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I Forge Iron


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Everything posted by Buzzkill

  1. Sure, you can keep them in the logarithmic casing - sold separately.
  2. Unfortunately for me, that sounds quite similar to this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ac7G7xOG2Ag Although I suspect every word she's saying in that video is true and accurate, my understanding of that topic is so limited that she may as well be pulling the same stunt as in the video I linked to.
  3. Another fun fact regarding illegal weapons in IL: Brass knuckles (or similar items constructed from any solid metal) are illegal to carry or even own. That goes so far as to include paperweights or jewelry shaped like brass knuckles.
  4. I don't foresee going back to flux for pattern welded billets at this point. I haven't yet tried one without flux or kerosene, but I have gotten good results on the last couple using kerosene. I really didn't want to let the billet cool down to increase the layer count for fuel and time purposes. However, I'm now drawing the billets out further and then instead of a simple fold, I cut about 4 inch lengths, grind the mating surfaces, and stack the billet back up 4 or 5 layers deep. That's been working out well. On the most recent billet I went up to about 50 layers and then flattened the billet perpendicular to the layers without getting any delaminations, so I'm happy with that. I'll have to try a billet with nothing to aid forge welding. Kerosene does tend to leave a lingering aroma on my clothes and in the building.
  5. No, that is not correct. The main point of pattern welding is the pattern itself. Some techniques, such as san mai do use a softer/tougher metal as a sleeve for the harder, more brittle higher carbon insert to get a "best of both worlds" result, but the cutting edge is not a mix of the two steels (or it shouldn't be anyway). "Original" Damascus steel, sometimes referred to as Wootz steel, was superior to most steels available when it gained fame. It had a recognizable pattern due to the technique used to create it - crucible steel. It would still be considered a mono-steel though. The high carbon mono steels available today are generally superior to anything produced centuries ago. You may also see a reference to blades made from steel folded X number of times with a claim that it keeps the blade sharp as it wears. The purpose of that was to ensure a homogeneous piece of steel rather than the folding creating a bunch of thin layers that would wear in use and keep a sharp edge.
  6. The flame color should be a good "medium blue" when it's neutral. Somewhere Mikey has shown a picture of a "perfect flame," but I don't remember where it is at the moment. If the flame is light blue or has a green tint to it that's an indication of a fuel rich burn. In the picture on the left it appears as though combustion is happening at the opposing wall from the burner rather than at the end of the burner tube. That's what I mean by blown off the burner. Sometimes that's just due to the speed of the fuel/air mix being faster than the rate of combustion. After the fuel mix leaves the burner it will begin to slow, and when it hits the opposite wall it slows significantly so combustion can take place there. It's not uncommon to see the flame "jump" back and forth between the end of the burner and the opposite wall. Ideally complete combustion will occur before the flame reaches any other surface. You can try turning down the pressure until the forge begins to glow to see if that helps with the issue. Regardless, once the forge interior temperature exceeds the ignition temperature for the fuel air mix, combustion will happen at the end of the burner anyway. If the fuel stream is aligned properly within the mixing tube and there are no other reasons for the flame to lift off the burner this really isn't much of an issue. With the temperatures you seem to be getting I'm guessing it's just a little too much pressure when the forge is cold.
  7. To me it looks like you may have gone just a little too far with the choke opening. The flame in picture on the left has a purple hue to it, which is an indication of a fuel lean (oxidizing) flame. It also appears to have blown off the end of the burner, but that may just mean you're running a little bit more pressure than needed before the forge gets hot. It looks like your setup is outdoors. Keep in mind that sunlight tends to affect our perception of colors a bit. The picture on the right shows a forge easily hot enough to forge weld high carbon steel, and probably hot enough to weld mild steel. Indoors I'd bet that the forge interior would appear lemon yellow to white. You've got plenty of heat for smashing steel anyway.
  8. I decided to try forge welding a billet (1095 and 15N20) for a blade without using flux. I have some kerosene, so I chose to soak the stack in kerosene after arc welding the stack together and also arc welding a short bar on the stack to grab with tongs. I'm using a propane forge, btw. The initial weld went fine. I had a solid billet with no apparent delaminations or dark lines as it cooled. After drawing it out, I hot cut the billet in the middle (leaving only a thin layer uncut), brought it back up near forge welding temperature, used my butcher brush vigorously on the mating surfaces, and folded it back on itself. I brought it up to welding heat and attempted to set the weld, but no joy. Since dunking a glowing chunk of steel in a container of kerosene seemed like a really bad idea, I grabbed the flux and proceeded to weld the billet with satisfactory results. Is there a reasonably good way to fold and weld a billet without flux (or anything else likely to produce inclusions) and without letting it cool back down to use something like kerosene? Flux inclusions haven't been a huge problem for me, but it is always annoying to hit one on the finish grind after all that work has been done. I'd rather eliminate the possibility if I can.
  9. More thongs when blacksmithing? I'm not sure any of them are truly better or worse for our application. Hopefully you are wearing something over those. To my eye the flame shape looks good, but it appears to be burning fuel rich if the color in the picture is what you are seeing with the naked eye. If you open the choke a bit that should help you get an even hotter forge. I'm looking forward to seeing what you do with it.
  10. Welcome to the forum. If you haven't already done so, it would benefit you to take a little time to read through the Read This First topic, which you can access from the blue bar at the top of the page. That will help you get the most out of the forum. It appears to me that at the time that picture was taken your burners have an excessive amount of gas compared to the air they are inducing. The more burners you have in a given space the more opportunity there is for conflicts between the burners. They can compete for air at the inlet side, although with the design you used it's not likely to be the main problem. On the flame end back pressure is created, and back pressure from one or more of the burners can impact the performance of other burners. The closer they are together the more likely that is to happen. You posted this in the Ribbon Burner section of the forum. A ribbon burner may be a good option for you, especially if you are going to decrease the length of the forge a bit. Half inch plate is extreme overkill for a forge shell. A sixteenth of an inch is more than sufficient. It would most likely be worth your time to peruse our Forges 101 and Burners 101 topics. They are quite lengthy, but they do contain the answers to most questions that people have about forge and burner design: https://www.iforgeiron.com/topic/46536-burners-101/ https://www.iforgeiron.com/topic/47439-forges-101/ If you still have a lot of questions after reading those topics and/or others in the Gas Forge section that catch your attention let us know and we'll try to get you operating as quickly, efficiently, and inexpensively as we reasonably can.
  11. When your performance degrades it's time to stop for a while (or a day) and come back later. Too many times I've tried to power through "just 15 more minutes and I'll be done," only to make an error that took much longer than 15 minutes to correct. You can try to switch to a lighter hammer, but if you're having the symptoms you described it's most likely time for a lengthy break - especially if this is a hobby.
  12. I have not forged A2, but I have forged O1. It can air harden in thin cross sections. I was forging a knife when it happened to me.
  13. This may very well have affected the integrity of the steel in that area. Hopefully it just caused some surface decarburization, but it's likely to be more severe than that. If you quenched right out of the forge with that part of the blade overheated you most likely have large grain structure in that area which tends to mean a weak/brittle section where it was overheated. In the future you may want to consider using a piece of pipe or steel tubing that you can put in the forge and then put the blade inside that to help with more even heat distribution and also avoiding direct flame impingement. Sliding your knife blank in and out through the hot spot will also help you attain an even heat on the blade before quenching.
  14. To me it looks like you probably got it too hot before quenching - at least in the area where you are seeing the pitting/deformation.
  15. Welcome to the forum. If you haven't already done so, you should read the Read This First topic which you can find in the blue bar at the top of the page. That will help you get the most out of the forum. The threads we have on gas forges and burners are some of the most active on the forum, and as a result they tend to be quite lengthy. However, nearly any question you will have has probably already been answered there. Here's a couple links to get you started: https://www.iforgeiron.com/topic/46536-burners-101/ https://www.iforgeiron.com/topic/47439-forges-101/ If you still need help or have further questions after reading through those let us know and we'll help you get sorted out.
  16. Welcome to the forum. If you haven't already done so, please read the Read This First post which you can access through the blue bar at the top of the page. It will help you get the most out of the forum. Without being able to see the flames from your burners it's hard to make any real judgments about the burners. There are also a number of substandard design issues with the forge. We typically recommend choosing one proven and effective design from an experienced person and follow it strictly for your first attempt. Once you have a better understanding of how things work then you are better equipped to make modifications or improvements to a design. We have extensive threads on forge and burner construction, namely Forges 101 and Burners 101. They are lengthy, but the answer to just about any question you have regarding those two topics can be found there: https://www.iforgeiron.com/topic/46536-burners-101/ https://www.iforgeiron.com/topic/47439-forges-101/ If you can't find answers to your questions after perusing those threads let us know and we'll try to get you on track.
  17. True TP. I failed to observe the location. If they have coins similar to ours the principle still applies. Otherwise I guess it's sourcing nickel, copper, etc in small sheets to get the same effect.
  18. As a side note, I'm not sure there's enough of a difference between 304 and 316 to give much contrast even if you do manage to get those 2 forge welded. Since the whole point of pattern welding is to see the pattern afterwards, you want to ensure your starting materials will provide the contrast you are looking for. A more or less standard combination for knife making is 15N20 and 1095 steels. These weld well together, produce good contrast, and still have the characteristics desirable in blade steel after welding. Since you are going for something "purty" rather than functional, I'd second TP's suggestion of mokume gane. A stack of quarters might give you the desired result here.
  19. Deimos, now we're on the same page. For a while I thought I was missing something obvious that everyone else was easily understanding.
  20. Agreed. I put distal tapers on full tang knives for balance reasons frequently and as long as the surfaces are flat it doesn't really matter that they are tapered. You compensate for whatever minor change in thickness exists as you remove the scale material to get the desired feel in the hand.
  21. I get that we want to use the cylinder to "push" rather than "pull." I just don't see how that can be accomplished without changing some combination of the frame and the movable portion that holds the top die. Simply flipping the cylinder 180 degrees and attaching it to the same points doesn't change it from "pull" to "push." There does not appear to be enough room between the top of the frame which holds the bottom die and the bottom of the movable portion that holds the top die to install the cylinder so that it can "push" the top die down without some extensive modifications.
  22. I guess I still don't get it. It appears that in either configuration the oil has to flow into the portion of the cylinder that contains the ram in order to retract the ram and provide downward pressure on the top die. Why would the retraction force of the cylinder be any different whether the cylinder was mounted base up or base down or even horizontally? Doesn't the surface area remain the same on the ram side of the piston? I can't see how flipping the cylinder allows the greater surface area of the other side of the piston to come into play. It's still pulling the ram in rather than pushing it out, right? Does it create vacuum/low pressure by pulling the oil out of that side of the cylinder rather than just pushing oil into the other side?
  23. I'm following along, but I admit I'm a bit confused here. I get that the "push" is stronger than the "pull" and the reasons for it. What I don't get is how flipping the cylinder 180 degrees will make any difference. In the current configuration or with the cylinder flipped 180 degrees it's still using the "pull" of the cylinder to apply the pressure. Wouldn't it require redesigning the system so that the top die was stationary with the bottom die movable to accomplish the goal of using the "push" action of the cylinder? Either that or mounting the cylinder overhead to push the top die down, but again that's a frame redesign. What am I missing?
  24. Thanks for the info Cs. The results are professional and pleasing to my eye.
  25. Quite right. Thanks to you and Glenn for catching that before someone got hurt based on something stupid I said. I was only thinking about the spring tension and not other inherent danger. The bottom line is the best options are to have a professional with the right tools do the work or sell it and find/buy some more suitable material.
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