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About Chelonian

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  1. Sure was fun! Glad I came here before trying it though - otherwise I probably wouldn't have had much success.
  2. I just finished trying the coal, and it seems quite good! It coked up into large puffy clumps, which I assume is a good thing. It consistently got the metal nice and hot, so I'm happy. Thanks for all the help!
  3. I got the forge going today, so I cut a piece off the end of the rod (not exactly fun with a hacksaw ), and tried hardening it. I tried breaking it, but even when I was hitting it quite hard, it didn't break. So I cut a groove into it, and then tried hitting it again. This time it did break: (don't worry I didn't break it in the vise) I then tested the hardness with a file, and it pretty much just skates it. I did manage to eventually round off a corner after about a minute of filing, but I don't think it was biting much.
  4. Chelonian

    It followed me home

    I vote for mailbox post. That is a really cool find.
  5. Thanks for the answers! I think at this point I just need to try it and see what happens. I'm hoping I'll be able to try it later today.
  6. Great information, thanks! I did just think of another question though: since my forge is made of plain old red bricks, and I was told to make sure they were completely dry before use (So that they didn't crack when I heated them), will putting damp coal on them and then heating them be a problem?
  7. Okay, great! I'm glad that it's usable. Is the purpose of wetting the fine coal just so that it doesn't get blown away by the air, or does it help the burning process in other ways too? I'm using a JAPOB side-blast forge, if that makes a difference. Thanks!
  8. Hi, I just found a place to get bituminous coal in my area, so I bought a 50Lb bag to try it out. When I cut the top off the bag to take a look at it, I saw this: (6-inch ruler for scale) I know basically nothing about what it should look like, but this looks REALLY fine to me. It's almost like dirt. WIll it still burn okay? Is this the normal size for bituminous coal? I tried digging around in the bag to see if it was just this spot, but it all seems about the same size. Thanks!
  9. That's a good idea. I'll try that next time I get the forge going. (might not be for a while because the weather looks awful for the next few days here) And then I'll post the results. Aren't most general forging hammers hardened and tempered? Thanks!
  10. I'm mostly wondering if it would work to make hammer heads. Unfortunately, the only vise I have is a small Wilton machinist vise, and I'm unsure if it would handle being pounded on too much. I guess I might be able to try it in the vise if the piece was really thin. Is there any other way to test the brittleness? My spark testing method was a 3/4in cut-off wheel in a Dremel at 30K RPM. Thanks!
  11. Hi, I recently found a large piece of metal in the basement of our house. It is 6 feet long, 1.5 inches in diameter, and weighs 35 pounds. I'm wondering if anyone has any ideas for what to do with it. Here are some photos: (next to a 2lb ball-pein hammer for scale ) I wasn't sure what type of metal it was, so I tried spark testing it. Does it look like it would be hardenable? Here's a photo of the sparks: If you have any ideas, please let me know! Thanks.
  12. Chelonian

    What did you do in the shop today?

    After finding a suitably-sized stump for my recently acquired truncated anvil, I made my first pair of tongs today! Well, technically it's my second pair, but my first didn't come out nearly as well. They may not look the nicest, but they do hold stuff quite well. Now I don't have to use pliers to hold everything! It was also my first attempt at riveting something. It's definitely much nicer using a real anvil than the piece of rail I was using previously. Here's a photo:
  13. I think that diamond shape on the side means it's a Trenton, but I'm no expert.
  14. Thomas, Thanks for figuring out the weight! I never understood the whole weighting system, so the 230 was just a guess. steve miller, I think I'll wait and use it for a little while before making modifications, but I may do that at some point. Thanks!
  15. Chelonian

    It followed me home

    Brought home this anvil earlier today. It's a 185# Wilkonson Queens Dudely anvil that is missing its heel (185# now, so must have been a bit more before it lost its heel). Are they considered fairly decent anvils? I got it for 125$, so I think I got a pretty good deal regardless. Also, if anyone knows approximately when it was made, I'd love to know. Here are a few photos: I'm looking forward to cleaning up the face with some hot steel and a hammer.