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I Forge Iron

tinkertim

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    Bristol, England
  • Interests
    Electronics, Mechanics, Robotics, KnifeForging, reverse-engineering.

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  1. I did the same as Buzz, With my first IFB forge I used a 3/4" AMAL injector as a single burner into the side of the forge. Later I built a Ribbon burner based on half an IFB, and connected it to the same 3/4" AMAL injector and fed it in through the roof of the IFB forge. I agree with Buzz's results. The single burner was louder and fiercer to reach the same colour temperature. It seemed to blow more heat and dragons breath out of the door, compared to the Ribbon burner, which had lots of softer flames and brought the inside of the forge to a more even colour. I also noticed that once up to the same colour temp, the Ribbon burner used a lower PSI than the single burner at the same heat. And it is so much quieter to work with. You loose the high frequency scream. I use the 3/4" AMAL burner as a single for localised heating as a hand torch, and just put it back into the Ribbon burner plenum port when I want to forge. These are just my observations, but as a engineer and a hobby-smith, I save money on gas with a Ribbon burner, so I'm never going back to a single burner in my forge. Just my £0.02 worth. Tink!
  2. Regarding Gas-grade Teflon tape Vs. normal plumbing-grade Teflon tape: The differences are in the manufacture. Plumbing-grade tape is mechanically stretched during production, so giving you a longer length of thinner tape for the same volume of Teflon. The stretching process causes thousands of micro-tears to open up in the Teflon, which isn't a problem for water-based use, as the H2O molecule is too big to get through these micro-tears, but gas molecules are smaller and CAN get through these micro-tears. Gas-grade Teflon tape is un-stretched, so is much thicker and doesn't contain micro-tears. This extra thickness makes it much better at filling the threads of a gas-pipe fitting, and why, in the UK at least, it is specified that you only need 1 & 1/4 turns of Gas-grade tape on a tapered gas fitting to seal it correctly. Sorry for the little essay, but I wanted to know the real difference between the two tape types so spent quite a while investigating it, but finally found manufacturing details as well as tests of the tapes, including micrographs showing the micro-tearing on the plumbing-grade tape. Quite interesting (and sad) for a Tech Nerd like me! Tink!
  3. I was trying to decide whether to drill some holes in the stump and make up some Hardy-like tools, when the opportunity to pick up a light-weight (56kg) Farriers training anvil came along, and it was too good an opportunity to miss. He also let me have ~30 full-sized used farriers rasps to play with for free! He also had a 5 foot high mound of old shoes, waiting to be recycled, which looked crazy! I liked the idea that I could add any radius I liked to the edge with an angle grinder, to suit particular jobs, and just rotate the cylinder to suit. JHCC, I didn't like to think how long it would take to grind, bore & chisel out a half-cylinder's-worth of wood from the top of that stump, as it was really hard. I then wouldn't be able to use the cylinder on the stump in its current orientation. Currently that lump of steel is a semi-doorstop, waiting for its next suitable project. Tink!
  4. UPDATE: Added to the Improvised Anvils thread. https://www.iforgeiron.com/topic/52308-a-collection-of-improvised-anvils/?do=findComment&comment=741896 Tink!
  5. As suggested by JHCC, here is a pic of my first Improvised Anvil: A billet offcut of Stainless Steel with a radius of 5" and a height of 4". It had a 3/4" hole bored up most of the way through the bottom, so I embedded a big bolt in a stump, and ground the head down until my cylinder of steel would sit snuggly over it. Not much to look at, but for a beginner it was plenty good enough, and I made a good few tools on this. Tink!
  6. Thanks for the correction Thomas. What I started with was an offcut billet of stainless steel, 5" diameter and 4" tall, with a 3/4" hole bored most of the way through the center of the base. It weighs around 10kg, and I drilled and screwed in a large bolt into the top of a tree-stump-sized log, and ground the head of the bolt down until my Improvised Anvil was a snug fit over it. As the edge of this billet cylinder was pretty sharp, I ground a varying radius along part of the top edge, so that I could choose my desired curvature for striking my hot steel. It wasn't perfect, but for a beginner it was fine, and I made a number of tools on it. Tink!
  7. Hiya Apple, As other have said, welcome to the forum. The main LPG supplier in the UK is Calor, but there are other independent suppliers around who will supply Calor refills for less than a main Calor distributor will, so you need to find who is local to you. Regarding cost, the Calor site lists their Bottle + Gas and Refill-only prices. GOOGLE: calor lpg prices On their site they post prices up to 13kg size (which is what I use) but for 19kg and 47kg you have to contact them. For a 13kg size, they say that Bottle+Gas is £78.49, while a refill is £38.50. I think my last refill cost £35 inc delivery from a local independent distributor. Back to the real question. You say you want to get into Blacksmithing. We need to know if you mean as a hobby or as a business. We also need to know how much money and resources you have available to put into this endeavour. Depending on your answers, we will be able to advise you better. For example: I'm a hobby smith. I went on a one-day Blade-making course near London and got hooked. I make my own first forge out of Insulating Fire Bricks and a bought AMAL burner, hose, regulator and 13kg LPG bottle. I started with a 10kg block of steel as an Anvil-Shaped-Object (ASO) and made a few tools to start with. I then found an old anvil that a local Farrier didn't want any more, at a good price. Then I decided I wanted to make a more efficient and flexible forge that heats up quickly, to save money as a Hobbyist, but it wouldn't have a tough enough lining for everyday business use. If you are going to be starting Blacksmithing as a business, then you would want a forge that has a heavier-duty lining. It would take longer to heat-up, but the lining would hold that heat better, so it would transfer that heat to your steel stock quicker. At the end of the day, the biggest thing to impact LPG cost and usage is the size of your forge, the thermal efficiency of its lining, and the efficiency of your burner. As has been said 100's of times previously on this site, go for the smallest forge that will do the job. It is not uncommon for Smiths to have various sizes of forge, to handle the various types of job they are working on. The most common request from new Smiths is advice about a huge forge that they have bought/built that can fit anything from spoons to Sabres in it, but that gets through a ton of LPG to heat up. Sorry to ramble, but in conclusion, tell us a bit more about what you want to do, what your level of experience is, and what resources you already have available, and we can then make a start on advising you. Hope this helps, Tink!
  8. That's a really cool story Frosty! Thanks for sharing. Tink!
  9. Hi Tom, I don't think you can compare PSI for a Venturi setup and a Forced-Air setup, as you will have different sized Gas orifices, so Apples Vs Oranges. It is more down to the Fuel/Air ratio in your Fuel/Air Mix (FAM) and the volume of FAM you can combust within your forge per unit time (eg. per Second). The more volume of FAM you have combusting per second, the more heat you will generate (within the limits of Propane combustion parameters). Tink!
  10. I have to agree with Buzz. I converted my single-port burner to a Naturally Aspirated Ribbon Burner (NARB), and used it in the same forge with the same jet size, etc. so comparing like with like. I found I could maintain the same heat at a lower PSI, and with a much more even heat throughout the forge and less dragon's breath. The many smaller flames are aimed across the roof of my forge and swirl round onto the floor, making the whole of the inside an even hot temperature. The burner is also much quieter in use and uses less gas. With all the positives for me, I'll never go back to a single-port burner in a forge. I will make a mini single-port for a hand-held burner though. Localsmith, with your reference to a Ribbon burner with many high-speed flames, and mention of a large gas orifice, are you sure you are not referring to a Forced-Air Ribbon Burner? Tink!
  11. It's Funny Dan, It's pretty easy to get Colloidal Silica in the UK, but a pain to have to import Kastolite30 from the States, yet you have the problem the other way round! Ho-Hum! It's a weird world we live in, and people just have to find out what works for them. Re. a CNC mill. This has been on my Tinks-Toys list for so long now! Very jealous! Tink!
  12. Good to hear from you Dan. Hope all is well with you. Re. The honeycomb. That's a real shame, but you've got some pre-failure info which is good. I remember these sorts of honeycomb on portable gas heaters, where it seemed that the front face would glow orange and appeared to radiate as much as the flame (you could turn off the flame and feel how much heat was still coming off the honeycomb). I agree that if we could find high-temp honeycomb it would be the "Holy Grail" of NARB development! I'll keep watching your experiments with keen interest. On another note, I've been getting a few people in the UK trying out your Zircopax/Silica (ZS) slurry for flame-coating of rigidised Ceramic blanket or board. They have reported very positive results, so we have a few more converts to the ZS slurry approach. All the best, Tink!
  13. This looks really cool Dan! I'm keen to see how well it works at max-heat. If it will comfortably reach welding heat, then I may modify my NARB setup as well. I've just done some hunting, and using Ceramic Honeycomb search keywords, managed to find the same ceramic elements as you on Amazon.uk for around £12, so cheap enough to play with. Good to see you posting again. All the best matey, Tink!
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