Damascus steel is the metal of kings, queens, leaders, and warriors, prized for thousands of years for its mythical beauty and magical properties. It is strong and hard, yet ductile and flexible, qualities that earn it the reputation of the sword that can sever other lesser swords.
The remarkable characteristics of Damascus steel became known to the western world when Europeans reached the Middle East, beginning in the 11th century. They discovered that swords of this metal could split a feather in midair, yet retain their edge through many a battle with Middle Easterners. The swords were easily recognized by a characteristic watery or ''damask'' pattern on their blades.
Not all Damascus steel is identical, and our methods of using it on our pieces are as varied as the patterns within the material itself. Mythological history is steeped with tales of the magical valor spurred by the legend of Damascus swords and weapons.
Bejeti Damascus is no less magical as we painstakingly create precision wallets from metals fused in a Masters forge. Fit for Leaders.
Beyond its lore, the science of this marvelous material starts with multiple types of steel (alloys) and metals in the form of plates, bars, rods, chips, or powders that are stacked or assembled into a billet shaped mass. The mass is “forge welded” into a solid billet by heating it in a forge to around 1,200°C (2,200°F), and hammering it into the desired shape and condensing it until the layers have fused solid. The billet is again heated and manipulated by folding it, bending it, twisting it, or cutting and restacking it. The creativity in the manipulation is the artistry of the process and is limited only by the imagination of the blacksmith. The diversity of the metal layers is what makes this material so special. Some layers offer hardness, while other layers offer the flexibility that protects the hard layers from shattering; a shock absorber of sorts. The combination of properties is science, but the result is pure art. Conversely, it is the layers and their varied properties that make Damascus steel maddeningly difficult to work with in the world of high tolerance machining. Bejeti employs a variety of Damascus steels, each considered the best of the best in the world.
Bespoke, small heat Damascus Steel
Small ‘heats’ (batches) of stainless-steel Damascus are produced by weld-forged, stainless-steel plates. The techniques produce small batches of billets that are of exceptional reliability with patterns that are themed and very organic in nature. Developed by a world-renowned blacksmith who wanted a more intense, dense twist pattern, Bejeti uses a Damascus steel with a natural grain look. No one piece is identical to another.
Artisan-Forged Damascus Steel
Forged by the hand of a Master blacksmith in an artisan forge, these billets shatter the divide between metallurgy and artistry. Each blacksmith has a signature style that will clue the discerning eye as to whose hand was responsible for the billet. These Damascus steels use a wide variety of carbon steels and other alloyed metals as dictated by the desired pattern. Each billet is as unique as a fingerprint.
Our process to transform a raw billet of Damascus includes CNC machining to high tolerances, grinding, electric discharge machining (EDM), and full inspections. Beyond that, the process requires a combination of polishing, acid etching, basic compound treatment, protection of control surfaces, hand blending, coatings, fitting, and inspections. Each and every process has taken years of development and refinement and can vary for each type of Damascus steel we use.
Creating with Damascus steel is an extravagant amount of work, but the results are stunning.
The organic connection between the material and those few who engage with it is nearly divine.