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Mark Knapp

Making a damascus vise from scratch

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This is a project that has been on the back burner for a while but now I'm moving it to the front. Some of you have asked me to post pictures of the build as I go along, so here we go.

First step, make the post. I had a bunch of spade-eye hooks from and estate sale so I made a test piece of damascus from them to make sure it would work. I didn't want to waste a bunch of good hooks unless I knew it would work. Essentially, a bunch of hooks are put into a metal box and the voids between them are filled with powder-metal. The box is welded shut and put into the forge, heated to forge welding temperature and compressed into a solid block of steel. Then the box is taken off and the bar is drawn out to length and rounded.

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Here's how the bar looked out of the forge. There's about 2000 hooks in there from size 16 to 2. The bar is about 5/8" in diameter.

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Then I turned the bar to just a couple of thousandths of an inch over 3/8ths inches.

DSCF5884-X3.jpg

And sanded it to finish size.

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Then the bar was etched in Ferric Chloride to show contrast between the hook material and the filler material. The result is a little less exciting than I wanted it to be but I learned a lot. It was a good test. I'll make another one with more hooks and less filler, hopefully the result will be more dramatic.

 

 

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I was going to make one of those too.  But then I got to thinking-heck I ain't got the slightest idea how to do it!.  Just kidding of course, but will be interested in seeing your final product.

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I got a really nice bunch of hooks in the mail from Dave today, Thanks Dave.

Thanks everybody, ready to start on the base in the next day or two.

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Unfortunately, the hooks are likely too small.  I doubt you'll ever get hook profiles on the outer surface.  It'd be super cool if you do!  As you stated, more hooks less filler ... like ... almost nothing BUT hooks.  I recently gave away a bunch of hooks, but I'll look to see if I have some more from Dad's tackle box.

Oh!  Maybe you could magnetize the box, making the hooks stay against the outside as you pour in the powder.

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Tagging along this is gonna be fun to watch

thanks Mark for taking the time to do it.

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20 hours ago, mikechell said:

Unfortunately, the hooks are likely too small.  I doubt you'll ever get hook profiles on the outer surface.  It'd be super cool if you do!  As you stated, more hooks less filler ... like ... almost nothing BUT hooks.  I recently gave away a bunch of hooks, but I'll look to see if I have some more from Dad's tackle box.

Oh!  Maybe you could magnetize the box, making the hooks stay against the outside as you pour in the powder.

Yep, stay tuned

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17 hours ago, Mike West said:

Tagging along this is gonna be fun to watch

thanks Mark for taking the time to do it.

Thanks Mike

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Mark, you could make some serious cash making Damascus and then making a Law style vise out of it. Even making small upgrades to existing vises.
Nice job 

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On 5/18/2021 at 3:25 AM, Bazzer69 said:

Mark, you could make some serious cash making Damascus and then making a Law style vise out of it. Even making small upgrades to existing vises.
Nice job 

Thanks Barry. I'm trying to keep from making it another job. What I'm going to do is make two of each version. This one's going to be a Dyna-King Barracuda style trout vise with midge jaws. I'll make one for charity and sell the other one to support this endeavor. I'm planning on making at least four pairs, one pair will be a LAW type vise.

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