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I Forge Iron


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Everything posted by -Quint-

  1. A Clinker. Sounds like it could be grammatically correct as a plural in context. A fist? as in a group of knuckles... or more fittingly, knuckleheads "Look at that pathetic fist" said one welder to another about the group of blacksmiths relentlessly pounding on their anvils...
  2. One night, a lady funeral director friend of mine who helps me out occasionally was doing a transfer for me. I got a panicked phone call from her a little while after giving her the job, "THE VAN IS ON FIRE!!!" she was screaming, I made sure she was ok, calmed her down and then asked her to PLEASE take the body out of the back lol. I heard nonstop "free cremation" jokes for quite some time after that! Also, until recently I used an extended Ford E350 as my main service vehicle. Thanks to all of the additional space in that tank, I was able to keep all sorts of emergency type stuff handy. One of those things being a 5 gallon gas can, which was normally hidden in the van, since it's not very classy to have a family see a gas can in the vehicle you're placing their loved one in.... One day I was unloading a body from my van at one of the funeral homes that I do work for and the gas can was in plain sight for whatever reason. The guy who came out to assist me saw the gas can. He said "do I even want to ask what that is for?" I said "yeah, I'm now offering free cremations right here in my van as part of a package deal". So, even after 25 years of enduring all of the tacky funeral jokes, I'm guilty myself.
  3. I've tried throughout the day and I cannot get a reply to stick to Theos thread, so I'm giving this a shot. If it sticks, I'm sorry mods, maybe you can move it into Theos thread. I had a less spectacular, though similar idea recently. A good friend of mine passed away Jan 1 last year, he was part of a very tight crew of friends, within that crew there were a half dozen of us who have really stuck together over the years. We walked the tracks a lot. We rode the subways a lot, like back in the days when the subways looked like they did in The Warriors... He LOVED knives. He didn't have a great eye for quality, he was an artist, he just loved the concept and the designs. But anyway, that's all back story, we cremated him when he passed. I handled the funeral arrangements and held on to a significant amount of the cremains, part of which we are planning to use in a private ceremony for just the core of the crew, and part of which I intended to use to make a memorial gift for each of the inner circle guys. My plan was/is to make RR spike knives (an homage to our train history as well as his love of knives) but somewhere in the steel of the hilt, a small recess filled with some ashes and sealed in with some epoxy. Visible, like a little capsule set into the steel. As far as the legality of it all, I know this is an old thread and I'm sure you've worked that all out already Theo, but aside from scattering in a public place, you can do anything you like with cremated human remains. And I swear one of these days I'm going to get to your shop (it's me, Cliff)... the 3 or 4 miles away from me that you are has seemed like a vast desert lately, but I'll get there as long as the invite is still open!
  4. If you think the plate might get in your way, maybe you could just clip off those two corners nearest the vise. Even at 45 degrees I bet your working area would feel much less obstructed and you wouldn't really lose any useful space on that shelf. And I bet you wouldn't even have to move your tool holder. Mine is mounted on a mobile stand as well, with a machinists vise just about uncomfortably close by mounted to the same stand. Feels crowded sometimes, but it works.
  5. If I can whittle that down to an hour, I'll gladly earn $50/hour during some of my "down time". Yeah, the stainless is noticeably tougher to work than mild. I'm still at less than a dozen times at the forge and SOMEHOW I've wound up working stainless more than half the time, which was NOT the original plan I don't mind the tough to work part, it's the rapid cooling that eats up time and gets frustrating. I bet I could make one of these out of mild in a fraction of the time. As far as a finial, I think that's a great idea. The only hurdle is that both ends of this particular instrument get used, but I could easily add a skull and bevel down the edge of the crown of the skull so that it can still be used for blunt dissection... Yes, definitely! In fact the inspiration to me for making these was so that I could personalize a couple and give them to the guys who work for me as part of their xmas gifts, but it looks like it's going to be xmas in January this year. Or February.... March?
  6. forgot to do the insurance "copy my post before submitting" thing and just lost a multi quote, long post *%#5&#9@@#%>!#xx(&#%
  7. Thank you Frosty! The Egyptians did do just that, with a somewhat similar instrument. This one is used for blunt dissection on one end and then the hook end is used to "raise" arteries and veins. I'm not sure what the market is like but I do know that most of the stuff available is flimsy and mostly made overseas. This piece is pretty heavy duty compared to anything I've seen in my 25 years in this business. I showed it to a couple of colleagues already and they were willing to pay me $50 for one. I tend to think a lot of funeral directors/embalmers are content with the $25 hooks they get from their chemical suppliers, but who knows. This one took me 2 hours from lighting the forge to wiping the rouge off, I'm sure with some practice I can get one done in an hour.
  8. Rashelle, When I check out the forum from my phone, member locations, avatars and other things are MIA, but on the laptop, it's all there. Were you browsing on a different device?
  9. I'm not a gambling man, but I'm almost willing to bet this'll be a first here on the forum lol. An aneurysm hook is an instrument used in the embalming process. I made this one out of some stainless. Intentionally left the flat of the handle "forge finished", as my friend Raymond Richard calls it (maybe everybody else does too, but I first saw and heard it from him). I considered stamping a name on it, but then decided against it but you can see where I messed around with the "E". It's just a prototype.
  10. Very interesting, that never occurred to me. The piece I made is actually an embalming instrument and it sits in a disinfectant/water solution quite a bit. The other manufactured instruments that sit in the same solution never show any signs of rusting so I assumed they were of a higher quality SS, but this explanation seems more likely. Nothing particular just yet, I grabbed the stainless threaded rod to make a couple of corkscrew worms for xmas gifts. Worked out pretty well, or at least good enough for a few beginner projects. Mr. Powers, you are a wealth of knowledge. I unashamedly admit that I have NO idea what that means but I will most certainly be researching it now. Thank you. Ausfire, I think that is absolutely spectacular! Very cool.
  11. Does threaded rod count? I've been using stainless threaded rod to make corkscrew worms, it's the only stainless I've been able to get my hands on... but it turns out not to be such a great grade of stainless. One piece I hammered out is rusting...
  12. Ha! Yes, that would make life easier. And I'm sure once I attempt forge welding I'll place a lot more value on those few seconds.
  13. I just can't seem to reply to this particular topic... Oh wow, it finally worked after 93 attempts I don't have an ideal set up, but it works. My shop is set up in my basement. I have a basement door that opens outside to a small concrete platform, my forge is a homemade gas forge that I've mounted to the bottom half of an old BBQ grill... so I wheel the forge out there, heat my stock outside and then walk the few steps back inside to my anvil. As far as noise, it's a 24/7 noisy neighborhood and my neighbors are noisy as a bunch of skeletons dancing on a tin roof, so nobody has found the nerve yet to complain about my periodic hammering...
  14. This oughtta go into the "gems" thread, oughtn't it?
  15. Mutant, I'm a 15 minute train ride from Times Square, and I used to live in Commack. Small world...
  16. Hey Ron and Mutant... where on LI are you guys? I live in the city, but still work on LI. Maybe we can share our inexperiences...
  17. Hey Ron, I lived a good chunk of my life on Long Island. I'm back living in the city again now. I forged my first piece of steel just a month or so ago so if you've done this before then you probably have more experience than I do, rusty or not, so you wouldn't likely learn anything from me but I'd be glad to share experiences. Like for example, what happens immediately after you say to yourself "well that doesn't look hot anymore" lol or, "where did the other half of my beard go?"
  18. Thank you sir, I'll check it out. I've never used the walnut to make anything smaller than a shotgun stock, and even that is much smaller than the guitar bodies that I'm even more accustomed to using the material for.
  19. Made this one out of an old butter knife, worm is from the same threaded rod I used on the last opener. I'm struggling with the claro walnut, it's been sitting in my attic for way too many years (since my gunstock and guitar making days) and is extremely dry and brittle. The scales just kept cracking, the ones in this pic were actually the third attempt and as careful as I was they still cracked in places and altered my original shape. Time to go back to the oak and hickory.
  20. I've been trying to find a comfortable way of doing that Glenn, but I just seem to get in my own way. I'm sure it's at least mostly due to lack of experience, but while it's happening, I can picture that peen being twisted 45 degrees and putting me in a much more comfortable and efficient position. Ivan that hammer looks perfect, I like it... Tell my favorite city that I said hello and I'm sorry I haven't visited for a few years.
  21. I've only been forging for a month or two and unfortunately very sparingly during that time frame... the two hammers I've been using the most are both cross peens, a 2-1/2 pounder and a 4 pounder. Every time I'm using the peen, I find myself wishing it was diagonal. I feel like I have to get my arms in awkward positions to get the cross to hit where I want it to. So do any of you folks use a diagonal regularly? If so, is it because the other more common direction peens felt "unnatural" to you?
  22. Looks really, really nice! I hadn't seen any of your work before this but I've noticed you often call yourself new to this. This work, at least to my eye, tells me that you're more advanced than you give yourself credit for.
  23. Thank you Frosty. The only difficulty I really had with the stainless was that it cooled SO quickly! Both the broken scissor and the threaded rod I used presented the same characteristic, so I assumed that it was typical of stainless. Short working time and it clearly doesn't like being worked "cold" at all.
  24. Thank you There actually wasn't a finger loop, it was a plastic handled scissor, sort of a half tang construction piece of junk. The screw is riveted to the main body under the scales, with clearance carved out on the underside of the scale so it could swing. Here's another pic prior to the scales, in case I'm not explaining it properly! Thanks again for the compliments, encouragement certainly oils the machine!
  25. Thanks Frosty. This was a very powdery type of coating, possibly old gold paint? Definitely not a metallic plating, but whatever it is I ain't taking any chances breathing it in.
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