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Thread: Thinning damascus

  1. #1

    Thinning damascus

    Forgive the possibly newbie question.

    With knives like the Tanaka R2 damascus, how do you thin behind the edge? It seems to me that the textured damascus would prevent you from thinning easily - you'd have to take off a whole bunch of material and make the knife look pretty ugly doing it.

    Or am I missing something?

  2. #2
    Senior Member EdipisReks's Avatar
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    ideally one would thin, polish, then re-etch. it's one of the hazards of buying that kind of knife.

  3. #3
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    You could also use fingerstones instead of re-etching, though that would look different than original. I have yet to get some fingerstones, but plan on it at some point. In my experience, the Tanaka damascus had less reactivity/rust problems when I polished out what was etched; looks better too, in my opinion.

  4. #4
    How exactly do you "re-etch"?

  5. #5
    Senior Member EdipisReks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by slowtyper View Post
    How exactly do you "re-etch"?
    acid. i use a combo of PCB etchant and 12 molar HCL, but i work at a basic research biology department, so i have access to happy, happy acid. regular PCB etchant (available at radio shack) and white vinegar, in a 50/50 combination, inside a PVC pipe or glass pitcher sized correctly to keep the knife nice and upright, works great. just keep it in until it looks right. dispose of the acid by pouring it down the drain VERY slowly with the water running, and treat the knife with a baking soda/water slurry when you're done. it's really not a big deal, just wear rubber gloves and safety goggles. even my mix doesn't do much more than turn any affected skin yellow, as long as it doesn't get in your eyes, if you get it under the tap quickly.

  6. #6
    Cool, thank you. I only have one damascus blade but I'm not thinking of thinning it....however I will try that when the pattern eventually starts to fade from regular sharpening and when I have some time to kill.

  7. #7
    Senior Member mateo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EdipisReks View Post
    dispose of the acid by pouring it down the drain VERY slowly with the water running
    Err.. isn't this illegal in most states?

  8. #8
    Senior Member EdipisReks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mateo View Post
    Err.. isn't this illegal in most states?
    no. dilution is the solution. it's what any high school chemistry lab would do. like i said, very slowly.

  9. #9
    Hobbyist Craftsman Hattorichop's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by EdipisReks View Post
    no. dilution is the solution. it's what any high school chemistry lab would do. like i said, very slowly.
    High school kids are etching damascus these days?
    Boy did I miss out!

  10. #10
    Can you show us how to cook meth next?

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