Cold Iron Blog

What does ‘Story Telling’ have to do with bladesmithing?

Posted by on Jan 23, 2013 in About Me, Welcome | 0 comments

What does ‘Story Telling’ have to do with bladesmithing?

On my homepage you see the tagline ‘Storytelling through the forged blade’.  I thought I’d take a second to explain what I mean by that.  I believe that a forged blade can tell a story in multiple ways. The most obvious is the story that it tells about itself and it’s intended purpose.  For example.. a skinning knife. Elements of it’s story are the facts of itself.. a thin, sharp, lasting edge that is comfortable to hold and has the right edge geometry to do it’s job.  Then the story evolves as...

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For the Love of Iron

Posted by on Jul 12, 2011 in Techniques | 7 comments

For the Love of Iron

                                                                                                                                                                       Cold Iron Gold is for the mistress — silver for the maid — Copper for the craftsman cunning at his trade. “Good!” said the Baron, sitting in his hall, “But Iron — Cold Iron...

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Whittling knife with Dwarf

Posted by on Jan 15, 2016 in Available, Other | 0 comments

Whittling knife with Dwarf

Here is another in my series of small belt/whittling knives with netsuke-like sheath carry carvings.  The knife is high density laminated 1095 tool steel and big leaf maple burl grip with copper ferrule.   The sheath is a Scandiavian style center-seam construction and is made from vegetable tanned leather.  The netsuke is matching big leaf maple carved in the form of a dwarvish fellow. 2 3/4″ blade, 7″ overall.   I’m asking $275 plus shipping for this knife, sheath and...

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Relic Boot Knife

Posted by on Jan 12, 2016 in Available, Other | 0 comments

Relic Boot Knife

This rather crude fantasy piece is a fusion of Scottish, Japanese and Scandinavian elements.  It is a compact little knife and would fit well into a boot, pocket or be used as a neck knife. The materials for the blade include a bronze bolster plate with ebony and moose antler.  The moose antler is carved with a traditional Scottish basket weave commonly seen on sgian dubs and has been deeply antiqued and stained as if it’s been in soaking in a bog. The blade is 2 and 3/4″ long and forged from W1 tool steel which has been...

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A Tuan Lian .. or ‘Militia Jian’….

Posted by on Jan 7, 2016 in Available, Swords and Historical | 0 comments

A Tuan Lian .. or ‘Militia Jian’….

Here is a gallery depicting the forging and building of a tuanlian jian. These Chinese swords were specifically made by local blacksmiths for military use and were deployed from an armory to village-level militia members in times of war.  They are typically very strongly built but also a bit rough and tumble in terms of fit and finish.  They were weapons of war and were not intended to be status symbols or works of art. I’ve long been wanting to make one as I’ve been attracted to their rustic simplicity and sense of purpose....

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Kiridashi – Bloomery steel, Ebony, Kintsugi

Posted by on Dec 3, 2015 in Available, Other | 1 comment

Kiridashi – Bloomery steel, Ebony, Kintsugi

Here is a small Japanese utility knife or kiri-dashi forged from beautiful high carbon home-smelted bloomery steel.  It is engraved with an abstract bamboo theme and comes with an ebony sheath with a natural fissure filled with Japanese gold kintsugi powder.  The kiri-dashi is 4″ long. I’m asking $175 for this.

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A Turkish archery thumb ring …

Posted by on Nov 23, 2015 in Other | 3 comments

A Turkish archery thumb ring …

Here is a Turkish style archery thumb ring that I cast from the native copper found in the mountains of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. My version has ‘himotoshi’ drilled into it so that it can be used as a netsuke.. or necklace.  

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Spring Bokuto

Posted by on Nov 23, 2015 in Other | 1 comment

Spring Bokuto

This is a bokuto.. or bokken… that I carved in the spring.  I carved it from an old osage orange fence post and determined the shape from an Edo period katana that I happened to have in my possession at the time.  It weighs 1 pound and 10 oz with a total length of 41 inches. The point of balance is 8.5 inches from the grip.  The wood has been work hardened through both hammering and repeated work on a sword pell.  This a powerful weapon and training tool.  The weight and shape of this bokken may classify it more as a...

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Tungolgim… An Anglo-Saxon seax.

Posted by on Nov 10, 2015 in Swords and Historical | 0 comments

Tungolgim… An Anglo-Saxon seax.

This knife started as a gift from Sweden… bars of beautiful carburized bloomery steel made by Götz Breitenbücher (https://www.facebook.com/GotzIronworks/), an extremely talented smith who smelts much of his own steel directly from iron ore for use in his wonderful weapons.  One of the bars he sent to me had Gibeon meteorite folded with the bloomery steel.  I have taken these bars and forge welded them together and forged this blade.  It is an Anglo-Saxon seax and I call it Tungolgim… Old Saxon for ‘Star-Gem’.  The...

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A Viking stye axe…

Posted by on Oct 21, 2015 in Axes | 3 comments

A Viking stye axe…

A Viking style axe forged from a single bar of 5160 tool steel via the punch and drift method with a 25″ hop hornbeam haft. The head weighs 1# 9 oz and is 6″ from poll to edge. 7″ cutting edge.   This is a very sharp and very aggressively cutting axe.   I’m asking $200 shipped to CONUS. Overseas.. please inquire.  

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18th Century Scottish Dirk

Posted by on Oct 1, 2015 in Swords and Historical | 0 comments

18th Century Scottish Dirk

Here is a dirk based on this unusual piece that came up in auction a few years back. There was some thought that it may have been associated with the infamous clansman Simon Fraser as there is a Fraser clan motto on the spine. I started with an early 19th century spring and cut it and stacked it for what ended up being a 150 layers or so. I wanted a blade that had subtle character invoking some of the artifacts one would sometimes see in Pre-Bessemer steel. The description states that the grip was bog oak.. although I find it unlikely. The...

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Relic Cloak Pin… pattern-welded steel…

Posted by on Aug 27, 2015 in Other | 0 comments

Relic Cloak Pin… pattern-welded steel…

Here is a cloak pin designed to turn pretty much any blanket into a cloak. I forged it from pattern welded steel.  I designed the pin to be fairly large so that the pattern welding would be clearly visible so I recommend using this with old wool blankets or items in which you don’t mind poking a hole into.  For nicer garments I recommend making a permanent, re-enforced holes.  There are quite few online tutorials on how to use these in various ways.  Google ‘blanket pins’.. and explore.  It is a very comfortable way to...

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