John R

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About John R

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    Advanced Member

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  • Location
    Port Angeles, WA
  • Interests
    Gun building, blacksmithing.

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  1. I have a full hot caustic bluing setup for bluing rifles. And I sometimes do the rust bluing thing. Tanks below. Hot, sweaty, nasty work. The bluing gear is under a lean-to roof behind the shop, with three sides open for ventilation. Bluing salts eats everything, so the stuff cannot be in an enclosed shop. Note the floor: A bed of gravel, then pallets, then rubber horse stall mats to stand on while tending the tanks. The salts will even eat concrete. The roof is fiberglass greenhouse panels over treated wood joists. The dark vile looking stuff in the rusty tank is the bluing salts. I run the salts at 285 degrees F, so no harm to heat treated steels. The stainless tank in front with the frothy white liquid contains the cleaning solution at 200 degrees F. The caustic tank has to be mild steel, stainless steel tanks for the salts will give a ugly bluing color. Other tanks are cold water rinse, hot water rinse at 200 degrees, neutralizing bath at 140 degrees, and water displacing oil bath. I leave the gun parts in the water displacing oil over night. From the time I light off the first burner, until I dump the parts into the water displacing oil, takes about 4 hours. Not counting the metal prep!! Looks like this when complete. 460 Weatherby on the left, 458 Lott on the right.
  2. Go to or where the guys in the welding business hang out.
  3. Fido The Door Stop for the barn. Doubles as a boot scraper.
  4. None! For Sale anvils are just about unheard of in my area. I credit this to the late period in time when the Pacific NW was settled. And I live in a remote area of the Pacific NW.
  5. I stack large spherical roller bearings next to my American Star anvil. Keeps the anvil on good behavior, it does want to be pounded on via 52100. A side note: For the machine shop, a large bearing stripped to the outer race makes a nice round parallel for set up on the vertical milling machine table, as the sides of the race are ground parallel. A large outer race is also handy for tramming the mill spindle.
  6. Yea finding the tree with the good figure is not easy. We have a lot of Big Leaf Maple here where I live but the figured trees are not too common. Back in 1994 and 1995 when we were cutting the Maple trees I got to the point of being able to recognize a tree with good grain: Peel off some bark at the trunk and look for the wavy rippled knobs on the surface. The wood in the photos has been silently curing since 1994 and is now at a good moisture level for stock making. 11 percent is about as low as the wood drys here in the wet Pacific Northwest. I live about 2 miles from salt water. Rippled surface: Checking moisture He hit the ground running when the chain saw was started.
  7. Very true. The wood is Pacific Northwest Big Leaf Maple. Very strong stuff, harder to carve than Walnut. I live in the middle of its range, there are Big Leaf trees 20 feet behind the shop. The blanks shown were cut in 1993 and are continuing to silently air cure in my shop. Both environment and terrain influence the grain. We have found the best figure in trees that grow on steep slopes and are exposed to the winds. Prime example below: On the side of a north facing valley. The slope is about 60 degrees. A big double trunked widow maker below, it was a bit of trouble to fall both trunks and stay out of trouble. This area receives a lot of rainfall. Maples need a lot of water. North Olympic Peninsula of Washington State, the trees below were anywhere from 2 miles to 7 miles from salt water. Knarley and twisted. Both trunks were full of beautiful grain. A good idea of the steepness: At the sawmill. Still knarley!! Another tree. This one was hanging over a canyon, about 5 miles north of the one shown above. The road was too bad to bring in a logging truck, so we slabbed it up with chainsaws. Wood to die for. No finish on the wood, just ran through the planer. The grain depends on how the log is sawed. Note below that the top flat side is tiger stripe, the front edge is "flame" or "quilt". Quilted: I will look through the box of cutoffs for a hammer handle sized piece. I save all the cutoffs from the blanks for knife handles.
  8. Just imagine what it looks like with a nice hand rubbed oil finish. The small red piece is about 3 inches wide and has 21 coats of oil with a touch of red stain. Clear coat finish:
  9. It was about Pacific NW firewood: I will put some words to this later, got to run to the barn and feed the livestock. John
  10. Your pet peeve is big peeve to me. I do not sell at shows or craft fairs, but go to buy, usually with a few thousand bucks in my jeans. I cannot stand seeing items on a table with no pricing!!!! If a guy wants to sell something, a price tag should be on it. I will not hunt up a person to ask how much. Many times I have passed on buying something I wanted just because of no price tag. If a guy does not have pricing on his items, he is telling me he does not want to sell anything and is just showing off his wares.
  11. Yep, my biggest peeve on forums. Tell us where you are located! You can buy 5160 and 1095 on ebay.
  12. Search the Forums, or: Buy Steve Sells Book, it is mentioned in a thread above this one. I have a copy, it is a good reference. And this one: The Complete Bladesmith: Forging Your Way To Perfection by Jim Hrisoulas All your questions will be answered by reading both. I use 1095, 5160, and L6.
  13. Mine goes up to 650 degrees F, thermostat controlled. I have thought about using it for drawing knife blades. Mine holds up to 400 pounds, a little much for my hobby weld shop, but the price was right. 50 pound ovens are available for much less. I need to bump the thermostat up a bit, ideal temp for 7018 is 250 degrees. The rod manufacturers have guidelines for proper temps for 7018 and other rods. On craigs list here for $80. If they were not in Surry B.C. Canada I would have bought them yesterday. Complete with rods.
  14. I like 7018. Burned a lot of it way back when I worked in the Maintenance Dept. of a large paper mill. Most rods do not need to be in an oven (6011, 6013 for example) but for the best welds the low hydrogen rods like to be dry. Keep your eyes open if you want a rod oven, they appear often on the local ads. Took me over a year to find this one after I started looking.