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I Forge Iron


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  1. I also agree with Dave Budd. I would add that it’s worth running your fuel mix a little heavy on the oil. Milling is hard on the motor and it will appreciate the extra lubricant. The chainsaw mills do take a much thicker cut than a band mill but they are also cheaper. And they don’t take up nearly as much storage space. If money is tight, you can make your own rip chain. There are lots of places on the internet that will walk you through it. If you are buying them, get the thinnest one you can. It saves wood and it’s less work for the saw.
  2. Maybe I missed it. What is the serial number that you found?
  3. Daswulf, how much coal is in that truck bed? I’m trying to get an idea of how much a ton of coal is by volume.
  4. I have a couple of plastic 55 gallon drums but they don’t have removable lids. I like the IBC tote idea. I could load the tote into the truck, fill it and then unload it at home. That saves me from getting much coal in the truck bed.
  5. I am going to pick up my first ever load of coal this week. It just occurred to me that I don’t have any idea how I’m going to store it. The coal supplier near me (in South Eastern Ohio) sells bituminous coal in bulk. I can have them load my truck with a skid loader or I can bag it up myself by hand. I’m curious to see how you guys are storing it. In a pile on the ground? In barrels? In bags? In a purpose built bin? Anyone with photos of their storage would be greatly appreciated. Thanks
  6. Frosty, I’m sorry to hear about your accident. You seem to be doing quite well. I do a lot of felling by myself and that is always in the back of my mind. There is a massive amount of weight towering overhead and once it starts moving, you don’t have any control over it. I would bet that those guys at 61’s would love to hear from you. We almost always lose track of people and their outcome once the call is over. The HIPAA laws make it nearly impossible for us to follow up with someone. In today’s social climate the people with complaints are far more vocal than those with compliments. It’s always a good feeling to have someone say thank you. As for the first projects on my list, I will be making my basic tools. The idea that a blacksmith can make his own tools is possibly the most appealing part of this for me. My wife sometimes gives me grief for the amount of time that I spend in the wood shop making jigs to make things or the amount of time I spend tinkering with the tools. I foresee this hobby to be very much the same.
  7. Excellent. Thank you for the advice. That is exactly what I want to do. I want to try my hand at reproducing some fireplace pieces. I have a mid 1800’s summer kitchen that is missing some pieces. I have found several examples to strive for. I am very excited about this new adventure. Also, I just posted a thread about an anvil. I would appreciate your feedback on that as well.
  8. I found this Armitage Mousehole for about $2.90 per lb. This will be my first anvil. I believe that it’s in the 1830-1835 range. I can’t tell if the pritchel is drilled or punched. I don’t notice any bulge but I may just be missing it. There are some pretty big damaged places on the edge of the face that look to me to be from a farrier. They don’t seem to be delaminating. There is also one on the step. It has what seems to be a great ring to it. The ball bearing test bounces back to about 90% over nearly the entire face. The heel being a little less than that.The weight, if I’m doing the math correctly, is stamped at 172lbs. I haven’t actually weighted it. What do you think? Good deal or a good lesson about impulse control?
  9. I guess I don’t really have anything absolute at this point. I have the sum of a few hours of heating and pounding out some hooks to base my plans on. I literally have 10 fold the hours in reading and research than I do in experience and application. I have a strong affinity to old things and traditions. I love history and I love attempting to keep alive the quickly fading skills that our society has passed over for a modern disposable lifestyle. And of course, there is something absolutely amazing about taking a hard piece of steel and bending and twisting it into something beautiful and useful. I have 2 strapping young sons that essentially work for food and housing. They will certainly get their share of time swinging a sledge. Lol
  10. ThomasPowers, good point about “old fashioned”. I guess I meant old fashioned in regards to United States timeline. 18th and 19th century. Coal forge, bellows, no power hammer. Although I’m not so diehard that an occasional wire wheel or a mig welder for fabrication of jigs and such would be out of the question. As for QuadState, I didn’t find out about it until the week of. It was too short of notice for me to make work and family arrangements. It’s about 3 hours drive for me. I’m pretty bummed about missing it.
  11. Hello. I’m new here and to blacksmithing. I’m a 20+ year career firefighter in Ohio. I’m getting close to retirement but nowhere near ready to slow down. I’ve always been a “tinkerer” and I love learning new skills. Blacksmithing seems to be an amazing new hobby/ addiction for me. I have taken some blacksmithing classes at a local living history site and fell in love with it. So now begins the search for tools and equipment. I have plans to build a small shop in the spring. I am a bit old fashioned in most things that I do so I expect that my smithy will follow suit. I have been spending hours upon hours on this site. The knowledge, information and experience compiled here is outstanding. Thank you to all of you. You will be hearing from me in the future.
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