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Found 20 results

  1. Hello everyone, this is my first time posting here. I'm very new to blacksmithing and am looking for some advice on fixing up this old stake anvil. I just recently picked up this old William Foster stake anvil for $100! It was pretty rusted when I got it, I've been trying to clean it up. I soaked it in a vinegar/water solution and scrubbed away with a wire brush and a some coarse steel wool. I got most of the rust off, but now I've gotten through some of the patina down to bare metal in spots. I am hoping to keep as much patina as I can, but there is still rust in some of the deeper pits. I wanted to ask for everyone's advice on how to proceed. From what I've been able to figure out I know William Foster anvils were forged in the early to mid 1800's, and I don;t want to damage it. Which brings up my second question. The face is pretty pitted from the rust, should I sand it and make it a more usable tool again? Or should this be left alone as a collectors piece? I've attached some photos below of how it came to me, and how it's looking now. Thanks in advance for your help! -Russell
  2. Hey everyone, I just recently picked up a Kern Machine Tool CO. Camelback Drill Press. It was originally purchased and used by the Maysville hydroelectric plant blacksmith shop servicing Salida Colorado. When that shop modernized it was shipped to the Glenwood Springs shop. Finally when that shop modernized as well an employee bought the drill, I then bought it from him. So this drill has seen a lot of use and history. I want to lightly restore the drill and make use of it in my shop. It has been well taken care of and the Babbitt was only poured 5 or so years ago and seems tight with remaining shims to go. To which end I am turning to my fellow smiths for knowledge and advise. So here is what I need to know. 1. What arbor taper does it use? I think it is an mt3 but I am not positive. 2. It came with the original working motor from 1896 which is 220 volts 1800 rpm and here's the kicker 2 phase. How can I convert my single phase 220 to 2 phase 220. 3. If I have to get a new motor what motors do those of you with your own Camelback use? Can I gets picks of the data plate. 4. should I just spruce it up since everything moves well and works, or should I do a complete tear down. Thanks in advance for the help I will add progress pics as needed
  3. Hello all. I just stopped by my local antique store on my way home from work to see if they had a leg vise on hand. Sure enough the owner did and I ended up leaving with a rusty old vise that he says he got up in Boston bar, BC. Perhaps it is a remnant of the gold rush that happened in the mid to late 1800 in BC. Any who. I brought it home and quickly disassembled it and started at it with a cup brush. The only mark I found was on the female end of the vise thread. A letter stamped M or W. Can anyone help me I'd this vise? Sorry if my photo size is too late. I have no idea how to reduce.
  4. I’ve started this thread to document the restoration of a small bench top fly press I recently acquired via the usual on-line auction site. The press was advertised as a “Barn find project” and “rusty and not moving” which turned out to be a fair and accurate description. I’ve wanted a small fly press for a while and always enjoy the challenge of bringing an old tool or machine back to life (to use, not for show) The final price at the end of the auction was GBP£24, about US$ 31. I guess I spent a similar amount on fuel to collect it and a 5 hour round trip in the car. (Broke the journey in the middle with a quick trip to Iron Dwarf’s forge to pick up some coke and a quick chat with the dwarf and the copper elf, always a pleasure.) The first challenge was to remove the four rusted in bolts holding the ram guide in place. I wanted to remove these before attempting to free of the main screw just in case the ram was rusted to the guide. I don’t claim to have a lot of restoration experience but have learned the hard way that impatience when working on old stuff is a very, very bad thing that always results in broken bolts or blood loss somewhere along the way. With that in mind after a cursory wire brushing to remove surface crud all relevant parts were liberally dosed in Plus-Gas (my preferred penetrating fluid) and left overnight. Finding a spanner (wrench) to fit the bolt heads took a while, the UK went metric a long time ago but fortunately I have some imperial sized tools and an old BSA motorcycle spanner fitted perfectly and with a little persuasion with a soft faced hammer they were free. Luckily the ram was not rusted to the guide. At first I couldn’t see what holds the ram onto the screw but after a little cleanup I could see a couple of dovetail pieces on the ram, one on each side. After some thought I decided to leave well alone (KISS and “if it aint broke......” Moving on to the next challenge, there was something stuck in the tool hole at the end of the ram but fortunately it was threaded. after some time rummaging through my collection of non-metric fasteners I found a nut to fit: I filled the retaining screw hole with more Plus Gas and left it overnight then rigged up a small extractor using large washers (including a recessed one from an old angle grinder) and the nut found earlier. By steadily adding washers and/or shims made from broken hacksaw blades it came free without the use of heat or brute force. The piece removed: It is 5/8" in diameter and as can be seen there was no shoulder on it......in future nothing will be allowed into the tool hole without a shoulder! Next task was to free up the screw. As I have no handle for the press I found a wrench large enough to engage with the nut on top of the press and used it with a soft faced hammer to wind the screw inwards by a fraction of a turn. After quickly making up some soft jaws for the bench vice I inverted the whole press, (glad it wasn't a Norton #6!!) clamped up the octagonal handle spigot in the vice and turned the whole press to free off the screw......that was easy! The next job (not started yet) will be to make a handle. I'm not sure of the best way to do it yet. The handle fits onto a tapered octagonal spigot. Width across the flats at the bottom is 1 1/8", tapering to 1" at the top. The spigot is approximately 1 3/4" high. I guess I will need to make a tapered octagonal drift then slit and drift the hole on my handle stock. I'm not sure if I should drift a tapered circular hole first or go straight to octagonal? Also as it's a single use thing I am wondering if I should harden the drift? Any thoughts or advice very welcome please. That's it for now.... I've a couple of questions about this press; at the rear of the frame there is a tapped hole about 3/8" diameter and 1 1/4" deep. (So it doesn't penetrate right through the frame) Below that is a slit that does go all the way through the frame. I'm wondering what they are for.....possibly for mounting some kind of stripper? Any thoughts or ideas are welcome! Tonight I'll look through my bar stock and old bolt collection and start planning to make a few basic press tools. I'll also start making a very substantial bench for the press to sit on.
  5. Rookie here, looking to scrape together a small shop piece by piece. I've been looking for anvils in WI and have been put off by the prices. Today, I found one in a broken down shed. I took some bad pictures with my phone. There's an upside down triangle on one side so I assume it's Columbian. It's really really rusty and has a chip out of the bottom corner of the heel. First off, can this be saved? It hasn't been used in decades. It has nice ring and rebound when hit with a wrench (that's all I had on hand). Any idea what I should offer for it? What would be a can't lose price? Does anyone have experience restoring something this bad? Of course, I realize opinions are only that. I don't expect a firm answer and will make the decision on my own. Thanks.
  6. Hi all. This is my first post...anyway. I'm restoring a old axe head for a friend the blade is going to need alot of grinding to get the pitch of the blade right. Iv heard that that will make the edge prone to chipping if not heat treated properly after. The butt of the axe is horably mushroomed but I want to use the mushrooming to make a good hammer head. I don't know how to heat treat it to get a good solid edge aswell as a sturdy hammer head on the other side? Any advise, comments or questions would be much appreciated!
  7. Hello, This will basically be my first post on here, and I had a question: I've acquired a Trenton 152# anvil made in 1823, from a family member for free. I can use the anvil only if I refurbish it to function and look like brand new, if not better. I would like to clean ALL the rust off of this anvil, and build up and clean up come chips off the tool plate on top. What is the best, most efficient and thorough way of going about this? My budget to restore the anvil is around $300-$400, I have plenty of connects with machine shops and fabrication shops around here, I have an angle grinder and various tools of my own as well as some common sense and patience. Any pointers are welcome, here is a picture I took for reference, forgot to take more detailed photos.
  8. I live on a farm house and the barn next to me is full of old equipment. The main thing that caught my eye was the belt grinder. The entire thing is rusted. Keep in mind I know next to nothing about these things. I would absolutely need to rewire it and clean it up thoroughly but I'm wondering if it is doable for someone who has no experience. hopefully this imgur link works. if anyone can give me more info on this thing I'd appreciate it https://imgur.com/gallery/KvwwR
  9. A while back I bought for $65 a forge blower; and have been restoring it ever since. I've been attempting to remove both the grease and rust without power tools (since I'm a broke teenager), with electrolysis and simple green and a wire brush for months now. Here are some of the parts after I've cleaned them up a bit: Funny thing is that I can hardly find any information about the forge blower anywhere on the internet. Perhaps a couple listings on ebay, but that's about it. Gear casing that I just separated today. Any ideas of how I can weld the broken piece back on? Recently removed stand Not sure if I can do electrolysis on this fan. The gear is stuck. By that I mean that I can't get it out, but with the handle attached and the other gear installed, it spins rather well. I just want to get it out along with the worm gear so I can actually remove the grease and rust. This and going to the hardware store (at the start of the school year) are my only two obstacles currently. Also acquiring/building a forge without welding equipment. The stand has a rusty bolt that I was able to loosen a tad bit after doing likely the sketchiest electrolysis cleaning ever with the entire stand in a garbage can with holes in the bottom and double lined with garbage bags. Any suggestions on how I can push out the axle pin on the inner gear or the brass bushings would be wonderful. Rust/Grease removal as well, including information about this particular blower.
  10. Hey, guys! I just bought this anvil, and I was wondering if I should use it as is, or if I should resurface it? If you can't tell from the pictures, it's an old peter wright from a foundry here where I live.
  11. Hopefully will be starting to build a electrolysis tank large enough to fit this Reed 108 in tonight. Looking froward to getting all 300lbs of this vise cleaned up, painted and restored. Haven't done one this big yet. Should be fun to see how it turns out.
  12. Following a recent retrenchment I decided to renew an earlier interest in blacksmithing and started planning a small garage forge set-up. A visit to a local salvage yard to investigate a hand-cranked blower was disappointing because the blower was beyond economic repair but by chance I found a 'German' style leg vice at a reasonable price which was in fair condition for restoration. This vice has the benefit of the extra-large side plates which provide additional support and stability to the front jaw and therefore was an immediate purchase. After surveying it I found that it is just missing the front thrust washer, the complete mounting bracket [the welded tab was a previous owner's quick-fix, I think], the spring, and the front jaw thread-protector - all things often missing on 2nd-hand vices. As far as I can tell, the German vices tended to have a mounting bracket that is bolted to the vice and screwed into the support post through scrolled 'V' shaped arms [see right-hand picture of the various mount styles attached]. I will have to forge one of these once I am up and running. Similarly, I plan to make the front thrust washer by forging a ring from square bar and welding it closed. The front jaw has a small hole just above the washer location which I assume is to lock the washer and prevent it from rotating. I will need to create a tab on the washer for this. Can anyone tell me whether this vice would have had a 'U' shaped spring - the space seems a bit small for the simple single-leaf style found on 'English' style vice. Also, if anyone has a photo of a 'screw protector plate' I would be interested to see what it should look like - this is a fitting that attaches to the inside of the front jaw and covers the exposed threads as the jaws open and which just rides over the screw box as it closes.
  13. So I found this old and really beatup anvil at work a few months ago so have gotten into smithing, nothing fancy just a couple of railroad spike knives and a pair of arm guards so far. But I feel like improving my workplace since I can't really make any smooth bends with these edges and it just bugs me the way it's been treated. Very deep grindmarks on the square horn and a minor one on the round one, chippings along the entire edge on both sides and in the hardy hole. On the plus side the face is flat and even without irregularities and it got really good bounce over all. Is it worth repairing this old wreck or should I look into getting a better one?
  14. 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
  15. Ok so I've got a old 321 pound Peter Wright Anvil. I was wondering if it will effect the value or worth of the anvil if I were to do some fringing on the top face. Mainly along the edges because there is some dings and chips along the sides. I'd like to grind a little to reshape at least one edge but if it's gonna mess with the value or anything like that then I'll just continue using a large separate piece of steel for the sharp edges. Any suggestions and or tips would be greatly appreciated Thanks.
  16. So I am currently living in Hawaii and decided to get into knife making. I started to look around for an anvil and to my surprise found this one on c list. The guy I got it from said he found it in a ravine behind a stable out here. It was rusty and he tried cleaning it with coke and a wire brush. I got it for $100 took it back to my place and cleaned it up some more to try to identify it. I found an upside down triangle with what looks to be a degraded C in it on one side and an M on the other. This leads me to believe it is a Columbian Anvil from Cleveland OH. Was it worth the price I paid? Any way to better narrow the manufacture (1905-1925). From what I read these are cast steel anvils and it does have a nice ring. Looking at getting it into shape for knife making, The base does not seem to be level and it rocks (angle grind the high spots?). I see you should rub it with oil but what kind? I saw one youtube video of a guy using motor oil, is that ok?(I'm not going to paint it) Any opinions filing or resurfacing the face? Is that needed? Just want it to be in working order that's all. I like the old look to it and don't want anything that is "crisp and new".
  17. Hi All, I purchased a working bellow forge which looks to have been a type of rivet forge built somewhere around 1900-1930 i have not found identification on it. and I can not find any info on this type of forge except an old belgian hardware catalogue but they only had sideblast forges. the bellows work on the up and the down stroke but air was limited. It was spilling air at the return valves so at least the valve housing would need a complete rebuild. next was the tuyere which was clogged with debris and a few nice sized chunks of aluminum/aluminium and lead. I did manage to get them out without any major hassle. Since the bellows seem to be working I will leave them alone and I am thinking of using leather for the "valve flaps" (looks like originally they used some kind of tissue). however, I have no idea which sealant to use for the joints between the different pipes from the bellows exit to the tuyere. most high temp joint material hardens and i do not know if they will act as a glue or just simple sealant and the tuyere from the top. Another question is, the table was lined with bricks can anyone tell me how these forges where originally lined? I would say bricks but the tuyere is quite a bit above the bricks. Any and all info is more than welcome. Vaporlock I apologise for the dodgy pictures, it was very sunny.
  18. Hello everyone, I believe this is my first post on I Forge Iron. I am in some need of some help and advice. I purchased a rough Champion 401 rivet forge from a blacksmith in Townsend, DE for about $50. The blower is in pretty much mint condition, minus the wasp's nests and caked on grease and dirt I cleaned out of the fan area. The rusted out legs were basically fused into the mounting brackets, but managed to free them and replace them (took a month of chiseling and filing). I will be replacing the rusted out, paper thin base pan bottom with a new 1/8" thick plate. The only problem I am having is that the end of the blower tube and the front part of the frame is rotted. Is there anyone out there with a 401 frame and a matching blower tube that I can buy. There is a guy who lives four and a half hours from where I live that has what I need but refuses to mail it to me unless I pay double for it. He was asking $50 if I were to go there and take the blower he wants off it, but said last night that if he has take it off himself and ship it to me he is going to charge $100 (not including shipping). I just can't see justifying a final cost of around $150 for 1/5 of a forge that usually goes for $200 to $300. Driving there would cost basically the same. Can one be made? I am always up to a challege and I am not worried about historical preservation of the forge. I have a plan to make multiple style base pans for it and have it to be easliy swappable depending on the project. I will post pictures of what I have as soon as I get them taken and loaded.
  19. Hi, I have remade a set of hinges for an old chest belonging to my father. Not much to say other than it was a fun little project. A bit tricky to make it all fit but in the end a pretty nice result. The rivets are made essentially as nails and assembled from the inside and then riveted cold on the outside. Stock used: 25x4mm
  20. hey all this is my first post, i would say i am humbly familiar with coal smithing, but this little trinket seems to have fallen into my lap and i am trying to learn more about it... i know it is a champion blower and forge co. complete repair outfit No. 30... but as for what it is worth as a useable forge i am not so sure. I have used a bit of clay to line the pan as it is only 1/4" cast iron, and i am very unfamiliar with side-blast forges. so i dont know quite how to get this puppy cookin', which is mainly why i am posting. it has a 12" x 14" pan. is that even worth trying to work with? everything including the blower runs nice and smooth. i have all of the original parts including a emery wheel, two blower/drill press/emery wheel crank handles ( one long, one short), one cutoff harty (5/8"), the additional drill press bit holder and base plate, 12/4 to 1 geared crank system, and anvil. if any one has any ideas or tips for me to get this forge doing work please post a comment. thankyou. p.s. i have "restored" this forge a bit, but i just bead blasted it and gave it some fresh paint. hoping to minimize the rust. -Dave
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