View Full Version : Damascus Carving Set WIP

02-22-2012, 02:22 PM
Hello all, I started on a carving set commission this afternoon. I took some pictures of the fork being forged. I thought some of you may find it interesting.
Started with a lump of 120 layer damascus, it has some laddering forged and cut which should help the pattern along.
Roughed out the start shape I need under the hammer.


I had to regularly remind myself it is damascus i'm working and so do everything forge wise nice and hot.







I added a twist in the forged octagonal section to make a feature in the damascus later


Bit more forging either side of the twist and then to the grinder







Thats it basically roughed out with all the material where I want it. I left it to anneal over night.

Next to the carving knife, it will be a 280mm profile in damascus and blue paper steel san mai.:)

02-22-2012, 02:33 PM
Wow! What a great set someone will have.

Thanks for the pictures Will. Look forward to seeing the finished product/s.

02-22-2012, 02:54 PM
Looks like you are off to a great start Will. Thanks for sharing with us.

02-22-2012, 02:56 PM
Thanks Gents, they are for my friend big Tom, his sister and her husband are moving to the u.s. They will be a going away present. I thought I had better get on with them as it won't be long before they are off. As they know my work in general and I know what they like, I haven't really planned it out, just a few lines chalked on the table. Nice to work like that sometimes.:biggrin:

02-22-2012, 03:52 PM
Are you going to surprise them Will?

Pretty thoughtful (and generous) gift.

El Pescador
02-22-2012, 03:57 PM
Looking good Will!


02-22-2012, 04:03 PM
Im not that generous, My mate is commissioning it for them.:D But the fork is kind of a freebie so I guess i'm at least a little generous. :laugh: I think it will be a surprise, but their brother Tom will be doing the giving. Would like to be there though when they open it. He is going to have a box made for them too.
They like big meat in that family so they should go down well:knife:
What do you think of a little curve on the fork tines? Most of the carving forks i've used are straight and I often wish there was a bit of a curve to get some clearance.

02-22-2012, 05:53 PM
Way way cool!

02-22-2012, 05:55 PM
What do you think of a little curve on the fork tines?

I think a little curve makes sense.

02-22-2012, 06:06 PM
Cheers, yep thats what i'll do then. Probably just cheaper to stamp them out flat. No point in me worrying about that after forging it like this:D
Thanks Spike, its fun to experiment :biggrin:

02-22-2012, 06:10 PM
I see them both ways (straight and curved), but think curved would be a bit easier to use. Like this (http://www.williams-sonoma.com/products/wusthof-classic-curved-meat-fork/?pkey=e|fork|13|best|0|1|24||7&cm_src=PRODUCTSEARCH||NoFacet-_-NoFacet-_-NoMerchRules-_-).

02-22-2012, 06:38 PM
Yeah that looks good. A subtle curve. My tines are quite far apart. But I think that will be ok.

I'm now thinking I may take a small round file to the remnants of the twist surface texture and make a feature of that. Mmm looking forward to etching it.

02-22-2012, 08:21 PM
Hard to judge scale but looks like it'll be a big fork,what are the measurements?
I prefer curved tines to straight but only gently curved. If you can get the twist crisp with files that'd be awesome

02-23-2012, 04:53 AM
I'll get some measurements today. Curved it is:biggrin:

02-23-2012, 05:01 AM
Yeah that looks good. A subtle curve. My tines are quite far apart. But I think that will be ok.

Your tines aren't too far apart. Every other carving fork's are too close together.

02-23-2012, 05:16 AM
I find traditional carving forks to be mostly useless when tackling a large roast or bird. The are okay for use as a fork when you want to move a slice from carving platter to plate, but for controlling the roast, meh. The tines are too close together, so it doesnt help prevent any side to side or twisting motion. The handle is also in the same axis as the roast would be turning, so it doesn't provide adequate leverage for preventing it.

This is my father's carving "fork" and I believe it was his parent's before it was his. No maker's mark. Tines are a shade over 2" apart (54mm actually). Makes for a very stable roast or bird while carving, even on wet/greasy/slippery carving boards.


02-23-2012, 12:53 PM
That looks great! I have measured mine, the tines are 155mm long and 50mm apart. It going to be a pain to hand finish, I've brought it home to do infront of the tv tonight.
I did a bit of file work on the spiral bit, looked pretty good but I test etched it and the damascus looked better so the file work had to go.:D

Mike Davis
02-23-2012, 02:34 PM
Very nice Will!!! Really like the shape of that.

Marko Tsourkan
02-23-2012, 04:02 PM
Crazy skill there, Will -

02-23-2012, 05:57 PM
You gotta love a dammy carving fork.....:thumbsup:

HHH Knives
02-23-2012, 06:37 PM
Will, AWESOME! I just found this thread and glad I did. I was thinking about doing a set just the other day. Iits great to be able to see how your doing yours. I will be watching. I cant wait to see that finished fork. Your doing some really COOL stuff!!! Thanks for Taking the time to do the WIP! :D

02-24-2012, 04:32 PM
Thanks for the kind words Guys,:biggrin: got the blade forged out and tapered today and heat treated them both. The blade is 290mm at the moment. Will be getting a bit more slender after HT :D

03-24-2012, 01:15 PM
Some progress on these at last, :D
Quick check of the san mai so I remember where I am.

Handle bits cut squared and drilled, now gluing up. I'm trying something different on these, its good to experiment on your friends:biggrin:

Bolsters drilled and slotted.


Getting there....Have a great weekend everyone:biggrin:

03-24-2012, 02:18 PM
Looking good Will.

Can't wait to see them finished. Your friends should be very pleased.

Eamon Burke
03-24-2012, 03:11 PM

Marko Tsourkan
03-25-2012, 10:04 AM
Looks great Will -

03-25-2012, 11:20 AM
Thanks Guys, did a bit more on these today. Got the handles squared up, bolsters shaped, I made an endcap for the Knife too to get the balance nice, I epoxied the bits on and have left to set. These Handles will be on the "diamond", I'll knock the corners off and there will be a taper on the sides at the front, maybe the rear. I've seen a handle like this and liked it, Kramer or Fish? I cant remember.
I've started using West systems epoxy and i'm really impressed, its quite fluid when fresh and it really seems to penetrate, takes a while to go off, but it just feels solid. The real test will be grinding those tapers in on the copper bits without the glue popping.
Gave the fork a quick etch, I think I will hand sand finish it to get better contrast rather than polish as the pattern is really subtle in places. Blade also hand finished ready for logo and etch.:D

03-25-2012, 11:08 PM
Now that's going to make on hell of a carving set. The fork in particular has turned out to be quite sublime. Great job Will.

Mike Davis
03-26-2012, 02:04 AM
Pretty amazing again Will!!! Really dig this stuff.

El Pescador
03-26-2012, 11:36 AM
Looking good Will. Handles are too square-ish.

03-26-2012, 11:38 AM
Looking good Will. Handles are too square-ish.

:plus1: - I agree with Pescy - LOL

03-26-2012, 01:15 PM
Thanks all, handles are only rough shaped at the moment. I would have finished them today but yesterday I must have forgotten to put any hardener to glue on the copper bits.:cheffry:

03-28-2012, 02:37 PM
These are finished. I'm really pleased with the way the tapered diamond shape handles turned out. The Fork handle is wider than it is tall, which feels nice with a side grip on the fork, the knife is narrower than it is tall which feels really nice. Hope you like.:biggrin:

Eamon Burke
03-28-2012, 02:43 PM
There has been some impressive things posted today. This takes the cake.

I am so stunned I'm logging off.

Eamon Burke
03-28-2012, 02:46 PM
Please tell me your friends are moving to Fort Worth.

03-28-2012, 02:51 PM
Thanks John, I'm not sure where their moving, I'll find out, it will be near a naval base somewhere. Hopefully I'll get some shots of them in the box Tom is having made for them and if the box is nice hopefully have a future contact there for work like this.
Here are some handle shots. I'm very pleased with these and certainly look to giving this option on work in the future. They take a bit longer I would have to work out some pricing.

El Pescador
03-28-2012, 03:22 PM
truly ******* awesome!

03-28-2012, 03:32 PM
Thanks Judd, the more I look at that copper the more it looks like brass. Its an odd bar I grabbed at the scrap yard. I think it is brass but like 80% copper, which is unusual. It should look really nice after a few months when it dulls and gets a bit more bronzy looking.

03-28-2012, 03:41 PM
I am so stunned I'm logging off.


Heirlooms to be Will. Beautiful work.

P.S. I guess I need to get one of the resident handle makers here to make me something with a red spacer, as they always jump out at me. Can you tell me what the red spacer material here is? Looks great.

03-28-2012, 03:46 PM
Thanks Johnny, its a red hard fiber material designed for knife handles. I thinks its called fiberous sheet, or something like that.:biggrin:

03-28-2012, 03:50 PM
Or maybe I just need to order a knife from you and ask you to incorporate a red spacer into the handle. ;)

Bravo again Will.

03-28-2012, 04:11 PM
Kinda hard to tell from the pics. Would be helpful if you sent them to me so I could see them in person...


El Pescador
03-28-2012, 04:18 PM
Thanks Judd, the more I look at that copper the more it looks like brass. Its an odd bar I grabbed at the scrap yard. I think it is brass but like 80% copper, which is unusual. It should look really nice after a few months when it dulls and gets a bit more bronzy looking.

I hope you're thinking the same thing I'm thinking...

03-28-2012, 06:03 PM
Wow! Wow! Wow! ....Wow!

03-28-2012, 06:24 PM
stunning work!

Andrew H
03-28-2012, 06:33 PM
Or maybe I just need to order a knife from you and ask you to incorporate a red spacer into the handle. ;)

I think you just need to order a giant red spacer :rofl2:

The handle design looks really interesting, Will. How does it feel in the hand?

03-28-2012, 10:07 PM

Looks like new contours/ shape on the handle?



03-28-2012, 10:11 PM
I think you just need to order a giant red spacer :rofl2:

I told you! I can't see one without commenting on it. :O

I have a couple of knives with Marko right now; may need to talk with him about my obsession with red spacers and see if he will indulge me on one of them.

03-28-2012, 10:15 PM
:bigeek: :doublethumbsup:

03-28-2012, 10:48 PM
Beautiful work, Will!

03-28-2012, 11:52 PM
I don't think i can add anything to what's allready been said about this set, apart from the fact that it's one hell of a carving set.

I'm just glad i commisioned one while i can still afford to. In fact i think my next purchace will be a Catcheside suji to compliment my gyuto. This is going to be my only chance of getting my hand's on custom knives of this quality before Will realises he should be charging double for work of this quality.

Expect an email about another commision pretty soon Will.

03-29-2012, 01:40 AM
Looks good Will.

I have a couple of knives with Marko right now; may need to talk with him about my obsession with red spacers and see if he will indulge me on one of them.

Ha! Good luck, red spacers aren't really Marko's thing...

03-29-2012, 03:52 AM
Ha ha thanks Guys. To me the handle feel a little more comfortable than standard octagonal. The taper allows more comfortable pinch grip and the swells and narrows in the right places seem to make it more comfortable and stable to hold for my hand with my hand less cramped. This was a good one to test it out on as they won't be using them for 10 hour shifts:D I guess I need to let some of you test one out for extended periods of use in the future.:groucho:

03-29-2012, 05:04 AM
I hope you're thinking the same thing I'm thinking...

I bet your thinking, yay double bog oak! No I think I know what your thinking. :)

Dave Martell
03-29-2012, 10:52 AM
WOW!!!!!! :doublethumbsup:

04-02-2012, 03:07 AM
Thanks Dave, looks like the handles worked out. I had a bbq/party on Saturday and Tom came to pick up the work and have a burger. He was very pleased and says he can't believe he has to give them away.:D

Dave Martell
04-02-2012, 11:48 AM
Tom screwed up there.:lol2:

04-02-2012, 02:39 PM
I like the way you made the handles alike each other, but not the same.