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I Forge Iron

Bayshore Forge

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  • Location
    Traverse City, MI / Nashville, TN / Houston, TX
  • Interests
    Law, golf, shooting sports, mathematics, backpacking, paddle boarding

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  1. Mike, I had very limited tooling and skills, so I made one that tapered up to “snug” however I’ve fortunately never had it get stuck. A tinky sideways tap and it loosens right up. Hope yours comes out great! Brent
  2. I was actually given a copy of US military blacksmithing manual that included a section on this specific forge. Unfortunately I think I may have gotten rid of it. Ill look closer tomorrow. I bet it can be found online with the right keywords to search though. Brent
  3. Update: I have been using TSC nut coal for basically two years now. The only other coal I've ever used is sourced from my local marina, randomly found along the rocks - no clue what type it is, but it smells different when burnt and behaves different from the anthracite from TSC. I have gone through over 20 bags of the nut coal, two different brands. One is pictured earlier in the thread, and the other is in a sealed plastic bag and called something like "miner's choice" or "Miner's Nut" (can't remember). I have found that using my forge set up the coal likes a kindling fire and the hair dryer on high to start, and then the hair dryer on low to sustain for hours. In a pinch of low coal I have been successful with turning the hairdryer off right before I pull the bar out, then back on right after I put it back in for another heart. I believe this uses a bit less coal, but I'll admit I usually leave the blower on low constantly. With a mature fire and the dryer on low, I have been forge welding up to half inch mild stock. I have never tried to forge weld anything thicker than 1/2, but I believe I probably could. My brother successfully melted/burnt a rail road spike by failing to pay attention. Coal is not easily available in my experience in Northern Michigan, so TSC anthracite has been my go to. Brent
  4. This thing looks pretty darn cool. What type of stock did you start with?
  5. Hey all, Hoping to start a thread where people can post their own renditions of tavern puzzles and the like. I personally have made what I've seen called the Iron Heart and also what I've seen called the Conestoga Playmate. Iron Heart picture included below. I don't currently have a good picture of the Conestoga, I'll upload one if I come across it. I keep these in my car and show them to people all the time, they always go over very well. Lets see some puzzles!! Brent
  6. I have never seen any like this before, although I am new to blacksmithing. Would it be possible to get a little explanation on how to make these? Measurements? It looks to me like they are adjustable scrolling tongs, but I'm interested to know if with a different shaped jaw it could work with a variety of flat/square stock sizes. Thanks!
  7. Heres a pic of the forge I promised, didn't get around to measurements, I will try next week. One thing I'd mention is there's not a overhang of sorts and it works very well. One negative is the bellows is on the far side and in the way of the smith working the opposite side, designer should have put it off the back instead. I also found it hard to get the piece laying horizontal in the fire. Not quite sure what could have been done to remedy this. Brent
  8. Any break throughs? This story is pretty neat and it's making me want to try to out sand in my forge, haha. Good luck, Brent
  9. Today was my first day demonstrating, here's an update. It went really really well, we had 364 visitors from 11:00am to 5pm. I made a bunch of wall hooks, a few nails, a nail ring, and a tavern puzzle. Here's some pictures, the tavern puzzle isn't perfect, but I was trying to not take a ton of time. Yes we had four smiths counting myself there for the beginning when the pic was taken of the forge. Tavern puzzle was cool because it demo'd forge welding for the folks. Brent
  10. I am constantly astonished at the quantity of quality thought I get whenever I post a question. Thank you guys so much, these answers should give me plenty to think about for AWHILE! Haha. Brent
  11. Hey all, so long story short I told a friend I'd make him something if he gave me a pile of scrap metal. He said he would be interested in a grapple hook. Initially I thought, SWEET! Now before I start I have some conflicting theories in my head. I'm thinking spring steel because I'm scared mild might snap or bend uselessly if he ever used it for anything. So then I'm thinking harden it, but where to temper it so it doesn't break? The arch of the hooks? Should the arches have a round cross section or should there be a rib on the top for support? HAS ANYONE ACTUALLY MADE ONE TO USE BEFORE? the shape cosmetically I'm confident I can produce, but I'm worried about function. Thanks for your time, Brent PS NO he's not a ninja. He's a commercial fisherman so I guess he just likes all hooks and nets.
  12. I might be really late to the ball game here but what about simply burning out the middle? If you set on end and start a fire on the ground it could just burn the surrounding area. Just keep an eye on it and extinguish before its too close to where you want it finished? Might save some time. I'm not a woodworking though I've seen people burn stumps and I think this might work. Brent
  13. This is quite possibly the staple gold mine paragraph for ideas if anyone ever gets bored. Only one paragraph but so much conveyed! Thanks, Brent
  14. I believe either my county (Leelanau County) or the town of Glen haven was named the "most beautiful place" in either Michigan or the US, because the smith mentioned this and said it never used to be that busy. I'd hedge a bet for the county because Glen haven isn't crazy beautiful itself. EDIT: totally forgot to load new comments so this is offtopic now and kinda useless. Can't figure out how to delete. Thank you for the historic importance ideas, that would probably be the best! Now I just need to figure out what they would have made! Brent
  15. Thank you all for the time spent on thoughts and ideas! I really appreciate it! Sir Reynolds, I have not yet smithed there but the day I visited and was recruited I saw no less than 35 people between 4:45 and 5:00 (shop closes at 5). The smith on staff that day said he counted over 300 people and seemed astonished. And to those that read this in the future, keep those amazing thoughts coming! Love the ideas and help you guys so willingly provide
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