Adair

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About Adair

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  1. Thank you both for helping me face the reality. I asked them to just send the dies back. We'll see how long they hold up pounding cold sheetmetal. I'll be curious until the end of time what steel I actually purchased. It was soooo long ago. The first tool steel I ever paid for. -Adair
  2. Hello all, I sent some dies to a heat treat shop. I had 4140 written on the steel. I have a few hundred dollars invested in machining. They were heat treated but do not test above 45 Hrc. I was after 54 Hrc. The representative in the shop thought they behaved like 4130. He can case harden them but these dies are for cold work (sheet metal power hammer). Is there any prudent next step that I might be able to take. I bought the steel new but it was 20 years ago. I must have mislabeled it. -Adair
  3. Adair

    "New" hammer

    My first guess was a sawyer's hammer. Your explanation reinforced my conclusion. It's light compared to many sawyer's hammers I've seen, but the opposed, wide peins look correct. -Adair
  4. Adair

    U.S. Army (Cavalry) pack forge

    Iron Dragon, Thanks a million. This forge belonged to my friends grandfather and he would like to be able to use it again. Very interesting to know that it was welded. I was hoping to rivet the corners! -Adair
  5. Adair

    U.S. Army (Cavalry) pack forge

    Irondragon, I would really appreciate that if you have the time. Thank you. In the attached image you can see what is left of the forge I've been asked to reconstruct. -Adair
  6. Adair

    U.S. Army (Cavalry) pack forge

    Hello, A friend has asked me to reconstruct a forge identical to this one. There is next to nothing left of the box and lid, but the hardware and legs are all intact. I was hoping I could get a measurement of the thickness of the sheet metal used so that I can have a new one brake formed. Any chance you could provide that? -Adair
  7. Adair

    Weighing the merits of a lathe in the shop

    Since I started this thread quite a while back, I'll share what I wound up with. I started out with an 18" Greaves & Klussman that was a project lathe. It had no countershaft, no transmission and was quite worn. I worked on it for a while and then came across a 20" leBlond. It was turn-key, but it was a gap bed which had real limitations since 99% of my work would be up close to the chuck. It was also far more lathe than I needed. Ultimately an 18" ATW lathe appeared at my local salvage yard. It was all disassembled, but I was able to trade my Greaves & Klussman for it. It has a QC gearbox, a countershaft motor mount, double back gears and much less wear. I have it mostly assembled and all parts appear to be present. It's taken a while to wind up with the right lathe. I did save a good lathe from a sad fate, though I resigned another one to the same. The big LeBlond ways will become a mighty workbench. It took some patience until the right one came along, but all three were nearly free.
  8. Quilbilly, For what it's worth, 4". As Jeremy K stated, I change the crosshead position on the Pittman as needed. A.
  9. Beaudry, Ha, it may make the engineerring-minded laugh. I have always hated little giant treadles. I made my own that is balanced with minimal slop in the linkage to reduce treadle stroke and the resulting flamingo dance. The parts you see are pillow blocks to make the pivot points wide to reduce twisting. There are twin tubular push rods that go up each side of the frame. They are actuated by a lever that extends from the treadle behind the hammer. They push up on the clutch arm rather than pull down as the original did. I built a new clutch arm with a lever running the opposite direction to make that possible. I love it because the action feels like a large air hammer, but I am not a gifted fabricator. -A.
  10. Ugly, but it gets the job done. It can't slip any direction. The tapered cross section of those toggle arms makes any other clamping solution pretty sketchy. -A.
  11. Todd, I grabbed a photo of the spring. As compressed (leaving about 1-1/2" gap between dies at rest) the spring is 7-1/4" long. It feels a bit tight to me when I'm running hard. I've worked under at least three other 100# LGs over the years for comparison. With the clutch fully engaged, it feels like the links are already pulling up on the ram before it has transferred all its energy to the work. I bet if I could back the spring off just a hair more all would be in order. Beaudry, I confess, the lack of a spring guard is due simply to laziness on my part. It's as careless as not putting on a seatbelt. As for the brake; I did turn my crank plate on a lathe when I acquired it so that I could easily fit a brake strap. It's on the list.
  12. I have the exact same hammer. I will check on measurements. The spring I have was purchased from Little Giant 20 years ago. I made a compressing clamp to securely pull the toggle arms together while I pin the toggle links. I did it once with multiple pipe clamps, but that was sketchy. There are so few surfaces to gain purchase on. -Adair
  13. I've always loved the narrow face and long horn on these anvils. They may not be the most effective distribution of mass for a general forging anvil, but they sure have shapely proportions. -Adair
  14. Adair

    something i've been working

    First of all, congratulations on getting a fire going and having some quality forge time. I hope you don't mind some constructive criticism about your posture. I offer it because it pains my lower back to see you hunched over like that. A lot of beginning smiths do what you are doing. I believe they want their eyes close to the work and their body far from it. Some also insist on their body always being square to the work. My advice is step up to that anvil and get your body over the work. You will save your back, save your muscles, and improve accuracy and endurance. Swinging as the photo shows, you are expending a lot of energy to hold that hammer in the air at arms length from your center. -Adair
  15. Adair

    Demo Ideas

    The best tip I can give for public demonstrations, and this is really crucial when your audience is random: Demonstrate items that you can forge in your sleep. Confident, linear processes from beginning to end are infinitely more captivating than fussing and tapping as you try to work out something new Additionally, a well rehearsed operation will free up your mind to interact with the crowd while you forge. That is a skill in itself I've found. I'll make the same product repeatedly, striving to make each one like the next. If you can dictate what you are doing while you are doing it, and wind up with consistent, quality products, you will be honing your own skills in addition to entertaining the crowd. That determined certainty about every move is really apparent, even to someone who has never seen a blacksmith work. -Adair