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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Seax’s from the Lathe

Posted by on Jun 28, 2017 in Available | 0 comments

Seax’s from the Lathe

I’ve been interested in the random quality of the textures found in the pole lathed bowls and cups of the Viking period and I was pleased to find a historical example of a knife with a handle like this.  So I made these.     Each is turned from rosewood and feel wonderful in the hand.  The construction is very simple with the tang of blade being burned into the grip and secured with black pitch. The blades are forged from 1080 and the over all length is 7.5″ for both. I’m asking $175 for the one with the iron ferrule...

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Bog Seax

Posted by on Jun 28, 2017 in Available, Hunters & Puukkos | 0 comments

Bog Seax

This Anglo-Saxon seax was forged from 1075 and has bone and ancient bog oak grip.  The oak came from the UK and was buried in peat for hundreds of years before being raised and salvaged.  It is a magical piece of wood. The dot ring carvings on the bone bolster were typical on small belt knives of the early Middle Ages. It has a 3 1/4″ blade and is 7 1/2″ over all.  I’m asking $300 for this knife.  

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Early Medieval Cooking Set

Posted by on Jun 28, 2017 in Available | 0 comments

Early Medieval Cooking Set

This rustic cooking set is based on implements commonly used during the early Middle Ages and Viking period.  There is a roasting fork, eating knife and ‘essendorn’ or eating thorn (which was used in place of a fork).  The steel for these came from some spikes I salvaged from a huge, old growth log washed up on Long Island in the Apostle Islands of Lake Superior.  They were probably from a logging operation in the late 1800’s as the steel is ‘shear steel’..a type of steel that was common before the modern...

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Trolls

Posted by on Jun 28, 2017 in Available | 0 comments

Trolls

Here are some trolls … Hob, Nob and Bob.  Carved in basswood, painted and stained in linseed oil.  Hob is about 6″ high, Nob is 4.5″ and Bob is 3.5″. I’m asking $75 each for Hob and Nob ($140 for both) and $30 for...

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Early 18th century brass spined Scottish Dirk

Posted by on Jun 15, 2017 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Early 18th century brass spined Scottish Dirk

I’m offering this Scottish dirk at a reduced cost due to difficulties I had with putting in the inlayed brass spine.  The blade is 5160 and the grip is stained boxwood.  Although not an exact historical reproduction it does represent several antiques.     ...

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A Small Iron Hatchet

Posted by on May 23, 2017 in Axes | 0 comments

A Small Iron Hatchet

Here is a small hatchet made from 19th century grain elevator wrought iron with W1 tool steel edge and hafted with hop hornbeam (locally called ‘ironwood’).  The total length including head and haft is just over 13″.  The head measures 4.25″ from poll to edge. The cutting edge measures 2.25″.   This little axe will make a wonderful camp tool.. but could also be used in a historical re-enactment context. The small size is made for in a lot of mass behind the cutting edge.  It also throws very nicely.  The...

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Gastropod

Posted by on Apr 27, 2017 in Available, Other | 0 comments

Gastropod

Here is my ‘Gastropod’ with high density 1095 shimstock and 15n20 on the sides (sparsely). The blade was differentially heat treated to display a hamon. The bolster is cast bronze and the grip is stained boxwood. The matching ‘netsuke’ for the sheath is stained walrus ivory and is strung by a silk braid made in Japan for this purpose. It is inspired by an original netsuke. If you are familiar with this concept you will know that what I have here is only inspired by the idea. Classically in Japan these are small...

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Loveless Inspired

Posted by on Apr 27, 2017 in Available, Hunters & Puukkos | 2 comments

Loveless Inspired

I’ve been in a sort of creative rut the last few months and decided that I needed to ‘reset’ some things and go back to the roots of where I started. Also… after reading a book on Japanese craftsmanship (the ‘Unknown Craftsman’) I started thinking about things made in an American context that fit the ideas put forth in that book. What I’ve made might seem like a surprise to some.. but to me the knives made by Bob Loveless, especially his drop point hunter, are a paradigm of utility, high craftsmanship...

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English Ball-Grip Trade knife: An Interpretation

Posted by on Mar 22, 2017 in Hunters & Puukkos | 3 comments

English Ball-Grip Trade knife: An Interpretation

I recently saw a picture of one of the unusual knives worn during the Great Lakes Fur Trade… the English ball-grip trade knife.   Knives were very important to the traders and trappers during this time period and they were often traded for furs and other goods.  In the 18th century these trade knives were often English in origin and sometimes only the blades were traded and given grip made from wood local to the Great Lakes region. Partly because I live right in the heart of Fur Trade country and partly because I love the lines of...

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‘Black Knife’

Posted by on Mar 15, 2017 in Available, Hunters & Puukkos, The 'Black Knife' series | 2 comments

‘Black Knife’

Here is an update on my on-going quest for a standard, utilitarian (and hopefully aesthetically pleasing) knife that I can offer from my shop at a cost reasonable to my customers but also friendly to my one-man-shop business. I’ve been increasingly interested in the concepts of art versus craft. In Japan, Scandinavia and elsewhere there has been a movement towards an appreciation of beauty in the utilitarian items made by craftsmen for everyday use. Things such as rice bowls, tea cups, spoons and other items that people can easily take...

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