The new, reorganized, Journeyman Smith and Master Smith guidelines, approved at the most recent ABS Board meeting have been posted on the ABS web site. It must be stressed that these documents have been redrafted to clarify the rules and make them easier to understand and refer to, there have been no changes, with the exception of limits on integral knives, forged from round bar, for testing.
A note on this change- the board felt it was necessary to add a stipulation regarding integrals in order to preserve the intent of the 10” blade length and the 6” presentation blade length. With many integrals having a gradual transition to where the ricasso would be, rather than a guard, it made a clear and accurate measurement of blade length more difficult. With consideration to those who forge finger guard extensions on their integrals, the stipulation was narrowed to integrals forged from round stock that gradually reduce in cross section to the blade with no clear definition as to there the ricasso would begin.
This new guideline format, is in an outline form that has added descriptions for better understanding of the process. Those planning on testing should download them to see if they may better understand the rules for testing.