First Name: Neels
KGSA Number:
Telephone: 083 451 3105
Web Site:
Instagram: blackdragonforge
Does Courses: Yes
Course Info: There is nothing quite like hand forging your own knife. This introductory 1 day class taught by Neels van den Berg, an American Bladesmith Society Master Smith and member of the Knifemaker's Guild of Southern Africa, will teach you how to hand forge a basic knife as it has been done through the ages, with step by step instruction. The class is open to students of all skill levels, including those with no prior experience in bladesmithing.

The class focuses on the fundamentals of forging, grinding, and heat-treating a blade. The knife will be forged from SAE5160, a medium carbon spring steel perfect for the intended application. During the class, students will be guided through the process of forging the knife blade to shape, basic flat grinding, heat treating - hardening and tempering, and blade finishing and sharpening.

The class covers the safety precautions that must be taken when working with high-carbon steel and the tools and equipment used in bladesmithing. Students will learn about the history of bladesmithing and the different types of blades and knives that are made by bladesmiths, as well as the basic principles of blade design, such as blade geometry, edge angles, and balance.

By the end of the class, students will have the opportunity to take home a single hand-forged knife, which is the outcome of the class (No handle scales and no sheath). Class notes are provided in the form of the instructor's Bladesmithing 101 tutorial uploaded to his YouTube channel, which is free to access.

This class is a great opportunity for anyone interested in learning about the art and science of bladesmithing. It's a hands-on class that provides a great introduction to the field, and will give you a taste of the process and the skills required to be a bladesmith. You will have the opportunity to learn from a master of the craft, and gain a solid foundation in the basics of bladesmithing.

For more information and bookings, please phone me on 083 451 3105
Profile: Neels van den Berg is a highly skilled and accomplished knifemaker with over a decade of experience in the field. He has passed performance tests from the Southern African Bladesmiths Association and the American Bladesmith Society, including achieving his Master Smith certification from the ABS in 2022.

Neels' dedication to his craft is evident in the numerous awards and accolades he has earned throughout his career. His work has been recognized at knife shows and competitions across South Africa, including winning Best Art Fixed Blade and Best Dagger at the Durban Easter Knife Show multiple times, and the B.R. Hughes Award at the Blade Show Atlanta in 2022. He is also a voting member of The Knifemakers' Guild of Southern Africa and a member of the Cape Knifemakers Guild.

As a master of his craft, Neels Van Den Berg creates knives of the highest quality and design that are not only beautiful but also functional and with this level of recognition and awards he is considered one of the most accomplished and respected knifemakers in the industry.

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