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I Forge Iron

Nobody Special

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About Nobody Special

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    Senior Member

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  • Location
    Coupeville, Wa
  • Interests
    Smithing, casting, running, almost anything involving historical engineering. A shiny new hobby or bit of knowledge a day practically.

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  1. The "dish" in the windowsill reminded me. You can use a broken piece of porcelain to sharpen knives, although you have to be careful not to scratch the blade. Done it a couple of times in a fix.
  2. Still doesn't smell as bad as cutting bone with a power saw or a cutting disc.
  3. There's several things to consider. You need to allow for zinc loss before adding it. Done right, you shouldn't lose more than about five percent. You don't want the copper heated beyond the boiling point, then add solid zinc at the last minute. You may also want to cool your alloy right after dissolving the zinc, and are you using flux? A heavy layer of flux on the surface will keep more zinc in the mix, especially since it's harder for it to burn without oxygen. I don't know your experience level in casting, but you're taking precautions working with molten zinc, right? Zi
  4. Kanka actually says on their website that undesignated parts of their anvils may be soft, with a hardness of 30-40 hrc. Love the look of the hollands and Jymm Hoffman's double horn colonial. I now know what I want for Christmas.
  5. On the above. My emphasis on the safety issues above. Casting can be dangerous, and I have the weird scars to prove it. Seek experienced help, and read up. Don't trust the internet and youtube especially as a guide. I think the differences between cast iron and cast steel are well addressed above. Casting steel at home is generally not feasible. Cast iron is exceedingly difficult, and not forgeable. Forges and casting furnaces usually require very different designs for anything but the smallest items. If you play with non-ferrous metals (not iron), metals that are cast usually us
  6. Good morning, I've read that about oroshigane, in the far reaches of the internet, along with intense debate over whether it was tamahagane, or tamahagane including scrap, or any scrap billet made by the smith. Definitely internet fodder though, the Japanese swordmaking section of my library is a bit scarce, although I recently obtained Mark Kulansky's microhistory of paper, the Beekeper's Bible, and several books on the OMC stern drive they were putting in Bayliners in the early 80s. My love of obscure, or at least not mainstream texts runs in the wrong direction, I suppose. I confe
  7. For casting and for what smelting I've done, I've mostly preferred charcoal. If I remember correctly, (a definite maybe), orishigane was steel put together by Japanese smiths from selected pieces of tamahagane iron blooms (a famous steel made from Japanese iron sands in a complex three day process). Sometimes they added other bits of steel to lower the iron content. Tamahagane was the starting point for katanas, orishigane was the end steel for katanas, welded into a billet. Mr. Powers has an intimate knowledge of metallurgy, and will assuredly know what I have messed up above. From my
  8. Hard to go wrong with Coq au vin. The Coq is optional, the vin is not.
  9. Africanized bees, yellow jackets, murder hornets. We've got all of it...especially dang varroa mites. Youse guys have inspired me. Gonna go work on the 74 Dart. Swapping a leaky fuel sending unit.
  10. Me to Self: I'm finally immune to beestings again, I barely even feel them. Bees to Self this morning when I was covering the hives which were being robbed: The moron thinks he's tough now. Good morning earlobes.
  11. I seem to be going the other way. Bad enough what I had in Texas and Arkansas. Georgia and Appalachia just made it thicker and rounded me off with words like sigogglin and katywampus. I tell my Army buddies I got a bad score on my ASVABs so all they would let me go to DLI for was an accent.
  12. Shoot, that's your parts car? Reminds me of my dad's 60 El Camino. He bought a second one for a parts car in the 90s, and ended up using it as a daily driver.
  13. I don't have a lot to add to what's above. The main mechanical benefit that you surrender if not tempered, is that if you've hardened it properly, or even improperly, you are at serious risk of the edge chipping or the knife breaking. They sometimes even break on their own with no use if you don't temper after hardening. This can be especially dangerous in a kitchen knife.
  14. On the vehicle side, I'm playing with a 74 Dodge Dart I picked up for a song, and a xxxxxx stern drive Bayliner. I'd be fine with the Bayliner becoming an artificial reef, but I like the Dart. Did the head gaskets and freeze plugs, raised the dang torque bars to where it didn't scrape the wheel wells when you make a turn, and we're currently playing with the carburetor and getting rid of all the assorted duct tape and bubble gum from the previous owner. This is far more literal than I would have believed possible. The vacuum hose is connected to the brake booster with silicon caulk. Fu
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