Desmond Redmon

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About Desmond Redmon

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    Venedocia, Ohio, USA
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    Learning, Understanding, Applying

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  1. Actually if you can find a local machine shop, ask them if they have any large pieces of scrap you can buy. Often they have to scrap out a part and are only getting a recycle price for it. Don't automatically turn down a piece of round steel if it has some good weight. You can clean the surface with an angle grinder and still have an OK anvil. If the machine shop doesn't have anything or won't sell it, ask them who they use to recycle their steel and go visit them. Most likely in IN your looking at Omnisource. I stopped at an auto salvage yard to get rid of some old bed springs and asked about anvils (I do any time I go to flee markets antique stores etc) and they had a Southern Crescent 80-100lb in nice shape for $3/lb I left it alone since it had a thin steel face on a cast iron body. So just keep asking and you'll stumble on one eventually. Most steel works easier the closer to the melting temp you get so dark orange might mean you are working harder than you need to.
  2. I'm not sure of 19Braden86's experience so for a bit of clarification... Heat it to bright white (to my eye) just below sparking or welding level. Also as well as the previously mentioned methods, use the edge of your anvil as a lower cross peen. Basically look at the pattern of movement you want the metal to take and then apply the appropriate directional tool. First stage once heated, I draw it by using the cross peen directly across the anvil from me at a comfortable angle working the whole length of the spike starting with 10-12 strikes adding a few more as the spike lengthens. Both the cross peen and anvil edge draw the steel longer and thinner and a little wider with each hit. Rotate 90 degrees and work the areas you didn't spread the first time. Reheat and repeat always working the area between your last set of strikes. Once you achieve the desired length switch to a lighter faster hammer and tap it to the square or round shape you wanted. One thing to keep in mind is that you do not have to heat or work the whole spike all in one go while you are learning, fewer heats comes with experience (so the tell me). Controlling your heat, your hammer, and your next step seem to be the most important from my newbie perspective.
  3. Like everyone has said awesome man! Keep the updates coming
  4. Smooth Smith, I'm not sure if you are still reading this or not. We can be an irascible bunch, but with reason. We in general don't mind newbie questions (which most of mine are), but you are I think trying to ask about a furnace (used to intentionally melt metals and produce a casting or ingot) rather than a forge (used primarily to heat metals to a workable temperature). I am unclear if you are unfamiliar with the difference between the two or if you are asking about using the firepot of the forge to house a crucible that you will then use to melt metal. Secondly, your image shows an infantryman with a rifle that same infantryman would have gone through training on placement of things like M18's (aka claymores). M18's are labeled for safety (front toward enemy) which forges nor furnaces are labeled. Which is why your post triggered the (forgive me Glenn) pucker factor. That said ThomasPowers recommended earlier alloyavenue is a good site and I agree for a decent primer but ask around there is almost certainly someone near you who casts metal a few times a year. I strongly recommend visiting one of them since no working foundry will let you in the building during operations because casting metal has so many inherent dangers. Seeing a furnace and the whole process involved will be of great help in understanding how to mitigate the safety issues involved. Liquid iron will burn through jeans with almost no hesitation and leave a second degree burn down your leg, into the top of your boot when it can cost you a limb (worked in a foundry) You mention casting copper then you've reached nearly iron temperatures in something (providing pictures would help too btw) so you are at near alloy temps. Plugging exhaust ports MAY be an acceptable idea if your furnace was built incorrectly or may cause the system to become unsafe. Rather like walking to an auto parts store picking up a random part and asking if it will fit your car we simply do not have enough information to answer your question. Either way both providing more information and reading more from available sources will make any advice we can offer much more valuable to you because we can answer much more specifically.
  5. 3 in 1 works good at 50+ degrees I haven't had the forge over a winter yet. 30 weight motor oil seemed to add a bit of drag to the crank.
  6. I was really impressed by the image, so I contacted Tempil on Friday with a generic can I use this image to make posters for me and free to friends at a blacksmithing group question... Today before I got home from work they emailed me the .PDF, approved the distribution (free, cannot charge and must maintain copyright mark) so by all means contact them nice people.
  7. Just my bit, (as a fellow newbie) don't bother with paint on the anvil the smoke from hot paint can be hazardous and your hot iron will burn it off and polish the face within a few days after you start hitting hot metal on it. As to claying, the iron around the tuyere looks pretty thin? The original firepot for my forge was 5/8" and the replacement I am using (Centaur Forge Vulcan) is about the same thickness of cast iron and I do not clay mine (other than high temp mortar at the joint between the pot and the ashgate). If it is thinner than that and you are planning on a lot of welding temp usage (making damascus etc) it might be worth it, else keep it dry don't rapidly heat or cool the iron treat it like a cast iron skillet and you should be ok. If you plan on welding a lot, cooling the forge regularly with water (generally a bad idea with anything cast) clay it. Take all of what I say with a grain of "let me look that up" since all of my info on claying is from reading the forums and old catalogs.
  8. Thank you all for the info, and I do understand the advice to wait a year before making major changes. My I took round stone to the chips I was having trouble with and kind of refined the jagged points out to smooth enough to work with. My small tweek was as I said more of an OCD thing since I had a perfectly usable notch if I smoothed out the sharp edge... Figure if I can manage to grind away much material with a 200 grit stone I would end up a world champion arm wrestler, alas I ran out of sharp edge before I developed a 30" bicep
  9. As I discussed with Glenn tonight, this was a bit of a leading question... I was actually trying to use the few chips in the edge of my anvil to help fuller on a three dimensional shape rather than a my anvil is chipped away to nothing how do I put a 90 degree angle on it... I was exploring hammer only scrolling, and found I was picking up impressions from the chip I was trying to use to help me keep the radius of the rod while scrolling. I am still exploring the use of each tool an operation and the produced part was just a fire poker to use on the forge (I wanted one that the handle hung down when dropped against the wall of the forge body). Yet all of the advice I see is DO NOT EVER DO x. I was trying to all you folks into elaborating a bit more on when you do what to repair a chip, or use a chip to your advantage. My bad for the somewhat deliberately misleading question, but he what without the why is extremely frustrating to read page after page... Never leading me (or any other newbie( to a greater understanding. So my bad, and thank each of you for the input.
  10. OK, I have been reading for a week or so (in my few mins of free time), and I see a huge majority of people saying don't grind, weld etc to repair edges. My edges are leaving marks that are more unsightly and problematic, and I have a variation of the questions I've seen asked frequently... I don't want to grind or weld to make a perfect edge, what I am trying to decide is how to blend the sharp points back so they don't gouge my work leaving "ugly" marks. I'm thinking of using a high hardness round file to remove the sharp points inside of the chip marks and using them for different sized radius grooves for fullering and shaping. Other than the very slight metal removal, are there any other dangers to the anvil in feathering off the sharp edges of the chips? Yes I know it's more or less an OCD question, but as a machinist I hate seeing sharp edges which concentrate stresses ...
  11. Looks like a good start man, keep it up
  12. Looking really good congratz mate!
  13. From the picture that's going to be the low end if anyone else is in competition I think. Most run 3-500 if in working order, and that looks in really good shape. Also depends how much the auctioneer knows about the value as well. I had to do a lot of searching for images and such while I was rebuilding mine, short of an electric blower these are really nice to use.
  14. Just a thought, put a piece of steel in the other side of the vice (if you insert your piece on the right side of the jaw, put the piece in the left most edge of the jaw) that is the same size or ideally slightly smaller. Vices that get warn a bit will pull off center creating a less than parallel surface for holding your work piece. With cold mild steel you have about 20% grip on a heavily warn vice without a spacer which gives you around 60% if it is slightly smaller (less than the thickness of your fingernail) than the workpiece.