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I Forge Iron


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  1. I'm firmly of the opinion that to each their own. If you want to drop $100k and have a collection of 1000's of anvils, go right ahead. This isn't communist Russia, one anvil for each peasant. I loathe that type of entitlement thought process (and feel very hypocritical and rebuke myself every time I am jealous about others fortune or possessions) As a beginner I started with a 40 lb Vulcan. Nothing to write home about. Then I did reading, research and a few trainings and determined I didn't really care for the traditional London pattern. Glad I didn't blow $500+ on one, which I would have done had they been lined up at every garage sale. Instead I went out and spent way more money than necessary on the anvil I wanted, south German pattern, with shelf and upsetting block and am 100% happy about it. And were I not able to find an old one, I woulda bought one of the new cast anvils, and been very happy about it as well. And if not that, lots of scrap yards have lots of chunks laying around.
  2. Agreed with your statement. Without knowing the entire history of the part there is a bit of conjecture, but moisture could play a part. Was there any acid cleaning or descaling? Those could factor in also. I think the delay in temper may have resulted in a crack and then residual stress did it in after the temper.
  3. I guess I don't see why it might not be. If you have a high hardness steel, have tension, and have dissolved hydrogen, I'd think it could be an issue. It must not inherently be an issue, or they'd be popping left and right. But maybe with the initiation of a small quench crack there was enough stress concentration to put it over the edge? Without having access to a scanning electron microscope, it's hard to say.
  4. Could easily be a quench crack that developed. Also, a hardened piece of medium carbon could be susceptible to hydrogen embrittlement, which will manifest itself within typically 24-48 hours of stress being applied. Most common in fasteners that are torqued.
  5. Reading a little more in the sticky about the hofi hammer, he mentions he used C45 for the forged hammers, which to me sounds like a 1045 carbon steel. Really nothing to special about it. If it was welded with an appropriate medium carbon filler at the appropriate heat treat, annealed well, and the reheat treated, it probably wouldn't be worse for the wear. Or if your feeling really adventurous, you could take off a known amount to remove the crack. And then forge weld on a new face. Beyond my skill, but should be possible.
  6. If your bent on repairing, you could probably have it gouged, then tig it back in. If done properly it shouldn't seriously affect it. This isn't a garage deal tho, to properly weld the alloy steel it should be preheated, and then reheat treated after welding. A tool and die shop could probably fix fairly well if you don't want to remove the affected material/alter the hammer geometry.
  7. So my personal taste says the blue fill looks outta place as does the break in the guards. I like the guard color, like the burl color. I'd love to see the guards with tight seams rather than the gaps. Again, Just my opinion. I like the blade, overall shape, I like the tasteful as forged surface. Altogether a very nice piece.
  8. I am, my B.S. was in materials engineering, worked at a failure analysis lab for about 8 years. Was a WI professional engineer in Metallurgy. It's lapsed now because I am currently a six sigma black belt at an injection molder. I moved to northern WI, and you take what you can get when it comes to engineering jobs. I did very much enjoy my metallurgy career, but like the lower population density of Price county a lot more. OP-sorry for the thread drift. It was a very good question, I've been thinking a lot about the most cost effective ways to ID scrap using non analytical methods myself as my scrap pile grows.
  9. Mr. SLAG, A good point about the abbreviation, even if covered previously. There's lots of acronyms and it's easy to blow past them. Probably the OP (original poster) will be able to get an Arc-spark OES , which with modern equipment let's you get the carbon and sulfur content also. In the past, you needed to do a LECO (brand name) combustion for the carbon and sulfur and get the rest of the elements from the arc-spark. Then there is the lesser used GDS (Glow Discharge Spectroscopy). And if all you have are small samples of drillings, you could have an ICP-OES (Inductively Coupled Plasma) performed. And the super old school analytic way would be a true "wet chem" using titrations, but no one does that any more. Either and any way, having a lab check for alloy chemistry and compare to the nearest grade shouldn't be a difficult exercise.
  10. I don't think you can successfully identify alloy based on weight. The difference of .2% carbon to .8% carbon is humongous, but the weight change will nil. If you have a ton of nickel that could make it a bit heavier, and also the high alloy tool steels can get heavy with lots of tungsten etc. By far your best bet is to find a metallurgical test lab (college or commercial) and have them run an OES. Then you will have a truly analytic evaluation of the composition. I'd guess it would be less than $500 for one sample. If more I'd check around for another lab, should be able to find one for under $250 if you ask around. Usually they will need a slice about 1" square or so. I used to do this testing myself, so I'm fairly familiar with it. (Former metallurgist here with reverse engineering experience.)
  11. That's for the input everyone. I'm leaning towards breaking out the slab in the forging area and seeing the dirt underneath looks like, but then probably making a pressure treated box and filling a sand/gravel mix from my neighbors pit.
  12. In the forging area it will be the normal manual equipment. Gas forge. Welder, torch. I have an MZ75 hammer on order, and was going to put that on wood slabs over an area that still has intact concrete. The compressor is going in its own room on the other side of the building in a sound isolation area. The concrete is bad in some areas and OK in others. Multiple pours over time by the looks of it.
  13. I know it's been covered a bit before. I'm working on putting a new forging area together. It's an old building, and the floor is about 2"-3" slab concrete that is cracked and heaved. I have a few thoughts, I could just fill over the floor with sand/gravel/put run, I could reconcrete, I could break out the slab and just use the dirt. What's your preference?
  14. ASTM A502 is what you will want to search. Looks like there are 8-10 grades that are all in the low to medium carbon range, some with alloying, some plain carbon. Several grades can be class 2, so that doesn't pinpoint the chemistry. Google Search turns up the standard for me.
  15. It will probably work just fine. The risk you run is the bronze is harder, grit could score the shaft instead of bury in a babbit bearing. How intricate is the shaft? If it's pretty simple, just do the bushing because it's quick, simple and potentially off the shelf. You could probably do a polymer bushing or a roller bearing and get satisfactory results. Unless you have a ton of cost and time in the components I wouldn't over think it. Just keep it oiled and I'd think you'd be fine.
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