Charlie Metcalf recent knife project

Forging Ahead

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I’ve been having a lot of fun making knives at the studio of Dean Crumpacker — an inspiring teacher who, due to the onset of Parkinson’s disease a number of years ago had to change his focus from massive blacksmithing projects to a more managable knife making. I have always been interested in forging iron since my sculpture days in college. This interest migrated into knives because of my love of cooking and appreciating a good tool for the job.


These are photos of the knives I’ve made. Joining two types of steel (bandsaw blades and spring steel) causes patterns in the steel after they are forged together and then ground into knives. This is due to the different makeup of the steels and their reaction to heat and soaking in an acid bath. This technique is called forged welded or Damascus steel.


This art is an extension of my creative process used in building. I am inspired by and honored to be a student of Dean’s.


Here’s a link to recent story on him.

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