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Jean Thibodeau




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PostPosted: Mon 04 Feb, 2008 12:46 pm    Post subject: Banding on a blade after patination?         Reply with quote

Doing a little aging on my Dordogne sword blade and I'm using a mix of ketchup + lemon juice + yellow mustard and it seems to be working very well to produce patination very quickly as well as some etching of the surface.

Daubing with a baby wipe the whole surface, then waiting 1/2 hour to 1 hour and wiping of with a damp cloth.

Repeat many times until the amount of staining is achieved then clean with oil and finish with some renaissance wax.

Just thought some of you might try this recipe next time you want to age a blade quickly for a dark grey finish of weathered steel but not " neglected " or rusted steel.

One weird thing with the " my " Dordogne sword is that the steel has 5 narrow bands, spaced every 5" to 6 " inches, where the steel stains less than the rest of the blade ? Just a subtle shade lighter and symmetrical on both sides of the blade, I'm guessing that this might be zones where the temper might be harder or softer than the rest of the blade or the alloy carbon content might vary ?

One possibility is that when the blade is tempered it is held or supported at these points by something bleeding away some heat i.e. acting as heat sinks and these places on the blade have a slightly harder temper !?

The Generation 2 swords are handforged in the Philippines, I believe, using traditional methods and the steel's composition might be variable or the heat treat " fixture " causes heat variations along the length of the blade.

I've used the blade for test cutting and hit a heavy wooden post with it HARD a couple of times ( possible abuse ) and the blade seems fine and a flex test shows no obvious problems: So hopefully the uneven patination is just an aesthetic problem and doesn't bother me too much if period swords might show the same type of uneven patination and/or selective and variable tempering.

Oh, and this may be something just with my sword and I don't think it's an issue of quality/durability for the Generation 2 swords, even if my theory about differences in heat treat over the length of the blade is true: The difference in hardness may be only great enough to be visible but not enough to be a problem with the blade's durability.

Just wonder what our industry professionals might think of my theory about the way the steel is affected by staining differently in very distinct and regular zones ? And any other opinions welcome from everybody else. Wink Big Grin

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David Donovan




Location: Wichita, KS
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PostPosted: Mon 04 Feb, 2008 7:31 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I got a similar result on an MRL 15th Century Cinquedea which I subjected to a vinegar treatment last summer. I only got a single band in a specific spot, but it appears on both sides of the blade and is noticeably brighter than the rest of the blade. I've always been curious as to what that was all about...
"Do something meaningful in this meaningless world."
Takasugi Shinsaku (1839-1867)
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Justin King
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PostPosted: Mon 04 Feb, 2008 8:14 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

These could be portions that were over- or under-heated during either hardening or tempering. Testing the edge with a file to see if these areas are softer or harder than the darker parts of the blade might be of interest.
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Jean Thibodeau




Location: Montreal,Quebec,Canada
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PostPosted: Mon 04 Feb, 2008 8:43 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Justin King wrote:
These could be portions that were over- or under-heated during either hardening or tempering. Testing the edge with a file to see if these areas are softer or harder than the darker parts of the blade might be of interest.


That's my guess and when I touch up the edges I'll see if it feels softer or harder in those light areas, although before I brought out these areas I couldn't feel any difference but I wasn't looking for any !

I do know that some blades like my Windlass New Coustilles seemed a little softer near the guard than closer to the point when I hand sharpened the edges with first a file and them diamonds hones.

Maybe a 1 or 2 of RC hardness points might be enough to make a difference in taking a stain on the blade but not be significant on the use of the blade ?

Oh, I'm trying to uniformise the finish by putting the patinating mix selectively to darken the light areas more and then do the whole blade again a few times. Fun to experiment thought. Wink Laughing Out Loud

On a practical note this article on myArmoury about hardness of blades in period does show some variability in hardness in the same blade and this doesn't seem to have been a problem !
http://www.myArmoury.com/feature_bladehardness.html

Some differential heat treating seems to have been deliberate but a lot of it seems also random. Eek! Laughing Out Loud

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Gary A. Chelette




Location: Houston, Texas
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PostPosted: Tue 05 Feb, 2008 9:45 am    Post subject: Re: Banding on a blade after patination?         Reply with quote

Jean Thibodeau wrote:
Doing a little aging on my Dordogne sword blade and I'm using a mix of ketchup + lemon juice + yellow mustard and it seems to be working very well to produce patination very quickly as well as some etching of the surface.
Big Grin


Do you plan to eat this sword or display it? Razz
I do my best to keep mine shiny and clean. To me, this is a SIN!
Will that be on wheat or rye bread?

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Kenneth Scott





Joined: 14 Apr 2007

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PostPosted: Tue 05 Feb, 2008 7:25 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I am not sure if this is the same thing, but in pattern welded blades you see the varying bands after giving them an acid bath. I'm pretty sure I had read that these bands are caused by variations in the carbon content of the differing steel alloys.
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Fabrice Cognot
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Location: Dijon
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PostPosted: Tue 05 Feb, 2008 7:46 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hello Jean

Jean Thibodeau wrote:
Maybe a 1 or 2 of RC hardness points might be enough to make a difference in taking a stain on the blade but not be significant on the use of the blade ?


No Happy at least not for HT-induced hardness. I can ssure you that, if you take a piece of steel, and partially harden it (leaving the other part unquenched), and differentially temper the hardened part, you will have a difference in hardness in various areas of the hardened part, but they will etch all the same.


A pic of what you get might help, but there can be quite a lot of explanations.....

Fab

PS : still thiking of the cinquedea pics BTW.

PhD in medieval archeology.
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Jean Thibodeau




Location: Montreal,Quebec,Canada
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PostPosted: Tue 05 Feb, 2008 9:04 pm    Post subject: Re: Banding on a blade after patination?         Reply with quote

Gary A. Chelette wrote:
Jean Thibodeau wrote:
Doing a little aging on my Dordogne sword blade and I'm using a mix of ketchup + lemon juice + yellow mustard and it seems to be working very well to produce patination very quickly as well as some etching of the surface.
Big Grin


Do you plan to eat this sword or display it? Razz
I do my best to keep mine shiny and clean. To me, this is a SIN!
Will that be on wheat or rye bread?


Oh, I don't do this to expensive pieces that I want to look the way they would have looked new in period but for the less expensive pieces I experiment a bit. Razz Eek! Laughing Out Loud I don't go in for the heavily corroded relic with major pitting. It's very much what one gets cutting tomatoes with a carbon steel kitchen knife: In use weathered look.

the finish is very superficial and can mostly be polished off if one changes one's mind and it leaves only light surface activity if repolished bright.

UPDATE " : I tried selectively staining the light areas and they stayed lighter so I used some OUTERS GUN BLUE
over the staining and I got a really nice and strangely uniform deep blue finish ! The acidity of my " secret " formula Wink may have well prepared the surface to accept the bluing very well as I got a much better blue finish that I usually get using this or similar products !?

Amazingly all the surface activity seems to have disappeared and the light zones blued in a way identical to the rest of the blade: Problem " solved " but now the blade is blue. Razz Laughing Out Loud

Ah, still not sure what caused the banding but as what was suggested by Fabrice maybe the blade which is forged may have varying carbon content in bands for some reason ?

( Pics: Yeah, I need to get around to trying out my digital camera " eventually ": Hate those instruction manuals Eek! )

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Last edited by Jean Thibodeau on Fri 08 Feb, 2008 12:58 am; edited 1 time in total
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Gary A. Chelette




Location: Houston, Texas
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PostPosted: Wed 06 Feb, 2008 12:09 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I have always wanted to gun blue my Del Tin, but I was afraid I wouldn't like it after.
Tool Black would be cool though. Would you do the hilt and pommel and the blade or not the blade?

Are you scared, Connor?
No, Cousin Dugal. I'm not!
Don't talk nonsense, man. I peed my kilt the first time I went into battle.
Oh, aye. Angus pees his kilt all the time!
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Jean Thibodeau




Location: Montreal,Quebec,Canada
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PostPosted: Wed 06 Feb, 2008 10:37 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Gary A. Chelette wrote:
I have always wanted to gun blue my Del Tin, but I was afraid I wouldn't like it after.
Tool Black would be cool though. Would you do the hilt and pommel and the blade or not the blade?


I did the hilt furniture first and it looked real good, doing the blade also is optional and one can " enjoy " wear mark in the blue through rubbing off or one can retouch it periodically.

I know about liking it or not as my Godfred has been blued and repolished bright a few times ! At times leaving the fuller blue.

Also one can partial buff out the blue or leave it dark and uniform.

My Windlass new coustille has a patinated guard and pommel and a blued blade at the moment.

There is always the question of what one perceives as attractive wear marks making a piece look lived in or being annoyed by any flaw in a finish and wanting it uniform: I tend to change my mind about that a lot.

Oh, and as I've said with the high end pieces I leave those alone: An Albion Squire line sword maybe, a Maestro line sword might be interesting to finish blue and let it get marked up " naturally " because of training, although that might be more frustrating as one sands away any nicks in the blade for safety reasons ? An Albion Next Generation or Museum line I don't think I would mess with.

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Peter Bosman




Location: Andalucia
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PostPosted: Thu 07 Feb, 2008 12:13 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Well Jean at least it is not ' bending after patination' Razz and you may have replicated a heaven's ladder finish Wink

peter
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Craig Johnson
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PostPosted: Thu 07 Feb, 2008 7:40 am    Post subject: Banding         Reply with quote

Hi Jean

It sounds as if you may have a blade that has some alloy banding starting to occur. This is a process where the alloyed materials in the steel start to congregate as the material is cycled through the heating and cooling stages of hot work. If the blade is forged and the material had been thermacycled a few times in manufacture and processing and then again in forging it may well have started to develop this a bit. The heat cycle and time needed usually would not result in this type of development but it is not unheard of.

It should not really affect the blade too much and probably will not affect the heat treat at all.

Best
Craig
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