Past Meetup

The Hand-Forged Knife: Intro to Blacksmithing and Knifemaking - 2-day class

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2 people went

Price: $50.00 /per person

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Class Tuition: $220. A minimum $50 deposit is required to RSVP for this class.

This is an introduction course that will teach students how to make a knife in two days and how to use salvaged materials from leaf springs, roller bearings and other qualified steel pieces to make blades.

This class is open to the first 8 signups who pay in full. The tuition is refundable if the class is canceled only. I expect it to fill up quickly, but we plan to hold this class again, as well as more advanced classes if there is interest. If you want to hold your RSVP, make sure you pay ASAP.

an example of a hand-forged blade

About the Class:

This 2-day class is designed to serve as a basic, hands-on introduction to the craft of bladesmithing. Instruction will include information on tools and equipment, material selection, body mechanics, design considerations, forging techniques, basic heat treating principles and finishing methods. This will be a fairly active class, with strong emphasis on student participation, and will involve a healthy amount of heat, noise, sweat, and physical exertion. Each student will start with a 1/4"x3/4"x6" segment of high carbon spring steel, and through forging, profiling, beveling, heat treating, and finishing, create their own personal hand-forged blade.

This class will focus on introducing the basics of blacksmithing first. This isn't just a knife-making class. You're not just grinding a pattern out and then heat-treating it. Not that there's anything wrong with that kind of knife-making, but learning to actually blacksmith gives you an entirely different skill set and a huge range of options in working with scrap metals (as in a post-disaster or post-apocalyptic situation) that you can't reach by simply grinding out a blade pattern.

Knives will be forge-finished and if all goes well for you, you will go home with a paracord-handle, finished knife. Additionally you will receive a pair of safety glasses, ear plugs, a file, and a file card to use for the class and take with you.

You will actually learn to heat, pound and shape spring steel into a blade. Come prepared to do a lot of hammering.

Students will be introduced to metals, heating, forging, hammering techniques, straightening, grinding, shaping, knife and handle making.

Don't have huge expectations for the quality of your first blade. :) It's pretty ambitious to make a decent blade the very first time you have ever swung a hammer, but you will make one and learn enough to be able to do this on your own, or of course do it again in a more advanced class with more information and techniques next time.



Class dates: December 1 - 2nd, 8 am - 4 pm

Lunch will be provided.

Class Tuition: $220. A $50 deposit is required to RSVP for this class.

Tuition must be paid before the class begins.


Here is the course curriculum for this course:

Day 1
8:00 am - 8:30 am
- Welcome
- Introductions (Instructor/Students)
- Class Overview
8:30 am - 9:00 am
- Safety Guidelines
- Tools and Equipment
- Materials
- Demo #1: 1018 vs. 1080
9:00 am - 11:00 am
- Demo #2: Forging a Blade (Instructor)
- Q+A
1:00 pm - 4:00 pm
- Group Forging (Students)
- Normalization
- Annealing
- Closing Remarks

Day 2
8:00 am - 12:00 pm
- Profiling
- Beveling
- Sanding/Polishing
1:00 pm - 1:30 pm
- Intro to Ferrous Metallurgy
- Demo #3: Hardening the Blade (Instructor)
1:30 pm - 3:00 pm
- Group Hardening
3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
- Group Tempering
- Finishing Discussion
- Closing Remarks

About the Instructor: James Brock. Following an interest in traditional Scandinavian knifemaking, James began making knives by stock removal in early 2001. In 2009, prompted by the desire to make damascus steel, he acquired a small gas furnace and began making hand-forged blades, eventually learning to make damascus from ABS Master Smith Harvey Dean in February 2011. James' passion as a bladesmith centers around salvaging old, worn, or otherwise discarded pieces of high carbon steel (i.e. automobile leaf and coil springs, bearing races, worn out saw blades and files, broken plowshares, etc...) and giving them new life on the anvil. He specializes in Scandinavian-style bushcraft knives, EDC's, and hunters. Examples of his work are available online at ( - as well as below. James will be doing a series of blacksmithing and blademaking courses for The Human Path that center around using reclaimed, recycled and found materials in novel ways.