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Found 5 results

  1. Hey everyone, since this is my first post let me introduce myself. My name is Daniel and I live in the Willamette valley in Oregon (in case anyone needs a shop hand). I made this account when I was still a complete novice and trying to make tongs out of railroad spikes and using channel locks as my main tongs. Also when I was collecting cast iron window weights thinking that I was going to forge them into something. lol anyway let me get into the meat and potatoes of this post... I've been searching all over the web looking for different designs of treadle hammers because I want to build one to suit my needs. Compared to almost everything else blacksmithing, there is very little data on the good 'ol human powered beast. However the discussion is always centered around one existing design vs. another (Grade-Marx vs. Clay Spencer's design, the fabled Grasshopper, etc. Swing arm vs in-line etc.) Nobody really talks specifically about WHY these designs are good or bad beyond the basics: Anvil, hammer and spring weight, materials, build complexity... But one thing is ALWAYS ignored... GEAR RATIO!! First let me mention that I have never used a power hammer OR a treadle hammer. In videos, though, I am not at all impressed with the power of Clay Spencer's design. It's a 1-1 gear ratio with the pivot in the very center of the bar, and the drive linkage at the very end of the bar. It appears it hits NO harder than your foot can stamp the lever. The older gentleman with the Grade-Marx hammer, however, had some oomph behind it. I'm sure you've noticed how far back on the spring his linkage is set up. However I did notice when he went to faster hits, it seemed to lose a lot of power. The Clay Spencer seemed to really shine for repetitive hits. I'm also thinking a lot about drive systems. Levers and springs? Pulleys and springs? Counterweights? (I've read people don't like counterweight THs much though) I could make a treadle hammer with tons of pulleys, heavy duty rope, and a coil spring from a car, and it would be a wonderfully adventurous press. The foot pedal would have to travel so far that I'd need to climb a ladder and ride it down in order for the hammer to move a few inches with a tremendous amount of force. 9-1 ratio = 100 lbs on the foot pedal with 9X the travel distance = 9x the force on the hammer end with 1/9th the travel distance. And I also understand that Force is = to mass (weight) x acceleration. (I'm not actually this smart, my dad is a mathematician and i'm always bothering him with questions) So with this concept in mind I'm thinking I want the hammer to travel really far and the foot pedal to be very hard to press. But then there's a balance I need to find because I'm a hermit without power in my shop and really want to use this thing to draw bigger stock into smaller stock. (eyes the sway bar and coil springs on a junkyard truck) That being said, I also like doing decorative work and do love the idea of controllability while using tools. What are your thoughts? I really want to build this thing and I want it to be exactly what I need. Please help
  2. Hi. I've recently installed my Alldays & Onion 1cwt, I'm having trouble with the treadle, it's a bit stiff going down but can still forge with it, it's when it goes to return it doesn't want to without me aiding it. it has been sitting around for over a year and I've left the hammer running for over an hr to warm it up. Just wondering if it's a common thing or do I have to take it apart to fix. thanks Tom.
  3. I’d like to hear a little discussion about the merits of both of these hammers. The swing-arm type I’m referring to is the one with the adjustable height head. I’m going to build one sometime in the future so I have been pondering on this a bit lately but would like to hear from any one who has used either or both. Most of the builds I remember in the last few years have been for the inline type with the explanation that you do not have to make any adjustment to the hammer to when you switch out tooling. However I have talked to two professionals who said the very much prefer the swing-arm type. The reason begin that they hit faster and harder and so they can get more work done in the same amount of time. If I recall correctly the linkage in the inline design is less efficient in converting movement of the treadle into movement of head and thus take more time and energy to accelerate the head than the swing-arm design. Also the return stroke on the inline is longer which adds to the cycle time of a blow. One think to bear in mind is that a professional usually runs items in batches and will build their processes and tooling accordingly. Therefore the cycle time of the hammer becomes the limiting factor. A hobbyist will normally be making a one off item and using what ever tooling is at hand so adjustments to the hammer may become the limiting factor. I have used both types, but only for a short time each, and my experiences matches the above. It seemed that the inline felt heavy was hard to get moving and would wear you out if you had to use it a lot. Where as the swing-arm hammer was much snappier and just required less energy to use. To me the only time the inline is of a real advantage is when you using tall tooling such as a punch or drift and you needed to switch the blow from the tool to the stock mid heat and can not afford the time to adjust the hammer. If any one has experience with either hammer or both and would like to comment please do so.
  4. This was in a bucket of dies that came with a recently purchased treadle hammer. Any ideas of what it might be used for? (I've just propped it in the hardie hole.)
  5. I’m interested in knowing the most efficient method of upsetting the end of ¾ and 1” square bars. The process of forming a 50% larger bulged end for table legs up to 45” long. I need a more productive way to accomplish this than, dropping a hot bar on end on a heavy plate on the floor, or hand hammering it while supported through a square hole in a big swage block. I’ve been thinking about making a 50-75 lb treadle or pneumatic hammer, with the front of the anvil open and shaped like a u. Make the anvil from three very heavy bars or plates welded together. I could then place a removable die block with various square holes in it on the anvil and key it in location. This would support the bars to be swaged. The die block would slide out to the front of the hammer to allow install and removal of the bars. I could core drill a 2” hole in my shop floor to allow the long bars a clearance for their length. I’d pre swell the ends of the bars so they would stop in the die block in the correct location. You all have vast experience and I’m pretty new to blacksmithing. So I need to know if I’m missing something or any better ideas are out there . I’d use this hammer for other operation requiring top tools also.