Neal the smith

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About Neal the smith

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    Basildon, Essex, UK

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  1. I was looking to import a grinder from the US (choices are somewhat limited here in the UK) and looked at all manner of grinders from Bader, Grizzly, KMG, etc. I ended up on the phone to one of the owners of Ameribrade grinders Keven Roark, who I was very impressed by. He really knew his product having developed various versions of it. It would have been a good fit for my needs, but in the end the cost of shipping the product proved prohibitive, so I got the welder out and built my own. So what am I saying? Don’t rush into anything, do your research, have *conversations* with people who use and know the products you’re looking at. And if all else fails, get the welder out. NB: this is in no way an endorsement of Amerbrade. It is an endorsement of having conversations with folks who know the products.
  2. Jason, Welcome! Someone with more ability than me will doubtless link you to the “read this first” article. In the meantime it sounds like you have a nice initial setup. Once you have hammer and anvil you can pretty much make other tools you need (punches, drifts, tongs, etc) as you need them. You’ll find it great practice for basic skills. I’ve only found this forum recently but folks are knowledgeable and generous in sharing their experience.
  3. Stunning work Owen. I must get myself on one of your Damascus courses. It was your fault I caught this bug! One knife making course years ago and been hooked ever since.
  4. Thought I’d make a little axe for no reason other than my own amusement. About half of a farrier’s rasp and a stick I picked off the forest floor last summer. Finished with raw linseed oil. I mowed the lawn too - no goats to help.
  5. Well done CP. There's no stopping you now. Feel free to share photos.
  6. Hi Timothy, No idea! Any marks or stamps on it? N
  7. Hi Ben, Welcome. Where about in Beds are you? I'm not a million miles away over in Essex. Greensmith - one who does too much copper forging.
  8. Incredible buy! Personally, I've not got space for milling machine, lathe or press, but maybe one day I'll score a deal that good.
  9. Needed something to hang the keys on so made Mr Squiddy. Here he is posing on the wall of the forge.
  10. Hi CP. When I first started out and before I got some good hands-on guidance, I really struggled with forge welding in my propane forge. Turned out I simply wasn't getting the steel hot enough. As soon as an experienced smith had showed me the lemon yellow I should have been aiming for, I cranked up the forge, blocked the doors and did it first time. No problems after that so persevere and you'll get it. Re axe steel, it depends what you'll be using it for - woodsplitting, camping, etc. I would suggest you let the tool's use direct what steel to use - what proerties do you want/need? For outdoor use you may want to try something corrosion resistant like 420 stainless, but this will come at the cost of edge retention. For general purpose camp axe, I'd probably go with 1060 - but I'm sure others will have their own views.
  11. For high carbon or 15N20, take a look at highgradesteel.co.uk too, as they have an ebay store too for smaller lengths. Obviously it works out cheaper per KG if you buy bulk, but sometimes the initial outlay is prohibitive.
  12. Hi. Something similar second hand on eBay (UK) will cost around GBP 200 - 250, and will typically be cast iron. So yeah, if I had the need of one, I'd go with something new like this. I think Daswulf has it on the head, though - would you use it enough/are there alternatives better suited?