how can i make a homemade forge on the cheap?

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Posted · Report post

ok. but won't i get a little boost in efficency? how bout plaster of paris mixed in?


No. Didn't I just say that?

Plaster of paris? No in spades.

You're overthinking this stuff. Ram some clay or dirt into the pan like I described or however you wish. Build a fire and do some hammering.

Frosty

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Posted (edited) · Report post

Hi new guy,

Just a bit of encouragement from a fellow newbie.

Listen to guys like Frosty - I followed their advice and made this forge:

100_4049.jpg

lit a fire and made this lot:

First_forge_work_.JPG

I know you probably want to make the best use of the materials you have, but when we are talking about a metal container lined with clay dug out of the garden, it really doesnt matter if it dont work perfectly first time.

For example mine is like a bowl, so I would change that so I can heat the middle of stock etc.

Before I made this one I just had an offcut of 5 ich dia pipe, stood it on a bit of mesh with an air pipe in the bottom, filled it with charcoal and made myself some coat hooks.

It is quicker and cheaper to risk making a poor forge from mud, than to try and make a really good one first time and waste materials.

Just my opinions,

in a nut shell listen to what these guys are telling you, keep it simple.

Edited by Bob JS

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Posted · Report post

i already have a decent forge it just does not run very hot. and it needs a real blower. not me with a fan :)

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Posted · Report post

i already have a decent forge it just does not run very hot. and it needs a real blower. not me with a fan :)


Sorry,

Must have missed a page of this thread somewhere.

Got a hair dryer? or a vacuum cleaner

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Posted · Report post

Take a picture of your forge and post it, please.

Charcoal is fully capable of melting or burning steel. I have trouble understanding how you can have a charcoal forge that "does not run very hot." The only thing that springs immediately to mind is that perhaps you're using way too much air. You can actually blow the heat out of the fire that way.

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Posted · Report post

well you could do what i've been doing lately, if you have a good yard you can always build a ground forge kills the knees unless you make a seat or get some knee pads ;), all you gotta do is dig a hole in the ground make sure you have some pea gravel sand etc, to absorb the heat (i have a red clay yard) dig out a trench for a pipe stick it in (make sure you cover it back up or it will fall out) connect your blower and voila. its very versatile if you want to change the shape its as easy as a pick and a shovel

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Posted · Report post

eccept (its a great idea) Inappropriate language deleted and have a small herd of cows if i did that to her lawn! all i can get away with right now is a hobo forge (a hobo stove with a blower and insulation).


Inappropriate language deleted

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Posted · Report post

Hobo forge? What's a hobo forge?

I thought you were fanning the fire and didn't have a blower. If you're fanning it, that's your problem, find a hair drier, go to Sally Anne's or another 2nd hand shop, it'll cost you a buck or two and do the job.

Insulation? What's with you and insulation? It's only use in a solid fuel forge is to keep from damaging the table. 1" of compacted soil will do that for you.

Did you see the forge the guys in Finland made from an old lawnmower deck? Have you seen all the brake drums and rotors? A wheel will work, an old washtub, BBQ, trashcan lid, washing machine door.

My first forge was the top of an old washing machine, brake drum, some pipe and a hair drier resting on cinderblocks. I was 10 and my anvil was a piece of scrap steel from Father's shop 2" x 4" x 14-16". I didn't have a hardy, hot set, pair of tongs or a horn on the anvil. I had a couple ball pein hammers, pliers, chisel, hacksaw and if I wanted to use a vise I had to carry it to Dad's shop and use his. Half the time if he saw me he'd put me to work in his shop.

I didn't have anyone to ask questions, nobody to show me squat, Dad didn't want me wasting my time learning a DEAD TRADE. I didn't know there were books available or even any living blacksmiths other than farriers. And none of them had time to show me anything either, they were working.

Sure, I didn't accomplish a whole lot with my lashup but I was heating and beating steel! In spite of no help and frankly active discouragement I was out there doing it.

You're beginning to strike me as the kind of person who talks a thing to death and never get around to doing it. Seriously, unless you're really young, your folks just won't let you do it or you just can't find anything to use (look HARDER) you really, REALLY need to just start doing it.

Frosty

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Posted · Report post

Hallelujah and amen.

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Posted · Report post

Very good Frosty! You took the words outa my mouth!
Finnr

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Posted · Report post

i called it a hobo forge cuz all the parts were on the side of the road on the way to get a hammer. and i am saving up for a blower so hey. and plus frosty i have already mad a knife, ash rake, tried to make a poker, and have tried to forge weld. but i can't post pics so i have no proof.

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Posted · Report post

New guy,

What sorts tools and materials do you have available to you? Do you have access to a junk yard? How about an illegal dump site? Does your garbage company have a bulky trash collection day? Also, are you using charcoal briquettes or lump charcoal?

Rob

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Posted · Report post

i burn my own charcoal and i have acces about 300lb total iron scrap. thats it. and i have a vise grip and welders gloves, glasses an angle grinder, one file, a drilling hammer and a rr trank with a plate welded on top

also i have acces to some hack saws and a blow torch. plus about 8 or 10 chords of oak fire wood well seasoned.

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Posted · Report post

Sounds like you are good to go then.

Rob

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Posted · Report post

yeah i think i am. but now i just need a blower so i can heat the forge to welding temp. i just might have to make onw. in my forge :)

i found a blower! just a shop vac looks like ill start welding this weekend.

this is mt first knife and a chisel. and a little picture of me after forging.

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13050.attach

13051.attach

13052.attach

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13056.attach

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Posted · Report post

i found a blower! just a shop vac looks like ill start welding this weekend.


A shop vac is pretty powerful.

Really, an old hairdryer will do the trick. Like Frosty said, it's cheap and delivers air at a good rate for smithing. That shop vac is either going to blow sparks and embers everywhere, or it's going to just eat up all your fuel really fast.

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Posted · Report post

Aeneas you right but i have 10 chords or more of fire wood. trust me fuel is not an isue and i have a screen over the back end of the forge so not too many embers. by the way thanks for the advice anyway.

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Posted · Report post

For a guy with a million questions, you sure seem to have all the answers.

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Posted · Report post

i like to ask even if i know the answer, true aenes is right but, we just cut down a dead tree and i seriously have 10chords of wood. still, a shop vac blows embers but so do i fanning. hence the solution.

look also i just am using a shop vac as a interem solution until i can make my own blower. so i am in the process of staring a hand crank blower.

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Posted · Report post

I made one out of just clay it works great. I would say start with a weal well from a trailer with some piping it works great. I use an old furnace blower.

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Posted · Report post

Shoot I had my Y0-1K forge out last Saturday, used 2 single action bellows, (one cost me 20 roofing nails the rest was scrounged!) Worked a treat. We ran a raised firepit to produce charcoal for forge fuel had to chase folks away from it when we needed to transfer some.

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Posted · Report post

I am in the same situation as the new guy. The link to the Blue Print 0133 the famous 55 forge is non working......can anyone please help me find this information as I am desperately trying to get started while i am motivated to do so. I need help building a good cheap forge......any takers?

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Posted · Report post

Thank you for taking the time to help a newbie out. I greatly appreciate it.

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Posted · Report post

Emerson what would get you started fastest would be to spend a Saturday afternoon with a smith who knows what he's doing.

Not knowing your location I can't suggest someone to you.

If you are near central NM I would be happy for you to stop by one of my open forge sessions.

(or to put it bluntly: I suggest you go to your user cp and edit the location to put in your general area.)

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