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I Forge Iron

bluerooster

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  1. I prefer to use the hand crank, and use whatever hand is available to crank it. Usually the tong hand, but if heating a large piece, I will switch hands. I can put the steel in the forge, and while cranking, reach over with the other hand, and dust off the anvil, set the hammer, all without moving. From fire to anvil is 1/4 turn, 1/2 step.
  2. I have a paint thinner can with the top cut out, and use old peanut oil as a quenchant. I like the smell of deep fried turkey.
  3. Ya'll are doing some nice work out there. I like the bottle racks. And the ornaments are looking good as well. I fired up the forge for the first time in a while today. And decided to make a cable billet. Learned that welding cable is (for me) a tedious process, and it still may not come out right. Getting it to welding temp all the way through, without burning up the outside wires is a task not to be taken lightly. Needless to say I ruined another chunk of cable.
  4. Did nothing in the shop all weekend. Went camping instead. While there I ran across a couple items of interest. I couldn't find the owner, but I'll give him a call inna day or two. The vise I'd like to have moreso than the others. But that big "double barrel" drill press would make a fun addition to the shop.
  5. It's a Ford 2N. Very similar to (but newer than) the 9N but with a Hi/Lo gear option. Yet still older than the 8N. It has served me well for the past many years, but of late it's been a real PITA to start, and today just wasn't going to start at all. I guess I'll have to get it sussed. Problem is that I suspect it to be ignition related, but the only ignition parts available here are cheep made stuff from TS. NAPA has a few items, but not all.
  6. Must haves: Forge, Anvil, Hammer, Brush (butchers block). All else can be made with that. Nice to have to start: tongs mabe 2 different jaw, Vise, (can be made but takes time, and various tools must be made as well). And an old farriers rasp. As to what all for a complete smithy, I'll let others chime in here, as I'm a noobie myself. But I didn't have the benefit of an SO who wanted to buy me all that needed to start. I had to learn by making what I needed to do the job I wanted to do. I built my forge, My anvil is 109# chunk of scrap steel, My hammer is a 2# ballpeen, but I later got a 3# cross peen, and a couple sledges ranging from 4# to 10#. But my go to hammer is the 2# ball peen. I also have a 16oz ball peen, and a 12oz cross peen body hammer. I have various hardies, punches, slitters, and drifts, that I made as I needed them. I do believe that others here will agree with me on this; No matter how well your shop is equipped, there will be a tool that you don't have, and must make for the task at hand. I've spent the majority of my (short) forging career making tools, to use to make the tool that I need to do the job that I want to do. But so far, I've had a most relaxing blast of a time, and turned out some nice things, and some pure disapointing junk.
  7. ID sux. I hope you end up in a better situation. Didn't do much in the shop today. But tried to start my tractor to move the water heater. It turns over fine, has spark, has gas, has compression, is in time, but won't fire up and run. Ended up having to heave the heater into the pickup, and get it kinda close, and then walk it from there. Anyway, got it set up, and did a trial run. From lighting the match, to 180 degree water was less than 10 minutes. If I'd stoked it up big, it would have warmed the swimmin' pond from 70 degrees to about 80 degrees in mabe 10 hours. So, now I need to get out there and start cutting firewood. (dangit)
  8. I may be doing it wrong, but even with a coal forge, I look for it to become the same color as the hot spot. When I pull it out, it's steaming (even with no flux), and a spark or two is being emitted. I usually heat it slow, and allow it to soak real good. I want everything to be the same temp. through and through. Even then, it may not work on the first go. I remember one time, everything looked good, and I smacked it too hard. All my work vanished in a shower of sparks.
  9. Ya'll are doing some nice work out there. Beeswax is unobtanium around these parts. Even though bee hives are about 50 feet apart. I'd thought about robbing a super, but then thought better of it. I'll just get some from my sister in TX when she harvests some honey in a few weeks. I use beeswax for ball lube. I mix it with peanut oil, and soak patches in it to lube my black powder, muzzleloader balls. As promised earlier, pics of the latest blade, et,al. Cold shut. Not good. And another cold shut. Hall of shame. Various items that didn't make the cut. And another thing; forge welding cable is not for the feint of heart. I tried again today. And just couldn't get it to work out. No worries though, I have 4 more pieces of cable to ruin. I really liked the looks of the cable blade, except for all the cold shuts. I may go ahead and finish it out and test it to destruction. But I'd hate to waste the time fitting out a blade that is sub par.
  10. Got the Tanto clayed last week, and had to go to work. So I decided to harden it this evening. On smaller blades, I usually heat them with the torch, and quench. But this blade is a bit longer than I've made before, and clayed as well. So I dug a quicky trench forge beside the shop, and used charcoal to heat the blade. Got it up to temp, and quenched it. that part went ok, but after the quench, and clay removal, I found a cold shut on the cutting edge at the end of the blade. Also one about halfway down on one side of the cutting edge. Other than that it looks ok. The hamon is a bit faint, more so than I thought it would be. But then again, it's a piece of cable, and probably won't get very hard anyway. I didn't get a picture of my failure, but I'll have one tomorrow. So, back to the drawing board. I have some more cable. I wish I knew what cable chokers are made of. It sparks like low carbon, and probably is.
  11. Current flows from negative to positive. So the cathode needs to be copper, and the anode needs to be whatever is to be plated. Then the electrolyte solution can be as simple as water, or as complex as you want to make it. but I would think a salt solution of some sort would work just fine. I went out and started to weld up another piece of cable. It was comming along nicely, until I cranked the blower a few too many times. When I pulled it out half of it was gone. I'd allowed myself to burn it completely in two. I guess that's what happens when you get distracted as it's getting close.
  12. I fired the forge today and learned some things. I had a cable choker follow me home the other day, and today I decided to see about forge welding it into a solid chunk to be used for something. I learned that welding old cable is not the easiest task in the world, but can be done. This cable is 7 strands, each strand is 9 individual wires. (actually that's the center strand, the outer 6 strands are 18 wires, with the outer being about 14 gauge, and the inner being about 18 gauge) Best I could do was to open it up some, and soak it in laquer thinner for a while. That got the worst of the grease and oil, but the blue whatever it is between the wires didn't budge. I left it open, and tossed it into the forge to burn off whatever is left. Got it hot, and twisted it back together, added some borax, and back for a welding heat. Found that It worked best by welding a few inches at a time, using a swage block, and turning it in the direction of the twist. Anyway, got it welded up, and looked ok. but a couple cold shuts on the outer strands near one end. (They were taken care of when I started forging it to shape) Now, what to make of it? well, I hadn't made a blade in a while, so mabe I'll make a blade of some sort. So, I set about doing just that. I usually let the steel tell me what kind of blade it wants to become. I just bang on it as it forms it's self to the shape it wants to be. Well, after a few heats, I could tell that it wanted to be a short blade of some sort. A few more heats and I could see the shape of a Tanto comming forth. So, that's what it wanted to be, a Tanto, of sorts.
  13. Yes it does. I made a mistake on the wire count on the cable. It is accurate on the center strand, the six outer strands are 18 wires, with 7 outer being about 14 gauge, and inner being about 18 gauge. The center strand is 9, 14 gauge wires.
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