- Lion Steel SR-1 (2)
DAMASCUS BLADE KNIVES
The surface of Damascus knives has different patterns which have the consistency of sewing thread thin lines. The shape and look of the pattern depends on the forging technique and number of process repetitions. Damascus blade knives are strong, robust, stiff, hard, shatter-resistant, and easy for re-sharpening. Despite the stiffness, Damascus blades do not break when being bent, and they return to their original shape when force released. The original technique of Damascus blade forging was lost in the 18th century, most probably due to the breakdown of raw material trading routes. Blade smiths recreated this process of Damascus blade forging at the end of the 19th century and developed a few similar techniques. All techniques have in common that forging starts with a raw billet, and after several repetitions of the folding process and thermal treatment, the blade gets the distinctive pattern in the material.
DAMASCUS BLADE FORGING
High Quality Damascus knifes can only be manufactured by skilled and experienced blade smiths. The blade smith heats a billet with coke fuel or gas on a high temperature. When the steel is incandescing, the blade smith hammers the billet so that it becomes flatter. After this, the blade smith folds the billet and hammers it again so that new steel layers fuse together and get thinner. The process of reheating the billet and hammering it is repeated many times until the blade smith gets the desired pattern in the blade material. Every few steps, the blade smith torsional twists the billet instead of folding it. All described processes are repeated until the desired number of layers is reached. At each billet folding, the number of layers doubles. After this process, the blade smith forges the blade in its shape and sharpens the edge. In the next step, the blade smith quenches and hardens the blade. At the end, the blade is soaked into acid, where it gets its final, characteristic surface. Damascus blades can be made of high carbon steel or stainless steel.