Bruce Beamish

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About Bruce Beamish

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  1. Just buy a burner from Rex Price at Hybridburners.com or another reputable manufacturer and use a rated lpg variable regulator , gas rated fittings and hoses and use the forge in a well ventilated area. I do understand doing it yourself can be fun from an experimental point of view and you might save yourself some money. It can also be very dangerous. I know the other forum users are well meaning and plenty have built their own but that doesn't mean their set up as safe as it should be. What does the local fire code say on this type of gear? Where do you stand from an insurance perspective if something goes bang? Would you build your own oxy torch and try to run it off any old regulator and fittings? Be safe, keep your family safe. Cheers, Bruce.
  2. Hello Phil, I hope to make it again this year if I can escape from work. Good fun and looking forward to catching up with everyone Cheers, Bruce
  3. To follow on from Darren70 regarding the CIG toolcraft electrode, I have successfully repaired anvils with edge chipping and face repairs using toolcraft with 312 ss electrode as a bufferring layer. Preheating and post weld heat treatment were as per the manufacturers instructions. These anvils have held up well. Neither of these electrodes are cheap and I suspect it is similar for these types of electrodes no matter where you are in the world. Manufacturers like Eutectic and Bohler made similar electrodes to the toolcraft that I know of. Bohler also made a mig wire (skwamig, I think it was called or skw1 mig) that was a very good allround hardfacing material without the brittleness or checking problems of the more common types of hardfacing electrodes. Personally I think after having repaired a few anvils , it might be just as well to leave well enough alone. I was fortunate at the time to have full workshop (including heat treatment and metallurgical facilities) available to me. Good edges and a flat face all round are very nice on an anvil but if you have a old used anvil one that is not to bad in these areas learn to work around it. The majority of used anvils I have seen in the 35 years I have been involved in the Blacksmithing game have had some form of hollowing in the face in the area where they get used most and some edge chipping. Over time and as your skill level improves as a Blacksmith these imperfections won't bother you as much. This is of course even less of an issue on larger anvil as you have more areas to work with. As you continue in your learning and travels as a Blacksmith a better anvil will turn up, so trade up! If you feel the need to, move on "Old Faithful" to some one else or you may have got to like the old girls' quirks. Alternatively, you may find yourself in the position of buying a brand new anvil (see Frank Turley's posts). You know, the family has grown up and moved on and you've got some spare cash, treat your self! Cheers, Bruce
  4. I'm with the Peter Wright camp. It doesn't look like a John Brooks anvil to me. You can see the welded waist on this anvil and the step as mentioned in previous posts, signs of a Peter Wright anvil. The John Brooks double bick anvils that I have seen have the Hardie hole at the end of the face with the square horn and the pritchel hole at the end of the face with the round horn and also they step down to the square horn. I am talking only of the forged John Brooks anvils here not the modern cast steel ones sold by Vaughans. I use a small John Brooks double bick anvil as my demo anvil and I find it extremely versatile and I prefer the shape to the London Pattern. I have recently purchased three full sized double bick anvils, I've already on sold one and the others are in my shed having some TLC and none of them were like this one. When I work out how to post images I'll upload some of my double bick anvils, the largest of the three is really unusual with two different sized pritchel holes and two different sized Hardie holes (one in the face and one in the square horn). Enough of my rambling, you've got yourself one very fine anvil that looks in great condition, be happy and enjoy it.
  5. Rich and I have tried to help you but it seems you already have your mind made up. I see a home made burner and some water pipe fittings. Be safe and good luck.
  6. Not quite on the topic but I was interested in the comment about Chrysler parts. Even here in Australia the torsion bars of local Chryslers were (and are) sought after by Blacksmiths and others "in the know" for use as pry bars jemmy bars and the like. I can still spot one a mile off! I've got a few stashed away for special projects. Mind you they stopped building Chryslers here years ago so the source has just about dried up in the scrap line although the restorers still use them.
  7. Is there a reason you require a blown burner? I use a venturi burner and forge welding is not a problem. By all means anybody with reasonable skills can build a forge enclosure. The burner is a different thing though. Rich makes a very good point above. Have you had a look at Rex Price's site? http://www.hybridburners.com/ Rex makes a fine venturi burner and you could do a lot worse. Jesus Hernadez a knife maker uses one of Rex's burners in a vertical forge for forge welding damascus blades and is very happy with it (there is a link to his site from Hybridburners) Here a some videos of buildng a gas forge from Australia, http://www.youtube.com/user/corinkayaker/videos?view=0 I use one of these burners and a forge very much like this. My advice if you don't want to buy an off the shelf forge is at least buy a good quality burner that suits your size of forge enclosure and the work you want to do, buy good quality gas rated fittings and hoses.Check your local fire and gas regulations/codes and your insurance does, it cover the use of this type of appliance at home? Use the forge in a well ventilated area and check for leaks every time you use the forge before firing up and any time you smell gas, shut the forge down and check for leaks. Never leave the forge unattended whilst it is working and shut everything off when shut down, by this I mean shut off the valve at the cylinder, close the burner choke, back off the regulator, shut the idle valve (if fitted) Above all be safe and safety aware. Gas like electricity doesn't take prisoners it plays for keeps!
  8. Hello Matt, Selectron Idustries made a good fabricated press as did Accro (both Australian Manufacturers) of the cast iron body presses I have seen (I own both) are the John Heine and AP Lever (Australian Made) are good machines too. All utilise the twin bolt clamp for holding the die shank unlike the english presses I have seen which use a grub screw through the press head to hold the shank of the tool which can lead to problems. In fact I picked up a Norton No.6 deep back press for a friend of mine recently and the grub screw had been replaced with a bolt and the bolt was burred over on the shank of the tool. After finally managing to extract the damaged bolt, the press head now needs drilling and tapping oversize. So I speak from first hand experience of this problem. Another thing I noticed was that the Norton is a three start thread whereas both my John Heine and AP Lever are four start threads. The Norton is a double flyweight machine and the Australian presses are single flyweight, perhaps the idea is the extra weight increses the oomph (technical term) as opposed to the mechanical advantage of the four start thread? I did succumb whilst I was buying for my mate, a Norton No.4 deep throat press had to come home to stay at my place, yes I know my reservations as I have mentioned about the die clamping but it is the size I needed and I will use a tool holder and it will get looked after. Another thing that surprised me about this press (the No.4) was the poor quality of the casting, missmatch casting and a the odd bit of porosity! None of it is major but I thought it was unusual given the reputation that Norton presses have. Having said that, the quality of the casting on the No.6 is good.
  9. What an absolute beauty. Thanks for showing us.
  10. I was taught to calculate the volume of the forging divide it by the cross sectional area of the bar being used and add 5 % for wastage (scaling etc) Over the years I have found this to be a good method. It certainly gives you a good starting point.
  11. When I served my apprenticeship a fair while ago I was lucky to be mentored by some good Blacksmiths. The leading hand issued the jobs and would give directions on what to do, he was highly skilled himself but not the best man manager. If you got stuck or had questions he could be a bit brusque to say the least, so you tended to ask one of the other tradesmen, they would rarely give you direct solution, they would ask questions to see what you had tried and make a few suggestions. The idea was that you would go away and try some of these suggestions and they'd keep a bit of an eye on you to see if you were having a genuine go. If you were they'd maybe give a few more hints if needed and let you know what they though of how you went. This was encouraging and you learnt as you went along. Once you were accepted as not being a ratbag (fool) they would help out quite willingly but they never did the job for you and they quite often offered advice in lifeskillls and attitude to a youngster growing up and working with hardworking men in a Blacksmith's Shop. Better for them to set you straight than the Leading Hand or the Foreman to find out you needed to be pulled back into line. I remember these lessons well, I developed a great deal of respect for these mentors and in turn as I learnt and grew, earnt theirs. Not everybody was friendly, there were a few old Curmudgeons who would grudgingly acknowledge you with a grunt or a nod but that was about it. Occasionaly though after you had been there some time they might suddenly decide that you weren't a total ratbag and there might be some hope for you, they might give you a tip or two. I have taught Blacksmithing and other subjects to people of all ages and backgrounds and I turn I have learnt from them, by them asking questions which makes me look at the way I do things too. I have never held back in answering a question or showing anybody anything about the trade, If I can help out I will as I remember what it was like when I started. I don't hold their hand and a bit like the way I learnt if they go away and have a go then come back and show me what they've done and a few more questions at least I know their thinking about the job at hand and having a go. So much of this job is thinking about where you're going and about three steps ahead when you come out of the fire. Getting people to think like a Blacksmith is probably the biggest thing, or trade secret if you like. A good method for teaching and in life is as Ian from South Africa said "Do unto others"
  12. Thanks fellas, I guessed for a 6 ton press with two balls they'd be about 20 lbs each, so I might be on the right track. WOW ! Dale 33 Kgs If you get in the way of that with a bit of oopmh behind it you'll know all about it! I got myself with the handle of my AP Lever press (7 - 8 ton, single ball) a nasty bruise on the ribs and made me cought a bit! I reckon it could've been even worse for someone with less padding! Cheers, Bruce.
  13. Does any one know the weight of the Ball weights used on a Norton 6 A (deep throat) Fly Press? A friend is looking at buying one that is missing the weights. Thanks, Bruce
  14. In the situation I described above the twin ram press did have a wide platen with the rams set fairly wide apart and I was led to understand that an off centre load situation developed which led to the damage. It may have been an an unusual or exceptional set of circumstances that let to this accident. I do not know, I wasn't present but I was relaying what I had been told by the Engineer inolved in the repairs.
  15. I have seen what happens to a large twin ram press when the rams get out of synch due to a load imbalance. This was on a 200 ton press (I think) with a wide top platen. The ram connections on the platen got broken and the ends of the rams damaged. Fortunately no one was injured just clean underwear required. The end result was new connections on the platen and the rams shortened by about 5 inches and a mechanism to equalise the pressure between both rams fitted. This was a commercially made press too and It didn't have this arrangement from new! I don't know any more details as It happened before I started in that shop. It was one of the shop engineers that told me about it as he was involved in the repair and modifications. Why they didn't replace the rams with new ones I don't know maybe it cheaper and they reckoned they could live with platen not going all the way down. I never found it a problem I just packed things up if I needed too.