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I Forge Iron


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About Randy

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  • Location
    Reading, PA
  • Interests
    Forging hot metal since 1972.
    Author of A Blacksmithing Primer.
    Love forging with my 60 ton press and pushing hot metal like clay.
    Forged metal teacher and demonstrator.


  • Location
    Reading, PA 19608
  • Biography
    Over 35 years forging hot metals. Author of "A Blacksmithing Primer". Teacher and demonstrator.

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  1. I've seen them made from railroad rail as shown. But you can see the wear on the one as I described above. You can see mine in my book about presses and tooling. 1Hardie.bmp 2Hardie.bmp
  2. Seems like most cut offs for the press need constant sharpening. That process of cutting on a thin blade tends to turn the edge into a fuller.
  3. I really recommend that you use Batson's book to figure how to do the frame compared to your tonnage and what pump to what cylinder, etc.. Looks like you'll have plenty of strength there, but the info is out there so you know up front. Also keep your hoses to the back of the press in case something blows it's not aiming at you. Protective sleeves for your high pressure hoses is another good idea. It's all about safety. Looking forward to seeing the finished product and how it works for you.
  4. I mentioned how the transplanted European smiths did that over here so much. I saw one demo where they were anvil tapping AND striking! I think their were 3 strikers and it was quite the show, but obviously they weren't using tapping signals to control the action.
  5. All of the above answers are right, but no you don't have to do it. It is really just more of a habit. The old smiths were asked why they did it and they told us it was the only thing they could bring over here from their home country that was duty free. In other words they didn't have to pay taxes on it.
  6. I did not design this press, but bought it designed and the frame ready to go. I had to get the balance of the plates and build a mechanicals cart and assemble it. He then came over and did the plumbing. The man who designed it has built many presses and uses Batson's book to figure most things out. He also works along with the local hydraulics company if he has any additional questions or concerns. Equalizing pressure between the cylinders was one of my concerns, too. They do sell synchronizers for this purpose, but he explained that the pressure between the cylinders would balance on th
  7. RobWilson, Yes we do: http://www.astragalpress.com/Hydraulic_Forging_Press.htm .
  8. Grundsau, Yes you can. Brianc has it right. It's just less expensive to buy two six inch cylinders than one twelve inch.
  9. I just received this message from one of our members: Merry Xmas, Randy. I saw you wrote a book and I've wanted to get it soon. I was wondering if you'd say something about folks who say run away. As they think forging with presses is foolish? Like most any subject, I've found most are scared of what they don't understand most times. I don't know much about this type of operation and I’m very interested in any thoughts per se. Thanks Personally I’ve never heard anyone say those things in regards to the forging press, but I’ll address it for you in case that concern is out there.
  10. This is one of the first reviews by Albin Drzewianowskiof my new book which came out in August: Title: Hydraulic Forging Press for the Blacksmith Author: Randy McDaniel Publisher Skip Jack Press, an Imprint of Finney Co. Apple Valley, MN. 2014 ISBN: 978-1-879535-29-9 192 pages, Contact List of Suppliers and Artists, Index, and Author's Biography. Numerous color photographs and drawings. This book will not help you build a hydraulic forging press but it will help you understand what such a tool can do for the metalsmith and how to go about getting such a tool and setting it u
  11. Get the book by James Batson, " Build Your Own Hydraulic Forging Press". Sold through Knifemakers Guild and Blue Moon Press. Has designs and charts to do it right!
  12. Randy

    press power

    Everything I needed for my press came from Northern Tool including the motor.
  13. I've been running a two cylinder 60 ton press for about 7 years. No equalizer needed. The pressure will equalize between the two cylinders just due to its pressure. It needs equal length hoses, but that's it. You can buy equalizers, but for the little difference that I have between cylinder push I don't need it. If you watch my youtube videos you will not see a difference in the push from either side. The pump and motor were designed for this press and it runs at about 2" per second. A good fast speed for a general forging press. Photo is of the back of my press.
  14. Don't guess as to what is required. Get James Batson's "Build Your Own Hydraulic Forging Press". Blue Moon Press sells it. It has plans for C and H frame presses and charts to show you what goes with what and safely.
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