This page was last updated on: March 6, 2014
Ready to go blades. just add handles
Complete knifemaking kits
Knife Making
shiny things
High carbon tool and spring steels
Wood, fabric laminates, odd stuff
Non ferrous pins and guard materials
Leather, needles and thread
As well as running some of the finest courses in knifemaking that you will find, I can also offer you some bits to get you going on your own! The steel, wood, leather, and all other materials are the same as I use in my knives. I often have a selection of blades made and ready for you to fit your own handles to, but should I not have the right one for you then get in touch and I can make something to your design.

Kits

A kit contains all of the pieces that you require to make a finished fixed blade knife. The blades are all heat treated and sharpened, the wood is sanded flat on mating surfaces and the leather is pre-cut in the shape of a sheath (though some modification is still possible).

Each blade is slightly different, but for the purposes of these kits I am making a range of standard patterns. Should you want a different style, shape, finish, handle material, etc, then please get int touch and I will see what I can do ;-)


Blades

To keep things simple on the website, I am making this selection of standard patterns (though each one will vary a little due to the way I forge them). I take a completely random selection of blades with me to shows, so I may well have something else knocking about.

Of course, I can also make blades to your design :-)  forged finished, ground and polished, laminated or even pattern welded (damascus).

Image to follow when I've made some examples!!!!
Image to follow when I've made some examples!!!!
Image to follow when I've made some examples!!!!
Steel

This is the same steel that I use in my knives and tools. Each grade of steel has its pros and cons and is chosen for particular properties in specific applications. For example, a high carbon steel such as Silver Steel will hold a fantastic edge but is not as tough as a spring steel such as EN45. So if you are making a carving knife then Silver Steel is best, but if you make a machete from it then it will likely snap! Conversely, a carving knife from EN45 will not take such a fine long lasting edge.



O1 Tool Steel   

Also known as ground flat stock or gauge plate, O1 is the most popular tool steel in the UK for making knives. Partly this is because it is reasonably tough and takes a very good edge, but mostly because it is pretty much the ONLY tool steel that you can buy in small quanitites and as annealed flat bars!  Ideal for those who are only using hand tools or want precision flat bars to begin with. It machines easily (even files and hacksaws are fine) and the heat treating is fairly simple. It can be forged but is not tolerant of wide temperature varience in the fire and is hard work, it also requires remedial normalising if heated to forging temperatures

The smaller sizes are ideal for making your own spoon carving tools and can be heat treated with a blow torch.

Sizes available (500mm lengths):

2 x 10mm
3 x 25mm
4 x 40mm
EN45 Spring Steel
 

This is a medium carbon silicon manganese spring steel and is extremely tough. It is the standard steel for re-enactors in their swords as well as industrially for vehicle springs. It is ideally suited to larger blades such as parangs and bill hooks, but is also very good for smaller general purpose knives that need to be tough. I use it when teaching groups outside where we are doing all of the heat treating by eye because it is very tolerant of wayward heat treating and takes some abuse in the forge too! It is also very popular amongst wood turners for making bowl turning hooks.

Sizes available:

1/2" round  


EN43 Spring Steel
 

This is also a medium carbon spring steel. It is the steel used in most hand forged axes and adze in this country (unless the smith firewelds a higher carbon steel in for their edges). Very similar to what Gransfors Bruks uses in their axes too. It is easy to forge and easy to heat treat, however it is also only available in 1" squares from me!  So if you fancy having a go at making a hatchet, hawk or adze then it is just perfect. I can forge it down into smaller dimensions for you, but you will be charged for the labour.

Sizes available:




Bearing Steel
 

High carbon tool steel. More carbon than O1 and will take a better edge, so is ideal for carving knives. O1 is a little tougher though. Heat treating is a little more twitchy to get the best from it, but is still possible at home.

Please note that I have not labeled this steel as 52100. Most folk in the UK who sell blades from 52100 are using this steel. There is ONE place to buy it in flat sections from here and it is grade L3. L3 IS a bearing steel, but the chemistry is slightly different to real 52100. EN31 is closer to 52100 but is only available in rounds of 38mm and up!

Sizes available:




Pattern Welding Steels
 
Make your own damascus (pattern welded steel to give it the proper name)!  You need two steels of slightly different chemistry to give you a contrast. This could be a high carbon steel and a low carbon steel, but the result will be a medium carbon blade and fairly subtle contrast. Depending on the choice of steels in the mix, you may also have trouble with the heat treating as well. The best option is to choose two steels that have similar chemistry (so heat treat the same) but have suitable alloying elements to encourage a good contrast. Nickel gives  a shiny layer and manganese or chromium give a darker layer (more carbon is also darker than lower carbon, but will be more shades of greay than black). Steels rich in chromium tend to cause trouble when welded up, so avoid those if you can.

Best choices?  15N20 (or 75ni8, same stuff) for the shiny and Cs70 or Cs80 for the dark.


Sizes available (all 2mm thick):

40 x 50mm
25 x 100mm
50 x 100mm

1 blade billet  (11 layers of 40 x 50mm)
2 blade billet  (11 layers of 25 x 100mm)