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I Forge Iron

wirerabbit

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About wirerabbit

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    Advanced Member

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    near Jeddo, Texas
  • Interests
    Clay, reading, chess, and now *sigh* hot metal

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  1. Congrats on the anniversary (and the big job in Finnland). I finished nothing quite as ambitious as some of what I have seen lately on this thread, but I did get some more time on the forge today. Finished my second set of tongs. Was going for v-bit, but after my first v swage broke apart during the initial creasing of the bits, I realized my next project needed round bits and I didn't have the right square stock to accommodate. Heating up the new swage to try and get it to set down on the anvil more. My firepot isn't large enough in this configuration, but I tried.
  2. Nooooooooooo! That'll turn your beard from a heat shield into a fuse! Second day of forging for me. Gotta go soak the beard. T
  3. Another two hours of forging today. Wind was up, so I rolled the forge into the front of the garage. Got me out of the wind and allowed me to see colors much better. Here I'm preheating a tong blank while I heat up two spring steel bars for drawing out. I'm working on a nata for cutting charcoal and v-bit tongs for punches and hardy tools. This forge likes the charcoal a bit bigger than what I starting out forging with. Now I am chopping to about 1.25" to 1" or so. Not fussing about it as much. While I started out having to send the poker down to the tuyere to open up the fire now a
  4. Needed a v-swage for my next set of tongs (v-bit) and decided to do some modern a.k.a. stick welding. Three pieces of 3/4 mild steel square bar, some grinding, some welding, and then A LOT more grinding later... The tongs will help me forge my first set of punches as well as my first hardy.
  5. Nice lot. Are the open ends in good shape? I have been slowly adding to my wrenches. My skidsteer and implements have some pretty big bolts. T
  6. Update: Close to 20 hours on the forge so far and small incremental changes have reduced my charcoal consumption, increased the heat to my pieces, and allowed me to learn quite a bit about forging. Some items of note are I have started cutting my charcoal larger and the fire seems to be much more lively and heats stock better Though the firepot is made to JABOD specs, sweet spot seems to be a bit lower that the hearth. Adjusting amount of charcoal and how I place my pieces have kept me forging. Will have to modify soon I think, maybe in 20 more hours. Electronic b
  7. Hey Goods, I know. I changed my picture sizes when I edited my posting, but I forgot to correct my text. I was speculating on that narrower bar below the rotary blades. I was wrong, btw. When I spark tested, it came up at least leaf spring quality carbon. I don't have a collection of known steels to test against right now. Still, that small bar is about 2 inches wide and should make a great bolster plate. I honestly don't know what I'm going to do with those rotary blades yet, but I hadn't thought about making blades. Perhaps a fuller or a butchering tool of some kind. Now I need to
  8. 20 cents a pound at the scrap yard. Some mild, some spring. I have 12 ft of 5/8 " sucker rod and what I think is at least medium carbon bar over 1 inch. I started salivating when I saw the spring (~2") in the bin. Shredder blades probably mild steel but will make a great bolster plate for me. Odds and ends to play with.
  9. Hey Paul, Hedge Apple is made into charcoal, but that might be for smokers. I wish it grew here where I live. I would try it for sure. Potter's who high fire love to place the green apples in pots for the great ash effects. Guess the real question is how much ash does the charcoal produce.
  10. Driveway update: I spent another 2 hours on the new tongs. I started drawing out the reigns ala Joey Van der Steeg, but finished on the horn. still struggling with holding things with my flat bit tongs. I will continue to experiment with this method in the future. I also made another tong clip from portions of the first clip I made last session. I was concerned that the clip was easy to bend, so when I finished making a c-shaped clip, I quenched in water. OOPS. The second time I used it, I heard it break in half. I made it too brittle. (this was garage door spring < 1/4 inch
  11. Nice twist, Firemedic. You like the s-hook opener style better than the ring opener style? Just curious. Still need some tooling before I attempt an opener. Taylor
  12. What I did in the driveway: Found two more hours of forging. Used my first ever tongs to start my second ever tongs. Those are pieces of 3/8 inch by 1 inch bar, 11 inches long. They are marked 1 1/4" for nibs, 1" for boss and the rest for reigns. Forgot what I was doing and started the first bar at the far side of the anvil! Have been watching too many youtube videos. I needed to relax and remember. Sorted it out. I alternated with tong blank and a piece of crowbar for a hold fast. Left the air running as I alternated between a tong blank and the hold fast. After I finishe
  13. I'm behind in documenting the forging sessions with this forge, but after my Aug 18 session, I dug out a vitrified chunk of the old earth fill from my blow pipe. At that time I still had a good amount of crumblies sitting on the top surface of the forge. Even though I replaced the earthen fire pot with an IFB fire pot, I may have inadvertently thrown in a clod of the old clay thinking it was a piece of errant charcoal. After that last forging session, I found a blob of over fired earthenware stuck to the IFB acting as the hearth stone. More must have made its way into the tuyere. That or some
  14. Hey Dennis, Thanks for the help anyway. I was hoping for a full-time charcoal blacksmith to chime in. A clarification: The steel wheel is 17.5 inches in diameter and about 7 inches deep on the side that I filled for my forge. It is a much smaller rim than a semi truck wheel. I've pretty much determined that I was seeing problems where none existed. Last three forging sessions have highlighted that to me. I've yet to hear from a full-time charcoal blacksmith, but I can't argue with results. Finished my latest project in quick order, using much less charcoal than I did my very first forging
  15. Another two hours in the shop (driveway) and I finished the tongs and started straightening some spring stock I found at the scrap yard. First order of business was to finish drawing out any fat spots in the reins, taking the corners off and straightening out the whole business for better fit up. Next, I cut the 4 inch bolt long enough to join the tongs and I peened my first rivet. Frazer was worried that any threads might bind up, but no threads were injured in the making of these tongs. These tongs are made to hold 3/8" flat stock. I made them out of 1" by 3/8" by 20" l
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