Hammer Forged Custom Knives
There are two reasons I build hammer forged custom knives.The first reason is, I think that if it's done right, the thermal cycling required for forging high carbon steel makes a better blade. The second reason I forge is it gives me more creative freedom in following my chosen art. I love the way I can make hot steel flow into almost any shape with a hammer. With the right experience and patience hot steel can be molded like clay.
Hammer forged. high carbon steel blades are the standard by which all new blade material is judged. When heat treated properly forged high carbon steel makes the best all round blade. If I thought there was something better I would use it.
Other than the type of steel you start with, I think heat treating is the most important part of making a quality custom knife. I've studied this and experimented with it for over fifty years. I test every custom knife I make, from my most elaborate colector grade knives to my least expensive field grade hunter, I'm proud of the way my all custom knives perform.
I make my own damascus steel for my knives from high carbon steel. By making my own damascus steel, I can tailor the number of layers and the pattern to the blade style of any damascus hand made knife I build.
I believe a damascus blade slices better because of microscopic serations created by the layers crossing the cutting edge. This is the reason I do a sharks tooth damascus pattern on the cuttubg edge of many of my knives.
I sometimes embelish my knives with carving .etching and engraving but I prefer the natural beauty of ivory, bone, stag,wood and other exotic materisals. I use a lot of bronze, wrought iron and damascus steel for guards, buttcaps and such.
Designing a custom knife is the most fun part of being a blade smith. This is why you'll see so many different styles of knives made by me.
I believe in the old saying "form follows function". Therefore, when I design a knife I first think "what it is to be used for". Then design the knife around that. I love flowing lines, curves and facets. All this is combined with the right building materials (and in the case of a demascus knife, the right demascus pattern) for an over all balanced look.