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About nhoman

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    Durban South Africa
  1. Explain the goal of what they'll be making. To demonstrate the power of heat, get them to try working the metal cold and then show them the relative ease of working the same piece once it is heated. That's bound to create a "wow" moment which might just bring the kid back for a second round.
  2. A skeleton walks into a bar and orders a pint and a mop...
  3. Welcome. I'm also a raw beginner and already I've had tons of help and advice.
  4. Same happens when I walk around with a camera, tripod and some flashes - no they don't ask if I make horseshoes :P but you get similarly silly questions. I'm sure any hobby/profession has it's 'public image' which gives rise to senseless questions and comments that can be annoying to the hobbyist and the professional alike.
  5. Frosty, I looked into ITC100 but to get it here would have been a killer. Exchange rate of about 7:1 and the weight of the stuff would have been prohibitively expensive for me. Instead I got something locally - the supplier calls it electric paint. Came in a fine white powder. I added water, mixed it well and painted it on. I didn't wait for it to dry - instead I fired up the forge and panicked a little when some of the stuff started dripping and running down the walls. Soon after there was a bit of steam as the water got cooked off and I left it running for about another 5 minutes. Then I turned off the gas and plugged up the openings with some leftover blanket and left it to stand overnight. This served two purposes - I stuck the blanket down with mastic (looks like cement in a tube but sticky beyond belief). Leaving this mastic out in the air to dry will probably take a month. After baking it for a bit, it turned hard like cement. The paint has certainly firmed up the fibers but it is not very strong. It flakes off if you knock it a bit hard and it probably won't take much weight before it starts to crumble either. On the up side though, this stuff glows bright yellow and holds the heat beautifully. I think I will follow MacBruce's example and get some broken firebricks for the floor. At the moment I have some old paving bricks in there and I'll see how they hold up. Perhaps I'll just stick with them.
  6. Thanks - I tried the water tip before applying the paint and it worked like a charm.
  7. Women usually say the same about their shoes - Ironic choice of ad that came up with your post :D
  8. I wore a long sleeved overall, rubber gloves with elastic on the wrists, a dust mask... That stuff is microfine and just gets in EVERYWHERE :). I think next time I'll just get me a Hazmat suit :rolleyes: Yes I will be covering it with a refractory paint but that'll have to wait till morning. The burner is probably about 90% complete so if all goes well I should be able to fire her up by tomorrow night. Sometime later I will get some firebricks for the floor but for now the excitement is just too much... Burn baby Burn. Still to do: Support and adjuster for the burner assembly. Feet Handle Door(s) Paint (Maybe)
  9. Welcome - You came to the right place for info. I'm also just starting out and most my questions have already been answered before I could even think them :D
  10. This is the first time I ever worked with this stuff. Just a few questions - am I supposed to just pack it lightly or was I right in compacting it, squashing into corners in order to get a tight fit? Second question - despite my best efforts, I now have fibers all over my arms and probably down into my unmentionables. Any secret cures for getting rid of the itch?
  11. South is relative :rolleyes: Welcome to IFI.
  12. On the one hand you warn me about the dangers of addiction and on the other hand you "suggest" I make a multitude of smaller anvils... Sounds to me you've started with your 12 steps and then relapsed :D Thanks a lot for the advice and for the humour. For now I intend making one larg-ish anvil (I need more steel, Igor...more STEEEEEL Muahahaha) and then, once I've lost most of my friends, I'll probably look into getting/making more. I started making the forge today... or more accurately, I cut open the tank, cleaned it out and hammered some of the dings out using the two smaller chunks of steel as anvils. Lesson no.1 - it is hard work to hammer on cold steel. And it was LOUD :o but so far the neighbours haven't complained. I live in a very forgiving neighbourhood - I forgive their raucous late-night parties and they forgive my early morning grinding and banging.
  13. Thanks for the replies so far. @Thomas - thanks, I've been over that link and they explain the hardfacing very well but no word about my crazy idea to weld the pieces together. Some things I should have probably mentioned in my original post: Goal for this anvil - Whatever comes up. I will most likely not do jewelry or horse shoes other than experimenting. That's the reason I was thinking of going a bit bigger than 3". Welding - I should have mentioned that hardfacing will definitely be done at the end, regardless of what steel I got. With this in mind, is the (probably) A36 still OK? The welding I was referring to was sticking the two pieces together side by side and making it all into one solid piece - not just welding up on the sides. The idea is to grind/cut them down to a V or a J and then building it up from the middle of the piece towards the edges. The total height of this weld would be about 10 to 12 inches. What I wanted to know about the welding is if this would be bad or very bad?
  14. Hi there My name is Leon and I'm becoming an addict :D I have been lurking in the dark corners of these forums for a while, just reading and trying to learn what I can. The one thing that I did pick up on is that the anvil to some is almost a deity, so I figured even before selecting a decent hammer, I should look into getting or making an anvil. Seen as how the anvil is such a personal thing to some, I settled on making instead of getting. (Yip another noob trying his luck :rolleyes: ) I have read the big-stone-little-stone analogy a few times over so I know anything can be an anvil and anything can be a hammer. It's just easier if you don't have to explain to visitors why you're pounding away on a stone when there's so much steel available. At my local scrap yard I picked up a few offcuts of some kind of steel. They were cut with either laser or else plasma. The four bigger pieces are about 3" thick. I'm not a metalurgist but I can only guess that something this thick will not be used to make house numbers for decorating somebody's house wall. Instead, it is probably used in constructing some relatively large objects or machines. Assuming this to be true, I am hoping that I have some fair to decent quality steel. On to the first question(s) then: These chunks are 3" thick. I was aiming for at least 4" but couldn't find any pieces that thick. I was lucky enough to pick up duplicates so I'm aiming to weld them together to make a 6" thick anvil. Now I'm hoping these last few words didn't cause any sudden pains in your chests or shortness of breath but that's why I'm here - most of you know a thing or two that I don't (a thing or two-hundred is more likely). The question: Will such a large weld be bad for the overall quality of the anvil? Should I rather go with two seperate smaller anvils instead of trying to make it this wide? If the weld isn't such a bad idea, what kind of rod should I be looking at for this job? Still on the theme of welding: All these pieces have a short cut on the tops from where the plasma/laser started its cut. Same question as above - can I just weld up the cuts or shoudl I rather cut/grind to get rid of the slits? The pix: The two bigger pieces with the slit visible in the non-rusted one. http://www.leonhoman...pre_anvil_1.jpg (You are not allowed to use that image extension on this community.)??? - I'll get that figured out sometime. My collection so far: The truck compressor will become the forge. (The burner is still in the making. Pretty much the same as THIS - about 80% complete) The two larger chunks I'm hoping to join at the hip. The two smaller twins will similarly be joined side-by-side and then shaped to become the heel complete with hardie hole etc. The small horn-shaped object was originally intended for the horn but I'm still looking for alternatives. The little 'L' shaped block in the foreground... that was just to pretty to leave behind at the scrap yard :wub: http://www.leonhoman...pre_anvil_2.jpg (You are not allowed to use that image extension on this community.)??? - I'll get that figured out sometime.
  15. Hi there My name is Leon and I'm from Durban, a hot and humid little city on the East coast of South Africa. My friend and I got into melting aluminium (that's aluminum to you 'mericans :D), brass/bronze/copper etc. on charcoal fires. So far, cast iron is still a dream but we're working on switching to waste crank-case oil as a fuel because it has lower cost and higher temps. Part of my furnace research led me to forging related websites and I intend to get into forging as soon as (or maybe even sooner) we've got some positive results with the oil burners for the furnace. I'll probably go with a propane forge because I would already have all the basic knowledge. Anyway, as long as it has to do with hot metal, I am interested. There's a lot of knowledge in the forums and I'm hoping to put some of it to good use.