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Found 292 results

  1. Well here is my first post... I'm about to start the journey of iron working and I feel like my head might be to high up in the sky too think about the negative impacts of this new hobby. I would like some advice that will keep me rooted in the real world. But let me tell you where I am now: I helped a friend work some steel a few years ago and I could never shake off the longing to do it again. I've moved twice since then and will likely be off to the other side of the world before to long. I've read tons of books and watched hours of videos. I picked up a railroad track anvil for $20 and plan on making a trashcan forge (gas) this weekend. I plan on making small things first (arrow heads, small knives, etc.) to start and use that experience to learn the trade. I would like to keep my smithy as mobile as possible as moving is still in the cards for at least the next 6 years. Do any of y'all have advice for a novice metal worker? First projects? Ways to develop basic skills? Is this railroad track going to be enough? Should I even bother? Thanks for the help. Big Jim
  2. JAPOB - Just A Pile Of Bricks

    Riffing on the JABOD idea, I decided to use what was handy, namely a pile of scrap 2x and plywood, some old bricks leftover from a neighbor's tumbledown chimney, the wifes long-forgotten hairdryer, and a bit of old fencepost pipe (relax, I am aware of hot zinc issues, and wore a respirator for the welding and first fire, thanks for thinking of me!). The bricks are piled up two-deep on the floor, and arranged so that the gaps between bricks dont line up. Nothing is mortared, so as the bricks burn up, which it will, I can just re-stack it all. The hardware store in town sells smithing coal, and so after a bit of faffing about getting the coal to coke and the bricks warmed up, it works quite nicely! I lost 6" of the rebar shortly after I took these photos, got distracted in the garage and left it in too long, and it melted right off! I just left the dryer on low, and the tuyere pipe swings in front of the dryer to adjust the blast; the pipe stays surprisingly cool in use, and when I was done, I just took it out so it wouldnt burn up in the after-fire heat. I set the dryer off at an angle, so if the blast control line gets knocked off, the fire will die down instead of run away on full blast. It's not perfect, but its not too bad for the investment. This was just a first fire and a test; I'm working on getting my anvil on a stand and so hopefully in the near future I'll actually get to do some work and get to know the forge. Hopefully I can make this little pile of bricks work for awhile.
  3. Review my forge

    I made this forge out of an old cast iron sink, metal gardening stakes, fire bricks, pipes and a repurposed vacuum. You don't see in the picture but the back of the sink is to be used as a top for it to help keep in the heat. And I did elivate the higher over the air vent. I use coal as fuel. If anyone has any tweaks or tips on how to improve it I would be grateful. Thanks
  4. Forge Chimney

    Ok so I built a shop recently for blacksmithing. I needed to make a chimney set up so I took an old water pressure tank and used it as the hood. I have 6" chimney single wall going above the roof. The hood opening is 13" tall and about 14" wide. The hood is also resting on the forge. Anyway when I tried using it smoke did go up the chimney but some would puff out towards the top of the hood. The smoke buildup is not good and hard on my lungs. So my question is what am I doing wrong here? I did a little reading on threads and other websites about the chimney needing to be at least 10" or the hood needs to be lower. I can't make the hood lower without cutting more of the tank off because it is resting on the forge. Or should I scrap the hood and buy a professionally made one with 10" chimney?
  5. What am I?

    My mechanic gave this to me and i dont exactly know how it works. It seems like there is an ash dump and the other arm is some sort of adjustable jet. Any ideas? I am not a coal forge kind of guy yet so this could b3 used with anything and i would not know it.
  6. Everybody starts somewhere, and after viewing countless videos showing different types of forges I finally decided to bite the bullet and build something simple. What I have so far: A wheel, a 30 pound chunk of rail, and countless different tools, scrap steel, etc. I can weld and grind but not well, I expect to gain some skill during the project, but for the start it'll be as simple as possible. I plan on burning charcoal, I'm working on a retort but for now I might either buy charcoal, or use wood, wood will require a good hood that burns the smoke off as well as the dodgy rocket stove I built a few weeks ago. Critique and suggestions welcome.
  7. Choosing a Burner/Forge

    So I'm in the market to buy my first forge or make it from scratch. I own very few tools in general and I'm not the best handyman in the world either. I was originally going to buy a forge around 300-500 bucks. Everyone on the Reddit forum was saying to basically build my own and save some money. I'm looking to do pretty much a bit of everything eventually. I was thinking of going Propane because I thought it would be cheaper. It'll also be cleaner which is nice seeing as how I'll be in the driveway most of the time haha. Basically, I didn't know a good propane forge or burner to buy. Is there any good brands of burners and forges out there I should look at? I know of the following places that I was looking at. Centuar Forge Alec Steele has some burners for sale Hybridburner Devil Forge
  8. Getting a Gas Forge

    So I have been using a hand crank coal forge for some time now and have been getting tired of starting and maintaining the fire. I've been looking into buying a gas forge and have looked at Majestic Forge and Diamondback forges. After reading some threads in here I decided magestic was poorly made and couldn't weld easily. I looked at Chile ones too but that is out of my budget. I want to know if any of you have had problems with a diamondback Forge (I want the 2 burner blacksmith model). Or if you think it would be worth my time and money to just make one and buy the burners then any advice on insulation would be great. Also, I want a forge that can do some good welding. I want to try some Damascus in a few months.
  9. firepot depth

    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.
  10. Brake Drum Forge Issues

    Hey all, So I know this has been asked before, but I am new to the world of forging and am on a limited budget so I built a brake drum forge, with a 1.5 inch flange and pipe welded onto the bottom, with the tee fitting to allow for an ash dump and an air supply (two speed hair dryer). I initially made the mistake of using anthracite coal, so I switched to lump charcoal, because I cant find bituminous. I am able to get the forge hot enough to bring my rail road spike up to a nice glowing red, but after the first heat it's a constant battle to get the spike back up to a good temp as well as getting a uniform even temp on the spike. Not sure what I am doing wrong, because I know it gets hot enough, I melted one of my spikes in half. I have spent almost 50 hrs trying to make a single knife, so I am getting discouraged. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
  11. JABOD esc forge

    So I basically designed this off of a JABOD forge but used a high heat fireclay as the base foot the mix. It ended up being mostly a mix of 2:1:1 fireclay to sand to perlite. I used Portland cement and more sand for the layer past the 'fire pot' because I needed more volume. Also reinforced the edges or crumbling bits with store bought Hercules heavy body sodium silicate which works like a charm for those curious. I used lump charcoal and it got decently hot but threw Sparks like a xxxx. Currently working on an insulating and spark trapping dome. Link to pics on drive because chrome doesn't like me today: https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=0B69b0Z0wuf7xSkZfMGNWSENYZ3M
  12. I'm new here, but wanted to share the anvil I made with you folks.
  13. Hello, new member from near Wichita, Ks. I have only been playing with smithing for a few months but find it very rewarding and therapudic. Grandfather was a blacksmith but he passes when I was only 7 so I have always had an interest in the craft but been too busy with life until now. I admit the show forged in fire did respark my interest and bring me to where I am now. I built a modified version of the freon bottle mini forge, purchased a Oregon blade maker 2x72 belt grinder, and made a striking anvil from 2 - 60# blocks of steel. I have made 5 knives learning something with every one. Not looking to start a business just enjoying experimenting and learning something about how my forefathers made their tools.
  14. Hey there I need some help with hooking up the burners to my forge. Im new to smithing and this is my first attempt at a forge. My forge has 3 trex burners and my goal is to be able to use them independantly or all together. I have researched how the propane distribution block should look and came up with this. Pics attached. My issue is to go from the distrobution block to the burners i need to use flexible copper tubing and to connect it im using compression fittings, the issue is the compression fittings keep leaking ive tried a hundred times and i just cant get them not to leak propane a bit. Is there a special way to do this? Any help would be great. Thanks
  15. Hi Everyone, I have access to a thermal spray shop with air plasma and HVOF guns. We also have several Thermal Barrier Coatings, refractory metals, etc. that can be applied. Would it make sense to apply a TBC to the parts of the forge that come in direct contact with fire? I think it could extend the life of the components, but I'm not sure if there would be contamination or out-gassing issues. Does anyone have any experience with this? All feedback welcome. Best Regards, Jason
  16. T burner

    I have recently follow frosty's T burner plans and have one problem,my burner will be running good with dark and light blue flames it will suddenly go out and I would have to re light it. any advice on how to fix this would be greatly appreciated, thanks in advance
  17. I decided to try designing a fire pot for my eventual coal/coke forge and I'm not sure if my clinker breaker design will cut the mustard. Does anyone have any input on if this design will work or experiences with a similar design? Any feedback is greatly appreciated. Best Regards, Jason
  18. My forge

    I am putting my gas forge together and I only have ribbon burners. They are three connected together each being about 17 inches long. My forge is a 8x8x28 inch square tube that I plan to insulate with refractory cement and one inch of kaowool.how thick should my cement be and how should I arrange my ribbon burners to prevent melting and get maximum heat? I am fin with using less than three burners if I should.
  19. My 'new' forge

    So I recently picked up a 'new' 2nd hand forge. From what I could see on first hand is that is is quite a good shape, the last owner said that his dad gave it to him brand new a couple of years ago and that he'd wanted to get in to blacksmithing, tried it out and found out it wasn't for him, and he had it sitting in his workshop for a few years and decided to sell it. I paid 165 euros for it and it works like a dream. I am extremely happy with my purchase, I practically stole it from him
  20. Gas Burner Help

    Hi I have been using a coal forge for the last while, but coal is not easy to find in my area(at an affordable price) so I'm attempting gas. I did some research and felt good about it and set out building the burner. I failed. Find my efforts attached. Here's my problem. Instead of the short "blowtorch" type flames i get metre plus dull red-orange flames. Any obvious things I'm doing wrong? Or am I not even close. Please help! Thanks!
  21. Hello guys this is my first time ever writing a forum so go easy on me. However, after searching the internet for hours I cannot find a forum on my particular problem. I am running a homemade forge with a homemade fire pot and clinker breaker. Although I have burned bituminous before, it is hard to come by and I don't particularly care for how smoky and stinky it is! So after searching, I have found a local feed store that carries anthracite for a more than reasonable price of 5$ for 50lbs. I really like how hot and clean the anthracite burns and never seems to burn down as quickly as bituminous. However, I have a problem that occurs every time I run my Forge. It works beautifully for around an hour and I can easily reach welding heat, but after this first hour it is like a light switch is flipped. I can see a bunch of unburned, black coal at the bottom of my firepot and the fire cools down considerably. After about five minutes, my coal bed looks like checkered black and white. If I scoop the cold coal out of the center, there just seems to be more coal around cooling and falling down. I don't understand what the problem is seeing how well it works in the beginning of my fire. Apparently this isn't a common problem as i cant find a forum on it anywhere. It is very frustrating and is ruingin the forging experience for me. Anything would help, and thank you all.
  22. New here. I'm looking for advise on fixing this up. The fan is free but the crank is locked up, I know ill have to t take it apart. Anyone have suggestions on what to do or where to start?
  23. Forge restoration questions

    I am freshly out of the USMC. 12.5 years and 100% VA disabled. My dad was a farrier/blacksmith for 30+ years and I wanted to learn the art. I use his forge when I visit, but I live 500 miles away. To get started, I bought an old stand forge and wanted to get it up and running. It was in disrepair, but I've got the blower moving and bought a new ashgate and tuyere grate. It had a small crack in the pot on the edge, which I will weld. I am pretty resourceful, so I can rig a belt. In pictures of similar forges, I have seen, there is an additional piece to attach the lever. I have seen how to rig it to work without that piece, but I would still like to find one to complete the forge. there are 4 bolts in the side that appear to have been to hold a wind/heat shield. I can make one from tin, but I would much rather at least be able to see what it is supposed to look like. I am very new to the community and know very little as it pertains to antique forges. Any and all information, from you seasoned guys, about this forge will assist me in learning and will hopefully help me narrow my search for parts. I would like to know things as simple as what this style forge is called. Also, I was wondering about lining/insulating the bottom of the forge. Fire brick would be too thick. I was thinking some type of clay or mortar. How were they originally insulated? the first photo is a similar forge with a complete handle/lever assembly. I am missing the metal piece between the bracket and the wood. The following 3 photos are the forge I bought. once again, any and all information on this forge would be extremely helpful.
  24. Hello from North Dakota

    Hello new here finally got my forge assembled from all the bits and pieces I've pulled out of abandoned farms, sloughs and family handme downs so far it's been great. And these are what I have to start with. Still looking for a better anvil than the 3 prices of rail I have but that's just time and leg work to find a good one