dave in pa.

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About dave in pa.

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    Lancaster County, Pennsylvania

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  1. Thank you dave for your post in hobby or part time business. i am just starting my journey in blacksmithing and live in PA. i wanted to sell some of my stuff on etsy. your post was a huge help. thank you

  2. Hey all, Can anyone tell me anything about the champion no. 60 a aluminum blower? The dad of one of my students just gave me one and I can't find any info on them. Pic is from the web but looks the same as what I have. Any info would be appreciated. Thanks, Dave
  3. Here is what I did... Talked to several of my smithing friends who sell their wares to see what they do. Most just wait until they get caught to do anything. I have to believe that if anyone gets caught it will be me (and I can't afford it). Went to H&R Block and found that the federal tax system (and my home state of Pennsylvania) have a form called Schedule C. This puts anything that you make in the category of personal income and you pay taxes at whatever rate you are already at. It also allows you to deduct for tools, materials, mileage, shop rent, table rent, insurance, taxes, and any related expenses. In Pennsylvania... I don't need a business license or a tax number (but my apps are in and being processed now). YMMV so talk to a professional about it and ask about Schedule C. Hope it helps someone, Dave
  4. Aubrey, I would move up to a 3/4 or 1 inch pipe. Then, find a way to control the air blast as was said above.
  5. Aubrey, I'm here to help as much as I can. Ask away! Dave
  6. I have used corn as forging fuel many, many times in several different forge set-ups. For one event at a historical site's harvest show I started Saturday morning by cleaning all coal and coke from the hearth and then forged all that day and the following day on nothing but corn. It was certainly a crowd gatherer. Good points... it burns hot and clean, no clinker from the fuel itself. it needs very little air so it's more energy efficient and easier on the smith. around here it is cheaper than coal and gives me the same heat. the smell of a big corn roast will let you forge places where the smell of coal will get complaints and possibly shut down. Bad points... fire management is a little different than with coal/coke but is easy to get used to (and I think is a good thing to practice). vermin will eat your fuel supply if you don't secure it well. (I once watched a groundhog push the lid off of a galvanized trash can and then help himself to many helpings of my corn, not a problem encountered with coal) Some of my experience with corn... First let me say that I have only used corn in bottom blast forges (clinker breaker type, raised cap type, and flat plate type) with crank blowers or bellows. if you use an electric blower you will need to be able to throttle it down a lot. I have found that shallower boxes (3 inches deep) work better than deeper ones (5 inches deep or more). I use feed corn from the local feed store. I have never worried about the moisture content and have not noticed any difference in the burning of the corn. Start you fire with paper and wood. Slowly add corn around the edges, too much too soon will give you massive amounts of smoke/steam that will drive you out of your shop. It will "coke" and cap over just as a soft coal fire does. work as usual but keep an eye on your workpiece as the fire is much hotter than you think. you will find that the fire requires very little air as apposed to coal. too much air will fling your kernels out of the firepot. as you work you will need to bring fuel into the fire more often than coal. as you bring more in add more fresh corn around the sides and back of the fire (I add a soup can full of fresh corn at a time). this will "coke" and be ready when you need it. you may find yourself managing your fire more often than you would with coal but I find this good practice especially for new smiths. when done for the day, rake the fire out of the pot and let it go out. The corn coke will be ready for your next fire just as coal coke would. don't leave the corn piled up in the box and think you'll have fuel the next day, it will burn completely. That's all that I can think of at the time. I"ll try to help with any questions, Dave
  7. I think the determining factor is... where you're selling your work. Playing to different locations, venues, and targeted customers will decide for you.
  8. I'm one of the guys at Rough and Tumble and can tell you that those bellows are still working GREAT (I believe Al had something to do with it). I have used several different crank blowers and can honestly say that I like the bellows much better. You can get a little air or a lot of air in an instant. With less effort than cranking. BUT, I do know that since the Boone Homestead is a state historic site you can't just fix whatever you want. It takes the proper paperwork to be filed, the required number of quotes to be obtained, the approval given, the money approved, the funds given, and the work done.... even if you have someone that will do it for free! (gooberment efficiency)
  9. Hey Fangedknight, You could not have been working with a better guy. I have worked with Frank for about 13 years doing classes, events, work days and fun days. He really knows his stuff and doesn't mind sharing with those that are interested. Congrats and welcome to the fold, Dave
  10. Now I can tell my wife that sometimes "hold my beer and watch this" actually works.
  11. Anvil, I have the chart but was looking for what color is working best for those that have used 4140. BTW... What's an "app", I'm one of those dinosaurs that have a phone that ONLY makes phone calls. Stash, The bronze color has worked out? No chipping or cracking? I had pretty much decided on using a heated rod through the hammer eye to get the needed heat. Thanks all, Dave
  12. Hello all, How about your tips on hardening and tempering 4140 hammer heads? Specifically your tempering colors as I'm using a coal/coke fire. Thanks, Dave
  13. I do plan on having distance and/or a heavy table between the bride and myself. But I think she must have a sense of humor, given who she is marrying .
  14. At least once a week I am offered up the location of a "bunch" of railroad spikes in exchange for a spike knife or tomahawk. After a couple of questions the source is unquestionably verified, since we are a mile or two from a major railway. I then educate the individual and tell them to "leave them where they are".