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I Forge Iron


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About BartW

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    Senior Member

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    Belgium near Hasselt
  • Interests
    Forging (knives); diving (instructor)

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  1. I leave them open outside of my shop for a couple days untill I can no longer smell propane. Then I use a very large adjustable wrench to remove the valve, then I fill it with water. If it has been filled and emptied a couple time for a couple of days, I cut them with a plasma torch. Sometimes the valve is stubborn, but I've never broken one off.
  2. Well; only a picture will do. The anvil is broken in half, about 10 inches behind the pritchel hole; it's welded back together by a stickwelder; and reinforced by welding a plate over the seam, and a strut under the square horn. Both feet under the round horn are also broken off; and replaced with a square-iron bracket. anvil horror :-)
  3. I don't get that either. Maybe it's location based. Here there's no shortage of anvils nor post vises, new as well as on the second hand market. Postvises, anvils ... I don't get it. Give me 400€, and I'll get you a post vise & an anvil in a couple days. Just for facts, I checked the local Belgium based second hand website. 3 post vises today, 5 anvils. And one anvil that got abused to an insane degree. The Square horn broken off halfway into the face, welded back with a strut, and half of the foot broken off, with a bracket as replacement ... the sorriest anvil I'v ever seen ...
  4. My first anvil is 82 cm from the concrete floor. My second was 80 cm from the floor; and my third is 77 cm from the floor. I've moved mostly to the 77cm high anvil; but I've also moved away from knifemaking a bit lately.
  5. I've seen 2 small anvils with hi-end anvil markings but cast in poor cast iron, obviously fakes. One was a UAT, and the other was a SZ Skoda anvil. At first I thought the faceplate on both had been removed; but the side were milled to look like a faceplate. So; yes; there are counterfeit anvils, although not a lot.
  6. About the original question; get the biggest heuer front Vise (the forged steel versions) you can find; I've banged hot steel on it for years, and it's still kicking well. But legvises are better for shock absorption.
  7. Hello; Well actually i did that experiment a while ago. I took all my anvils; cleaned & polished them. On each I put a slab of copper(about 2 x 2 x 0.5 inch), same thickness, cut from the same bar. I took a 50mm (2inch) ballbearing, and dropped it from a meter high on the copper plate on the center of the anvil. I couldn't detect a difference between anvil hi-end anvil (solid tool steel vs tool steel face plate). My iron swage block had a noticeable smaller dent, even compared to a railroad track. A piece of cast iron was about the same as mild steel, I didn't have a cast iron anvil. Now, my opinion is that rebound Does matter, but the difference is extremely small. You will save 1 or 2 blows out of 100 hammer blows, but that's it. And if you stay in suitable anvil teritory you may save one blow in 200 by having better rebound, so does it matter really ? Well yes, but not much.
  8. That's the reason I keep a whole stack of railroad around... Help me as a striker for an hour, 58 cm of RR. 2 hours; 58 cm of RR with 2 fish plates welded in Sometimes, when people really want to get into this, but really are rock bottom, I'll just give them away.
  9. There are more than enough anvils more to the north, usually the french "pig" style, even more north (other side of France), you are in my corner of the world; and there are plenty anvils around here. Now being spoiled anvil-wise, you need to understand what you want to do, and what kind of anvil you want for that work. I have anvils which are completely harder than a file, and made from tool steel; they will not support cold work on edges. There are also softer anvils; anvils with faceplates ... Once you figure that out; use the Thomas powers anvil acquisition process; take your time, and you will find MANY anvils very close to you. Buddy of mine living near Barcelona has several from old barn sales and such.
  10. A2 / 1.2363 is an air hardening steel. As in, get it beyond critical or non-magnetic, hold and aircool, and it will harden quite deep. It's a very fine steel actually :-) However, hardening a block of this size is NOT simple. You cannot heat up one end and let it aircool, as the heat in the other end will anneal it. You also cannot heat up one end and quench it, as it will crack the top layer. You need to get it entirely hot, soak for a LONG time, and you need to quench it some way suitable for this steel in this size, as still air will be too slow. If I needed to harden this, i'd get professional help. If you want to use it as an anvil as such; I wouldn't harden it at all, and I would not grind out the inevitable hammer marks; as this alloy workhardens easily. meaning; the more you deform the top layer, the harder it will become.
  11. In Belgium, we've had succesfull treatments of very bad cases with serum from people who fully recovered (same blood-type). However; we've also found that a lot of people "thought" they had it; but turned out just then normal flue. People really would like to believe they are immune; I understand, but here we only test people based on 4 factors: Flue-like symptoms after february, and 3 of the usual symptoms; most of the time: Fever; cough and loss of taste/smell. Usually they report all 3. This "seems" different from the normal flue; as the flue usually has only one symptom. I've never had a flue anyway with all three symptoms mentionned above anyway. Keep in mind; there's still a LOT more flue going around than the cerveza-virus Stay strong, and help others, together we'll get through this.
  12. Well; this is week 2 in lockdown-light (as in, we're free to go shopping and whatever; but try to stay at home). In Belgium; this is starting to flatten the curve; as our ICU beds are about 50% full. (counting an ICU bed as artificially ventilated with 100% oxygen and doctor & nurses available). if we don't loose too much health personel, and people stick to the social distancing for a while; we won't reach the 100% mark; where terrible choices will have to be made. We probably won't stop this, but we will stay below the breaking point of our infrastructure. However; this is Belgium, there are 11.4 milion people living here, this is smaller than New York, and we have more highly advanced medical facilities & hospitals than most other countries in the world; and we spend over 10 % of GDP on social welfare ... What gives me trouble to sleep at night is the billions of other people in the world, who will probably suffer a lot worse from this pandemic. And what bothers me is the goverments & companies using this pandemic to do stock buybacks, pay bonusses, issue dividents, issue more deth, to do reorganisations, to reduce costs, to lay-off people ... pretty much everything that got us in this much economic trouble in the first place. Some common sense, compassion and social awareness should be the lesson from this pandemic, but I fear few will see it that way. I suppose we will need new leadership, and our old style leadership won't go away without passing under a guilliotine first
  13. Hello; Practical problem here; I need a 25 cm (10 inch) diameter hole in the ground, more than a meter deep. Now I don't have one, and I can't buy one (lockdown & self-isolating). But I have a LOT of iron and steel and a lot of tooling to manipulate them. I know of three types; First is the typical "auger" style thing; resembling a helical drill, often made by round things welded to a central round thing. Then there is the 2 bar type, which twists at the tip. Then there's the pipe style thing with dirt-scooping points below (this one is often quoted for rocky soil). Now I don't have rocky soil; but I do have LOTS of roots, as I basically live in a forest. I also have 25 cm diameter diving bottles which I can cut up; which would make the last option probably the quickest. What do you recommend ? anyone know any "hack" to make the helical flights for a soil drill ? greets, bart
  14. From Belgium here, we just installed 4 gasoline powered screw compressors & backups from the fire-departement in a hospital to build more respirator capacity. They probably don't have enough oxygen concentrators for hundreds of people, but they will at least be able to artificially breath for them. I donated most of my oxygen gear (diving instructor), and gave them all my pneumatic valves, solenoids, hoses and such as there were a couple pneumatic engineers there upgrading the respiratory support system. This hospital is special in the sense that it doesn't have CPAP or respiratory boxes per intensive care bed, it has plugs and valves per bed with a centralized compressors and oxygen units. Which means they can support a LOT more people needing this kind of support. What was a true eye-opener for me, and proof that this beast isn't the flue, is the exhaustion of the people in intensive care. In a soaking wet bed. Lots of young healthy people too. I talked with someone who recovered (from behind a window). 26 years old, 40 % lungcapacity left. He is going to leave the hospital with an 80-year old chainsmokers lungs. He spent days in a haze from fatigue, like an elephant stood on his chest, trying to breathe, but only achieving partial breaths, feeling like every next breath could be his last. He fought through it although he considered giving up a lot too, but then he realized it would be a miserable way to go. Our goverment has shut schools, everybody is to self-isolate, only stores opened are those selling food, and go out only when needed. Most people follow this fairly well; but you still rarely see facemasks in stores' clients. I expect these measures to continue to June. (So the whole april & may ). My blood curdles when I heard [someone] say the cure is worse than the sickness, I suggest he takes a visit in an hospital with some patients in intensive care. So my 2 cents; Protect yourself & your loved ones from this. PPE when in public, walk away when you see too much people together, or people without facemasks. Isolate as much as possible.Teach your kids clean routine. Do not underestimate this, but don't go into panic either. Consider everything you cannot vouch for as "clean" contaminated. This beast doesn't care about your age, $'s, colour or location. It's a lottery. 75 % of the people will be mild. 25 % will be sick. Some will need hospitalisation, and few will die. (Don't quote me on those numbers) Care for others. I've given away most of my shop facemasks (I used to buy them by the 100, the N95 rated dustmasks). There's a time and a place for everything. Now is the time to NOT get this, mourning & comforting others can be done later. There's a vicious thing going on in the (mostly financial) economy right now; abusing this situation. Please stop that, as it will get a LOT of people dead and even more suffering.
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