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Found 15 results

  1. I am trying dive head first into blacksmithing as a hobby and I am trying to do it by spending as little as possible. Lucky for me I have some really good auto scarp yards close to me. I am thinking of attaching a 2 foot length of railroad to this i-beam. This beam is really heavy and with the weight of the rail I am guesstimating that it will be well over 100 pounds. I see that most people attach anvils to tree stumps. Am I going to run into problems with this plan?
  2. I walked around a railroad track recently and found two tie plates. Stacked, they weigh 54lbs. I'm wondering if they could be used as a starter anvil. They make an amazing ring and have good rebound, but they can dent somewhat easily. I have access to railroads, and should I go with this or try to find a piece of track just laying around another railroad? Thanks, Jacob I'm also wondering if there is a rust protection galvanization on it. That could be a reason for the denting. I haven't cleaned off all the rust yet.
  3. Hello All...I found this piece of metal with the profile of a railroad track. It's marked "Bethlehem" and "L.V. 80". I'm guessing it's from Bethlehem Steel and possibly the LV is Lehigh Valley and the 80 is 1980? Im less than an hour from Bethlehem so that's why I'm guessing this. Any ideas on what it is?
  4. I have just started blacksmithing. Most of my scrap metal is railroad spikes found at flea markets. Normally i trace the spike on paper then set up the curves and design to what I want to forge. I am beginning with simple blade shapes, but then want to move into longer and more distinctive blades. What I haven't researched yet is how flat should one of these blades be and how far can you draw out, some of these scrap pieces. As in my most recent plans i have 5 an ahalf to 6 inches of train spike(as steel left over after handle) can i form a 8 in blade easily? Ps iv only had about 2 ok days of forging , still adjusting my forge and work space.
  5. I made these for my Associate Pastor and Assistant Pastor at church to say thank you for their many many years of service.
  6. Hello, new member here. After much youtubing and lurking on this forum, as well as taking a couple night courses in blacksmithing and welding, I've decided to go ahead and try to make a coal forge and post anvil. It's still very much a work in progress, and I'm still scrounging up materials. For the forge I've got a brake rotor and the lower half of a bar stool. The bar appears to be relatively thin steel, comprised of approximately 5/8" square tube. I've no idea if it can stand up to the heat that will be close to it (but not directly in contact with) but since it's designed to bear the weight of a drunken human I suspect load bearing won't be an issue. The top of the stool is a frame made of the 5/8" steel, and is about 17" in diameter. The rounding of the legs extend the diameter at the widest point of the frame to about 21". My idea was to weld 14 gauge sheet metal over the top, with a hole in the center to accommodate the bowl of the brake rotor (leaving a lip of about an inch on the top of the sheet to help support it in case the welding starts to go, as I've read might happen. Is 14 gauge thick enough, or should I try for 1/4 inch? I'm also unsure of how wide I can make this sheet. I don't want to make it too tippy, but I'd like as much space up there as I can fit. As for the fire pot, I've got to decide how to block up the holes around the center hole. For the center hole, which is about 2 3/4", I am considering a 2" black iron end cap (OD is 3") with one or more holes drilled into the top. I read somewhere on this forum that a single 3/4" hole in the top of the cap is a good choice for a coal forge, provided the cap extends about an inch above the bottom of the bowl. I can grind the cap down some to make it shorter if need be, because I think it's at least 1 1/2" as is. A flange will be welded(/bolted?) to the bottom of the rotor, to which a 4 inch segment of 2" iron piping will be connected. That piping will connect to a T elbow, and 5 1/2" inches of 2" will lead down from that as my ash catcher. I was planning on welding a piece of angle and bolting in a small circular plate running flush to the bottom of the 2" pipe that I could just push aside to let the ash fall out and close it after. For my air intake I'm having a 4" segment of 2" pipe connect to the T elbow, and I'll attach 3" aluminum duct to that. The duct will connect to a cheap bathroom fan I'll use as a blower. I'll adjust fan speed with a dimmer switch type cord that's plugged in between the power source and the fan. I had wanted to use a valve between the fan and the piping to control air flow w/out having to slow the fan down, but it looked a bit heavy and was too expensive to rationalize buying at the time. I don't have a clinker breaker. I'm still mulling over anvil ideas, mostly to do with how to mount it on the stand. I picked up about a foot of railroad track, but then later found a very interesting piece. It's from a railroad, but it doesn't have a rail (though it's about the same width) It's about two feet long and weighs at least 70 pounds, possibly more. It's broader on one end than the other. It looks like a support of some kind. I'll take some pictures when it's been cleaned up.
  7. Been playing with blacksmithing for a little less than a year now.... This was one of my first projects (only about a month in)... Alot has changed since then but still, given what I had at the time... pretty proud of this one...
  8. From it's hiding place in a sloppy scrap pile and in nearly perfectly camouflage in the dust, yesterday, me and a buddy dug out this little piece of track and loaded it in my trunk. It's been around the farm for decades. Under the direction of my father in '68 I remember moving it along with a bunch of other stuff from the then "destined to be moved and reassigned" old blacksmith shop (a defunct mule team service center) to the new tractor shed's shop. I was 13. I remember being told it had been a secondary anvil. The primary one was and is still there and is shaped a bit differently - like a 250 - 300# Columbian. I rather have loaded it but they still use it. Maybe one day:) So I came home with this piece and spent some time today cleaning it up and exploring its possibilities. It's got a slight belly along the centerline length (about 1/16 th inch) where the most severe mushrooming is visible. And the tone is slightly duller in that area. I've ground down the top a bit to mostly eliminate the pitting at the centerline crown, but there is still significant pitting along the edges. One of the edges shows significant mushrooming... Presumably some from the rail traffic and some from a hardened smith abusing his favorite spot. The other edge - not so bad. This thing is 6" wide at the bottom, 7" tall, 3" wide at the top and 17" long. It appears to fit the cross section spec of 133# / yd rail, yielding ~66# for 17". It seems fitting to spend some effort and $ to make this a more desirable piece for my shop, though I don't want to go overboard on it. I'm hoping I'll get some suggestions from some folks here w/ know how on how I might improve it. And I'm hoping to get some technical help from someone who has experience resurfacing rail for use as an anvil, especially on what rods to use, and in what sequence. It doesn't need that much... The crown is roughly an 1/8" inch higher than the two edges. So if I was to flatten the surface, I'm thinking build up the edges... with what rod? Then grind and cap with what?... Then rinse and repeat with what? I just don't know. I've googled hard surfacing and anvil surfacing and read around a bit, so I know what's out there info wise for the most part, but the reading I find is mostly aimed at antique anvil restoration, not rail resurfacing. This surface sparks while grinding like Chinese Fireworks Manufacturing Co, would during a bombing raid. Can any of you guys help? Suggested technique? My welding machine is a Lincoln "cracker box" AC/DC, so that's what's at my disposal. It tops out at 125A DC & 225 AC. Thanks in advance. John in Baton Rouge.
  9. I have seen lots of guys forge knives out of railroad spikes. Drawknives on ebay are like $20usd and up. I figured, why not try to make a drawknife from a railroad spike. Well here is my first go at it. Any critiqueing is welcomed (as long as it is helpful). I want to learn and the only way to do it from others advise. Thanks and enjoy. If you like the video please subscribe to my YouTube channel. Check out the video HERE.
  10. A while back I posted that I was looking for an anvil. I decided to take the offered advice and find a piece of rail to pound on until the right anvil came along. Turns out salvage rail can be had in virtually any quanity for $.25 pound in my neighborhood, (and coal is $40 a ton...but no anvils!) so I bought a 3 two foot sections. Unfortunatly I have few proper tools for metalworking, so I had to grind the crown and shape/cut it with a belt sander and angle grinder. I am planning to use the other two pieces vertically as a base for the rail. Any suggestions for improvements?
  11. I am 17 years old, and I have been blacksmithing for two years. It's great fun, and the beauty is amazing. But to the actual topic point, I have recently gotten consent from the county to salvage an old section of railway (My mother works in the Clerks office, so finding permission wasn't all too difficult). And the reason that I wanted to salvage the old line, is because of the HC stampings on the spikes. So I have a small tractor, truck, trailer, and even a buddy who's got nothing else to do, but I have no idea how to disassemble the tracks. If I just wanted the tracks, I could just use a large cold set I've made to shear the spikes. But I want the spikes! So I know it's an odd question, but does anyone know the best way to go about this?
  12. A friend explained his Paleolithic Diet to me. It’s based on the Paleolithic period and how people lived. It also made me wonder about the other side of the coin. How Paleolithic people died. That inspired me to create this. Unlike my last blade, it is not smooth and refined. The handle is layered with jute rope that I hand spun specific to the task. The blade has been finished as a “Brut De Forge”, and honed to fine edge. Its not a razor edge because I can’t shave my arm with it. I’m still practicing how to sharpen correctly with a sharpening block. Specs: Overall Length: 8.75 inches Blade Length: 4.75 inches Blade Width: 1.25 inches All constructive criticism is welcome, thank you.
  13. This is my first knife. I am having a great time figuring out what end of the hammer to hold because have no formal training at all, whatsoever. After using a wire attachment on my angle grinder, I progressively sanded it to a 120 grit finish. I haven’t tried to put an edge on it yet. Blacksmithing has quickly become one of my favorite weekend pastimes! Everything I learned about this art I learned from books (20%) and YouTube (80%). I did this as a first project after watching a few youtube videos and deciding to make a forge and try it. Once I told my friends that I wanted to try Blacksmithing, they started dropping off all kinds of odd pieces of metal along with railroad spikes. I have no idea why my friends just randomly have railroad spikes, but then again I am not going to ask. I have heeded the warnings and not tried to pick up spikes near a train yard. I just posted a short write up on the RR Spike Anvil I made, so feel free to take a look a that if you are interested. I appreciate any constructive criticism and advice. K-
  14. I have an 4 1/2 inch angle grinder but I can’t seem to get the angle right with it for an American Tanto point. Should I hot cut it with a chisel? Is a bench grinder how its done? I appreciate any advice. The best I can get it to without messing up the blade with the angle grinder is something like this: I want it to come out like these:
  15. My wife has an uncle tha'ts retired from the railroad and I scored some rail off him through my father-in-law over Christmas. I've been coming up with some ideas on how to make it into an anvil. I don't have an anvil yet and want to work the planning out on this one so it might last me a while. It's a little over 3' long and weighs about 130 lbs. So it's one of the heavier rails produced in North America. I went back and forth on building horizontal or vertical.... back and forth. Talk to this guy, read online... call a blacksmith... yada yada. So I've decided to go vertical and since I have over 3' I can cut it to exactly knuckle height and it be tailored to my hammer blow. The question I'm asking myself now is how to secure it. I have enought material to take the stump out of the situation (oh yeah, got a stump when I thought I was going to go horizontal). So here's what I'm thinking... I can fabricate a stand that allows the bottom of the rail to rest on my concrete slab. 2 things, is that solid enough, and will that eventually crack the slab. I can put it in a bucket and fill with concrete... will this lessen the rebound force of the anvil? And how secure do you think it will be? I was also thinking I could get an old spare rim or something and use that as a base, but figured that would lose some of the force. I am up for thoughts and ideas on how to secure it. And if you think a 3' tall railroad anvil is worth it. Should I just cut it down to fit my stump and secure it that way (Stump is about 18" high). Just figured the more mass I can keep the better it would work. Brent p.s this picture is a mock up of how I want to fab it. I plan to have a hot cut, fuller, two horns and weld some square tubing as a hardy hole. If I use some of my drop I can use the top of the rail for the round horn and the base as the square horn. What do you think? Oh, and I was thinking of welding this stick with some 7018. WIth proper preheat and post do you think I will have any problems. I also can MIG or run some flux-core.