Knife as of Dec. 1 2021. File initially ground into knife. Started from an 18″ file. Prior to December 2021 I had ground it into this shape.
Forge improvised from old Weber kettle. Coals rest on terracotta saucer from Home Depot, reinforced by pizza pan. Holes were drilled to allow air circulation from below. Blower is an old hair dryer, connected by a short length of PVC pipe to an iron pipe that actually goes into the fire.
Clamp to hold blades flat. Two right angle brackets stiffened by poplar 2x2s. C-clamps used hold the sides together
Heated the blade to orange color in forge. Alas, no picture. Quenched in cold water. Big mistake. Placed in clamp to stop warping.
Knife broken after quenching. The tip of the blade just snapped off with finger pressure
Tested the strength of the remaining body of the knife against some scrap wood (Southern Yellow Pine, I think). The blade survived.
Reshaping the now shorter blade. Ground down about 1.5″ of the file blade to make the tang longer.
Almost finished knife. The guard is a piece of aluminum. Brass would have been better, but the aluminum was on hand. The handle was made from two wooden scales on either side of the tang, with additional pieces of wood added above and below the tang. I was able to add rivets to make a mechanical connection between the handle and the tang, but I need more practice at peening them.
Here is the finished knife with the leather sheath I made for it.