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I Forge Iron


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    Anchorage Alaska
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    Addicted to making things.


  • Location
    Anchorage, Alaska
  • Interests
    Addicted to making things.

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  1. This is all just based on my personal experience, which very clearly is much less important than your personal experience. I obviously am not going to convince you of anything so I am done discussing it with you. To anyone else reading this I urge you to think about what we KNOW carbon does when it is in solution with iron. The melting point gets lowered with increasing carbon. So common sense should make any reasonable person consider that it may have an effect to the faces of a weld joint as well.
  2. Lol, we are all nitpicky in one way or another. I know I may not convince anyone to try out what I am saying, and that is fine by me. I think that sadly they are missing out on something good. As for item number one you are completely missing the point here. I am not trying to add carbon to the metal, just the weld joint. No need for special conditions or lots of time as the carbon only needs to react with the first atomic layer in the weld. Also, just to be clear I didn't quote You Tube, so please don't lump me in with the jumble of idiots out there. It honestly may NOT be a good idea for you, especially in a coke forge. But why try and stop anyone else from trying it in a propane forge? The reasons for trying it are sound, even though it doesn't seem beneficial to you.
  3. You are making me think that I should be looking at Activated charcoal...
  4. My intent with adding a carbon source to flux was based on a couple things. 1. Carbon lowers the melting point of iron (and thus the welding point as well). I can't say a knife maker would care to do that, but to someone welding mild steel it could be very handy. 2. Carbon bonds with Oxygen, if you are trying to insure that a joint has no free oxygen to make scale then why would you not add it? The tiny little bit of ash in charcoal is likely less of a problem than all the old scale, rust and crud that many of us successfully leave in our welds anyway. 3. I run propane. Adding carbon to flux in a coke fire would seem pointless to me as well. Even though I can tune my burner for welding there is a LOT of poorly running propane forges out there. Many shipped new from the factory with terrible tuning. Adding a little insurance for newbies and people not inclined to tune a burner seems like a kind thing to do without causing much of a problem that I can see. Even running a well tuned propane forge I was never able to get leaf spring to weld to itself until I tried adding charcoal dust. It seems to me that making personal observations is one of the cornerstones of the scientific method. I feel sorry for anyone that feels they need to discount someone else's off hand and without any experimentation, as they are doomed to follow the crowd their whole life.
  5. I honestly have not fire welded much recently. I played with the ratio a bit and found I could lower the charcoal dust percentage and still have it work well. It worked very well for welding leaf spring to itself, which is typically really hard to do. Give it a try, just make sure the charcoal is DUST and add some boric acid to help wet it. On the topic of metal bits in flux, I like many don't find the idea appealing. But It should be noted that cast iron powder would typically have a lower melting point than steel. I have always suspected that "iron fillings" in good flux that worked was actually cast iron that lowered the melting point at the weld by adding carbon. It also would scavenge excess oxygen. It has been on my radar to play with, just no time for it recently. Seems like a reasonable thing to try with anhydrous borax. Ps JHCC, if I didn't mention it before your original posting here on borax has to be one of the absolute best, most accurate and useful posts on all of IFI.
  6. Here is my favorite tidbit. Mathematician James Grime of the YouTube channel Numberphile has determined that 39 digits of pi—3.14159265358979323846264338327950288420—would suffice to calculate the circumference of the known universe to the width of a hydrogen atom.
  7. We are getting into the spirit of it this morning! Early September snow for the last day of summer... I am going to be making little fish shaped wall hooks for everyone.
  8. I do have to say that I honestly didn't expect that...8-)
  9. Thanks man! I like how the water comment went straight to single malt, been way to long for me. I think it would go well with a campfire as well since its always a good place for coming up with ideas.
  10. I don't think you will find an easy way to forge a blind square hole and keep the sides parallel. how about punching and drifting the hole in some stock and then arc welding it to a fancy handle?
  11. What I am describing is actually a solid phase weld. There is so much more control in a kiln you can do a better job keeping things from melting ( and thus blurring the boundaries.) so you get a much higher quality product. A weight applied while heating would just soak up the heat, slowing you down. Clamps are easy and there is a side effect most people don't think about, which is that Copper expands more than steel when you heat it so your clamp effectively gets tighter when you heat it. Some people take this idea to extremes by using extra low expansion metals as the bolts of the clamp.
  12. You bet. I have done quite a bit of cooper/brass, in one. Way more consistent, and repeatable billets than in a forge. I clamp it and pack it inside a stainless container with charcoal. Cook at 850c for 1 to 2 hours. Remove from heat and reduce thickness by 50% to consolidate the welds. Follow up heats in a forge to shape as desired. The main thing to think about and prep for ahead of time is how you are going to make that initial consolidation. I make my clamp so it fits in my press. If no press is handy make clamp to fit a nice big vice. They work well for the initial squish though 50% reduction may not be feasible in one heat. So follow up heats with a forge and hammer instead.
  13. Really like your post, thank you. My boss always says-" Don't think with someone else's checkbook" It has made a big difference to me in my day job.
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