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About Buzzkill

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    Central Illinois

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  1. Buzzkill

    Mud quenching?

    Did the mud have to be made by mixing in the urine of a virgin red-headed she goat on the eve of the full moon?
  2. First a disclaimer: I only ran a waste oil forge using a siphon nozzle for a short period of time, so take all of what I have to say with a grain of salt. I built my own siphon nozzle from commonly available hardware parts and some solder. It pulled the fuel into the air stream and did a good job atomizing the fuel, so no complaints there. I used the blower from a power vent hot water heater for the forced air source and typically ran 20 to 60 psi from the air compressor to run the siphon nozzle. If you're using a commercially available siphon nozzle you shouldn't need as much pressure to get good results. However, there are some challenges specific to using a siphon nozzle in this application that you have to deal with. The viscosity of used oils varies with the type of oil, the amount of contaminants, and also significantly with temperature. That affects the rate at which your siphon nozzle will draw the fuel in for a given air pressure. My recommendations if you are going that route has 3 main parts, which you may have already dealt with: 1) Always filter the used oil. It takes very little solids to plug up your nozzle. 2) Heat your feed container to a level that is higher than any ambient temperature your region will experience. 120 degrees F should suffice in your area. Warmer may be even better. You don't want the temperature outside to cause fluctuations in the viscosity of your oil. 3) Design your feed container so that it always has a consistent level of oil in it. Otherwise as the level drops in your container the hydraulic pressure will change and that will affect the rate at which fuel is pulled into the siphon nozzle. This normally requires a 2 tank system and/or a float/valve setup. If you can't maintain a constant fuel flow to your nozzle you may find that you spend as much or more time adjusting the fuel to air ratio as you do beating on hot steel. Were I to attempt a used oil forge again I would look into a constant pressure pump system and a good spray nozzle to eliminate the siphon nozzle. FWIW, I usually started up the forge using kerosene or diesel fuel and then switched over to used oil once the forge started glowing. Otherwise I had a lot of flameouts during the startup period. Good luck with your project and let us know how it turns out.
  3. Buzzkill

    First solo Tamahagane smelt

    True, but there's a grouper two of us who can't seem to stop.
  4. Buzzkill

    First solo Tamahagane smelt

    What's that? You'll have to speak up. I'm a little hard of herring.
  5. Buzzkill

    First solo Tamahagane smelt

    One thing that stands out from the background here is that we needed to move away from the fish puns. I think it's a form of bass-relief.
  6. Buzzkill

    First solo Tamahagane smelt

    I'm all about that plaice; no turtles.
  7. Buzzkill

    First solo Tamahagane smelt

    You swallow all that and you're going to need a sturgeon.
  8. Buzzkill

    First solo Tamahagane smelt

    I was just doing it for the halibut.
  9. Buzzkill

    First solo Tamahagane smelt

    Not from my Perch. It's just a little fishy.
  10. Buzzkill

    Flare Cone question??

    Keep in mind that the thicker your castable refractory "armor" is, the longer it will take to bring your forge up to temperature and the longer it will take to cool down afterwards. If you plan for all your forging sessions to be a minimum of several hours long then you may want to go that thick, but if you want to fire up the forge and be banging on hot steel in 20 minutes you may want to keep it on the low side of a half inch. You might want to go a little thicker on the floor than elsewhere though.
  11. Buzzkill

    New to the craft - looking for advise

    No, that's still not a good match for a forge. First, it's only rated to 2200 degrees F, and you could easily exceed that inside your forge. Secondly, it's a cement. Even though it says "castable" it's still a cement, which means it's good for sticking things together, but not for extended direct flame contact. The suggestions above are what you want in a forge. Wayne Coe is a member here who sells smaller quantities of good forge building materials at reasonable prices. Check out his website or shoot him a PM for more info.
  12. Buzzkill

    newbe question

    Use a cheap magnet. You are going to be touching it to glowing steel after all. Steel is completely non-magnetic once it's hot enough. You'll either feel the pull or you won't. I usually use one of the magnets used to hold steel for welding corners. Just stick it to something magnetic near the forge for easy access. Test how it feels with the steel cold so you know the relative pull of the magnet, then check it as it starts to glow and then go a little hotter and check again until it's not drawn to the magnet. It doesn't get much easier than that. You can typically see decalescence easily in low light on blade blanks. It will look kind of like a shadow in the sense that the steel on either side will be brighter as the transition takes place. Most of the time I've seen it happen in kind of an extended "U" shape since the tip cools off fastest and I usually don't bring the tang up to full temperature before quenching. Regardless, if you get a piece of steel higher than critical temperature and observe it in low or no ambient light you should be able to easily see it for yourself.
  13. Buzzkill

    A use for Scale?

    Scale is iron oxide. Iron oxide is more stable (less reactive) than pure iron. In order to convert iron oxide to iron it requires both energy (heat) and something that will strip the oxygen from the iron at that temperature (it has to have a greater affinity for the oxygen than the iron has). You are not going to accomplish that with a little bit of charcoal in a canister damascus setting. It will require a smelting process in which higher than forging temperatures are achieved and hundreds of pounds of charcoal are typically used.
  14. Buzzkill

    Ugly Metal Box forge

    Let us know how those hold up. Not all IFB's are created equal. The K26 bricks that have been praised on here recently were specifically the Morgan Thermal Ceramics brand, and from accounts given on here they hold up much better than other bricks which are also rated at 2600 degrees F. I haven't used the Morgan bricks yet, but I have used some other 2600 degree F rated IFB's which are only marginally better than the 2300 degree rated bricks. It looks like the bricks to which you refer are rated at 2800 degrees F, but I am curious about how they hold up to repeated thermal shock and the occasional bump.
  15. Buzzkill

    venturi burner air intake

    A whistling/chirping sound and a hot mixing tube are classic signs of the flame burning inside the burner tube rather than at the end of it. There are a number of reasons this can happen, but with the information you gave I'm guessing your burner is top mounted and pointing down rather than tangentially. Once you shut the burner off the heat inside the forge starts to go back up through your burner tube (chimney effect). Now if you restart your burner, the end of the mixing tube closest to the forge chamber becomes hot enough for ignition to take place there instead of at the end of the burner. Once you let everything cool down to ambient temperature then the mixing tube is below the ignition temperature for your fuel/air mix and it once again burns at the end as it should. There may be some ways to keep this from happening depending on your burner design. If you can snap some pics of the burner and post them it will help. Try to get at least one of the flame in the forge shortly after starting up, one while experiencing the problem, and one of the air intake area.