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About Kozzy

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    Butcher of metal

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    Southern Palouse WA state USA
  1. Man do you guys make getting a perfect forge weld hard. I simply clip the ground lead to the anvil and the hot to the hammer head. Never a problem.
  2. Anyone able to ID this?

    Since it's fairly modern, I would expect that a maker who desires to put out a good product would have branded it with a logo or name...and one which is putting out junk would avoid that. No, it's not a "rule" and there are a LOT of exceptions but that itself should be at least a hint toward potential quality. I wouldn't touch it at more than a buck a pound without a look-see and proper rebound-test. At a buck a pound, even an ASO could probably be passed on to someone who just needs a beating surface or decoration. The current $ 2.27/lb is pushing it rather hard on a "guess" about quality. That same $ 2.27/lb could buy one a heck of a good non-ASO in hard material at the junk yard...your friend would just have to get the notion that a workable anvil has to look like an anvil out of his head.
  3. Seeking advice on a forge for art work

    You might add Chile forge to your list. Although I haven't used one, they've been mentioned several times in the forum as excellent. I'll let others chime in on what they think but it often turns into a bit of a Ford/Chevy Mac/PC kind of debate because there is no single one-size-fits-all answer. Oh..and if you update your profile to include your location, you might be surprised to find people near you where you can actually see some options in person.
  4. What is it?

    I'd go with a planting dibble also. Those were not only for trees: Since strawberry fields need to be renewed with live plants every couple of years you would need a dibble for that also. Drive it in to the top of the wide blade section, cock it to the side to make an opening, drop in plant, remove, step to close the hole up. Something similar was used in large tulip fields as well as some other bulbs---even some onions are planted as bulbs or starts that way. Possibly potato cuts also in the early days but later there were some other tools developed for potatoes. Tobacco is also planted as plant starts (or at least used to be). In later days they'd sterilize a seed bed using what is essentially a steam tractor boiler to kill soil pathogens and start the slow growing seeds where they could be babied. Those plant starts would then be planted out in the field. Note that tobacco was locally grown all over the USA so it wouldn't be only a regional thing in the 1800s.
  5. Tin Roofing

    I'm assuming you mean corrugated roofing... but there are other forming patterns that might work for some things and not others. In all cases, if it was galvanized (which is likely) put an exclamation point or three behind that "...Bad bad bad." mentioned above when speaking of heating it. I'd save such a thing for alternative projects rather than smithing. Here are a couple of examples of planters.
  6. Odd straight peen?

    Here's an iron city ad showing a couple of similar sledges for masonry work so I would tend to agree with others--splitting rock/brick/concrete block kinda stuff.
  7. Here's one video of something similar for those who might need more information. I am intentionally displaying it only as a link for 2 reasons: For one, they tend to make large clogging posts and this is not that important. Also, I noticed a lot of videos with similar tricks as the youtube "suggestions" and some of those might also be interesting to people. Definitely in this case the blade tabs project into the handle. A handle that rotates even a little on one of these would be a nightmare to use. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yi43JA2ULKc
  8. Here ya go. There are 2 double bladed versions and one single that were commercial "antiques". The double bladed blades are .030" thick on one and .027 on the other. The single is .08" thick at the fat end. All were made quite sharp...one still has the plastic tape on protecting the edges that I never got around to removing.
  9. Historical post/leg vice question

    To clarify...this is an agricultural history museum focusing on the area's (northwest USA) wheat farming and cattle ranching which typically means from about 1850-about 1950's for our stuff. The "blacksmiths shop" we have is a gathering of some equipment from the town's main shop. it's heyday from about 1900 to 1950 when it grew toward being more of a fabrication shop to meet the times. Early vice history doesn't really apply. This is more about smithing roughly C. 1900-1920 era.
  10. Historical post/leg vice question

    In my quest to add some explanatory text to some of the items in the blacksmithing area of the museum I volunteer for, I was about to type something up on vices and decided it'd be wiser to ask the "experts". So, to that end I have a few questions to make sure I choose the text wisely. (has to end up short...although books could be written on vices). 1) I see the term Post vice and Leg vice used interchangeably these days and even in some older references. In a historical sense, which one would be "proper"? 2) Our current example is 7.5" across the jaws. Most on the farm were more like 4.5 or 5". What is the largest standard post/leg vice that was sold commercially and commonly enough to warrant a mention? Any idea what size one would have usually seen as standard (if one could call it that) in a commercial smithy? 3) I had assumed that standard for these vices was forged construction so they could take the hard blows of smithing. Was anyone selling enough cheap cast versions to warrant a mention so that visitors who might be shopping for one themselves might need to take heed? Obviously there are a TON of cast bench vices out there, often in wild styles (we also have that example--interchangeable "variety pack" jaws)--speaking specifically of post/leg vices in this case. I know my own answers to these questions but I'd be a fool not to take advantage of you folks who know a LOT more than the snippets I have picked up. Thanks for any comments you might want to make--or any ideas of what I should include in a "one page" sign. 98% of people never read this stuff but I have noticed enough people who do that I'd like to get it right and useful.
  11. That prompted me to look up some photos of old ulu knives. The radius variations are rather broad but a lot did have tighter radii--especially the old polished slate versions. Remember, these were essentially "skinning" knives used for many aspects of butchering--and meat tended to be cut from the bone in smaller "eating size" pieces/strips rather than large roasts. A tighter radius would probably be of benefit for that use. For a standard kitchen, I'd agree that larger radius would probably be more workable---and there were several "western" versions of that made years ago. I have 2 commercially made "antiques" that are double (parallel) bladed to use as an arm powered meat grinder basically. Very sharp and thin bladed. Handy for home made sausage.
  12. A toy that is well worth it for anyone doing more than occasional stick welding. A downright requirement if you live in wetter parts of the world. Looks to be in remarkable shape. Many (most?) rod ovens I see at auction look to have been tossed in a cement mixer at some point in their life. For anyone considering one, they do come up at industrial auctions fairly regularly---but pricing varies from pocket change to quite high depending on whether there are 2 people needing an oven or not. Point is, there are bargains still to be had if you have lots of patience...and decent deals if you don't. They can make a huge difference in weld ease/quality.
  13. Anyone else used tip tig?

    Thanks. Anything helps. We're going to use a pencil torch with a gas lens and it won't be handheld. I had already considered the issue of keeping the tungsten clean and consistently sharpening for repeatable results---something I have to get the crew to keep up on if this is going to work. The welds are so small that slight inconsistencies in process will bite me. Biggest shop problem I tend to have is inertia: People resist changes quite strongly..and when finally onboard, complain "why did you force me to do it the old way for so long?"
  14. If I used a variac, I'd only do it on one of the sale-priced harbor freight grinders. You are going to be generating a lot more motor heat if you slow that down and you don't want to kill a good grinder. As to those cheap HF grinders...they sound like the gearbox is full of rocks but once in a while they just won't die. I've been trying to kill one my Dad gave me for years and the darned thing just keeps going no matter how badly I abuse it. I much prefer using my good grinders but it's nice to have a knock-around to drag through the mud without worrying.
  15. Think this will get me?

    It's better than nothing but only by a little. Way (say that louder!) underpowered. Far less rigid a frame than it should have to work well. If it was super cheap, I'd pick one up because there are things those are handy for--like a quick deburr on the end of cut material. If it was more than about a 20-25 buck offering, I'd pass and keep searching...but again, if you have nothing now, it is better than that nothing in terms of a beginning. You'll outgrow any knife work that can do VERY quickly if you forge more than every couple of months. And for knife work it's lack of power WILL be frustrating.