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I Forge Iron


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  1. I believe that Thomas Powers has reported good contrast between bandsaw blades and pallet strapping. I'm not sure which is the light and which is the dark. Maybe he'll chime in here.
  2. Buzzkill

    New tools!

    I'm still not sure how that gets you more than 24 hours in a day. I lived in Fairbanks, AK for a couple years and we did have 23 hours of daylight in the middle of summer without ever going completely dark before the sun came up again, but our days were still 24 hours long if I recall correctly.
  3. More than half, but yes. I got it from someone who was using it as a yard decoration. It's a HB, and appears to have broken at the waist. It's a clean break though, so it's always made me wonder if someone did machine work on it or if it was made that way intentionally. It has 2 3/8" holes bored completely through the body. The spacing, placement, and precision of the holes makes me think it could have been manufactured that way, but it could also be the result of a skilled machinist with the right tools later on.
  4. Buzzkill

    New tools!

    Are you sure you live on the same planet as the rest of us?
  5. Here's a pic of it. I have about half the material cut for the new anvil, but I doubt I'll be able to work on it much more for a few months now.
  6. Sounds like you have the right idea. If you make believers out of them when they are young it will significantly decrease the frequency and severity of the discipline you have to administer as they get older.
  7. They can be a little vindictive too. My sister saved a baby crow when I was a teenager. Consequently it had no fear of humans whatsoever. It would open mailboxes and "distribute" the contents. One time it followed my mom's car into town a couple miles away and when she stopped at the bank it landed on the edge of the drawer at the window. The lady inside the bank asked, "Do you know this bird?" We still get a chuckle out of that one. They do love shiny things though. My dad was teasing it with a keyring one time and it snatched the keys from his hand and then deposited them in a woodpile a couple hundred yards away. It could also be a bit annoying. One time when it was making a racket I chucked a rock at it. I didn't hit it, but apparently it was close enough. A few moments later it flew in from behind me and knocked the hat off my head. Sometimes fear of humans is a good thing
  8. Thanks for the reply and info. Right now I'm planning on making the dies 3.5 inches long and 1.75 to 2 inches wide. Unfortunately it may be months before I can make that modification. I have rotator cuff surgery next week and I don't think I'll get that far this coming weekend. It gives me more time to think about how I want to do it I guess.
  9. Then that's too low pressure and/or an alignment problem with the mig tip in relation to the mixing tube. What really matters is where the fuel stream is aimed inside the tube. It's possible to have the mig tip itself perfectly centered, but a burr or piece of debris deflect the gas stream off center. Whenever you modify the mig tip you should always use a torch tip file or something similar to ensure the hole is not obstructed - if you haven't already done that.
  10. When these burners are constructed correctly it is normal to be unable to keep them lit in open air without a flare on the end. You have a minor flare of sorts which should make it slightly easier to keep the flame on the end of the burner, but the back pressure in the forge is what really helps keep the flame where we want it. Even in the forge it is sometimes necessary to run the burner at low pressure until the forge interior begins to glow before the pressure can be raised without blowing the flame off the end. The bell shaped reducer fitting you had to begin with is probably more likely to allow you to get a flame to stay on the burner in open air. Once you get the zinc off those parts and reassemble everything let's see if you can get a low pressure stable flame on the end of your burner. Mikey said he doesn't think your mig tip is centered in the mixing tube. If true that will definitely affect the burner performance. Personally I find that pictures can sometimes be a bit deceiving due to the angle of the camera. However, as Mikey suggested, you can hook a water source that has a little pressure to the burner and shoot it through the mig tip to see how well the water stream is centered in the mixing tube. If your regulator does indeed have a flow limiter built into that is likely to keep your burner from functioning properly. We should be able to zero in on some of these issues soon if you bear with us though.
  11. Ok, a couple things. I see your ball valve is most of the way closed. If your regulator can go to 0 psi on the low end then open the ball valve all the way and control the pressure/flow with the regulator. Without covering the air intakes, when you try to light it, does the flame just blow off the end of the burner as if there is too much pressure? If it does then again turn the pressure down at the regulator and see if you can get it to stay lit with low pressure. If you can get it to stay lit then post a picture of that flame. If not then describe how it behaves when you try to light it.
  12. Can you post a picture of whatever flame you are getting on the burner? That will go a long way towards pointing us in a direction regarding what you should do next. Oh, and if your mixing tube and the coupler on the end of the burner are galvanized you should replace those with black iron fittings or strip the zinc off in a vinegar (or other acid) bath.
  13. You'll want 220v or more to power the machine. Using 110v limits the horsepower of the motor you can use on a traditional circuit. It's best to have 1.5 hp or greater for a 2x72 grinder. If your budget will allow for a VFD then I do recommend going the variable speed route. The cheap Chinese VFD's are not NEMA rated and will need an enclosure to keep the dust and debris out of the system or they will fail fairly quickly. A 220v 2 to 3 hp TEFC 3 phase motor (and a VFD rated for the same or greater hp) works well for this application. If you start off with a flat platen attachment, that will get you started. You can build or purchase additional attachments as your skill and budget allow. I'm far from a master bladesmith, but the things I use the most are the flat platen, an 8 inch contact wheel and slack belt grinding. Others probably have different preferences, but those are mine. It's worth the money to purchase quality belts and only use them until they stop cutting well. The way I've heard it put best is "use the belts like they were free." Trying to use a belt once it no longer cuts well makes you push harder, which builds up more heat and makes it more likely that you will slip and injure yourself or make grinding mistakes that are difficult to correct. I have some personal experience in that area. There's my 2 cents.
  14. If the ceramic fiber blanket is completely coated with anything that can withstand the heat of a forge to the point where no flames are in contact with the blanket and there are no gaps where the particles can escape then it should be fine. If you are applying the material yourself you will still want to wet the blanket surface before applying the refractory material. If you want extra peace of mind then go ahead and spray rigidizer on it first. All we are trying to accomplish is preventing tiny particles from becoming airborne, whether that be with rigidizer or other means.
  15. "...regulations on flying animals..." I thought you said they were dogs, or is this some new airborne breed?
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