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I Forge Iron

David Gaddis

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    Forest, Mississippi

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  1. Francis...I can see it now: "Two Chefs' Handmade Knives" on a sign, going out of town, on a back street, with motorcycle peeps, drinking brews at your bar, with red heads and almost no tops..... Well that is what knife making leads you into. Be careful my friend. David G Carry on
  2. I disagree with the drilling procedure UNLESS you cannot use a striker. The amount of metal lost by drilling, right down the center axis of round will remove a lot of metal. Learning to use a penetrator type tool (see Brian Brazeal) and in two heats the amount of metal lost will be similar to a toe-nail clipping. But what the hay, if you want to drill to control what you might be learning to do with a striker is okay with me. In fact it is not so difficult to make that penetration when used by the proper shaped tools. Exotic metal are not necessary. Better metals are appreciated, as per Mr frank T's reminding us that not everything is at it appears. Personally I really like to use torsion bars from GM Tahoe- type vehicles (Z-71 stuff). Those rods are about 1.3 inch in diameter. They are about 5 feet long and offer a lot for the price one pays the junkyard. Many are torch cut on one end as they were more quickly removed that way. The reason they had been replaced is from being "over-sprung" and not returning to an acceptable adjustment. Great for us, bad for the truck owner. David G carry on
  3. Many folks get uptight about anvils, stating this or that quality gives this or that result. Being down here in Mississippi one could be thinking these country bumpkins should be happy with a rock. But being here has also given me the advantage to meet some rather talented smiths from around the country coming by to visit some of our notable instructors. One of our teachers uses a so-and-so rebounding anvil and it is okay, while another uses one that you may think is dead as a doorknob, for what that is worth. Where I am going with this is: Properly using the anvil should be hot metal being displaced by the hammer. SO why do we make a fuss? Maybe its like bragging rights. Most everyone feel that a more rebounding anvil is more efficient than a dead one. I feel that way too. But I hate....HATE...a noisy anvil. That ring is supposed to indicated that the anvil is really hard thusly reflecting (rebounding) energy, making your work more efficient. Lyle Wynn uses an anvil that is quiet as a church mouse and at the end of his day plenty of work has been produced. It is about what you want to use. Now since I have more experience I could use the push arm of a bulldozer's blade for an anvil and produce acceptable work. We all know about the efficiencies. Maybe this year I will take a piece of steel like the gentleman above brings to bear and with one piece do an elaborate Rob Gunter surfacing job while leaving another natural... to find out how well the hard surfacing does. That could really stir up a mess of information. David G carry on
  4. One good smith that I was visiting with recently says that his system is done in an "outbuilding" so that the noise is not a factor. His drum has slits cut into the sides to allow the dusting material to drop out. He states that his product comes out clean grey with only a slight amount of dust. His method uses shots made from steel mill punchings. David G carry on
  5. I have posted here before on the actual usage of a side draft...going into a corrugated culvert. DO I still use it...Heck Yeah! And i would construct another if I had too. Brian has an operational system for straight up the top....and it works well. If my vents were going straight up..I would use it. Search my past postings for pictures. David G carry on
  6. Those systems were in use in the USA last century as the people that ran sewage systems collected methane and then ran it through a scrubber to dehydrate it. From there they ran gigantic motors that would power the system pumps etc. Methane puts out so little HP that it took great sized motors to produce even 75 HP. In the end the cost of working on the motors was more than the system could stand. Was it economical? Maybe....but rebuilding those Euclids and Continentals etc was too great. Off shore the practice continued until the use of turbines took over for sour gas usage. I do not if this was a mass system changeover but I was around many of them in the Gulf of Mex before Katrina. Carry on
  7. I think francis is mostly correct here..except there will be a conflict by many when welding hardened metal without pre-heating. we have started using set hammers and flatters anfd found the quality of out work to improve greatly. Personlly I think the set hammer should hve differentially hrdened face with a soft satriking surface. As for a swinging flatter i see little real good here when some type of welded surface or widened face will surfice for the the flatter job. two years ago we made 5 flatters by striking and it consumed the whole afternoon. Th quality was outstanding and it remains a prized tool. So here I should suggest for a simple one man band to weld a flat plate about 2-1/2 or so square and about 1/2 or 3/4 thick to a nice drilling hammer head, while being sure to soften the striking surface to prevent shatter. enjoy this project. David G carry on
  8. I constructed a striking vise several years ago and find it very good for those awkward positions. It is not a cureall but it certainly is nice to help. David G carry on
  9. If you are going to SOFA, there are a bunch of Minnenites that sold them last year for $17 or $18. And the guy next to them was selling them for a dollar more. Here in Mississippi they were selling for about $26 at the butcher supply. David G Carry on
  10. I have made several striking anvils, and a bunch of anvil stands. BTW your punched hole looks quite nice. For a 1 in sq hole I would start with a drilled 7/8 hole. Two heats should make a hole in 3 in thick material, well it did for us. Then make another drifting as the metal gets toward black to polish and firm up the hole. There should be a slight rise around the hole as the metal has been displaced, which can be easily removed by grinding. Not much worry about filling in the missed hammer strikes as there will be replacement mis-blows to show up until you get proficient in striking. If you use 1/4 in sidewall 2 x 2 sq tubing the answers will become evident as to installation of oil and sand. Oil and sand should be used in all hollow leg stands ...to reduce the noise factor exponentially. Good luck David G carry on
  11. Looks great just where it is in the picture. Carry on
  12. I really like the FONTS that were picked out for the project. Your plasma work and then installation made it a nice piece of art. Congrats to your well appointed sign. Carry on
  13. Fork lift tines are a special part of law and liability. Many people will not allow anyone access to a forklift tine that is "safety wise" unusable because some may try to make use of the tine in exactly that condition. Many things reduce the reliability of a tine such as over-capacity bending, excess proximity to heat, unauthorized modification such as torch cutoffs, etc. In this world of liability the law is stronger than reality. SO what does the shop do to a forklift tine that must be replaced? They cur cut the 90 degree angle out or the connector ends and send them straight to the recycler. Occasionally people can get them in the scrap yards without anything haven been done to destroy the tines. They are made from very good steel presumed to be 4140 or 4150, but there is no "for sure" easy determinant. We like to make top tools and bottom tooling for striking anvils from the tines when available. They perform very well. carry on
  14. If you need some high quality pics of an operational Number 1.... let me know. Use profile info Francis Tres Cole and I both use these things, though there are some differences. His motor is mounted high in the air and my motor is near the floor. My unit may not be so clean for photos but should show all that is necessary. David G carry on
  15. This has been an inspiration to watch and read throughout the whole process. Thank you for documenting the project while sharing some intimate ideals as the patrons too are benefactors. Carry on
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