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I Forge Iron


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About tjdaggett

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    Twin Cities, MN


  • Location
    Twin Cities of Minnesota

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  1. That's interesting about the coal/coke split. Airflow?
  2. Which is more valuable to you: time, or money? If you have time, I would second IFC's charcoal-making suggestion. I also know that Glenn often (exclusively?) forges with wood. I thought about doing the same, but wood forges put out a lot of radiant heat and I'm going to be working in a pretty small space.
  3. Question: why does charcoal work better in a side-blast forge? I have seen that statement several times from reliable smiths on this forum, but I can't find the reason in any of the related discussions. I've been limited in my research time lately, so apologies if I haven't dug deeply enough.
  4. Frosty, I was able to give a couple of criteria that he used in his shopping: - Cut through pieces of metal at least 1" thick (not quickly) - Shape/grind steel I most DEFINITELY said thank you. Thanks to everyone else for the safety advice. I do not come from a handy background; circular saws are the outside of my comfort zone. I will definitely be studying the manual before use, and even if my GREAT-aunt tells me to take the guard off I will stolidly refuse.
  5. Smiths, I was given an angle grinder for my birthday. I was vague with my birthday list, never having used an angle grinder before. I have not had time to research them, nor to test this one out. My father-in-law is a very handy person and did the research on this one, so I'm guessing it will do what I need it to. There is a limited window on returns, so I was hoping you might be able to lend me the benefit of your experience and confirm: will this do the job as a general-purpose angle grinder in a hobby shop? The details of the grinder are in the pictures below. Little Bean for scale (apologies for the blur).
  6. Frosty, we'll get her there one day. For now, she limits herself to quiet, gracious statements like, "Would it be easier if you did ______ instead?"
  7. Chris, I have nothing useful to add, except that I will keep an eye out for this kind of thing in my forge. I'm also making my own charcoal, so we'll have similar experiences. I will say that, had you not told us the story, I would have assumed those were rocks. Also, your name makes me smile.
  8. FeyWest, I apologize for the slow response. I apparently haven't checked my email in two weeks. I live in a suburban neighborhood and I have a fire pit and a woodpile. My neighbors therefore share with me all kinds of wood. The original trees in our area were silver maples (the one in our backyard is the largest I've ever seen) and they are starting to age out. As people cut theirs down, I've been rolling a few rounds back to my house and splitting them. We've also got crab-apple wood (I offer it to anyone who smokes meat first), lilac, white mulberry, and soon oak. Right now I'm working through my punky wood pile. Summer is garden time for me, so I haven't made much progress yet. I figure that if wet, moldy stuff will pyrolize and get metal up to welding heat, the good stuff will be even better.
  9. Thank you Chris and IFC! I put up a separate post with more pictures that goes into that a bit more. This is an ad hoc setup, more proof of concept than anything else. The first dream is to have a setup tailor to my height. The second dream is to have one that somehow accommodates my 5'4" bride as well.
  10. I don't have a great picture of the "finished" product, but I did my first forging this weekend. My goal was to set up an outdoor workspace, get the forge lit, and see if I could heat metal. I ended up making something resembling a fire poker.
  11. Does the draw knife draw? It looks excellent. That might be a good one for me to work towards; been needing one.
  12. My lady caught this on the forge's maiden voyage. I think it's more of an ostrich.
  13. Disclaimer: if this is too many photos, or if they are too large, let me know and I will size them down further. I don't have a good idea yet of the resolution/KB that is too much. Hello, smiths. I was recently given a good birthday gift: the time and space to assemble a make-shift forge, light it, and forge. My sister and brother-in-law brought dinner, allowing my wife space to take care of Little Bean and take pictures, and my brother-in-law manned the blower so I could do less first-timer multitasking. The setup was put together in about twenty minutes. The metal bucket is full of dirt to make an adjustable-height, fire-resistant stand. The white bucket holds the charcoal. My BIL and I alternately used my hammer and a scoop to work the fire. Note: my long-term setup will be in the white shed, but it needs to be moved out from under the maple tree, and the pandemic has diminished my labor pool (D&D brothers). Things Learned: - My anvil is much quieter than I anticipated. - My homemade charcoal produced almost no smoke once it was up and running (smoke picture was in the first five minutes). - The face of the anvil and the top of the forge both need to be elevated; I'm thinking 8". - The stump--not my first pick--is too wide. It kept me farther from the anvil, straining my back. - My little blower is not only capable of creating welding temperatures, it can burn steel. - My daughter, who watched from a distance, is hypnotized by forging. - My wife is a natural at taking forging pictures. Final note: I know I should not learn forging on rebar. My stock needs organizing badly. I would value your thoughts, opinions, commentary, and glowing compliments on my lady's photographic skills.
  14. tjdaggett

    My friend

    Praying this morning.
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