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About Cleave

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    GJ Colorado
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    Family, Bible, Mountains, Engineering, Wood and Metal Working

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  1. Thanks for the video hint, my elbow/forearm feels a bit improved already just following along with the massage.
  2. Thanks all for the advice. I'd much rather make mistakes on something like this than on something I'd lovingly pounded into shape for 3 days straight...
  3. With the campfire forge, I don't know if I'm capable of getting the heat that localized. Or perhaps the forge can do it and I haven't figured out how yet.
  4. Well, my hasty side got the better of me. I got the campfire forge going, heated the blade side to a red, checked on the magnet, let it cool for maybe 10 minutes. Put back in, heated blade side a bit hotter (to make sure the whole way across the blade was hot enough). For some reason, I went straight for the water quench as I only have about a gallon of used motor oil and a #10 can on hand........ Got some warm water in the 5 gallon bucket, and quenched, held her in there and stirred it around for a while. There were a couple ominous pops. A file couldn't touch the edge. My gracious wife didn't complain while I tempered it in the oven at a bit over 500 F, got a nice blue color on it. Then I noticed, twin cracks halfway through the sides of the eye one on each side. Should have heeded better wisdom and quenched in oil first! Or maybe don't hold it in the water so long, or don't heat up that hot. Not sure which it is. But still, a good experiment and learning experience. Now.... I have access to the father in law's welder but am pretty new to that myself... would it be a good idea to grind a v groove on the cracks, preheat, and weld the cracks back, then re heat treat??? Really this is just for the learning experience at this point.
  5. Right, I wondered about if the blade was forge welded HC and is gone now. And figured that "cast stee" meant the whole thing was likely the same alloy. Maybe it got in a fire and killed the heat treatment? Or somebody went nuts on it with a grinder at some point? Anyway, the edge rolls a burr within a few minutes of use. May as well try the re heat treat and learn something. It was raining yesterday so didn't light my campfire forge.
  6. I just today got a very similar vise, maybe the same model off Craigslist for $175. Even has the little holes under the jaws, what are they for anyway? Feels very robust, much better than the 35 pounder at the antique store without bracket or spring for $150, been sitting there for a couple years. My first post vise, and feels solid enough it could very well be the only one I ever need.
  7. By normalize, I meant bring just above critical and let air cool, back in the fire 5 or 10 minutes later, repeat 3x, to stabilize grain structure before quench. The eye did look even, so could be hung either way. The thing is very symmetric, maybe you could even run a wedgeless handle, with a snug tight fit, and flip it around as needed to access tight spots. That way a carpenter only needs to carry/purchase one. I successfully drilled out the wedge and removed the handle without destroying it and plan to try heat treating again when I get a chance. Thanks all for the counsel and entertainment.
  8. Cleave

    Show me your Lathe

    Here's my old WF Barnes and Co. #6. It was originally pedal powered. Someone long before my time made a motor and mount out of their junk pile, someday I intend to make a better motor mount, with better motor and pulleys. But it runs and does better work than I know how to do. I'm missing a critical change gear so haven't been able to run the lead screw yet. Maybe one of these years I'll cut my own gear for it....
  9. Yes the other side is flat for hewing beams. I have no real reason to keep tools that don't get used. Also, should I normalize 3x before heat treat or take it straight to heat treat?
  10. Thanks guys, I was sure there were good reasons, but wanted a little more elaboration on the topic. I know the feeling of a piece of struck steel vibrating in my hand!
  11. So I got this old half hatchet recently. It is marked "R. King Cast Steel Made in United States." A quick wire wheel de-rust, flatten the back a bit, new handle from a honey locust tree. Then filed the bevel. It filed very easily, too easily. Sharpened it up a bit on the stone, and tried it out. The edge rolled over pretty easily confirming my suspicions that the steel is too soft. Now, I've done a bit of blacksmithing recently (still a total newbie), and am wondering if it is worth pulling off the handle and re-heat treating this? Anyone have experience with this? I'd bring just the blade edge up to non-magnetic heat, then try oil quench first, then water quench if it didn't harden enough. Then temper it in the oven (I have a great wife). I suppose since the tool doesn't hold an edge well now, there's really nothing to loose if I'm careful and don't burn it up.
  12. This big chisel did make me wonder why old chisels and slicks have a socket and a wood handle rather than being forged from one piece of solid bar like this one.. Certainly when steel was scarce, that was the only real option. Also the wood handle is lighter, more vibration absorbing, and more comfortable in cold weather. But the chisel I made was so much easier than forge welding a socket, then turning a wood handle!
  13. I am a mechanical engineer, and can do the math, but when I'm actually getting a job done, this is what I do too!
  14. Here's my new RR track anvil, installed to supplement the Fischer Norris 1886 60 lb anvil, with really beat edges. The RR track gives me some nice crisp edges for bending and drawing. RR track was purchased from an antique store for $30, about scrap price. Probably weights 130 lb for 38". Center web is about 3/4". I ground a fuller onto one section of it. Its secured to an old utility pole section about 5' long, buried in very rock soil. I added a 3/4" hole through the web near the top for bending and such. The RR track anvil is very solid under the hammer and a very useful addition. (For you safety advisors, the Fischer horn was blunted long before my time, so not an imminent danger to the apprentices climbing on it).
  15. Here's my first successful bladed tool from the backyard blacksmith shop. Its a long timber framing chisel made from old drill steel which has a 1/4" through hole. Blade width is about 1 3/16" x 7" length Overall length is maybe 20" The through hole in the steel I just cold shut, and there is a thin line visible on the bevel that doesn't interfere with the tool's utility. The water quench didn't make it un-fileable, but it didn't file very easily. It holds an edge well enough, though a more experienced smith could certainly do better. I expect its a medium carbon steel because the water quench didn't make it fully hard. It was a fun project with a very useful outcome. Next drill rod project I'm thinking about drifting a socket into the existing 1/4" through hole, for a wooden handle, then slitting the drill rod the long way, and unrolling it, into a timber framing slick!!! Can't hurt anything to try I suppose....