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Thread: San Mai Elmax super steel with a damascus cladding.

  1. #1

    San Mai Elmax super steel with a damascus cladding.

    OK this is to funny not to share, Even though at the time I didnt find much humor in what happened, at all!

    I am always challenging Randy Jr. to try new things. and to experiment. Pushing him so to speak to continue trying stuff and stretching his skill set.. (As any good day should do IMO) And as any kid should he often dont listen to me or takes one part of what I say and then does it his way.. lol God Bless him!

    This time I may have went to far.
    I had a bar of Elmax stainless steel on my bench and told Jr he needed to sandwich it in between some damascus and make me a san mia bar! Which at the time seemed like a GREAT idea. lol you know, the beauty of damascus with a Elmax core. Man If we pull it off it would of been awesome kitchen cutter.. As Elmax has gotten RAVE reviews in the custom knife community as being one of the best powder stainless steels to date.

    . Anyways, This time he listened to my silly suggestions. and put together a stack, of San Mai, and carefully prepared it to go into the forge. After a reasonable soak time he pulled that bar out and took it over to the forging press. Now you might be thinking,,,,,, this dont sound half bad. I gota try that.. DONT DO IT! lol This is where the $HIT HIT THE FAN!!

    At the point where the press touched the billet, MOLTEN STAINLESS started shooting out of the bar. spraying in all directions and all the way across my shop, bouncing off walls. I exaggerate not. It was like someone shot it out of a gun. and then there were little fires caused by it in 3 areas on my shop. Its was kinda scary! Thankfully, no one was hurt. And after it was all over, Jr and I both kinda got a chuckle out of it..

    Now, I cant tell you that I wont be pushing him to try some other stupid crazy combination in the near future.. Because I probably will. and I have a feeling one of the combinations one day will be a winner. In the mean time.. I think we will stay away from the forge with Elmax!! lol

    Thanks guys for all your support and help this year. This community is the best and I count myself as being blessed to be a part of it!
    Happy New Year!

    Inspired by God, Forged by Fire, Tempered by Water, Grounded by Earth, Guided by the spirit.. Randy Haas

    Availible Knives

  2. #2

    echerub's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Toronto, Canada
    Whoah... press and out squirted the molten steel? Definitely glad everyone's okay - and yeah, that's one of those things that makes a good story afterwards because everyone's okay

    Happy New Year, Randy!

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    San Diego, CA
    Holy crap! I was expecting some pretty pics, lol! Glad you didn't lose more than the bar!

  4. #4
    Yea, it was pretty crazy, molten metal flying in all directions. and Jr hit it with the press about 3 or 4 times B4 he realized the extant of what was happening. I hit the floor ducking for then it was a mad dash to put out the fires and make sure there were gona be no more..

    tk59 were gona keep trying and working on a few other combinations. So some time soon there will be pretty pics

    Inspired by God, Forged by Fire, Tempered by Water, Grounded by Earth, Guided by the spirit.. Randy Haas

    Availible Knives

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    St. Petersburg, FL
    Yipe!!! What kind of press do you have? I would not be inclined to forge Elmax or other PM stainless steels to begin with for fear of screwing up what the mill had worked so hard to get, but now I have another reason. I'l stick with stock removal for that stuff.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    May 2011
    Top of Georgia
    You must have been really hot then, eh?


  7. #7
    Delbert Ealy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Indian River, MI Just under The Bridge
    Sometimes you just have to learn these things for yourself. I read the title of the post and thought to myself, no way he's done this, and I have to admit that when I saw the line about molten stainless squirting out, I laughed. Not because it was funny, molten steel shooting at you is not funny(I know, I have had this happen too). There is a reason there are so few stainless steels used for damascus and for forging. The high alloy content in steels like elmax lowers the overall melting temperature of the steel, combined with the intense pressure from the press which lowers the melting temp even more explains what happened.

    Laminated metals specialist, Kitchen knife and gadget maker
    "Build a man a fire and he will be warm for a day, set a man on fire and he will be warm for the rest of his life"

  8. #8
    PierreRodrigue's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Alberta, Canada
    Oh man! WOW! Glad you guys are all ok! Now I have to admit to giggling a bit picturing you guys running around putting out hot spots!

    Feel free to visit my website,

  9. #9
    Canada's Sharpest Lefty Lefty's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Yikes! Glad you two are ok!
    This might sound like a dumb question, but is it possible to forge the elmax core at a lower temp, while having a separate bar (different material) for the cladding going at a higher temp, then sandwiching them together at two different temperatures? I have a feeling this isn't doable, but who knows. I'm guessing you'd need two forges and that the hotter cladding would affect the core temperature. I'm just curious....
    Check out the happenings around McLean Customs, at:
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  10. #10
    The alleles created by mutation may be beneficial

    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Hampton Roads, VA
    Glad you guys are okay, but imagine how amazing those pictures would have been

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