At the Forge 2017

Around the Clearing

Fine Wood Working

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Wood Turning

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Second Week at The Clearing Forging Knifes (Start with 2017 click here)

Meet the class of 2018

At The Clearing in Ellison Bay WI. (wait for it to load)

This year I worked on 3 blades using the propane forge. The top plan is for a Viking Seax or Sax and the second is my Loon Knife. The handles are Black Walnut blocks which will be shaped and carved.

Planning for the blades and handles

First I get the blades shaped and then heat treat them in the forge.

Checking the heat on a blade for heat treating. We heat the blade to 1500 deg F and let it air cool twice before reheating and quenching the blade in oil.

It is hot enough so out it comes and into the oil.

Hardened and ready to cool but now it is brittle. After cleaning and tempering in an oven for 2 to 3 hours at 450 degrees the blades are tempered and not as easy to brake. So now it is time to etch the steel in acid to bring out the grain of the layers of steel. For the Loon we put a dot of electrical tape, so the eye would not etch and thus stand out.

Out of the acid the blade is cleaned and then blued with Gun bluing. After bluing it is hand polished as the blade last year.

The finished blade is inserted into the handle thru a Red Deer Antler and then with the blade covered in protective tape the handle is carved. The finish is an oil stain to protect the wood and bring out its color. Please note the Loon and The Sax were shaped from the steel forged from these 4.5" steel shapes.

Forge welded together and then hammered out on the Hydraulic hammer to over 18" of blade stock.

This hammer shakes the ground around the Clearing when in use so everyone except the quilters at the school house knows we are at work.

Our Instructor David DelaGardelle holds the Sax while I have the Loon knife at the Friday show and tell. Contact Dave at

Claudia stained her lether and did wood burning on her handles. Note the antler guard on the forged knife on the left and the Dragon carved in her Sax knife, with brass eyes and nose on a blade shaped from flat stock steel.

This is the work from this past week done by the class of 2018. Once again at the Friday Show and Tell. If you have close up photos of your knives, please send them to me to include with these.

Another week Ends at The Clearing as the sun sets over Wisconsin across Green Bay.

During the week I was forging Sharon was turning in the work shop. Here are her works from 2018.


If you have photos to share, please send them to me at




Update 5/19/2018