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I Forge Iron


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Posts posted by NoGoodWithUsernames

  1. Hmmm, they don't seem quite the same. Very similar but slightly different shape, I wonder if it was possibly a logo change over the years. If I ever find out anything different I'll be sure to share with everyone. 

  2. Hello fine IFI readers, I realized it had been quite a while since I'd been on and just wanted to stop by and say things have been going well. The forge you all helped me get going has been holding up extremely well and has helped produce quite a few little projects. I've experimented with some different finishes and quite like the glossy black finish applying canola oil to hot metal gives and it is also food safe. I successfully completed a small forge weld on a fire poker as well which I was pleased by. 

    Everyone likes photos so here is a little sampling of what I've done since the new forge has been running. Also a CAD model of a project I am hoping to work on in the near future. It will be a small bench for the bedroom, the model shown being a shelf on the bottom and I am planning on doing a "tufted" cushion as the top of the bench. (We will see how far I get with that or if it ends up with a basic square cushion.) 

    I will say I have found some limitations with the propane forge and would like to get a small coal forge at some point in the future to be able to do some larger ornamental pieces and oddly shaped things more easily. I do have an opportunity to trade time/labor for one from the guy I bought my post vice from, but that will be down the road sometime and I have enjoyed having a proper forge compared to my JABOD that was about 12"x18" outside dimensions, powered by a hand pump for air mattresses. 












  3. From working in the food production industry I will say that 304 is indeed food grade and is widely used in food and beverage unless superior corrosion resistance is required for things like tomato paste with high acid content which is when 316L would generally be used. 

    My very first project was a set of BBQ tools for my father in law and I used a drop of 304SS sheet from work as the spatula and riveted it to a forged mild steel handle. Turned out quite well. 

  4. Good Morning everyone, some better news to report today.

    Since the latest KOL application had cured for 24 hours I moved the forge outside and installed the burners to start the drying process. I would light it up for a few seconds, then shut it off and let it sit for a few minutes while I was working on other stuff. Wash rinse repeat. Kept a fairly consistent wisp of steam coming out of the forge and the KOL was noticeably changing. Light taps with a small wrench where it was dry would produce more of a ring vs the thunk the still wet KOL made. I even put one of the pieces of crumbled floor in the forge to dry it and it became much more difficult to break than an un-dried piece. When turning back over to right side up, none of the new casting fell out so between liquefaction and heat "curing" this time went much smoother.

    I also realized when turning it back over only half the floor is gone, it broke at about a 35° angle so from the front edge it looked like it all fell (and there was enough material I thought it was the whole floor!) but the back of the floor is mostly intact, so that made me feel a bit better about it as well. 

    In regards to buttering, everything was well wetted before applying the rigidizer. First layer air dried for nearly two weeks before it was completely dry (didn't have the burner running well enough to dry it with that.) I used two complete bottles on this forge and the insulation is crusty but still has a bit of give, does that still indicate that more of the rigidizer should be used? Insulation was also wetted again before applying KOL.


    I appreciate all the constructive feedback, as always feel free to ask for better information or call me out if needed. I think perhaps the largest issue starting out was not using the correct procedure for applying and curing the KOL coupled with a bit of impatience and feeling rushed.


  5. I will give that method a go, inswool is all rigidized, though again this is my first time at any of this so who's to say how well it was done. Learning a lot of lessons to help the next one go much better. I just found Wayne's method where he cuts the tank in half and hinges one side. Seems like a good method to help speed things up as you can cast both sides simultaneously. Oh well you live and learn and try to learn from others but sometimes I gotta get my hands dirty and see how things work out. 

  6. Also thank you all for the encouragement and advise. I'm still hopeful that the end result will be worth all this effort.

    Since a few have asked on details here is exactly the steps I've been using. 

    1: forge shell lined with rigidized inswool is on it's side

    2: pour 5lb bag of KOL into plastic tub

    3: weigh out 13.75 oz into cup on postal scale

    4: weight out additional 1.2 oz in separate cup for use if needed

    5: start mixing slowly adding water until I can form a ball and toss it up and down, usually ending up using all water measure out.

    6: get on ground with tub and sprayer full of water, spritz whole area I will be covering generously with water. (First time may not have been generous enough, been going to town with the water spritzing the inswool on the following two batches.)

    7: apply KOL 

    I am doing all this in the garage since it's been too cold outside, getting into freezing temps sometimes at night. After the first batch I laid some damp towels inside it and covered with a trash bag, last night I did not. 

  7. New day and a fresh outlook. Still frustrated, but ready to deal with this rather than being inclined to toss it in the bin. (No, I could not have thrown it out, too much time and effort put into it, but I can daydream!)

    Mikey, are you saying to cure AND fire each section of refractory before turning and going to the next? I only let it cure for a day and didn't fire it. Perhaps that was part of the issue, the KOL had hardened it seemed but when the floor fell it pretty much crumbled. It came off in big chunks but it was very easy to break apart.

    Swede, I like that idea, however I don't know anyone local who throws pottery. The local community college I believe has classes (not sure about this year with distance learning however) Will have to see how this one goes and might try that with the next forge. 


    A question on the texture/consistency of the KOL. When I mix it I have been starting with the 2.75oz O2 per 1lb KOL and working up to just shy of 3oz. I am able to form a ball and toss it up and down and it will hold together. However shortly after I start trying to apply it to the forge walls it starts acting more like granola and I sometimes can't even get it to stick to itself very well. I did pat it and got some liquifaction most places with this batch and that seemed to somewhat help but transitions around the front lip and rear lip were a royal PITA and still have some small gaps on the front that will need filling. Should I keep adding a little more water when mixing or is this just the way this stuff is? 


  8. I’ve about had it with this stuff. Thought it was all going well when the entire floor fell down in chunks after I had the forge upside down for a few minutes of putting this stuff onto the ceiling. 
    I can’t even get this stuff to stick to itself hardly. Still the only surface it sticks to is my hand. 
    I had to toss the rest of the mix I had prepped because there were no more horizontal surfaces to put it on. 
    At this point I think I would have been better off just buying a premade forge. Less headache and less money. 
    Now to order more kast o lite since I lost a whole bag of it in the floor. 

  9. This is where I am currently at. (see photo) Not very happy with how it is going. I am having a bear getting the dang stuff to stick to anything but my hands... (You can see on the left and right edges it's trying to pull away from the ceramic wool, and in the foreground a small pile of fallen refractory on the floor.) Hopefully once this portion cures it will stay in place enough to rotate and do the other side. Assuming that it is okay to let this cure a few hours/overnight and apply another batch later on?


    You can see the rectangular rear opening, at some point I will be making a bolt on front cover that will give the whole chamber a lip around the edge but I think I will need more Kast O Lite before I can do that... Trying to get it up and running to do some forging this weekend with a buddy. Though if needed to he can probably pack his forge and drag it with him. 


  10. First bag of Kast O Lite 30 is mixed and applied. Started with the 2.75 oz water per pound and ended up adding a bit up to about 2.9 oz per pound after some mixing. I must not have wetted the ceramic wool enough before applying because it isn't wanting to stick too well. 5 LBS covered the floor and up one side about two inches, and a little bit around the openings. Just waiting for the first batch to setup a bit so I can turn the forge and keep going.


  11. Tapered burner ports it is, here is where we are so far. Ceramic wool is all in, rigidized and dried. 

    Attached the two burners and lit it up because I couldn't help myself and we have a fire!

    I want to make a face to the forge somehow giving the whole thing about a 1" lip to help contain the flame, and then from there use fire bricks on the front and back shelves to block the openings further if needed.

  12. Alright, I think the layout is complete. Pre refractory is 10" dia (with a raised flat floor so 8" height) x 12" OAL (NO TAPER TO THE CHAMBER) factor in refractory and it's 9"x7"x11" which gives me 584 cubic inches. Which means I'll be building another 3/4" burner (or should I build a single 1" burner instead?)

  13. Of course, I even put my dunce cap on!


    Oh interesting, makes perfect sense though to use the refractory as a sort of Venturi. 

    This sounds really interesting, and to make sure I’m on the same page as you, you’re saying taper the entire length of the forge so the back is narrower than the front opening correct? 

  14. I apologize, I don't know why I can't get that terminology out of my head. 

    *castable refractory*

    *castable refractory*

    *castable refractory* 

    I don't think I've actually considered burner protrusion much, but I was planning on flush or slightly recessed. Though I do intend to have the burner bolt on so I can adjust that if needed. 

  15. Mikey, great question. I'll be shooting for 4 layers on the walls I think, for an 8" diameter with a flattened floor like so in this sketch. Per your recommendation above burner at 2:00 slanted slightly in look good? Though once refractory cement is in I guess that would drop it down to about 7" diameter. Still be plausible with a 9" end diameter and flat floor? 


  16. Hey all, just wanted to check back in and let y'all know this is still moving along. It got put on hold again for a little while, but I have some extra ceramic wool on the way now. I'm hoping to have it wrapped up in a few weeks to start working on Christmas presents for the season.

  17. Happy Labor Day fellow smiths. I'm here to show a project I just completed and delivered to its new owners today. 

    Started with getting a copy of their logo and transcribing it to its new scale. 















    The scale I chose gave me 2.5" with font so started cutting pieces to assemble the main part of the logo. 2.5"x0.25" flat mild steel.
























    Getting letters welded up and cleaning the welds. Technically they are forge welded, as in, they are welded (MIG) and then I forged them. 







































    Completed sign, might be hard to see but edges are all textured then used carnauba wax while still hot to help protect and darken the letters. Custom standoffs welded to the backside to set the letters off the backplates for depth.




















    Finally, the sign in its final position. 



  18. Mikey, I think I was inadvertently leaning towards a "D" Forge, or at least "D-ish"... I will read up on those, I found Andy's "D" Forge thread and will read through that. Are there any others that would make for some good reading?

    After just a few minutes of reading up I'm kinda thinking a hybrid D/oval forge, make it oval with a flat floor. This would in theory smooth the transition to the floor a little bit better as well as reduce some volume by lowering the ceiling of the forge. 

  19. Got it, I think our difference comes from me using the 11" as measured with the wool loose in there, which should probably be tightened up a bit to get closer to planned dimensions. I will for sure do a third layer of wool, maybe even on the ends to reduce that volume further. 

    Thanks again for the advise to a rookie, it is appreciated.

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