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Found 10 results

  1. So, I currently run a charcoal side blast forge. I basically filled it with clay and then the actual firebox has a cob lining made of refined earth clay, grass clippings, grob and a small amount of lime to act as a plasticizer (less water required to make the mixture wet). I get very good heat from it, some would say a little too good, So much so that the clay actually melts. like not little particles and clinkers but actual viscous, honey like liquid slag at the bottom of my forge. This doesn't overly affect the forging too much, as the tuyere is above the slag, but I don't like having to rebuild it every 2-3 forging sessions. Does anyone know a good liner or recipe, whether it be store bought or made (like my cob mixture) that could work better and melt less? Bonus points if it is refractory and doesn't draw heat away from the work piece. Thanks in advance
  2. Hi again! So, I’d like to begin with what I have and what I’ve tried so far. I have a very thick cast iron rivet forge. If this was EVER meant to be portable, then it must have been for MUCH bigger/stronger dudes than me! (6’4”, 275lbs) It has no identifying marks or instructions to clay, but it certainly could have as it’s missing the original wind screen and I believe the tuyere/champion blower/mounting bracket may have come from a different forge. Currently, I’m struggling with ways to keep the grate in place. When I got the forge it came with a cast iron floor drain of sorts and it was cemented down with what appeared to be furnace cement. It eventually dried up, cracked and completely detached from the forge. Since then, I was given some cone 6 pottery clay. First I tried a gently sloping mound about 12” in diameter that built up just over the lip of the grate. I let it set up for several days uncovered in my garage in South Carolina summer heat. Temps never dropping below 90*. It looked great after drying with minimal shrinking and thin edge cracking. I then fired it slowly, building successively larger fires until finally running a fresh batch of green coal up to near welding heat. This worked for about a week. Then I noticed hairline cracks all over the clay and the entire thing crumbled when I tried to remove the coal for cleaning. I know the suggested method is any found clay, sand, grog, and possibly fire clay. My main question is, will I ever be able to make a cone 6 clay mixture that will withstand these temps and hold this grate in place? I’d like to be able to build up a 4” thick “table” around the grate and then build in a sloping fire pot in the center that holds the grate centered. Right now, the clay is dissolved in a bucket of water to just above a slip consistency. I intend to mix with dry sand until I reach the preferred consistency of ‘clump and crumble’! So sorry for the text wall. I just wanted to give as much detail as possible. tl;dr: I have cone 6 pottery clay and I’m trying to make it work as rivet forge liner/shelf. Will this ever work as I hope? Ok, have at me. Thanks, Ben
  3. I am new to blacksmithing, and I just started to make my second forge. This one will be a significant upgrade from my last one; it was cheap and started to break down after a few uses. I am in the process of claying it, but I have no idea how deep to make my firepot. It is a bottom blast forge, has a 2 inch pipe for air supply, and uses charcoal as its fuel source. Any help will be appreciated.
  4. I am using Rutland black furnace cement thinned with water to clay a blade. I will be using a few thin coats instead of a single thick coat. First attempt at claying. Can anyone suggest (approximately) how thick to apply it. I know I may have to experiment a little, but I'd like to have an idea where to start, I am interested in differential hardening, making a hamon is not an issue.
  5. Hi all, I've got a Buffalo rivet forge that's the brink of death; the blower is a little champ but the hearth pan is another story. If I don't do something to line the pan is gonna be a goner for sure. I found a picture of a forge almost identical to my own on ebay. (see picture) When I asked the seller how he went about lining the pan he reported to using tile mortar; which seemed dubious to me. So I delved into the iforge forums and found two promising posts. The fist, complements of Charles R. Stevens: He suggested "...buy powderd clay, (fire clay) and mix it with sand use the waterglass to wet it, then case it (place it in a coverd container and let the moisture even out) if it's to wet leave the lid off till its the right consistancy..." I replied to his comment, but I'm new to posting on here, I'm not sure if it went through. Charles, if you see this, how much of each of these ingredients do you estimate I would need? And what consistency should the mix be for application? It is like pancake batter, putty or play-dough? Does any one else have suggestions on this? Another promising recipe from HWooldridge was posted a couple of years ago. He says: "I recently lined a Buffalo forge that has the lips an inch or so above the iron hearth and it turned out well. The process is based on something I learned years ago when I used to help my grandpa build houses. In addition to carpentry, he did some rock work and one thing we would do occasionally is reline fireplaces. On horizontal areas, he would make up a mix, apply it dry and level, then spray water on top. This would rock up in a day or so without cracking. The mix I used (based on his recipe) was 3 parts mortar, 3 parts clean sand, 1 part fireclay and 1 part dry lime. I mixed it, poured in the hearth to a depth that was flush to the top of the firepot and raked it smooth, then sprayed only enough water on it until the surface was wet. I let sit two days before making a fire and it had hardened nicely with no visible cracks anywhere. I think the minimal amount of water helps eliminate the cracking." I'm assuming he is referring to wetted mortar? But what type would be preferable? Any suggestions on this? I'm kind of lost... I apologize for posting a new topic on a subject that's been posted before; but while scouring these forums, I feel like I'm getting lost in all of the content. Please help! Here is a photo of the restored forge with a tile mortar lining: Thanks you guys, you all are always my first stop when I have a Blacksmithing question or problem to solve. -Kat
  6. I am currently in the process of creating a forge. I have done some research and I have seen mixed reviews on brake drum forges, I don't have the tools to make a proper firepot, nor the funds to buy one. I have thought of making an all clay firepot or a thin metal bowl coated in a thick layer of clay to use as a firepot. Has anyone ever heard of it being done or have any tips of how to do it or clay mixtures. I got the idea from clay crucibles I have seen before. Would any of you recommend doing this or would I be better off with a brake drum forge. Any help or references to other websites would be a great help. Thanks!
  7. I have a few pounds of kitty litter left over from patching my forge. I mixed the kitty litter with course sand and the patches held up well. I would like to use differential heating some knife blades (1084 and/or 1095 steel) to get a hard cutting edge and a soft spine. I know Satinite and/or various brands of furnace cement and/or refractory mortars are available, but I would like to try some home brewed material. Any suggestions would be appreciated.
  8. This is a 5" x 7" clay plaque pattern I made for a bronze casting class I'm taking. I like working with hot metal lots better to get shapes I want.
  9. I got my coal forge from a neighbor farm that was long sense non operational. I've use it a hand full of times the way it sits, burning only coal. The forge does have the word "CLAY" cast into it, but I have never thought much of it. My questions are.... -Should I have the forge lined with refractory clay of some type? -Am I safe to burn coke in this forge without clay? -Where can I get refractory clay/ how can I make it? Thank you!
  10. I just wanted to start a thread about my experience Saturday at Stans house. Got there he showed me his shop. and well..............i text my wife and told her i was movin in with Stan....lol She didnt find it quite as comical as i did...lol But after talked a lil bit he drug out some clay. Im thinking great. play doh....lol but it helped alot. never seen a diagonal peen hammer before. and working the clay with that hammer gave me some understanding of what it would do to the metal. Made a fork with the clay just to see how bad my hammer control was...lol. Any of ya that seen my 1st youtube vid know that its BAD!!...lmao But workin with the clay helped me visualize what the hammer hits will do. so im actually gonna do some more of that each time i get a hammer to learn a lil about its own personality. Feel free to watch the latest youtube vid. You will still see i am horrible at hammer control. but you will also see that i already started to improve with Stan helpin me out. Still got a long way to go. but heck of a lot better then a week ago..lol. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4QyX1XA5CO8 Video is just a compilation of some of my hammering. Wanted to do a full video of what it took to make the rose form a horseshoe you see in the pic. I MADE THAT!!!! sorry. lil excited. wasnt expecting to make something so cool the first day i met him...lol. But he would hammer his own horse shoe so far. t hen stop and coach me on how to do mine. then heat his up again take it little further. then coach me on catching mine up. Was an excellent class. Made it real easy to learn. I want to again thank those in the chat that told me about Stan. I was seeking someone close enough to me to show me how to do this right. Im looking forward to working with him again. and look forward to meeting more of you later this month and then at the hammer-in. John Lemmerman
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