It was asked what cable makes a good knife in another thread. Instead of hijacking that thread I thought it best to start a new one.
The first, and most important thing to consider is the size of the individual wires in the cable. When welding takes place .05" decarborizes, this amounts to .10" of the wires total diameter. If you take a wire that is .20" and weld it up you loos 1/2 of the carbon. That basically means you have a cool pattern but it wont hold an edge. Look for cable with large wires.
The next thing to consider is the type of cable. Cable is rated by strength. IPS is basically 1065, extra IPS is something like 1075/1080 and extra extra is somewhere close to 1090 although this will vary from manufactures.
Avoid any cable that is galvanized. This is toxic and can make you sick. It will also reek havoc on your welds.
I'll post some pics of various cables for reference later.
Rule #10; "I can make that" translates to; "I'm to cheap to buy it new."