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Copper Damascus? Carter?

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Dave Martell

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So going back more than a few years ago Ryan asked me if I'd ever etched damascus with copper and I of course said no. He then said that we'd have to try it sometime and I said sure but never did. He mentioned it every so often again and again over the years but I never had a damascus knife that I could try this on so I never did it. Finally he sent me one of his Carter neckers to "go for it". Here's the results....




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kalaeb

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Holy crap that is cool. I have a large copper san mai funny with copper accents in the handle that you are welcome to try but no damascus pieces.
 

Dave Martell

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Holy crap that is cool. I have a large copper san mai funny with copper accents in the handle that you are welcome to try but no damascus pieces.
I'm not sure how/if it'll work on that knife. I tried it on a Hiro AS and it did nothing besides temporarily turning the cladding red.
 

chazmtb

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That's awsome!

Just a question though, would it be food safe to have a copper etched knife? It would probably be, because people cook and distill things in copper all the time.
 

Dave Martell

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That's awsome!

Just a question though, would it be food safe to have a copper etched knife? It would probably be, because people cook and distill things in copper all the time.

I had the same question and all I can come up with is that it should be.....but what do I know about that? :)
 

WillC

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Looks really cool! I've done it by accident before from all the accumulated acid in the etchant from using copper coated welding wire to dandle stuff in. Will be interesting to see what happens with patina, copper is said to accelerate the corrosion steel, though i'm sure moisture would have to be present on a long term basis for it to cause a problem. I would think treated as a normal carbon blade it could be less reactive, other than a darkening of the copper. Ammonia and salts and things like that tend to cause the blue/green patina on copper.
 

bcrano

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I'm really interested, Dave. Just have to quickly sort out which knife.
 

bcrano

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Would it work on a Mr. Itou R2 damascus? If so I'm way in!
 

bcrano

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Subtle it would not be. But maybe subtle is over rated? :doublethumbsup:
 

bcrano

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So Dave the knife is on it's way! Its going to be a Mr.Itou Gyuto 180mm "Abalone Handle" for copperization!!!



Prepare to ooooooh and ahhhhhhh
 

bcrano

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You think? I got Pierre working on something classy, so why not throw a little confetti on this one? My small collection needs a spotlight hog.
 

kalaeb

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Just out of curiosity, what steels does Murray do his damascus out of, and which steel took on the copper properties?
 

Dave Martell

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Just out of curiosity, what steels does Murray do his damascus out of, and which steel took on the copper properties?
I don't know what Murray uses in his mix.

It looks like the copper got snagged by the core steel for sure as well as something in the damascus mix too.
 

PierreRodrigue

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There is a smith up here on the west coast, that actually blends pure copper in his damascus, gives a ribbon effect. More ornamental than practical! But looks cool!
 

Delbert Ealy

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There is a smith up here on the west coast, that actually blends pure copper in his damascus, gives a ribbon effect. More ornamental than practical! But looks cool!
I did this once kinda by accident, I was using monel 400 which has a significant amout of copper, the copper migrated into the steel, and it made the steel "funky" Don't ask me to be more clear on this, it just felt wrong. I think, but cannot prove that the copper migrated into the boundries of the crystal structure of the steel. I do know that it broke easier than my regular damascus, and it did feel funky when grinding it.

As far as the copper colored etch, this has happened to me many times, and is usually followed by the sort of reation that follows hitting ones thumb with a hammer. The copper adheres to both types of steel in the damascus and is usually a very thin layer which is not stable. if the knife sees any sort of use the copper coloring will be gone in very short order. Copper is much more reactive than steel.
Del
 

Chef Niloc

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I don't get it? Is there copper in the Damascus, or are you adding the copper somehow your self? I.E. how did you do this?
 

mainaman

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I always thought those are made by mixing copper and iron, I have seen many on japanese sites.
 

sudsy9977

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Wow looks awesome Dave.....cant wait to see if it actually stays with use....Ryan
 

99Limited

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Bang my head against a wall, but I don't get it. That copper etched blade looks like someone dipped the blade in a bottle of Pepto-Bismol. That knife would make a great gift for a Mary Kay associate.
 

mr drinky

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I'm with 99 on this one. Not only do I not understand etching enough to be slightly confused by this thread, but the look also doesn't do it for me. I also have a type of color blindness, so maybe that is it. Anyhow, good luck with the experiment, and I am interested to see how it comes out.

k.
 

Dave Martell

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The process is to add copper to etchant and soak until desired results are obtained then finish blade to the appropriate level. The copper is in the surface of the steel enough that it'll stay put but how it wears is anyone's guess. Normally when this is done it's not on purpose, it's an accident that occurs when etchant gets tainted. Some people do use it for effect on damascus bolsters or endcaps, etc. Normally you don't get the strong coloring effect that this blade took on as it's usually streaks of copper seen only. The copper will patina quickly and turn dark. It's not a look for everyone. :)
 
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