I’ve returned from Washington, Arkansas after completing the Intro to Bladesmithing course. I plan on taking the Damascus class and the Handle & Guards class at some point, but I don’t have the time right now. Too many knives to make and too much to do around the house. The course was heavily focused on blacksmithing or learning how to forge a knife from a bar of steel. It’s an extremely difficult thing to do and I wasn’t exactly prepared for it, but I got through it. I forged several blades including two Bowie knives that we had to pass through 4 tests in order to “pass” the course. The test consists of cutting a 1 inch, free hanging rope in two with one slice. Then chopping a 2×4 in half, twice. The cutting off arm air with that same knife to show that it’s still sharp and the blade hasn’t buckled, cracked, etc. The last part of the test is the most difficult. This is where you put the knife in a bench vice and use a cheater bar to pull the knife down to a 90 degree angle. Most knives snapped, but both of mine passed the test. I don’t have any plans to start forging my blades though. Mostly because you can’t really forge with stainless steel and most chefs want a knife that doesn’t patina, rust, etc. Anyhow, I hope to write in more detail about that experience. Until then here’s some photos.

weigeknivesropetest

Successfully cutting a 1 inch rope in one swing.

ABS Class Photo 2014

2014 American Bladesmith Fall Class Photo

travisweigeforginknife

Forging a drop point skinner.