Intro: Haladie Dagger-Ancient Weapon
So in this instructable I am going to show you how I build this haladie dagger. So this is a double-sided double-edged weapon from India and the first time I saw this in the forged in fire TV series. So you can say that this build is completely inspired by forged in fire. I am also a huge fan of Alec Stele who is best weapon maker on YouTube and I think most of you know him. A few months ago he builds Amores Chris Dagger. some of the inspiration is also taken from that dagger as well. I saw haladie half a year ago and as soon as I saw this weapon I fell in love with this and decided to make my own. But I definitely don't want it to look simple. Initially, my plan was to make this with father Damascus bars but unfortunately my parcel stuck in the customs office and due to that, I decided to build it with D3 high carbon high chromium Steel. I have some projects in my mind with the mosaic pins that's why I decided why not to make a handle with mosaic pins. So in this build your also going to see how to make mosaic slab as well and there are plenty of areas or projects where you can use these mosaic pins or slabs. Plenty of projects are still wondering in my mind and hoping that in future I show you them as well but for now I am going to show you the dagger build. Since this slab is my first attempt and I think I was not able to make it perfect as I needed and I came to know these mistake once the resin has been queued and I looked from both side after sending all the sides. Throughout the journey, I also tell you the perfect way to make the slab. As far as a blade is concerned I am quite happy with the result but I think if you have belt Sander then it's good to get a distilled taper onto the dagger. I tried that result with my angle grinder and files but not able to achieve that thing which I need it. Reason, why I'm posting this on the last date, is only because of the delay in the Damascus material which I ordered and I start this build 10 days before the final date and as the work started the time elapsed so fast that it came to the last date but I am happy that I am able to post this instructable. In the weapon line, this is my dream weapon and I am happy with the result and hope that in my upcoming weapon builds this experience plays the most important role in building them. Many of you are thinking that why I did not make it by forging process even I have a coal forge. although I have coal forge but I don't have a place to do the hammer work because it situated on to the top floor of my house and it's not ideal to hammer on to the roof because it may cause cracks or some other problem in the roof slab. So that's the reason why I didn't do the forging process I think in the future if I get the proper space then I definitely prefer the forging method as it's quite faster than the filing Jig when it's come to the beveling process. In last 3 days, I worked 17 hours a day which is a huge Nightmare for me because my right hand start cramped but I have the dedication for this build and only because of that I am able to complete this project in the required time.
There are many ups and downs came through this build but I faced each problem and able to finish this and the end result is in front of you. If you like this build and have some suggestions for me then definitely put them in the comment section down below I am extremely happy to read your feedback and reply you back.
Step 1: Material & Tool Used
Material and tool used
Following are the list of material and tool used to make this build.
Material for the knife handle
1. brass tube
2. copper tube
3. brazing rod
4. Two part epoxy resin
5. CA glue
8. Pigment powder
10. Scrap wood for making the mould
Initially, for the knife, I decided to use Damascus bar for the build but since there is some delay in the shipping because the custom of my country holds the parcel and didn't release it on time and because of that I decided to use D3 steel. This steel is high carbon and high chromium steel and generally used for making tools as it has more durable and holds up the edge very nicely. Initially, it's quite difficult to work with this material due to the carbon content but I think if you normalized the steel before the filling work for beveling the edge. You definitely get a lot of help after normalizing the steel. For the guard of the dagger I used brass and this is the thing which I love most than any other thing.
As there are a bunch of ways to do any work and you are free to use whatever tools you want and one works better for you. you can proceed with that. Following are the list of tools I used in making this dagger.
1. Angle grinder
2. Cutting wheel
3. Flexible grinding wheel (its different than the normal wheel generally used for grinding mild steel as it material removal rate is a lot faster than the normal grinding wheel because if you use flap wheel for this process than it took a lot more time to finish the work and second flexible wheel creates less noise then the normal one, so your neighbours will not affect a lot with this.
4. Flap disk
5. Die Grinder
6. Foredom or dermal
7. Carbide grinding bits
8. Drill machine
9. Drill bits
11. Center punch
13. Drill press
14. Buffing wheel
15. Buffing compound
16. Scotch Brite wheel
17. Knife filing jig
18. Various types of files like( flat file, half round, circular, square)
19. Diamond files
20. Bench vice.
Step 2: Designing the Shape
I didn't know much about this dagger before I watch this on forged in fire TV series and as soon as I saw this I am fell in love with this bad-boy and decided to build one for my own and I googled a lot for this dagger but didn't find much about this blade process. The only info I get about this knife is that its a double sided double-edged weapon which is mostly used for slicing and stabbing purpose and in India this weapon is used by Rajput Clans. I found some of the daggers having three knives but I decided to go with two. The main thing in the design is that all of them have a recurve. So I made a design which seems good to me and made that onto drawing sheet, then I palace a paper onto that and trace that design so that I can cut that design and start making the blade without harming master design.
Step 3: Cutting the Basic Shape
To cut the basic profile of the blade I decided to place my template onto the bar of D3 Steel and start tracing the outlines. Small neodymium magnets would work fantastically if you have any. I use those as well. I don't want to waste my materials that's why I decided to draw the design too close to each other so that less material should be wasted as it costly material. Then with the help of angle grinder and cut off wheel start the cutting process of the blade. Instead of making deep cuts from the boi decide to first score the outline onto the bar so that it would be easy for the bar to remain into that area. By repeating those lines deeper the material starts separate from a piece by piece. The area where the shape is quite complex I use multiple cuts method and then slowly knock off that material by perpendicular cuts. The separation part is quite time consuming because they are so close that if I cut with the angle grinder than it would easily damage the other knife. So I decided to drill small holes in those areas and then one hit with the hammer separate them apart.
Step 4: Final Profiling
After separating from the main bar the shape is quite rough and to improve that shape I use a flexible grinding wheel to grind off the excess material. The I follow the outlines which I generated from the template earlier, but even after grinding I left the tiny bit material so that final shaping could be done with files. Then with the help of files, I made the final shape. I didn't work on each knife at once, first I made the final shaping of one blade and then use it as a template and draw the outline on the second blade and then use files and angle grinder to remove the excess material.
Step 5: Marking:-
To draw the marking lines for the blades I coloured the blade with the help of marker and then I placed them onto a piece of granite which is dead flat and a good surface for the marking lines. These marking lines separating during the beveling process of the blades. Since it's a double-edged weapon and the end start tapering that why for me it very difficult to draw the layout of the centre line so that's why didn't draw that and use the eyeballing method. The blade edge line thickness is around 1mm thick.
Step 6: Edge Beveling:-
To start the edge beveling I use my own imaginary lines in the centre and with the help of the angle grinder start the beveling process. First I bevel one side up to which it looks pleasant to my eyes and then starts the beveling process of the other side. I stopped a tiny bit above From my edge reference line and finalize it on my filling jig. At this stage I forgot the ricasso area of the knife and stopped the grinding quite early then I noticed that thing and start the marking of those lines and grind of that area with the angle grinder.
Step 7: Finalize the Edge With the Bevel Jig
Since I left the little bit surface for the filing process I clamped my blade on to the Gough filing jig and start the beveling process of the blades. This is one of the time consuming work in knife making if you have limited tools but this process work awesome. I uses combination of different files to get the bevel of my blades. Make sure do not make the edge too thin because thinner the edge is more the chances of warping it. So I go as much safe as I can.
Step 8: Grinding the Blade
Before proceeding to the heat-treating process I decide to give the blade slightly clean finish so that it would be easy to proceed on the blade is hardened. With the help of angle grinder and flap disk of 80 and then 120 grit I clean the scratch marks. Which appears due to the filing process and now there are less chances of scale format it and once it hardened it would be easy to remove scratches.
Step 9: Heat Treatment
That is the most crucial part of this build because only a hardened blade can bear so much wear and tear for a long time. Since I am using D3 steel is didn't behave too weirded during the quenching process but I didn't want to take any risk so that's why I use thermal cycling. Before quenching the blade I made two thermal cycles by heating the blade to redness and then allow it to cool down slowly at room temperature. This thing is done to remove stresses from the blade. Once the thermal cycling process completed I hear the blade to the redness stage and then instantly dip it into the quenching oil as it is more friendly to the quench process of the blades. Once the blade has been quenched to check the hardness I use file and try to file down my blade but files barely able to make any connection with the blade which is a good sign of hardened blade. Then I place it on to the forge again to short time and continually flipping the blade so that it will not overheat and ruin the hardness of the blade for the tempering process. As this will make the blade able to bear stresses and didn't break in extreme conditions.
Step 10: Blade Polishing
Since I don't have belt sander so that's why I decide to use diamond files as it can easily remove the material even the blade become hard. The grit size of the file is 120 grit so it would be ideal for that process. I start with the file and then steadily increases the grit size to diminish the scratches. For the ease, I use soapy water as it removes material a lot more faster and gives the sandpaper more life and long run. I start from 150 grit and ended up to 1000 grit since I am going to use buffing wheel to me 1000 grit finish seems ideal for that process.
Step 11: Blade Guard
Since its a double sided weapon and usually used for slicing and stabbing purpose that's why there should be a need of guard which prevent the hand slipping onto the handle during stabbing. I made brass guard which prevents that action and keep the handler safe. For that, I use 1 inch thick piece of brass and then coloured the area so that marking could be easily seen. I cut down two pieces 1”X 3”. I cut them with the help of angle grinder. I use many other tools as well during this process but none of them work well. The only tool work good in that case is the angle grinder. Then I clamped 80 grit sanding belt onto granite slab and start the sanding process of those brass guards. Then I mark the area from where tang has to be passed. I draw that shape and then drilled out some holes to made a path for my files to enter into the balusters. After 2 days of work I am able to enters the tang into the brass pieces. To make the basic shape of the guards I made template onto the cad and use them as a reference to draw the outlines. Before proceeding to the further step I decided to drill holes first because once it get round shape it's very difficult to get the centre and drill holes for the pins. Then I follow the lines and draw cut the excess material with the help of grinder and grind of the excess with grinder and finalize the shape with belt by eyeballing. By making this thing my confidence reached on another lever and I am thinking that I can able to start the carving work as well. Once one shape has been finished I draw the second shape on to the sides and so the same procedure and the guard is in front of you which looks very beautiful indeed.
Step 12: Mosaic Slab for the Handle
Mosaic slab came in my mind for the handle of the knives. Although I am thinking about it for a long time but know when I get a chance I decided to give it a go. For the more detail process, you may also see my Instructables onto mosaic pins the procedure is almost the same. It changes when you have to make the complex shapes. After cutting down all the material I made the centre portion of the handle and glued the pins around it with the help of CA glue and then proceed further. Then I made a curve shape with the help of laminate and start placing the pins onto that laminate piece and then a small drop of glue used to hold the temporarily to its place. Then I made a box shape and place all of those pieces into that and then make an eye shape which I planned to make. Then I mix two-part epoxy resin and add a glow in dark pigment powder in it. Once the resin cured I make it square to each face by hand sanding and my handle piece is ready to rock. While making slab with pins always make sure that pins are cut down cleanly to avoid any misalignment. Always clean the pipes with acetone to decrease them so that they make a good bond with the resin or epoxy. Don't use too much CA glue while initial setting the pins. Take your time as much as you can to do it without the ca glue. While making slabs always make sure not to use that much pins in the slab if you are going to make knife handle with it. It has a lack of strength and difficult to work on. If you are grinding the slab to make sure to use plenty of water to avoid any mishappenings.
mosaic pins instructable
Step 13: Attaching the Handle
Since I am making hidden tang so these blades joined together with the help of this handle piece but before, that I have to made a cavity in them so that tang would be able to fit into these handles. On both side. I drilled fairly large holes so that it would be easy for the tang to enter into that handle. Then I fill the handle with the epoxy resin and apply WD40 onto the tang handle so the I will not be stuck into the handle. I also apply tape to the brass balusters so that it will also not stick with the handle. This technique learned from Alec stele. Once the epoxy dried I remove the blade From the handle and then repeat the same step onto the other side as well. You can see how clean the fit was once the blade has been removed compared to the back side which is still unfilled. After removing the blades off camera I filed a bit and made serrations so the epoxy will hold the blade to its position. Then I again mix the epoxy to finalize the handle and for that,I first glue the balusters of the blade and then glued the handle piece. To provide more strength to the blade handle I drilled 5mm holes on both side so that it would be easy to pin them together.
Step 14: Buffing
It seems quite odd that buffing comes to the early stage and this happens because my handle separated from the centre during the handle making process and it occurred at that time when I shaping the handle with an angle grinder. The reason is it overheat the metal tubes and it separated from the metal pin. So I leave it as it is and start the buffing process of the knife. I didn't pay too much time on this because I am out of my time and I am still writing this 5 hr. before the closing date. But luckily shiny surface appears onto the blade which increases the beauty to some extent.
Step 15: Blade Sharpening
It looks quite weird that sharpening comes first before finalizing the handle but it galleries to that incident. I have a wheel made out of mdf. Then I hold it into my drill machine and start spinning it. That wheel has sandpaper sticked one that from 150 grit to 1000 grit. To sharpen the edge. Since the blade edge is quite thick that's why I start from 150 grit. Shaping and finalize the dagger. Then I glued the handle together but before proceeding further I wrapped the blade with plastic to prevent it from scratches. Then I start the handle shaping process. I am not fixed to any design. I just kept on making pleasant & shape which suits the handle as well. For the shaping procedure, I use my foredom Tool, because my die grinder died in midway, at a time when I need it more. But even then my determination kept me on making this bad boy and completed on time. Then I sanded of the handle all from 150 to 1000 grit but I didn't do the buffing as it makes the surface black instead of making it shiny. The last four days are the most hardworking days of my life till now. Working 17 hours a day is definitely a nightmare for me. But after watching the end result I forget that hard work and pain. Now the final piece is in front of you.
Step 16: Finally
So if you like this build and have some suggestions for me then make sure to leave them in the comment section down below I am extremely happy to read your comments.