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I Forge Iron


2021 Donor
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About DHarris

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  • Location
    Purcell, Oklahoma
  • Interests
    Tuning perfectly good scrap into amorphous blobs of burnt steel at the moment.

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  1. Look for one of those health food/alternative medicine/new age markets. All those I have been in have had them. Natural essential oils too. I don’t pretend to believe all the gibberish about them, but some can be relaxing after a bad day at work. In the interest of complete transparency, it could be the two or three Coors Light I have while relaxing and reading in the tub and not the essential oils.
  2. And what is a knitting bowl used for? Nothing done at the forge for almost 10 days now. My baby brother came down with COVID. I had to pick him up and take him to the ED. They admitted him. I have been keeping my grandniece since then. My brother came very close to needing a ventilator. 10 LPM of O2 by nasal cannula could not beep his O2 sat above 90%, so they put him on High Flow Nasal Oxygen. That worked well and kept his sat above 94%. He was in the hospital for just shy of 9 days. He came home Sunday. I am keeping my little niece till he feels up to keeping her, which, God willing will be tomorrow. She is a great kid, but man she never shuts up. I am work out. My brother was one of those who refused to get the shots.
  3. You are in Europe. Why not WI for the body instead of modern steel? As old as Europe is WI should be more available there than here in Oklahoma. WI is much, much easier to forge weld once you accept as fact what more experienced smiths say. Work it at a near welding heat or it is likely going to split.
  4. This is my “sort of a” bullet grate. This is what it looks like after about 5 sessions. Unlike my first attempt which was too tall and melted, this one looks almost exactly like it did when I first began using it. Not even the small piece of rail anchor I stick in the hole has burned. I think I will slice a thin piece off the bottom of the melted first attempt and use it to make this one slightly taller. If it doesn’t melt, I will add another small slice until I hit the 2” Glenn suggested would be a good height. If it works at that height and doesn’t melt, I will weld the slices to the base.
  5. Beautiful place. Your cat or just passing by?
  6. I’ve always wondered why polydactyly isn’t more common in cats. It seems as if it should be an evolutionary advantage. It helped the Maine Coon and I believe another northern cat walk on snow more easily because it made their paws bigger. I’ve heard some say their cats with extra digits are more adept at turning lights on and off and opening doors and gates. One reason it may not have been (except for cats in snowy areas) is sometimes the extra toes may be pointed wrong and could make walking a little painful on harder ground. (Thank you, Google. I knew about the Maine Coon, but not the others.)
  7. The only coal I have ever used has all been the kind that sends gooey clinker to the bottom. Cleaning it out was just something I had accepted as being normal until switching to my current grate.
  8. For a long time I have just placed random bits of scrap across the tuyere. Then I tried making a bullet grate out of something I found in my FIL’s scrap pile. I have no idea what it what it was used for in its earlier life. I cut it flush where the pipe inside it ended. Then I welded a pipe onto the bottom of the remaining piece to sort of hold it in the tuyere. The opening is larger than I wanted, but it worked fine. I just made sure I had a larger bit of coal over it. Once the fire is going and the coal cokes up, it all lumps together and smaller bits were not a problem. It worked pretty much the way Glenn said it would. The clinker fell down around the bottom of it. But it stuck up too high in the pot and would melt a bit each time I used it. Last week I took the bottom part I had cut off and began using it. It works even better with no melting. I poked a wedge of steel down inside the hole to keep the coal from falling out. That was necessary because the last coal I bought is much smaller than what I had been buying from the club. A large piece is no bigger than the end of my thumb. I will take a photo of it tomorrow.
  9. That worked for one hole for the scales but not the second. Once the drill cut through the WI it would just spin. For the much smaller holes where the bolsters will go, same thing. Bit went right through the WI and spun on the steel. I then tried a carbide Dremel bit. Worked great. It isn’t a drill bit. More of a very fine rasp. But how it turns out is something I may never know. I set the blade down somewhere and now cannot find it. And now that my grandson is no longer living in our guest house, I have no one to blame for it going missing. This was just an experiment anyway, so I won’t be that upset if it never turns up. I will just start again, but not do all the stupid things I did this first go round.
  10. My dad has one he inherited from his maternal granddad. It has folding handles. I prefer it to others I have used. In addition to being easier to store, you can adjust the handles to an angle that feels best. Alexandr, do you have some sort of preform or jig you use for those? Looking at them I am reminded of a spun sugar cage.
  11. Polishing something small by hand is super easy. First you want to remove any scale that may be present. Then as George said, progressively finer grits of wet/dry sandpaper: 150, 220, 500, 1000, 2000. You should be able to see your reflection by then. It is surprisingly quick.
  12. Lots of errors with a first time. One of the more “doh!!!” errors was not drilling the holes for the bolster and scale pins. I can remove the hardening and stand a decent chance of not ruining the blade by having the blade in water while using a torch on the handle area, but it wouldn’t have been necessary had I just planned things. The bolster will be WI. Since welding them on isn’t possible now, I will go with J-B Weld and pins. I am not sure about the pins. No matter which I choose, they will be visible. WI would match the best, but drawing out the WI I have that thin without it splitting isn’t likely to be possible unless I made them square, and I can’t drill square holes.
  13. You need this guy. Usually they manage to evade him, but Tigger has managed to bring a couple of them home. On this particular hunt he came up empty.
  14. Man, you two cause me to have to Google more than any other posters on the planet. But I still don’t know what it is to ploot. Obsolete spelling of plout, which is evidently to plunge. And it just now occurs to me perhaps it was just a typo the whole time?
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