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damascus pizza cutter, tantos redux, back pain - Doug Ayen's Blacksmithing Blog — LiveJournal [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Doug Ayen

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damascus pizza cutter, tantos redux, back pain [Oct. 21st, 2004|01:25 pm]
Doug Ayen
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I had to take a few days and not do much at all, due to some back pain. Nothing serious, just pulled a muscle. Enough to sideline me for a while, though.

The pizza cutter wheel is all but finished, I'll try to get some photos up, though the digital camera is having problems focusing on it for some reason. After making sure it was circular, smoothing out the bulges and dips, and polishing it up to about 400 grit, I went ahead and heat treated it. The heat treat revealed a couple of imperfections, but nothing critical, so I re-sanded it to 400 grit and went on to etch it.

To etch the blade, I mixed up a 1 to 3 ratio of ferric chloride to distilled water, and etched the wheel for about an hour. Ferric chloride is very aggressive, all the more so when diluted a bit, so this gave me a very dark etch, with a lot of texture due to the different etching rates of the L6 and the O1. A quick rubdown with the 400 grit brought out the highlights, so I hit it with some baking soda to neutralize the etch, rinsed, and oiled.

I left the center hold undersized, so I'll need to drill and ream this out to match the bearing I have for it. I want a nice tight fit, so I'm going to need to find a reamer just under half an inch, then I'll heat up the wheel to about 250F, put it in a screwpress, and carefully force the bearing into the hole. If I do this right, it should have a good secure fit that will not slip or fall off later. If not, well, I have a couple of larger bearings around somewhere.

Since I've pretty much been confined to couch-potato-ing for the last few days, I watched a couple more of the "Gaijin's Guide" videos, specifically the foundation polishing and the habaki making. My foundation polishing, it turns out, has been fairly good, I'd do a couple of things different next time around, but nothing major. After watching the habaki making, though, I now want to go back and redo all the habaki I've made. They're crude, improperly shaped, have big noticible gaps in fit, and are just not anything to be proud of. Fortunately, copper is cheap, and it doesn't take that long to make a habaki, even doing it right instead of the way I'd been doing it.

(Habaki are the copper collars between the sharp bits of a Japanese sword and the guard (tsuba). They are wedge-shaped, and serve to hold the blade in the scabbord (saya) without the blade actually touching the sides of the scabbord.)