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A while back a gentleman sent me a large ball bearing wanting a Bowie forged from it.  I started out by welding a little piece of rebar on the bearing to give something to hold on to while it was being forged.

The next step was to forge the bearing into a flat bar.  I used a forging press for this as 52100 steel is quite stubborn under a hammer.

The bar was then forged to shape.  In this case, a narrow tang Bowie.

After normalization the blade was left to cool then ground to inspect for defects and prep for heat treat.


After quenching the blade was tempered then cleaned up and sanded down to 220 grit.  With the blade polished up somewhat it was given a soft back draw.  This is sometimes called "Blue backing".  Doing this further reduces the hardness of the spine but leaves the edge hard.

The blade was polished and a guard fit.  Threads were brazed onto the tang and a nut on the pommel.  The handle of stabilized elk antler was fitted onto the tang.

The handle is bedded with epoxy and the pommel torqued down never to come off again.

The blade is finished with the fixtures blended and the handle sanded and polished.

No knife is complete without a way to carry it.

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Outstanding!  Thanks for sharing the step by step pics.  Very cool.

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