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Found 18 results

  1. Hello all! First off, this is my first post to this site, and I'm super excited to join this community! Recently, I became enthralled with the idea of casting my own waffle iron (hence the name Madam Waffles), so I set off to design my own foundry to cast iron. Below I have briefly described my idea and design up to this point. I would greatly appreciate some feedback on the design! If there's something glaringly wrong, I'd like to know before I start the build. Additionally, my specific questions are as follow: What are the rough calculations you do to determine the size of your foundry? (I don't want to have to go in with the heat equation, material properties, etc. Is there a rule of thumb for the combo of insulation materials I'll be using?) Will this actually get hot enough to melt cast iron? Is 20-gauge steel over-engineering the outside? Lol Does the little table thing I have for the crucible make sense? Is it necessary? The Design I'm planning on making this propane-fueled with a forced air burner. The following screenshots show the bare-bones structure. It is to be made of 20-gauge steel sheets, 1-inch, and 2-inch square pipes. I want to weld those things together (I'm a xxxx welder though--just starting out, so that'll be fun). The weird piping coming off the side is the air blower (I got lazy with the CAD so did rough estimates for layout/dimensions. That's why it's square and then cylindrical.). I did not show the gas line piping, but it'll be a combination of brass fittings with a solenoid valve for safety (connected to the blower) and a needle valve. The hook things on the side are for a thermometer. I plan on finding smaller ones, but those were the only ones on McMaster that were close to what I wanted (I wanted the CAD). Dimensions Height ~22.5 inches Diameter ~18 inches Burner Diameter: 1-1/2 inches Insulation I want to have two 1-inch ceramic blankets with 1/2-inch of refractory on the sides (3/4'' on the lid and bottom). Additionally, I want to put a kiln brick(?) (the white bricks that are good insulators--not fire brick) under the crucible on the little table thing in the center. Pictures Final Notes Sorry in advance for lack of jargon, newbiness, etc. I appreciate and welcome all comments, questions, and concerns! Thank you!
  2. So the TL:DR version, has anyone had any experience making crucible steel with propane burners I've been toying with the idea of building a foundry, and i have had a pretty niffty oppotunity come up. My workplace where I am an apprentice fitter and turner for a high end fabrication company, they have some 335mm (~13") (australian, sorry) with 10mm (13/32) wall thickness, which to me is already starting to look like a foundry to me. I also am able to use all the tools materials and resources my shop has available, which is alot, so I should be able to make as great a foundry as possible. All the times any of you guys have imagined. That being said I do have some design constraints, or at least some preferences. First and foremost I do want to on, occasion be able to get the forge hot enough to make (good) crucible steel, which I understand is a tall order as is but i would like to try and do it with 3 venturi propane jet burners, or at least a forced air that runs off of an air compressor or something similar. Or mayb e a combination of, (2 ventri, 1 forced, etc). I am not set on anything by any means, Just a l was launching pad. So if I need 1, 2, 4 or 10 burners for example let me know what you think. The next major consideration is i will be storing it on my parents farm, and they are a bit sensitive about space so i would like to make this as small as possible, height and foot print. I dont so much mind how heavy it is. My initial thoughts on this, I would like to stack the burners vertically. I have access to a CNC lazer cutter, accurate to 1/1000th That I'm keen to use to locate my burner holes, and shape the to accommodate the parralax, set my tangent angles. Etc. I'd like to know how much of the length of the burners I can have submerged in the insulation. Or more accurately what's the minimum amount pertuding out I can have, I will be able to machine any specific specs so the only parameter is performance and type. I have a bit of chemical engineering history behind me so if you want to give me the numbers for nerds, go for it Also want some suggestions on lid mechanisms I'd like it to be handleable by one person. I've seen some cam/lever mechanisms that seem nice, offer patial opening (hieght) to adjust temperature and back pressure, but also takes up space so... ? Let's hear your favourites. As far as insulation, pretty straight foward 2 or 3 inch layers, 1/2-1" castable refractory, and i was going to put a coat or two of "Mathew's reactor wash", closest thing to a film wash available down here. I'd take suggestions on the specifics on floor and lid, I'm not so well versed there. My gut would say similar but thicker refractory layer(?) I have alot to address here and I'm sorry I know I could have found all this information In existing posts but all of a sudden I have been given some time pressure. I simply won't keep up on my own, I'll continue to try. Everyone if you have anything to offer here I'll definitley appreciate it. I've got some plans and diagrams coming that I didn't have ready (need the help in a hurry) to show you what I have in mind so far. Hopefully things comes out really well, and love to keep everyone up on the progress. Thanks in advance! Nick
  3. I've been researching the web and all of the forums and I've had a small hiccup with my first foundry build. I built a box of dirt foundry and ended up burning through the bottom of it and caught it on fire a little bit. I plan on modifying it but I picked up a 20 lbs propane tank today that has a valve issue and I got to thinking. Does anyone have experience with pouring plaster of Paris and play sand mix over kaowool for use in a charcoal foundry I'm only going to be melting mostly aluminum, brass, copper and possibly try my hand at making some bronze or aluminum bronze in the future once I get more practiced. I'm just beginning my journey into metal casting but I've done a ton of research and I've read a few things about casting refractory over kaowool but not plaster/sand mix. I know its better to buy a tested refractory I was just looking at alternative options. Any advice would be appreciated and thank you in advance.
  4. I've been doing a little digging trying to find ferrous rated crucibles, and I haven't had much luck. I've found a company by the name of Morgan Advanced Materials that make crucibles and some ferrous rated ones. Most of the ones I've found on other sites are rated for 3000 F, and I don't know how well the ones that are will stand up to a solid fuel fire and not a gas furnace. What do you guys use to melt steel? The reason I'm asking is I'm one of those people who wants to try doing just about everything so I know how it is done. That's the bottom line. I was planning on experimenting with making crucible steel just to understand the processes and chemistry that goes into making steel. I understand and acknowledge the inherent dangers of molten metal, especially that of molten steel, but all the same I wish to continue on in my quest to make crucible steel. Yes, I will take all the precautions necessary to avoid harming myself or putting myself or others in a dangerous situation.
  5. Pyrolized Bread Metal Casting Foundry Well earlier today I found this video posted yesterday by one of the guys I subscribe to on YouTube. He isn't the most safety conscious person, but he is an experienced machinist. The entire set up should of been outside, but its his house right? Its an interesting concept and he understands it and enjoys nerding out on the scientific to those of us who are not as, well you know...
  6. It's multi purpose. I may even be able to make steel ingots to forge blades from, but we'll see. The primary reason I built it as a furnace and not strictly a forge was to make bronze knife furniture. But there are all sorts of fun things to cast, including a scrap metal lathe eventually Without further adieu, here's the video Also, some pictures of the knife in working on.
  7. I recently finished putting together a new furnace made from an old keg. The top and bottom are solid 2700F refractory and the walls are 2" kaowool with a refractory shell. My burner is this Venturi. I took the furnace up to my brother-in-law's farm to do its first firing for curing and ran into a problem that I hope someone can help me with; you may be able to hear me mentioning in the videos, but for clarity the furnace runs great while I have the lid off but when I put it on the flame chokes out, spraying nothing but propane. I have to dial my PSI down extremely low in order to sustain a flame inside with the lid on and it isn't a sufficient heat source to get me to melting temp in any sort of practical time frame. I expect that the answer is simply to continue to fiddle with it further until I have it dialed in, but are there any obvious issues? This is something I would ask about over at Alloy Avenue, but I still haven't been approved for an account; their registration process is peculiar.
  8. hello everyone , at first this is my first time posting here and i am from the netherlands so my english wont be perfect . i watched a video about making a propane burner for my selfmade foundry ( so i finished the build but it does not work like the one in the video here are some photos's and a video of my burner .: so as you can see the torch does not burn right and it burns inside the supply tube aswell.. i am out of ideas what it can be please help video-1477765585.mp4
  9. I'm putting together a home foundry following some plans, but they haven't discussed the subject of high heat paint to protect the steel of the body and I was hoping someone here would have some insight. I've roughed out the body of my foundry and coated the outside with high heat paint (see attached) to prevent the steel from oxidizing; the paint is rated up to 2000F and my thinking was that if the exterior gets to the point of 2000F then I have bigger problems than paint vaporizing. I am tempted, however, to paint the inside wall as well; the lid and the bottom will be protected from oxidation by the refractory I plan to line them with, but the walls are simply going to use kaowool to contain the heat and I am worried that if I paint the interior that I could be risking temps that will vaporize the paint, especially at the seam of the kaowool. I really want to protect the steel as much as possible to extend the life of the foundry but I draw the line at any safety risks. I've considered lining the walls with refractory as well, but I am very reticent to deviating from plans. Here are the plans I'm using for reference. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Additionally, I am planning on buying a burner rather than constructing one as per the plans; I'm certain that I could make one but there are practical concerns and I like the craftsmanship of the burners I'm eyeing in eBay. These plans are for a burner where the tube is 3/4", but I think I can manage to attach something with a 1" tube as I can't seem to find any made to the specifics of the Reil EZ burner that the plans call for; would this be too much for this small a foundry? I could obviously just turn it down, but I would prefer to not over-stress what I'm working with. Thanks again; these forums have been a lot of help.
  10. Hello fellow metal workers, I have some questions regarding making aluminum tank tracks for a robotics project. The tank tracks are 4.25" wide x 5/8" tall (length TBD) they are made up similar to the way an Abrams tank track is put together. I found a metal works company who specializes in turning small 6061 aluminum - rubber coated wheels and though expensive they can produce what I'm looking for. So now I'm back to the tank tread portion which I'll probably make myself. My experience: 10+years experience with TIG welding/fabrication and can weld most things. Many years ago I read a book on backyard metal casting because I wanted to cast aluminum tank treads. Back then the guy was using a Pyramid furnace (the company is no longer in business) to cast aluminum tracks. So here I am wanting to pioneer this venture again with many questions. After reading the beginner pinned thread and all the safety precautions, Aluminum casting seems a little scary/intimidating as well as an enormous investment of time to learn a whole new universe of skills and the safety surrounding them. Therefore I've come to these questions which I hope others can help me answer. A:) Would a furnace produce acceptable enough results in fit and finish for this type of application? (or am I better off in fabrication?) B:) How much cost investment is there in buying a high quality furnace, crucible and safety gear? C:) Roughly how much time investment is there in learning to cast small aluminum parts? D:) What is the mold material needed? E:) Are there any up to date extensive youtube videos or good book recommends specifically for casting aluminum. I have concerns with doing it safely as well making sure the mold is built correctly. Additional massive concerns about what the results will be after I Invest huge amounts of time and money in it. Will the results be good enough for this use? And more importantly will they be better than a machined/welded/fabricated alternative. In other words: Which route is shorter and produces the best results? I'll attach some drawing and pics of what I'm trying to manufacture. Thank you, Av
  11. Is it safe to cut into a brand new empty propane tank to make a foundry? It was bought without ever being filled, so am I guaranteed I won't blow up or should I still remove the valve?
  12. I built a forge that I had intended to do some brass smelting with. I finished it two weeks ago and last night I smelted my first chunk of brass. After I was done I noticed four cracks on the outside of the forge (this a brick forge with 4 inch thick fire bricks as the walls and floor of the forge) and the center seam line of the ceiling bricks is cracked. Is this because of the heat of the fire needed to melt brass, or is it something else? The bricks that formed the ceiling suffered no damage other than the cracked mortar it was the exterior walls that cracked. Those wall are about 8 inches thick, before I made this forge I could put my bare hand on the firebricks and it would only be warm to the touch. I did use portland cement to mortar the exterior wall together but I used Heat Stop to mortar the bricks exposed the forge fire. Have I caused enough damage to my forge to consider it a problem. If it will help I'll upload pictures detailing the extent of the damage.
  13. Hello all, i've done a load of research into making a foundry, I've gone the way of the LPG tank lined with a heat resistant cement. However when i go to buy the cement i get blown away by the sheer variety of products i can buy. I wanted an expert opinion on two products: http://www.morganthermalceramics.com/sites/default/files/datasheets/1_alumor_60.pdfo- and http://www.morganthermalceramics.com/sites/default/files/datasheets/1_alcast_super.pdf The choice is between the Alcast_super which is a castable with max temp. of 1300c and the Alumor_60 which has a service temp of 1650c. I am going to be splitting titanium in a molten salt electrolyte using the Metalysis FFC cambridge process, melting aluminium for casting, melting lead, melting various scrap copper/bronze. What castable would you choose/recommend? Do i need separate crucibles for different metals or can i re-use one safely? extra info: coke/coal powered furnace, 5cm thick insulation probably, air forced.
  14. I am trying to find a foundry that will pour cast iron swage blocks. Preferably this foundry has some molds already that we can pick from. I am with the Blacksmiths Association of Missouri (BAM) and would like to source and inform our members as to the cost so that we can determine quantity and put an order in. I think the size of the blocks would be roughly 10" tall x 18" wide x 24" long and weigh 100 pounds plus. Thanks for any feedback. JH P.S. - Is this the right way to approach this or am I missing something.
  15. I'm interested in getting started in casting, and I intend to do primarily investment / lost wax casting, for things like blade fittings/pommels, scabbard fittings, buckles, and really anything else I feel like casting. Online sources are good, but what I'm looking for are recommendations on books for learning what I need to know to get started in lost wax casting. I intend to build a waste oil furnace like this one: http://www.artfulbodgermetalcasting.com/2.html for melting the metal. Dan Manders recommended a book for lost wax, but it seems to be a little hard to find. I also found this one on amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Practical-Casting-Reference-Revised-Edition/dp/096159845X/ref=pd_sim_sbs_b_1 Does anyone know if it's any good? I also realize I need a kiln if I'm going to do lost wax, so I did a search on the local craigslist, and here is what I found: http://grandrapids.craigslist.org/art/2915998885.html Is this a good deal for this type of kiln? I figure if I do get it, I should be able to use it for heat treating as well.
  16. so recently, i came across an old rr track that goes thru my place, (only bout a halfa mile) and i have a surplus of rr spikes, and i see all thee sites of people making their own steel tongs and such, but right now i cant hope to do that without a welder and drill press present. so a thought occured to me, "why not cast them?"ive casted small aluminum iingot (ignots?) before, and i was wondering how if i did decide to cast this, how to make a mould for brass, ive got atleast 3thousand .22 lr shells laying around in mason jars and such. my only issue is how to make a mould (id buy an actual foundry setup but i have tight money at the moment) i have my makeshift crucible from a 4in. diamiter rd stock steel that i lathed out, my only question to you gents now is: 1. is it even possible to do this with old .22 shells? 2. how do i go about making the mould? 3. would this even be a usable set of tongs?
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