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I Forge Iron


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Everything posted by ThomasPowers

  1. rotometals sells 10 different Babbitt alloys too. (I buy my tin from them for re-tinning copper pots.)
  2. Don't forget to will me your blacksmithing stuff first!
  3. In fact I would do it the other way as slate and marble are easier to cut than granite; so I would specify granite and let slate and marble be the "assumed". Please make sure you are on a GFCI protected outlet!!
  4. They should put out more heat as they get smaller---more surface area to burn at. Are you getting too much air? Can we have a picture of your forge in use? To see the fuel and air flow and heat. I seem to remember IFI having at least one other smith from Norway.
  5. My wife used to Volunteer at the Columbus Public Library, (first HUGE Carnegie library IIRC); she worked in the store where they sold off donated and deaccessioned books and so got first crack and, I believe, a discount. Books were cheap, I got to assemble and finish bookcases for them all. (No particle board!) We found a manufacturer that rated their bookshelves for over 200 pounds per shelf and could be bought in kit form. Over time we found that the local store that carried them would clear them out at the end of the winter season to make room for other stuff. So we would go and ask
  6. Yes, with a degree in Geology, I remember how surprised I was to see Labradorite sold as "blue granite". I would think Masonry & Stone would be sufficient with perhaps a "soft stone" vs "hard stone" . (I cut soapstone with a hacksaw and turn it on an ex-woodlathe to make viking era spindle whorls based on the finds at Birka...)
  7. To reiterate: heat treat is based on the alloy used which can/may/will differ between different manufacturers and can differ over time with the same manufacturer. (You can probably work out a HT method for a manufacturer and use it for their products and it will work until it doesn't!) Scrapyard Rules: Test! Test! Test! So sort your rasps by manufacturer and type (and hopefully by age). Select one from a group and do the basic heat treating test: starting with a warm vegetable oil quench and going to brine if that doesn't harden enough. Break the hardened piece---wear PPE! and examine t
  8. Odd that slate and marble are not included under "stone".
  9. Don't need a smelter; everything's already steel; just need to melt it. I expect that my stuff will be sold off after the 8 grandkids take their choice.
  10. I'll suggest they start practicing! It was fun selling off the 248# PW anvil as it was "too small" for the shop...Though I actually use the 165# ones more than the 400#+ ones.
  11. I really need to stop visiting the scrapyard as I probably have more stuff than I will live to use. I guess the goal is for the forge fire to go out from lack of fuel just as you pull the last piece of steel out of it for it's last heat and complete the project as your body gives out.... Not going to happen; though it was amusing when two friends/students were smithing with me recently and I mentioned that a particular hammer was my first smithing hammer and my only one for several years--(It actually shows signs of wear on it's faces, not just polishing, but wear!). Anyway they both we
  12. Boy I need to file a change of address for you!
  13. I'd suggest looking at the plans for the super sucker hood.
  14. Yes; I had a commission back in the early 1980's to make a large STOUT set of Kama for a martial arts instructor. I thought they were way too large & heavy; forged from a truck leaf spring with a continuous tang going to the far end of the grip. He loved them, used to cut down oak saplings with them for practice. Ended up taking them to Okinawa with him when he got an instructor job with the service...
  15. This one is available at the local scrapyard: It's in two pieces and I believe it's 20 UScents a pound...
  16. The Sears Roebuck catalogs are a gold mine for dated prices; several of them are available in reprint, (I have 1897, 1905, 1908, IIRC), and they can be found on-line. What impressed me the most was that they carried replacement screws/screwboxes for postvises in some of their catalogs!
  17. Are you burning the coke formed? Coke is what you want to heat your piece as it's nearly pure carbon and so not contaminating it with sulfur. (Coke is to Coal as Charcoal is to Wood). Coke has a porous structure to it, may even float! Coal should go from rock to tarry mess to coke to ash. Can you tell us more about your air supply, forge and how you know you are using "good" coal? Where are you at? 15 minutes in a smithy with someone who knows what they are doing could solve a LOT of possible issues getting started!
  18. Could you use explosively driven piezoelectrics to provide burst power to your rail gun and avoid the massive battery or capacitor pack?
  19. There was a 5" Central Forge(?) HF vise at the scrapyard last Saturday, looked brand new except the front jaw was broken off... SB you need an excuse to buy another vise? I thought all that was required was cash in your pocket or a place that buys plasma! I freely admit that I use my post vises a lot more than my benchvises nowadays; don't have to "baby" the postvises! (Used to be that bench vises cost a lot more than postvises back in the '90's in central Ohio; now it seems like prices have flipped.)
  20. Just a quick reminder to US folks; his gauge is metric---NOT PSI !
  21. Can you ask the person who threw them out?
  22. The fancy stand looks a bit "bouncy" to me if you do any heavy work. Would be fine for armour making
  23. That's the reason we get fines out here; our supplier gets coal in large pieces as it's easier to pick out the non-coal stuff and then has a crusher to produce something we can manage. Unfortunately it's output is fines...
  24. I was wondering about pegs for large stone masonry alignment and the "damage" from cutting the mortar joint.
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