Introduction to Bladesmithing
Brion Tomberlin ABS Master Bladesmith
Material fee: $130.00
Monday through Friday, 8am—5pm each day, no class on weekend
Skill level: Beginner and up
This two week course is designed for anyone interested in making high quality hand forged blades and includes lecture and hands on work, all taught by ABS Master Smiths. Metal selection, blade function and different blade design will be discussed. Hand forging to shape, normalizing, heat treating, grinding and tempering will all be taught. These semi-finished blades will be tested for their cutting ability, edge holding, hardness and flexibility. Handles and guards are not apart of this course but be discussed and students should be prepared to venture into a handles and guards course next.
Students should be able to make a blade which will pass the equivalent of a Journeyman Smith Performance Test. Successful completion of this course will reduce the required three (3) year waiting period as an ABS Apprentice member by one (1) year and will be eligible to submit their knives for ABS Journeyman Smith judging in two (2) years.
The Introduction to Bladesmithing course is a two week basic guide to forging blades. There are lectures and a lot of hands on experience with guidance from the instructor. The student will learn basic blade styles and how to forge them. They will also learn grinding the blades, thermal cycling and annealing, metallurgy for forging steels, and heat treating of the blades. Types of steels will also be covered. By the end of the class the student should be able to forge, grind, and heat treat a knife that will pass the ABS journeyman smith performance test. We will test knives in the class. I will also probably touch on Japanese heat treating methods to produce hamons and the types of steel best suited for that. The main thing is to have fun and get the student started on the road to forging high quality blades.
For further information about the ABS testing and training procedures please
visit the American Bladesmith's website.