today I'll be showing you how to make a knife from a railroad spike. this has been done here before but I have a different process than the one I've seen that you can find here https://m.instructables.com/id/Forged-Railroad-Spike-Knife/ now you may have seen this way before but this other ible is the only one I could find here so I thought I'd show you how I do it have fun and be safe :-}
Step 1: Gather Your Materials
here's something things you should have
1. A forge (mine is an old hibachi style grill lined with refractory cement using a dollar store hair dryer as a bellow)
2. An anvil (I use a steel I beem and a slab of granite)
3. Hammers (I use a 3lb mini sledgehammer and a 16oz framing hammer for reasons unknown to me)
4. Tongs (I made mine)
5. Bench vice
6. Angle Grinder
7. 2 good size crescent wrenches (I only have one and a monkey wrench)
8. A handy dandy railroad spike
Now I assume you know proper safety procedures like gloves, eye protection etc so I take no responsibility if you cut burn pinch stub your toe or maim yourself in anyway :-}
let's get started shall we?
Step 2: Twist the Handle for Decoration
by now you should have everything set up and your forge going so what we're gonna do is heat up the half of the spike with the head.
Once it's red/orange hot take it to your bench vice and clamp the head and grab your wrenches and arrange them as shown in the second picture then give it as many twists as you like (I always do either a full rotation or a rotation and a half) but only do full and half rotations so as to keep the point in the direction it started in
Step 3: Draw Out the Tip
here you'll want to draw out tip of the spike for your blade do this by heating it and striking all four sides equally to keep it uniform.
get the tip as long and thin as you like this will require multiple heats in the forge
Step 4: Shaping the Blade
first hold the spike flat with the part you want to be the blades edge up and hammer the tip on an angle to give it a flat back.
Then strike the sides of to the blade to start your bevel the blade will start to curve towards the back if you want to straighten it simply work on the blades back to reverse this
Step 5: Bend the Handle
it should be looking like a knife by now but we're not done yet!
now here's where my I beem I have comes in handy you'll need to elevate the blade portion with the edge facing up as shown while the handle is heated give it a few whacks straight down to give it a little curve
Step 6: Grinding Time!
shown it the picture is my angle grinder locked in the bench vice a diy bench grinder
here you'll want to clean off all the scale and refine your blade and grind away anything you don't want
Step 7: Looking Good Almost Done
Ok now we're get close to the final product now what I do at this point is get my blade edge sharp but I don't polish anything because we need to heat treat the blade and temper it by heating it in the forge to a red/orange heat and quenching it in either water or oil after that toss it in the oven at around 350-400 for about an hour and let it cool
Step 8: Finish Up!
now you can clean and polish to your hearts content and sharpen that bad boy up
now that your done go show it off! :-}
1. sharpening and heat treating blades is not something I go into detail on because they could be viable ibles in their own right and I think a few are out there
2. where I live having these spikes isn't legal don't get in trouble
3. if you have any questions or suggestions feel free to ask or add them
4. thanks for reading :-}