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As I have been more focused on knife making projects and growing the sharpening business, I had been feeling like blacksmithing was taking a major back seat to both. As fate would have it, I was commissioned to make a base for an 11 foot walnut slab which my brother Jon had been tasked with building.

My sister and brother-in-law recently rebuilt their home after the loss of their home in recent California wildfires. One of the few things to survive were slabs of Claro Walnut that Jimmy, Jon and I had slabbed four years ago. It is fitting that the surviving slabs become the spiritual and physical heart of their new home: the dining table where they would share meals, drinks and conviviality with loved ones for years to come.

It was the largest project that I have attempted to date and I am so proud of the result.

Brother Jon, who beautifully finished the tabletop, along with two gorgeous mantle pieces for the fireplaces, assisted me throughout the project. He was the striker, which is the wielder of the sledge hammer in the forging process, and it was a real treat to work with him on this labor of love.

Aside from that, I continue to refine my skills and the layout and equipment of my shop, both to create more efficiency and less mess, but also to prepare for where we are going: higher quality hand forged knives, more complex and striking damascus patterns ( along with our mono-steel knives) and maybe more table projects.

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