Welding steel

As I wrote some times ago I like to learn new things, combine the techniques I learned to something new, and expand my skills. One thing on my bucket list was to buy a welding machine and learn to weld. Probably because I saw my dad try his best with his not-so-good arc welding transformer when I was a child and still I am fascinated.

I looked up different machines, not too expensive for just getting my feet wet, with good reviews, and most importantly it should be as flexible as possible when it comes to welding techniques. I ended up having a look at Stahlwerk Schweißgeräte [unpaid advertising]. I was thinking about to get their MIG 200 amps machine as it was able to do Mig/Mag, arc welding and flux-cored welding. Unfortunately, it was not on stock for a long time on their site and on Amazon. I even got a welding automatic helmet and welding gloves for Christmas long before I got the machine itself.

So last week I did it and hit the “buy now” button as a pre-order. I had decided that for my needs 175 amps would be sufficient and bought the machine. The day the parcel service announced the package I kept hitting the reload on the parcel tracking page, nervous like a kid on Christmas Eve. Meanwhile, the tracking page even got a 500 server error message but fortunately, it wasn’t me. They where just launching a new page 🙂

My 14 years old son trying out dads new welder

I tried to weld some beads onto some scrap metal and oh boy times have changed. It was so easy to ignite the electrode and or the flux-cored wire. No way you can compare that to the old transformer I got in my garage, the old welding machine of my dad. In the end, I had the best results with simple arc welding electrodes.

In the above video you see my son trying out my new machine.

Customer review for the Longbow by JAMZT53

Today I received my Beautiful Longbow, courtesy of the Masterful Hands of Andreas @simplyknives.. The German Knife making Prodigy.. The knife is 11” OAL, with a 7” Blade, that is Razor Sharpened and hand sanded and polished to a Mirror finish..The handle is stabilized green Poplar Burl, which is my Favorite Color.. The Knife is the third Beauty, Andreas has made for me.. He does this part time and this Longbow is his 15th Blade, he has ever made…He also completed a Gorgeous Custom made Leather Sheath..
This knife exceeds any and all expectations I had.. It is amazing.. Feels terrific in the hand and I just love it.. Thank you so much, for all your hard work.. Checkout Andreas @simplyknives ..🇩🇪🙏🏻🤝🇺🇸

Joe Topiah @JAMZT53
View this post on Instagram

***SIMPLY AMAZING*** Today I received my Beautiful Longbow, courtesy of the Masterful Hands of Andreas @simplyknives.. The German Knife making Prodigy.. The knife is 11” OAL, with a 7” Blade, that is Razor Sharpened and hand sanded and polished to a Mirror finish..The handle is stabilized green Poplar Burl, which is my Favorite Color.. The Knife is the third Beauty, Andreas has made for me.. He does this part time and this Longbow is his 15th Blade, he has ever made...He also completed a Gorgeous Custom made Leather Sheath.. This knife exceeds any and all expectations I had.. It is amazing.. Feels terrific in the hand and I just love it.. Thank you so much, for all your hard work.. Checkout Andreas @simplyknives ..🇩🇪🙏🏻🤝🇺🇸

A post shared by Joe Topiah 🇺🇸Ohio🇺🇸 (@jamzt53) on

The story of my second built of Kukri III

Custom made Kukri III knife with leather sheath

Before I sent the first built of my Kukri III custom knife model to my friend @JAMZT53 I showed the knife around. It was admired by many people, friends, and family – so I quickly got another order for that knife in my books.

After I finished the Longbow I tried a different way to organize my work and started to work on multiple knives at the same time. I began making another PB, Tigershark, and Kukri III model at the same time and planned to switch whenever I had the motivation for a specific step of knife making.

Kukri III custom knife photographed from the top with grey background

While doing so life hit me and I found myself in the middle of switching my daytime job. Don’t get me wrong, the step was planned and long overdue but it brought a lot of changes to my life. With a lot more responsibility and freedom of making decisions, sculpting an entire IT department from the ground up and such. It is honestly an awesome job and it was absolutely the right decision.

As a result, I simply did not have the focus on handcrafting and coming back home late, and then go to my workshop and work on a knife. So knife making got a bit off my schedule. I was all the time looking forward to diving back into it though but even on the weekends, I could not find the time and energy for it.

Times have changed, I “arrived” in the new job and I got a lot of very positive feedback from my new boss and I am obviously doing one or two things right there. That put a lot of wind under my wings and additionally then came the Corona lockdown and we are all working from home. That took away all the commuting to and from work. In the end, I am working a lot more on my job from the home office and on the other hand, I am finding back my way into knife making on the weekends or finishing one or two steps in the evening. And also: It got warmer since spring is here – the small radiator just does not warm up the workshop so nicely when it is cold outside 🙂

Kukri III closeup of the etching on the hilt of the blade
Kukri III with a bit different name tag and my makers mark “SK”

So here I am back, with a finished Kukri III on my table, working on the sheath and pushing things forward to deliver the knife, which by the way came out quite good. I am happy with the final result and look forward to seeing the reaction of the one who ordered it.