Here are the results of a quick test etch in vinegar to reveal the character of the iron. I like what I see out of this (lots of grain). I wish I'd been more careful with all the hammer marks on this one, but I still have some grinding to do so we'll see how it turns out. Whether it up beautiful or not, it's my first forge welded piece and I'll treasure it forever. I can't wait to get it finished. I have a long way to go before I'm making pattern welded Norse stuff, but this is a good step in that direction.
On another note, here's a small carved amulet I made for an old friend. It's a donarskeule, sort of the Migration Era German version of a Mjölnir aka Thor's Hammer. The originals were antler or bone, but this one is walnut. Just a small token of appreciation for my friend, and something I hope keeps him safe during his travels as a US army serviceman.