PDA

View Full Version : Bill Burke 300 Suji Dragon's breath damascus



oivind_dahle
05-29-2012, 06:31 AM
A few years back I came across this knife on the old forum:

http://www.fototime.com/2232588E1D31498/standard.jpg

Amazing knife owned by an amazing man. The knife struck me by its beauty, and starting to read about the making and the maker I knew I would be truly unhappy not having one of my own.

The blade was hand forged in a technique known in Japan as hon warikomi, meaning "authentic wedging" and means the lamination is done by hand as compared to using available factory-laminated material. I started to read my up on Bill and his work. I was at this point unfamiliar with the 52100 and different HT. From Bill Ive learned a lot of words like jigane and hagane - gotta love the words.

Browsing through forums and the net, it was hard to find out about Bill. One of the coolest stories was on Bob Kramers site:

"All this may sound extreme, but so are the judges' standards, which are neatly illustrated by the story of Bill Burke. In 2002, a trucker used Burke's knife to escape from a wreck. The trucker had first tried another knife, made of the same steel, but it snapped; Burke's knife cut a large hole in the truck's cab, reportedly made of "double-thick-layered steel," and suffered only a mild chip. When the news spread, knife orders poured in. Several years later, Burke applied for his master's smithing stamp, but the judges turned him down--for mistakes that apparently didn't bother the show's buyers. "Even though the judges failed me," Burke told me, "all of the knives I brought were gone in about fifteen minutes." One sold for forty-eight hundred dollars. This year, the judges finally passed him."

http://kramerknives.com/nyer-art.htm

You can also read about the ABS MS on that site. I was sold.


I contacted Bill with some questions and what his price was. I talked with my GF and ordered one of his knives, however I wanted something special. I am highly influenced by Devin Thomas, Shigefusa and I pick the best of the best from other makers. I really like Mr Raders bolsters, so I asked Bill about an integral bolster on mine. Long story short, I ended up with lots of knives from Bill. We have discussed the knives from time to time, and Im pretty sure Bill is happy I live on the other side of the world cause I might be a person calling him every five minutes.

I wanted a san mai knife, as I really want to test Bills legendary 52100. But a few weeks ago I tested 52100 (Marko) and Pierres Suji. The 52100 couldn't take the same sharp edge, so I asked on the forum about it. THen I decided to go for a Dragon Breath suji instead of the sanmai.

Here it is in the early process of making. I know Bill will post some more pics in this thread, I also know the other knives is kicking his butt. Anyway:

Bills first integral bolster (ASAIK):

http://www.fototime.com/DB7D6FE4C24E365/standard.jpg


So far I have had the pleasure of talking to Bill a lot the past 2 years. Knowing the amount of hours spend pounding that knife its a privilege to have the opportunity to get my hands on it. Cant wait to see how it turnes out :)

oivind_dahle
05-29-2012, 06:32 AM
Oh I forgot. The other knives will be sanmai with Bills legendary 52100 as hagane :)

Marko Tsourkan
05-29-2012, 08:22 AM
Man, you like to brag. :D

DeepCSweede
05-29-2012, 09:44 AM
That is already awesome!! Oivind, your vision along with great artists is producing some amazing work. Continue on....

Bill Burke
05-29-2012, 09:52 AM
Thanks Oivind, a little correction. That is the first integral bolster Dragons breath but not the first integral bolster.

oivind_dahle
05-29-2012, 09:57 AM
More info Bill ;)

However Bill is the maker, Im just a wannabe hang around paying the Bill :)

Bill Burke
05-29-2012, 10:17 AM
300mm sujihiki blade steel from 1084, 15n20 and n201. The Dragons breath pattern has 27 seperate welding steps in it. This blade started out as a six to seven pound billet. through forging grinding and cutting losses when the dragons breath was finished there was only about a pound of steel left the forging of the blade and grinding further reduced that to a few ounces. this blade is 2.86 just in front of the bolsters and tapers to 2.0mm at about one third the blade length where it starts to taper more quickly ending up at .4mm at the tip. it has a full convex grind to a zero edgeand is less than .5mm 10mm behind the edge.

oivind_dahle
05-29-2012, 10:23 AM
God damn it will be fun to split lobsters with this one!

To bad your camera is broken Bill, cause we want pics!
Hehe :)

Amazing work!

Cadillac J
05-29-2012, 10:38 AM
Colin's BB suji has always been one of my favorite knives on the forum--just something about it that drew me in.

Dragons breathe design looks so freakin amazing on a narrow blade liks a suji...I can't wait to see the final product.

I might have to get my leather gloves and piano wire ready and make a trip out to Norway soon--kidding.

Eamon Burke
05-29-2012, 10:44 AM
Can't wait to see a close up of that bolster transition.

tk59
05-29-2012, 11:20 AM
...I wanted a san mai knife, as I really want to test Bills legendary 52100. But a few weeks ago I tested 52100 (Marko) and Pierres Suji. The 52100 couldn't take the same sharp edge...I don't understand this part. What 52100 couldn't take the same sharp edge as what?

oivind_dahle
05-29-2012, 02:20 PM
I testet 52100 agains a O1 core steel encapsulated in pure nickel and direct forged in a high contrast damascus of 15N20 and 1084 steel.
Might be just me but the 52100 got the same insane edge as the other. I asked Bill about it here: http://www.kitchenknifeforums.com/showthread.php/5936-BB-EE?p=98777&viewfull=1#post98777

I need to test i by my self, so why not a suji in dragon breath :)
This will not be my most used knife. Bills 225 sanmai (special) will be that, competing with my DT bubblewrap and some other hot models. Im no one knife man :(

Bill Burke
05-29-2012, 02:48 PM
Oivind I am with TK59 On this, I am not understanding what you are trying to say. Did the san mai take a better edge than the 52100?

oivind_dahle
05-29-2012, 04:30 PM
First off I am no expert on sharpening knives, but I did talk to Harald aka Darkhoek on the phone.

He didnt manage to get the 52100 as sharp as he did with O1.
I tried his 52100 and it was nowhere close to my white either.

It might be us norwegian not doing things right, but level of sharpness is not as good on 52100 as other steels we have. Are we noobs?

WillC
05-29-2012, 06:13 PM
Thats a stunning looking blade......Could just be that the 01 was a tad softer and easier to sharpen. I've found 01 a tad unstable up past 61 hrc, thats without cryo though, but Its nice at this hardness, I imagine the 52100 from the boys is well up past that.

tk59
05-29-2012, 08:03 PM
First off I am no expert on sharpening knives, but I did talk to Harald aka Darkhoek on the phone.

He didnt manage to get the 52100 as sharp as he did with O1.
I tried his 52100 and it was nowhere close to my white either.

It might be us norwegian not doing things right, but level of sharpness is not as good on 52100 as other steels we have. Are we noobs?Hmm. I'm not disputing your claim and I don't know the cause of the effect that you are seeing. I've sharpened a fair number of different flavors of 52100 and O1. Nearly all of them took very sharp edges very easily. That includes blades from Marko and Bill. If you're using a Marko 52100 as reference, he has his own HT (maybe several depending on what you're after). Another thing to consider is I've seen more than one reference to variation between different batches of 52100.

Bill Burke
05-29-2012, 08:13 PM
Hmmm, I could be wrong but I believe that with the right heat treat 52100 is capable of some of the finest grain and carbides that can be had. This should lead to a knife that is very easy to sharpen even at high hardness. The knife that Tihn has is 61-63 rockwell and to me it was very easy to sharpen and Tihn's comment above leads me to believe that he had no problem either. I guess that you will find out about my steel soon enough though. Maybee I should send you a loner Burketech just so you can see if it was you or the steel.

Darkhoek
05-30-2012, 02:26 AM
First off I am no expert on sharpening knives, but I did talk to Harald aka Darkhoek on the phone.

He didnt manage to get the 52100 as sharp as he did with O1.
I tried his 52100 and it was nowhere close to my white either.

It might be us norwegian not doing things right, but level of sharpness is not as good on 52100 as other steels we have. Are we noobs?

My point here, Řivind, was that I was not able to get the 52100 as sharp as the O1 in the Black Pearl from Pierre. That is not the same as it is not possible. Just that it has not been possible for me (yet). 52100 is an absolutely amazing steel, and I am sure it will take a screaming edge when I manage to break the code on the steel, as I apparently have managed to do with O1. I will continue to experiment with some of my obscure ceramic stones and different naturals combined with Marko's excellent diamond loaded felt strop to see what I can do. The obvious strength with 52100 is the edge wear resistance, which is amazing.

DarKHOeK

oivind_dahle
05-30-2012, 09:50 AM
I don't think we should speculate in this to much.
Harald and I will spend some time testing different stones on the different steels. But I got to say Harald is the skilled one of us. Im just a noob.
But seeing how the 52100 reacted on Markos strop was insane, so I will have a strop next to my cutting board at all times.

Anyway, Im really looking forward to this knife from Bill. I hope he gets a new camera so there can be some pics.
Bill: No need to send me a burketech - I would probably never return it, and you would never catch me as I live on the other side of the planet :P
When I like something you gotta take it back from my dead cold hands....

tk59
05-30-2012, 10:21 AM
...I was not able to get the 52100 as sharp as the O1 in the Black Pearl from Pierre...Thanks for the clarification, DH. I'm curious as to how you are evaluating the sharpness.

oivind_dahle
05-30-2012, 10:41 AM
Thin:

Harald and I did a tomato test. The 52100 didn't bite like the O1.
Harald might have done some tests on his own...

Anyway, lets not speculate to much. The 52100 is probably the best steel next to some of DTs mystery carbon, and with BBs famous HT this will be amazing knives. The reason I could go for dragon on the suji, is that I like BBs dragon and its not my main knife. He is making a sanmai 52100 hagane for me that will be my main knife to use. This knife is however a PITA for Bill so far :)

Justin0505
05-30-2012, 10:59 AM
Epic.

It will shurely be a blade of legend and lore. Ive also long wanted a BB blade w/ integral bolster. This is just over-the-top.

Darkhoek
05-31-2012, 09:15 AM
The dragon breath pattern with the integral bolster is probably the most spectacular blade I have seen to date. It is just a thing of unbelievable grace and beauty. Congrats to both Řivind and Bill on this masterpiece. This knife should definately have a full musk handle. And a matching full musk saya :D Hmmm, where do I score a 330mm musk ox boss piece these days...

As for sharpening 52100 it seems like the steel (at least with Markos excellent HT) responds best to synthetic stones and especially WA stones (White Aluminum oxide). They are highly effective stones and cut steel with very little applied pressure which to me seems to be one of the key factors (which again is kind of odd considering the steel's apparent chip resistance).

DarKHOeK

Bill Burke
05-31-2012, 10:27 AM
I use a combination of arkansas and water stones. My knives are sharp off the belt grinder, then clean up the edge with a Norton fine india stone, only about three strokes per sidethen a washita arkansas stone. then go to water stones 6000ish 8000ish and finish with 12,000 ish. No stropping as I have never found it necessary. This results in a screaming sharp edge.


The dragon breath pattern with the integral bolster is probably the most spectacular blade I have seen to date. It is just a thing of unbelievable grace and beauty. Congrats to both Řivind and Bill on this masterpiece. This knife should definately have a full musk handle. And a matching full musk saya :D Hmmm, where do I score a 330mm musk ox boss piece these days...

As for sharpening 52100 it seems like the steel (at least with Markos excellent HT) responds best to synthetic stones and especially WA stones (White Aluminum oxide). They are highly effective stones and cut steel with very little applied pressure which to me seems to be one of the key factors (which again is kind of odd considering the steel's apparent chip resistance).

DarKHOeK