Whether you plan on making knives by forging or the stock removal method there is a minimum amount of equipment that will be needed.
The equipment currently used in my shop is as follows: Gas Forge (home made), Post Vise, Peter Wright Anvil (150 lb.), 25 Ton Hydraulic Press, assorted hammers and tongs, vermiculite in a large container for annealing the blades. The annealing process softens the blade so that it can be ground, filed, etc. I use an arc welder to put together stock for my Damascus and the hydraulic press is used to make the Damascus Steel.
My finish shop contains 2 grinders (variable speed Burr King and a Wilton Square Wheel) metal and wood cutting bandsaws, bench vise, fluorescent and incandescent lighting, various tools and jigs (labor saving devices).
There are shops with a lot more equipment such as mills and lathes but I do just fine in my shop.
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