Forging Blades

I've already described forging in a general sense, now I'm going to describe the process as I do it, and in more detail.

Most of what I use now is round stock, so the first step is to forge it down to a flat bar. For this I use the power hammer. Usually I use mild drawing dies for this step. Drawing dies are dies that have a slight curve to them. This curve forces the steel mostly just in 2 directions, whereas flat dies spread the steel pretty much equally in all directions. The drawing dies are much faster than flat dies.

For this step I forge the steel at about 1800-2000 degrees.
After drawing out and flattening, I reduce the temperature to 1700 or so. I sometimes use the drawing dies to taper the point on the knife. Then I switch to hand hammer and anvil to forge in the bevels and any distal taper. Then while the blade is still attached to the parent stock, I use the drawing dies to forge out the tang. Using the power hammer, I can forge the tang in one or two heats, versus about ten doing it by hand.

Then I use a hot cut to cut the blade free.

I then thermal cycle in my digitally controlled oven. The I spheroidize anneal it.

Next step is grinding