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as my "spare time" keeps getting extended, I will be undertaking my next
project of making some carving knives. (then I will learn how to carve).
I see on 99% of the YT videos, they are all about just "making" the knives
out of a saw blade with no heat treatment or tempering. there are no
followup videos of how well they hold up under different carving projects.
what do YOU do, if anything, to the blades before putting them in handles ??

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I made this one last week - no heat treatment - just fabricated cold steel.

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Somewhere below sawzall blades are mentioned, and Milwaukee "Torch" blades in particular. I have made 5 or 6 carving knives from these, and they hold an edge very well. I ground them out paying particular attention to cooling, and none whatsoever to where the "tooth edge" was. They cut soft carving wood almost as well as commercial knives, and would probably cut just as well if I were better at sharpening.
 

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I'm very happy to buy the skills of experienced bladesmiths. There is an E2 blade in the snail mail from Jamie Sharp as I type. Heating and tempering the blade with a sweep is just something that I'm not prepared to get into. In anticipation, I need to root around and find some wood for a handle. Yellow cedar is gaining in popularity, I've got a few 3" x 6" x 60".

For Ulu and Umialik and stout blades, a rusty 10" table saw blade is a good source.
For wood carving knives that are just little flakes of steel, SawzAll blades and the like.

The cuts with an angle grinder are sort of a dashed line, join-the-dots kind of a thing.
Would a scroll saw/jig saw work? I've never tried it.

For mild crooked blades with/with out a scorp tip, farrier's knives can't be beat.
I'll revise the bevel from 25* down to 12* with a 7/16" chainsaw file to begin with.
Hall brand farrier's knives are so hard that I can do no more than 2 at a time and the chainsaw file is ruined.
Unlike a hardware store, the local forestry supply here has files in boxes of a dozen.
I suppose that a farrier could forge some cute blades out of a dead chainsaw file.

Then, if you feel like it, bash off the factory handles and make more traditional First Nations style wood carving handles.

For adze blades, different widths of leaf spring from vehicles is the sole choice. 7/8" up to 1 1/2".
You can copy a very useful set of blade dimensions straight out of the catalog page from Kestrel Tool.

I have seen pictures of First Nation adzes with 1/2 an axe head as the blade. It can be done.

With an angle grinder, make a shallow scoop in the leaf for length instead of a straight cut to cut them off the stock.
You can get 2 at a time done and the bevel in the bargain. That, I'm prepared to do but outside.
The local auto wrecker is a blade collector, I must pay him a visit.
 
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