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I Forge Iron


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Everything posted by DennisCA

  1. Latest pics of mine. Still working on the roof. Not sure when I'll be able to fix the exterior panelling, when I find cheap enough wood. To be quite honest, it's perhaps wrong to call this my smithy or shop. It'll be more a storage unit. It's actually BEHIND the shop I plan to put my blacksmithing stuff once the shop is finished. It'll be a leanto with a metal sheet roof and walls and the area will be a little smaller than the interior of the shop. Reason is I gotta share this space with others in the family. And turning it into a smithy is not realistic or good for stuff I will store there, it'll also be easier to put a chimney in the roof of a simple leanto for the forge. And it'll be a little more secluded. But for now, this winter I am gonna be moving my smithing stuff, anvil and forge into here temporarily. I got some old sheet metal roofing I am thinking I'll screw up on the walls around the forge area. But I dunno, maybe I need to drag it outside for any actual work since there is no chimney and a spark might be disastrous.
  2. The beam is now in place I later fitted diagonal braces as well
  3. I am going to leave it with a gravel floor for now, but maybe in the future I will cast a concrete floor. I don't have a power hammer and no definite plans for one at this stage, will have to see how this develops with time.
  4. I started lifting the beams into place on my shed/smithy. On my own and using hand power only. Made this ladder thingy: Then I had to winch it across the diagonal boards and then I have to lift it on to the center post. But I got it figured out, I got two winches and will make a simple crane to winch it in place. Tomorrow.
  5. Mine doesn't have a flat side actually (scandinavian hewing axes usually don't), I find it works quite well without it, you learn to angle the axe and also how much you angle it affects how big a bite it takes. I use two axes, the other one is a general purpose finnish forestry axe. I do the rough hewing with it, then the final hewing with thw hewing axe. Steps I take to hew a log: 1. Put on ground on some logs and scallop the underside so it sits flat 2. Mark out where to cut the log (I use a template and a level) 3. Use the marks to make a chalk line from end to end 4. Take a chain saw and make stop cuts every 5 - 6 inches along the log almost to the line 5. Start hewing These steps can be seen in detail in this long and detailed video on medieval swedish timbering techniques:
  6. Last roof beam is done for my shed/smithy, this will be the top beam and it's 6x7 inches, it's the smallest, the others are 7x8". But the top beam will have the smallest load on it. Every log was faster to hew than the one before it. I was starting to get the proper swing and aiming accuracy more and more. Eventually I started getting the proper hewing pattern (by finnish standards anyway) with a relatively sdmooth surface and diagonal cut lines running along the hewn face. Part of the trick was to, as I swung the axe downwards, to pull it towards me as well to create a slicing motion. Also I improvised a tool from some old squares to make a nice tool for checking I was maintaining the correct size on the log. I managed to keep the final height on the top beam consistent to 1/8 of of an inch along the length, it might go up and down a bit.
  7. May I recommend Oscar Duck for this list: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCeRbUDXuFXY8iqnAbs0o1NA He's got a small channel, only 2k subscribers so maybe people have not heard of him, but he puts out a lot of interesting and educational videos. Looks like high quality content to me so I figure he deserves some exposure. Last video was making 800 nails
  8. Thanks for the detailed walkthrough Frazer, though I haven't had any free time the last few days, busy framing walls right now
  9. He and his brother is somewhere between 5 to 6 kg which is a decent cat size.
  10. I was lying in the hammock a few days ago, had to take a break from the shed build. We had 32 C (almost 90F) in the shade, which is very warm for Finland when I got a visitor:
  11. Torbjörn lives in another country from me, it's not realistic for me to visit him. I did ask Torbjörn directly though and he said most firepots in sweden he'd seen where of his size, he did say he'd use bricks to make it bigger if needed, though that rarely seemed to be required. I am guessing the clinker breaker and fan must have an effect too, if it spreads the air widely instead of a concentrated blast for instance and if the fan is on the low pressure side. At any rate for me it's mostly intellectual curiosity I use a side blast for now so not really relevant. I've thought about building a bottom blast, but maybe I'll stick wi th the side blast, it's nice not to have to think of fishing clinkers all the time. I was looking at this blueprint if I were to try make a bottom blast as it seems proven, but I have a lot more in fabrication equipment than most so I was thinking of a real clinker breaker and not a grate then. Or a bullet grate, that looked like a nice design, so clinker was shed around the air intake in a donut form. http://magichammer.freeservers.com/fabricated_fire_pot_by_bob_patri.htm I've not had time to do more forging the last few days since I've been hewing logs for my shed / smithy build and I got a load of lumber so I can start putting up the walls. I modified the tuyere so it aims downwards now, that's my next test.
  12. Re: torbjörns forge, he had a video where he demonstrated it and gives measurements, depth 52mm or almost exactly 2":
  13. That's a simple change to try, I'll see what angling the tuyere downwards does for the fireball shape.
  14. This about firepot depth in bottom blasts is also something that I find tricky Anvil, torbjörns regular cast iron firepot is only 2" deep and he does forge weld in that too. I find it strange tbh how there can be such variation in pots. Anyway I looked at my forge last night and I ran it and what I could see the fireball seems to keep to the left, near the tuyere, as if the air rises upward quite quickly, doesn't propagate very far to the side. The heat seems to be quite localized thus, trying to heat a stock on the right side took a very long time, those coals where not even glowing. I had a piece of stock in the fire and I kept looking at it to see if it was scaling. But I couldn't say for sure if there was scaling going on or not, sometimes there seemed to be some but might've been because I moved the stock too far to watch it. Other times the stock looked clear, but might have a couple of tiny spots that I wasn't sure if they where oxidization or not. So my idea is I need to make the pile higher instead of wider, or both.
  15. It's about there I place the piece. My mound drops off though so moving it farther to the right would be difficult, I was looking at a torbjörn åhman video last night before I went to sleep, he made a side blast JABOD and running coke like I do. He made the firepot relatively deep and the tuyere was further down, but the pot was not as not wide, reminds me of how a charcoal forge might be shaped, he got to welding heat no problem in it. I was thinking the shape of the firepot probably means the air hits a wall and is forced to rise upwards through the coals. I thought it was an interesting note. I will use another brick for now I think and pile the mound higher on both sides, so I can move the piece further away from the tuyere and see what that does.
  16. I was trying to weld this ring I have for a scythe, it's 6mm steel originally, so it basically hold itself in the right position, the ring overlaps and that's what I was trying to forge weld together. I dunno if it was scaling in the fire or not, I tried looking and I didn't see it scale up, but I had a lot of scale afterwards and no viable weld. It looked like that when I put it in the fire, it worked without the weld since it was thick enough. But I still wanted to try and get it done. Will post some pics with measurements of forge. Here's a photo of the firepot, total depth seems to be 2 and 13/16ths as well as I can read this inch ruler I got. I think the inside of the pipe is between ½" to 3/4" below the floor of the forge at the 12 o'clock position. I try and place items in the forge so they are level with the floor of the forge, then I scoop coals back over it and it probably covers it an inch or more with coals, I try and pile it as high as I can while also having lots of coals on the sides. When I removed the coals I noticed the bottom of the pit had risen, was a fused mass of sand and I believe clinker, I broke it up and replaced it with ash instead, so the depth of the "firepot" was actually less than in the pictures when I attempted the welding. Might've had an effect.
  17. I gave it another try this evening, my flux powder and brush came. I took it slow and didn't run the fan on max, I let the sit until yellow heat then I added flux. I thought I got it, once I even got sparks by misstake, but when all was said and done it hadn't taken and I hadn't gotten any welding done. I dunno why I thought I was being real quick about it, two steps from forge to anvil, planned it out ahead how I should proceed, struck with a lighter hammer too. Mostly it seems I created a lot of scale and burnt a little of it. I dunno if I put it in the oxidizing portion and that's why it never took. Might be I need to reconsider something about the forge, I was pretty mellow with the fan, perhaps I should try and build the coke mound higher with bricks and place it higher up in the fire and see if that makes a difference.
  18. I'm working ON the shop again. Got a truckload of gravel to fill the inside and outside, 12-13 cubic meters of gravel. Shifted it with shovel and wheel barrow. On thursday it looked like And last evening like this We managed to move most of it my fiancé and I. And we got the path cleared for Elvis (our robot mower) which the truck driver covered up. Still a few more wheel barrow loads, we're putting it behind the shed and making a graveled area there. My intent is to build a lean to roof behind there. For even more storage. It'll be off the books.... I am actually thinking that back place might be the best place where to actually put my smithy more permanently. Since my family wants to see the shed used mainly for storage and not smithing. As long as it has walls and a roof.
  19. Worked on my franken-scythe which is a combo of parts from different scythe cultures and styles. Norweigan carbon steel blade, homemade snath in eastern european fashion with a single handle and eastern european wedge style attachement instead of screws. I need to work on the handle ring yet, didn't get it the proper size for the snath (which is hand carved so not perfectly round or straight all the way). Had to resort to some shims to make it fit for now. I have made it so you turn the handle to tighten the ring around the snath. The idea is you will be able to easily move the single handle to where you want it without tools. I might make it into a two handle setup yet though. Had to reinforce the snath, it broke more than once. Fir isn't the ideal material... But cheap and light.
  20. It might not be anhydrous you think already? I bought it from a blacksmiths supply shop.
  21. Getting a hold of borax was a little tricky but I am trying to order from a shop in Sweden, getting a proper blacksmiths brush too, only had a simple steel bristle brush and it hardly does anything. Getting 1kg or 2lbs> of borax, which hopefully lasts a while.
  22. That was exactly the behavior I got last night, so good to know something is working correctly!
  23. I tried to forge weld a ring last night but it failed. It didn't need to be welded though to work and I don't have flux, it was a spur of the moment thing. But it prompted some questions. I noticed the thing I had most difficulty with is telling when it's ready, I use coke and a side blast jabod, it gets up to welding heat as I've done that by mistake before. The way I understand fire management and smithing with coke is to mound the coke over the piece being heated. I shove the piece in from the side trying ot keep it level with the "floor" of the forge and use the coal rake to mound it up even more. With the ring I had to use the rake to break up the mound though and then put it in the center while rebuilding the mound over it. Anyway the result is that I have a very hard time seeing the object in the fire and it's almost impossible to look for that transition when the surface starts looking liquid. Just how do people with side blasts and coke forge weld? With bituminous coal I understand the coal naturally forms a sort of hollow cave of coked coal that is nice for forge welding and also for easily seeing the piece inside. The only way I get to see what's going on with the piece I built was to partially disassemble the mound I made. I am also a bit paranoid of looking into the fire too much, since it's not good for the eyes. I use glassesa but don't know if they give any IR protection. I'd love to hear from people who forge weld using only coke, or perhaps charcoal and coke, I tend to mix in some charcoal whenever I start a fire, it makes it so much easier to get going than using just wood or paper.
  24. Well I don't really need it pointed for now, I am after the full width for my current application.
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