ryu Batto Do, Order of Seven Hearts

  3. #3
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    Apr 2010
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    thanks man,gotta ask,do you practice under dave drawdy,if so ive probably seen you at swordfest

  4. #4
    As Christopher said, most makers use refractory clay, probably the two most common types used are satanite, and ap green #36. I've just started heat treating, but in my limited experience, satanite seems a little better, whereas #36 is maybe a little more convenient as it is pre-mixed. Both are available in small quantity from hightemptools.com.

  5. #5
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    at Kenneth, yes I practice under Sensei Drawdy and was the guy carving tsuka at the last swordfest
    "Please look in the encyclopedia and make a brief memorandum for me concerning the life of Correggio."
    Elbert Hubbard

    Nakamura Ryu Batto Do, Order of Seven Hearts

  6. #6
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    i got some stove and fireplace mortar,says it resists 2100f,I used on a jap style straight razorlike blade,im wondering if a hamon will show as I polish

  7. #7
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    What alloy? Some are impossible to get hamons on; others go wild at the drop of some clay!
    Thomas Powers
    CoFounder of the Intergalactic Union of Bladesmiths
    "when you forge upon a star"---you better have your union card handy!

  8. #8
    yep - alloy is the first important step in forming a beautiful hamon. Less than 40pts of Manganese is needed (none is optimal but I have some low manganese 1075 from
    Aldo Bruno that is just amazing for hamons, and it is just below the specs for what 1075 is supposed to be. It is in the .37% Manganese range. W1 is good, w2 is great. Smelted steel is possibly best, because of the absence of manganese and because the hamon can interact with the grain structure of the self-smelted steel.). I try to approximate this look by using cable (use extra-improved plow steel, it is 1080 but with less manganese). SOME 1095 is good, again,
    Aldo is your man. He knows this stuff, so he sources steels for us that will lead to beauty in heat treatment. I have a lot of the right type of cable if you want some of that. With cable, weld it, fold it, draw it out several times (at least 6 or 8 cut and stacked pieces over two or three extra weldings after the cable is consolidated into a bar. It looks like orishigane when you do this). Finally, I have had really impressive outcomes by random pattern welds of about 400 to 800 layers of either 1020 and w2 (1 : 2 ratio) or low mang 1075 to w2 (one to one ratio).
    After alloy comes normaliing at least 3 times on proper descendinig heats.
    Then, the clay.
    then, the quench.
    finally, the biggest one of all - the polish (ok, biggest other than the alloy but by far the most time consuming).

    Best of luck. You can pm me with questions or if you want cable.

    Kevin

  9. #9
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    im not sure the steel type,im kinda just starting out,ive made 2 knives so far and they work,i tryed to use clay from the ground mixed with ash,lol,it didnt work,i polished and polished,no hamon.i think its piece of an I beam,i flattened a piece and hardened it to do the brittleness test and it seems strong enough.I think im gonna order some satanite so i know

  10. #10
    If you have any old Nicholson files, they are 1095 or w1. Either will make a good hamon (not as good as low mang 1075 or w2. buy a bar of either from aldo, njsteelbaron.com). It is worth it, really. The dagger and the one with ironwood scales are subtle pattern welded with w2 and 1020 (dagger) or w2 and low mang 1075 (full-tang with ironwood). The last knife is mono w2.

    All were normalized x 3, clayed with satanite, quenched in 125F water for 3 sec then into room temp Parks 50.

    lots of fun. Hamons help feed the blade addiction. also make polishing tolerable.
    kc
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