ThomasPowers

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About ThomasPowers

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    Senior Moment Member; Master Curmudgeon

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  • Gender Not Telling
  • Location Central NM/El Paso TX Area, USA
  • Interests Iron Smelting

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  • Location Central NM
  • Interests Iron smelting
  • Occupation bit herder

ThomasPowers's Activity

  1. ThomasPowers added a post in a topic: Hello to everyone   

    You can also wait until you scrounge a piece of "worn out" rail with the top nice and flat and quite work hardened.
  2. ThomasPowers added a post in a topic: My First Anvil   

    If making a wooden base I suggest running the blocks vertically to cut down on the number of interfaces all with a bit of give in them.  Takes the same amount of wood and increases rigidity.
  3. ThomasPowers added a post in a topic: Setting up a furnace, with a couple questions   

    Crucibles are what the experts call them in making wootz and other crucible steels, exp " The base of the crucible was either rounded or pointed, an important point to note as the resulting crucible steel ingot would reflect the crucibles interior shape. " Dr Feuerbach in "Crucible Steel Production and Identification"  Indicating that the crucible was used to hold the melt as it cooled.  
    And yes they were 1 shot deals and the crucibles were then crushed and used as grog in making more crucibles.  Crucible steel was an expensive process in the early days!  Teeming would help to hold the cost down nowadays but for wootz you need the slow cooling so you would be in fact pouring from one crucible into another heated one and setting that one back in the fire.  Hmm might be a good idea if you wanted to make a number of pucks of the same melt and experiment with the thermo cycling 
     
    If you want to play around with doing your own and making modifications to the alloying elements then this is probably the cheapest way.  Ask steel companies how much for a 5 pound melt with very specific alloy specs and very specific heating and cooling requirements and how much for a dozen different runs!
     
    Over at Sword Forum International there was a fellow experimenting with using thermite to alloy steel and was getting some interesting results---until he posted that he was going blind. I guess his safety equipment was not as good as he thought it was.
  4. ThomasPowers added a post in a topic: High dex work gloves   

    Have you tried tig gloves?
  5. ThomasPowers added a post in a topic: Setting up a furnace, with a couple questions   

    1.8 HP seems pretty high, I'd think a good blower with a 1/2 hp motor would do fine.  Charcoal takes a soft blast and remember they used to do this with hand powered bellows.
  6. ThomasPowers added a post in a topic: Hensley anvil on CL   

    As I recall I saw a very similar farrier's anvil at Centaur Forge for $450.  You are allowed to look at the new anvils at the various blacksmith supply places and buy one there if you can't find a good one locally; so Centaur Forge, Blacksmith's Depot, Pieh Tools, Old World Anvils, Nimba Anvils, Fontanini Anvil and Tool, etc.
     
    As such you will find they are in general powerfully expensive!     Have you used the TPAAAT to find anvils that are not listed for sale by people trying to sell anvils for a profit?
     
  7. ThomasPowers added a post in a topic: Please help identify anvi   

    what do you plan to do with the creosoted lumber?  Or did you mean rail?
  8. ThomasPowers added a post in a topic: What is it that really turns you on in Blacksmithing ??   

    Thank you for posting all of this; I squinted and saw the comma instead of the period in between the nails and the money; Time for new glasses.
  9. ThomasPowers added a post in a topic: Stainless steel axle usable?   

    Good size for some hammers and if he bought and installed it you should be able to track down what alloy it is.
  10. ThomasPowers added a post in a topic: Pure Iron Availability?   

    If I may make another suggestion: I don't know if the silicon content will cause issues with your use case; but electrical steel is very low in carbon and is found currently in the USA! (I would try for the lowest silicon version to help factor that out.)
    "Electrical Steel
    Electrical Steel is the kind of steel used in magnetic cores for transformers, generators, and motors. Electrical steel has minimum carbon content and more silica content." 
    "For this reason, the carbon level is kept to 0.005 % or lower"
     
    I have some laminations I picked up for use in billets; I have not tried working them separately.
  11. ThomasPowers added a post in a topic: Stainless steel axle usable?   

    Yes, No, Maybe;  knowing what alloy would help a lot.  However the original use says it would probably be good for anvil tooling (and are you sure it's stainless and not "chrome molly"?)  Probably not an alloy for slitters, may make good punches.  What size?  Hammers are a possibility too.  Note that it will probably be a bear to forge---have a friend hold while you sledge.
  12. ThomasPowers added a post in a topic: The anvil plan   

    Got any family members that belong to a local Church?  A cafe that the old farmers hang out in drinking coffee?
    Good Luck!
  13. ThomasPowers added a post in a topic: asking prices are getting out of hand   

    I've had a number of people selling stuff tell me "Why should I know anything about what I'm selling?"
    My stock answer is "Truth in Advertising laws."   They are not amused.
     I could never understand why if they did not know they would make false claims and then be upset if someone called them on it.
     
    (There was one person selling something on the internet telling me they didn't have the means to research things...so I pointed out that if they could sell on the internet they could research on the internet...)
     
    Me I stopped using ebay.
  14. ThomasPowers added a post in a topic: What is it that really turns you on in Blacksmithing ??   

    ​John look at your numbers:  A smith was making 15 cents an hour and an apprentice making more than that making nails?  No I think the apprentice was making 1/3 what the smith was for a full day.
  15. ThomasPowers added a post in a topic: What is it that really turns you on in Blacksmithing ??   

    $1  of  1869  dollars would be worth:  $17.54 in  2014  So think of working a 12 hour day nowadays for $8.77!
    ​(no guarantee of how good the inflation calculator is...)