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Thread: Flint striker from old mower blade (fail)

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    Member DCorlando's Avatar
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    Default Flint striker from old mower blade (fail)

    Hi all, thought this might be interesting - I tried to make a flint striker from an old lawn mower blade. Cut out a piece about 6 inches by 3/4. Heated in my forge then beat on it with the hammer. The final shape was nice so I got the whole thing red hot and dropped it in water thinking if any thing could harden, it would be water. Turns out there just was not enough carbon in the steel to make it harden. Tested with a file and the file would still bite into steel. Tired it on a flint rock and no sparks. Live and learn.

    IMGP0062cropped.jpg


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    Yep. It's the carbon that makes the sparks, so if it's low carbon, not only will it not harden, it won't spark much either.

    AAMoF, observing the sparks when you grind it is one of the ways of identifying steel. Lots of sparks usually means high carbon, but other alloys can also mess around with the test.
    "The more complex the mind, the greater the need for the simplicity of play." Jim Kirk

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    Member DCorlando's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnLeePettimore View Post
    Yep. It's the carbon that makes the sparks, so if it's low carbon, not only will it not harden, it won't spark much either.

    AAMoF, observing the sparks when you grind it is one of the ways of identifying steel. Lots of sparks usually means high carbon, but other alloys can also mess around with the test.
    It did throw a lot of sparks when I cut it with the angle cutter/grinder; however, not on the same level as say 1095 would have. BTW - speaking of 1095 while I had the forge hot I re-hardened one of the strikers I had made previous. This time I used water for the quench instead of oil and it now very hard - fully skates the file. Before the file would catch a little bit after the oil quench. It is now really throwing sparks from flint.

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    Senior Member Antonyraison's Avatar
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    Old old files make the best strikers.
    My youtube: https://www.youtube.com/user/ultsmackdown Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/antonyraison/

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    Quote Originally Posted by Antonyraison View Post
    Old old files make the best strikers.
    Ones that are all messed up, rusted, etc., and can't be used as files anymore, you mean. If they are in good shape, keep them as files!
    "The more complex the mind, the greater the need for the simplicity of play." Jim Kirk

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    Member DCorlando's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnLeePettimore View Post
    Ones that are all messed up, rusted, etc., and can't be used as files anymore, you mean. If they are in good shape, keep them as files!
    That's why I tried to use the old mower blade as it was scrap. All my files are still in the tool box ready to file something :-)

    While the old mower blade did not work it was fun trying to re-purpose the steel.

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    Senior Member kyratshooter's Avatar
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    Most people use files past their expiration date. They do get dull and lose performance.

    You do not even have to process a file to get good sparks, just hit the edge on a grinder and knock the teeth off the edge without heating the file up. That smooth edge will throw a good spark. It will also still work as a file.
    If you didn't bring jerky what did I just eat?

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    Quote Originally Posted by DCorlando View Post
    That's why I tried to use the old mower blade as it was scrap. All my files are still in the tool box ready to file something :-)

    While the old mower blade did not work it was fun trying to re-purpose the steel.
    I try to re-purpose stuff, too. I have piles of stuff waiting to be re-purposed. ;o)

    Seriously, re-using is a great thing. Why throw it away, then buy something else later?
    "The more complex the mind, the greater the need for the simplicity of play." Jim Kirk

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    Administrator Rick's Avatar
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    Yard sales are for people that make piles of stuff waiting to be re-purposed. ;o) You take it out of their pile and put it in yours. That's called recycling.

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    Senior Member kyratshooter's Avatar
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    They make a TV show about you guys!

    https://www.aetv.com/shows/hoarders?...180722234930:s
    If you didn't bring jerky what did I just eat?

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    Quote Originally Posted by kyratshooter View Post
    They make a TV show about you guys!

    https://www.aetv.com/shows/hoarders?...180722234930:s
    I was being a bit hyperbolic when I said "piles". I'm not a hoarder. Maybe a squirrel. ;o)
    "The more complex the mind, the greater the need for the simplicity of play." Jim Kirk

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    Senior Member Antonyraison's Avatar
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    I just by them (old files) from second hand shops.
    My youtube: https://www.youtube.com/user/ultsmackdown Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/antonyraison/

    (BOSWA) ELITE SURVIVAL RANGER - BSR/16/05

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    Member DCorlando's Avatar
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    Update - while it did not work as a flint striker the unusual dual purpose handle I forged into it works great as a ferro rod striker. The pictures should help show how it is used on the ferro rod.

    IMGP0064resize.jpg

    IMGP0065resize.jpg

    IMGP0066resize.jpg

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