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  1. Following advice I’ve created a second grate which reduced the fire pot depth to just over 3'', and I've also added a fence to the table. The fuel is anthracite beans, and there are no other change to the pot form my drawing above. It’s no doubt an improvement, but I’m still finding the fire is lower in the pot than I’d hoped, and hence I still have to put the stock in at an angle. To show what I'm getting it seemed easiest to video it. I've put the link below: https://youtu.be/36eeyi9dmpQ The new grate is a reasonable fit, but no doubt some air is getting around the edges. I’m not sure if that matters, but whilst I’m experimenting I didn’t want to weld it in place. I’m hoping you can guide me further on how to get things just right. I could speculate, and the below seem like the immediate things I could play with, but getting advice from someone who knows seems like the best way forward Raising the great further, with more coals above the table Cutting a V groove in a rebuild (as suggested), but this is unattractive as it makes things harder to fabricate - but OK if that's what's needed Playing with the fan speed Playing with the grate opening size Thanks all David
  2. Your both right of course, and with some imagination I can come up with something. I had planned to get more done over the weekend, but ended up being distracted by looking at anvils (it didn’t go anywhere, but kept me entertained.)
  3. Thanks Daswulf - I appreciate the help. I’ve just had a go at burning anthracite and I preferred it to charcoal. It seemed to have pretty much zero smoke and smell, lasted a lot longer than charcoal, and without the sparks. I’m also going to follow advice and make forge MK II with a shallower pot. I’ll build it to the same dimensions as my drawing above, but 3’’ deep rather than 5’’ deep, and I’ll let you all know how I get on. If anyone is interested, the fire below is in the same firepot as the top post, but burning anthracite rather than charcoal.
  4. Thanks for the feedback, it’s really appreciated and it’s good to see that I’m not way of the mark. In terms of my question, and indeed my forge build, I’d hoped it would run with the fire more compact and higher up. The idea being that I can then weld some sides to the table to heap more coals over the fire. As suggested in the feedback, I was hoping not to have the stock at such a steep angle and lay it horizontal. There are all sorts of things I can experiment with like fan speed, raising the grate\base, the air vent size, or a rebuild to different dimensions. On the other hand, it would be good to know if that’s just how charcoal runs and there is nothing wrong with it and nothing to worry about. If there is something I can do, I figure the experience available here can save me time. In terms of what I want do, I’d say starting of small and simple – just basic skills on the end of ½ inch bar stock, and hence why I was thinking the fire didn’t need to be so aggressive. Maybe a smaller firepot would help with this, buy maybe a smaller fire pot would not cut it at all ? Thanks Again David P.S. – Yes a good point about updating my profile to give my location , although I tend to leave these things blank out of paranoia over internet anonymity. On the plus side it makes things safer, on the downside I can miss out on offers of help.
  5. Hi All This is my first post here, and after building my first forge I’m hoping I can get some help. I’m new to all this, and for me it’s just a hobby, but before I can get started I need to get my forge working. I’ve spent a fair bit of time doing my research, and after finding a lot of conflicting information I decided it was better to just get on and try and build something to see what happened. The decision process for the design was based on the following: • Unfortunately I failed to pull this forum out of the noise before I started the build • Across the internet there is an enormous amount of conflicting opinion, especially over the firepot depth. • I can get the materials cheaply, and I enjoy the welding and fabrication process. I fully expected the first build to be a long way from correct – but that just gives me an excuse to build another! • I’ve not added a clinker breaker. I wanted this to be a weekend build, and decided the effort of a clinker breaker was not warranted on something likely to have bigger problems. Instead I have a fire grate. • I was planning to use charcoal as a fuel with the possibility of switching to anthracite if charcoal didn’t work out. That’s because I can’t easily and cheaply get coke, coal is easy to find but it’s to smoky for the neighbours, and gas doesn’t interest me. Accounting for this, I decided for bottom blast which I gather is better for anthracite although less good for charcoal • The steel is ¼ inch throughout. I gather ½ inch is better, but I can cheaply get 1/4 inch. It’s also just for occasional amateur use. If I have to make another once in a while that’s OK. If I have to make lots, then it’s time for ½ inch! • I am using an electric inline blower. It’s max output is 750 m3/h. I have an electronic speed control as opposed to a gate valve so I can run it very slowly if needed. Well, on first fire with charcoal, things didn’t work out so well: • The fire was far too low down in the pot on low fan speed • On higher fan speed I was amazed by the ferocity. The fire seemed to move up (I think), but it burned through charcoal like it grew on trees and I think it was way to hot. I have not tried anthracite • There didn't seem to be a happy "medium" fan speed. In fairness, I'm too inexperienced to know what I'm looking for • I didn’t try building up the fire higher than the pot, and I have not welded sides on the forge yet. Before I make MK II, it would be great if people could set me in the right direction. I should add that I’m planning on starting small, so a modest size forge and fire will be more than ample for quite some time. Thanks David