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Thread: Much help is needed...

  1. #1
    Nicholas Yang Guest

    Post Much help is needed...

    To: Anyone who can help [particulary Ben San(Ben Harden)]
    There was a time when I decided to start creating a Katana, without any ample knowledge of the Japanese sword I started to create one using a piece of metal I had found in my forge, no anvil...nothing. All I had was a no name angle grinder. I had started creating the blade, only took a few days to finish...I used the "stock removal" technique. After it had been finished and sharpened (not very sharp at that), i took a swing at a tree...damn thing bent.
    Since then, i've been putting alot of time and effort into researching sword smithing, different types of materials and even how to build a forge. Before doing anything drastic, i would like to ask for your help...teach me how to build a simple forge, teach me how to utilise materials to their best potential...and i beg of you to teach me how to create a great sword...i know i'm asking for a lot and i know i'm being selfish...but i implore you...please help me...
    I took the time to read through numerous posts posted more than 2 years ago...and i saw a particular poster named Ben Harden who had great knowledge in Metallurgy and his skills are now respected and held at high acclaim by myself and probably many other people around the world... Mr Harden, please...i ask for your valuable time and assistance.
    I am currently undertaking high school in Australia and my resources are greatly deprived, i once had a metal tech teacher i looked up to...unfortunately, i wouldn't be in this position asking for your help if my teacher hadn't gone into major spinal surgery. This has put him out of commission for 1 year...i have no one else to turn to...
    Also, if my post is in the wrong forum section then i apologise for my ignorance as i am a novice in these forums...

    Thank you for taking your time to read this exceptionally long post
    From Nicholas

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2000
    Likes (received)

    Wink Want fries with that?

    Perhaps corresponding with Mr. Harden personally will yield better results. I am not a smith, but seems the information wanted would be a wee bit more than what could be typed in a forum post.
    David F. Craik

  3. #3
    Nicholas Yang Guest

    Default Thanks

    wow...someone really replied! I'm suprised, anyway, thanks for taking some time out of your busy schedule to reply, i really appreciate it.
    I don't know where to find Mr. Harden...and he's also in a totally different country all together. I'm in Australia:P

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Melbourne, Australia
    Likes (received)


    Nicholas, what part of Australia are you from? Not being a sword person, or metallurgist, I can't help with specific information, but I may be able to help you find some people who can give you the basics of smithing.

    (What I'm about to say has a very Victoria-centric bias, as that's where I grew up and am living, but it should apply to other states as well.)

    Firstly, you could try your local TAFE, to see if there are any courses in basic smithing or metalworking. TAFEs often offer night, weekend or school holiday courses, which could fit around your schooling.

    Secondly, if you live anywhere near places such as Sovereign Hill Ballarat (Vic.) or the Swan Hill Pioneer Settlement (also Vic.), they have working forges and smithys. A visit to these people may help, either through information offered, or possibly tuition (who knows?).

    Thirdly, contacting a local S.C.A. group (Society for Creative Anachronism) - the people who do medieval recreations - may give you further information. While they have a european bias, some members may know about smithing. There are groups in most universities and capital cities.

    A couple of words of caution, though. If you're making a sword, you will be dealing with molten metal (at least 1000 degrees celcius) and fire that is of similar temperature, and the risk of being injured, or causing injury is very high. Please make sure you have adequate training and proper equipment!!

    Also, the laws governing edged weapons in the various states are becoming increasingly strict, particularly so-called 'martial arts' weapons. I would suggest you find out about the laws in your state that apply to weapons ownership.

    good luck!

    Michael Mules
    Michael Mules

    Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2000
    Likes (received)

    Default Re: Thanks

    Originally posted by Nicholas Yang
    wow...someone really replied! I'm suprised, anyway, thanks for taking some time out of your busy schedule to reply, i really appreciate it.
    I don't know where to find Mr. Harden...and he's also in a totally different country all together. I'm in Australia:P
    I think perhaps the lack of replies is due to the fact that asking someone to 'teach you how to create a great sword' is a bit of a tall order over the internet. Such requests often go ignored here...a bit like asking someone to teach you jujutsu in a forum posting When I said 'correspond', I meant via e-mail to start, not neccesarily meet him in person. Was thinking he may be able to at least point you in the right direction.

    Mr. Mules definately has what I think may be better ideas.
    David F. Craik

  6. #6
    Dan Harden Guest



    I am assuming I am the Dan (not Ben)Harden you are refering to?
    Why not start by sending me a private email through E-Budo. Hit the PM key
    I am way behind in my correspondence already due to a very busy schedule but will try to catch up with you.
    You may be taking a step into what may prove to be a life long addiction-it was for me.

    Dan Harden
    Last edited by Dan Harden; 31st May 2002 at 12:13.

  7. #7
    Terreon Guest

    Default Gerrit Ahuis (TERREON)

    Hello Nicholas....

    A Budo Member who I know,called me, and told me about your
    problems to smith a katana.

    I know, that my way of Communikation in English maybe poor,because
    i am from Germany, but i try hard to speech good, so you can
    eventually read me.

    I also tried to make several kind of swords,also even a katana.
    Thank god i had a great theacher. my great brother of mine.
    He became a smithmaster.(art smithing/sword-knife smithing/horse smithing) he has now a own company as horse smith.

    many years ago, when i was a young boy, he started to teach me
    smithing.So i learned a bit of the materia.

    I say a bit! because the secrets of smithing are far too many,
    as i could learn them all in a few years.
    even my brother knows not all....he will never stop learning.

    when you decide to learn to smith a katana or somthing else like
    that, you must know that you started a long hard and maybe
    frustrating journey, before you can think of a result, thats
    worthy to be called a sword!

    or do you only wanted to have a katana?

    when one. its the better way.

    But i think, you really want to learn smithing......good!

    A few tips:

    -the best materia to make a katana is a komposite metal (legierung)
    who is called DAMAST STEEL.
    Damast is made of two layers of iron metal. a week and
    a hard steel. these two layers where put together and warmed.
    then they will be bended over, so that there will be now four
    layers (gefaltet) in the end this procedure must continue, till
    there will be 2000 layers.
    only then. after this procedure, the blade will be formed.

    -the hardening of the blade must be so, that the steel at the "tsuba"
    (parierstange) is hard and non elastic, and at the end of the blade
    it is weeker and elastic.

    I formed many blades. all of them failed the amboss test.
    only a katana, who i made with the help of my brother passed.
    so i grinded and polished the blade and completed the sword.

    I made a terrible mistake afterwards. i sharpened the blade.
    i tried to practice sword fighting technolgies, with wooden swords
    one day i tried it with my katana, and i injured my leg with it
    badly. it stuck in my legbone, and before i reached my parends,
    i lost many blood.

    this thoght me, not to use sharp swords for training!

    dont ever do that, unless you are a master of martial arts!

    I found out that i can have legally swords in germany, when the blades
    are not sharpened. so i grinded it harmless.

    To have, and carrying a sword is a great (verantwortung)
    please never missuse this sword to do any evil, because for others
    a sword can be a ornerful thing. the way of the sword.

    Its impossible for me, to teach you things like "seeing the riht temprature in the colur of the fire" or things like that by i-net.

    someone in your country mabe can.....i hope so.

    if you have technical questions....i hope i can give you answeres.

    TERREON formally known as GERRIT AHUIS

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