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I Forge Iron


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About Sharkfood

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    Livermore, CA

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  1. Ha, yeah I'm no spring chicken either... turning 50 next year. I've already blown out my elbow trying too hard with a 4-pound. I've watched press builds with hydraulic rams but just the hydraulic motors plus rams are $300-400 and that's for cheap ones that probably won't travel very fast. For now I thought I'd start with the bottle jack. The whole build is costing me $50. Sounds like you've had some fun jobs in the past!
  2. The thermometer won’t tell you internal temp, only surface. It’s still a great tool. I started by teaching myself stick welding so I could build a forge out of an air compressor tank. Then I bought a crappy 3x36 belt grinder which I regret now I’m building a 2x72. Also building and a bottle-jack press so Ivan reduce the hammering time. Having a blast!
  3. Thanks folks.. I did figure out my problem. It was all about the quench oil. I was trying to quench 1095 with canola and it just wasn't working. The hardening on one side was a red-herring and it was just the way the file happened to be skating made it seem like it was hard. After moving to Parks #50, it all went well and I have hard blades. @eutrophicated1 For forge temp gauges, I did fine this one on amazon and it works quite well. I use it to test the temp when I'm going through normalizing cycles and then for the final heat treat. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B079HH
  4. Thanks for the detailed reply. My forge is made from a 5-gallon air compressor tank with a single propane burner at an angle. It certainly has hot spots though. I have been using direct flame to heat the metal quicker (didn’t know any better I guess). I think that’s probably the issue. I’ll heat slower and more consistently next time. I was using a stock piece of 3/16 thick 1095 and forging the blade and leaving that thickness for quenching. Thanks a lot for the advice!
  5. After doing sone reading on this forum I think I know my problem. I’ve created 3 blades using two different steels and all result in one side of the blade hardened after the heat treat but not the other. I’m pretty sure I’m forging at way too high a heat. I was getting the blades up to light red/ yellow during the forge and mostly lying them on the same side in the forge during heating. I think I’m burning the carbon out of that one side. Until now I’ve only been playing with mild steel projects like Xmas ornaments, hooks and fire pokers so the forge temp didn’t seem to matter.
  6. Ok, first off I’m a rookie so I could very well be doing something dumb. I have a blade that was forged from a piece of stock 1095 bar that I purchased. It’s been ground to shape but is still about 1/8 inch all over. I’m trying to heat treat it but when I quench in heated canola oil the left side of the blade is hardened but the right side digs the file. I’m stumped. I may have been placing the steel into the forge mostly on the same side. Could that be it? Any suggestions?
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