Caring For Your Knife

When it comes to caring for your frontier knife or any knife for that matter you want to avoid rusting especially on high carbon blades but even stainless will rust when water is present. I personally use Frog Lube to coat my knives and wipe the excess off. DO NOT store your knife in a safe sheathed. Listed below are a few suggestions on taking care of that knife and keeping it nice!

1. Take care of the tip. Never use knife to pry, dig or chop unless the knife is designed to.
2. NEVER THROW KNIVES unless it is a throwing knife.
3. Do not leave knives and sheaths in direct sunlight or high heat. Sunlight oxidizes wood.
Heat affects hardwoods and weakens adhesive bonds.
4. Hand wash blades when necessary with a gentle detergent. DRY THOROUGHLY.
5. Clean handles and sheaths with a damp cloth and buff with a soft dry cloth.
6. Do not oil sheaths. This will cause them to soften and weaken.
7. Protect carbon steel and Damascus knives with a light coat of hand rubbed wax. Renaissance wax is very good but a good Carnauba only wax can be used, no synthetics. Oil will attract dust and can weaken sheath but is better than nothing at all for steel.
8. Wood handles usually benefit from a light coat of wax and a good hand rubbing with a soft dry cloth.
9. Brass and nickel silver fittings can be buffed and lightly waxed. Polish brass often. Coat with wax and hand buff with a soft cloth.
10. For long term storage, do not store knife in the sheath. Chemicals used in leather can react with moisture in the air leading to corrosion of even stainless steels.
11. KEEP YOUR KNIFE SHARP. Most accidents occur with a dull knife.

Heat Treating

Heat treating is one of the most important parts of making a knife. Keys to keeping it easy is being able to use  a kiln or a salt bath which there are many out there. Evenheat provides both of these. This allows you to control the temp which is a lot more precise than looking for a color in the forge. Using alloys like 5160 are very forgiving but using a 1095 or higher carbon steel you are asking for trouble. A lot of steels like 1095, 52100, 1084, will get you into the mid 60s for Rockwell hardness but you dont want to leave it that hard unless you are making kitchen knives so you must temper and make the blade edge more durable which now comes with the tempering process....

The next way to help in forging knives and getting that harden and temper you want is to know what alloy you are using. If you don't know then you would not know what temp to get to before heat treat.... Once you know this info getting a professional oil quench is very helpful as well and sets you up for success right off the bat. Quench oil like Parks 50 and AAA work for most steels you will use. I get all my Quench from Kelly Couples. He is full of knowledge! 

Get your steel from a reputable place...... I personally buy most of my steel from New Jersey Steel from Aldo and Pete! Great guys to work with!

I like Frontier Style knives so I like the forged scale left on the blade! So I have to forge to get that awesome texture so many desire on a knife. I am not much of a chrome polished shiny knife guy. You will commonly see knives forged by people who are into bushcraft, period style, woodsman, mountian men.

So knowing some info on heat treating and tempering is always helpful! 

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