This intensive program is a consolidation of several individual courses. Full on… In it to win it! You will enjoy a perfect balance of hands-on involvement as well as lecture topics. Assemble and build the essential tools and equipment of the modern bladesmith and learn how to safely use them. Upon completion of the course, you will possess a strong foundation in the fundamentals of knifemaking, should you choose to pursue it as a hobby or career.
2 weeks (approx. 80 hours)
Hands-on techniques will include:
- Selection of steel
- Propane forge build, operation and maintenance
- Forging techniques and hammer control
- Traditional annealing techniques
- Scale removal
- Heat treating
- Assembly of a 2×72 grinder
- Introductory grinding techniques
- Introductory hand-sanding techniques
- Handle attachment
- Simple leather sheath making
Lecture topics will include:
- Different types of knife handle construction techniques
- Overview of different blade geometries
- Introduction to basic heat treating and metallurgical principle
- Sharpening and maintenance
- Overview of leather sheath making design and construction
Workshops can be taken back to back or separated out. It is important not to leave too much time in between, as it is detrimental to the flow of the program. We will formulate the most beneficial timeline upon enrollment.
5-Day Camp Knife Build
This day starts with a primer on shop safety, followed by an overview of knife design, forging and construction techniques. You will use this information to design and formulate a building plan for a camp knife. We will move forward to hands-on forging a. By the day’s end, one can expect to have a knife blank completely forged out.
The student will be introduced to the various machines and equipment used in a typical knifemaker’s shop. Following a discussion on grinding technique, we will shape and prepare the blade for heat treating. Basic metallurgy and heat treating practices will be taught through lecture and practical application. We will finish the day with hardening and tempering the camp knife.
Day 3 consists of refining the blade finish and preparing the blank for handle and guard fittings. We will cover material selection and delve deeper into handle construction. This will be an arduous day of grinding, filing and monotonous hand sanding. We will take every opportunity to discuss aspects of knifemaking to pass the time as your arms slowly fall off your body.
The knife literally comes together on day 4. We will fit and attach a handle to the blade. In the afternoon, as the epoxy slowly cures, we will discuss the aspects of designing and building a leather sheath.
The day will begin with final sanding and fishing the knife handle. The student will then make a leather belt sheath to fit their camp knife. The segment ends with knife sharpening lessons.
2-Day Grinder Build and Workshop
This day starts with assembling the parts and materials for a 2×72 belt grinder. We will build the grinder and modify it to suit the needs of the knifemaker. We will spend the day reviewing safe operation and discuss the versatility of this essential machine.
This day starts with a safety recap and dives directly into developing grinding technique. By the end of the day, you will be confident and capable on your grinder.
2-Day Forge Build and Workshop
This day starts with an overview of forge design and the different components. You will build the body and line the cavity of your forge. It needs to cure, overnight.
We will begin the firing process to fully cure the forge for use. We will discuss proper operation and burner tuning. By the end of day two, you will have put your creation through its paces.
1–Day Program Recap and Action Plan
We will reflect upon what you have learned and formulate action plans to further develop yourself as a Bladesmith. You will be given useful contacts for supplies, educational resources and online communities, specific to the craft.
Due to the intensity of The Complete Bladesmith program, it is limited to one student. Price includes all materials and basic safety equipment. Price subject to change, depending on Grinder Choice(listed price based on a simple 2 wheel Grizzly G1015) Travel and lodging are at the student’s expense. A more complete list of personal gear as well as logistical information will be established upon enrolment.