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About dickb

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    Suffern , NY


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  1. I suggest you keep the swage block for one main reason. A swage block makes a few forming processes easy that would otherwise be much harder or next to impossible. .
  2. 1/8 stock is much too thin. You will always lose some thickness to scale and to forge welding. 1/4 or 3/8 would be better
  3. Looks like too much trouble making a knife, but it has the makings of a hardy cutoff tool . Just cutoff a couple of inches and weld a stem to fit our hardy hole and grind a bevel on top-
  4. The item in the first picture has the letter K raised a little proud of the surrounding surface. The item is basically hollow, so it would difficult to forge but not at all hard to cast so it must have been cast in an iron foundry, not forged by a blacksmith.
  5. Garages that repair shock absorbers, struts and suspensions are an excellent source or coil springs and maybe leaf springs. Removing coil springs from shocks or struts can be dangerous because they are under a lot compression stress. Best to ask the repair shop where you get it from to disassemble it. Disassembling a leaf spring pack is easier, just cut the clamp that binds them together
  6. I am making a series of knives using 1095, 1084 and 5160. Which blades would, or should, have the best edge retention. Please assume the blades all have the same edge geometry, and I am using the same hardening and tempering for all. The shop is in the style of around the year 1850. No electricity. To be specific, after normalizing I heat to non magnetic and let the work soak for a few minutes and then quench in canola oil . After hardening I take the work home and, within 3 or 4 hours, temper it to around 400 to 425 degrees Fahrenheit in my kitchen oven. I'm using separate a type K thermocouple to indicate the temperature because the oven controls don't indicate the temperature very well. Any suggestions would also be welcome.
  7. If you want brighter light go for a Halogen Bulb. What is a watermark ?
  8. Hi Dickb,

    I am new to forging and I built a burner and it is not working correctly. It puts out a blue flame a few inches and rolls up. I am using a non adjustable regulator and I don't know the psi. Thanks 


  9. Good sources for steel are Welding shops, places that make gates and fences . Prices will be a lot better . Bring along some of the things you have forged and explain you are a beginning blacksmith. You may be pleasantly surprised . My first experience leaning blacksmithing was with an experience blacksmith. He had me making tapers, tapers and more tapers. Square taper on square stock, round taper on square stock, square taper on round stock, round taper on round stock. I had tapers coming out of my ears, but I did learn good hammer control and how to move a mass of iron to where I wanted it. Probably saved me a lot of frustration on more complicated shapes.
  10. A jig or other holding tool will not guarantee that the round stock is not a few degrees rotated. I think that might come back and cause me problems later.
  11. I am making some hammers, about three pounds each. I can punch (or Slit) and drift hammer eyes pretty good on square stock, but all I have now on hand are a bunch of automotive axles ranging from 1.5 to 2.5 inch diameter. I do not have access to a drill press, just general purpose blacksmith tools. I am able to make a punch mark on the top and on the bottom of the stock quite accurately. Maybe plus of minus 1/36 th of an inch. I would appreciate any tips on how to punch the hole centered and at right angle to the front to back center-line.
  12. can you show the dimensions please
  13. That's where I'm getting it now. As I noted in my post there are too many stones mixed in with the coal and ( I think ) too much clinkers after a couple of hours burning.
  14. I am looking for something local, e.g. Lower Hudson Valley NY or Bergen County NJ.