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I Forge Iron

First Major Project


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Hi All

Well not really MAJOR - but today marks the start of my biggest project to date.

I've been working on a Trellis - Sort of shaped like a Cathedral Window with some Vines (and hopefully flowers ala BP0096. - Sort Of - My hammer work needs practice -

It's kind of a FAB - FORGE Combo until I can learn to forge weld with consistancy.

So far the frame pieces and vines are all tacked!

I'm pretty proud of myself, :cool: considering other than some little Garden Stone Holders, and a couple firepit utensils... I'm unexperienced :D And at times, not very imaginative!

I'll see if I can get a few pics to post of it while I take a break to eat.


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Here is the one flower I was able to make.

Pretty tough to neck it down without the guillotine. Thanks to Finnr showing where to find a tutorial, I know how to make it. Then I'll be able to get it nice and clean.

First picture it's still attached to the pipe, and since I was not going to use this one, I cut it off and roughly made three little legs for it to sit on. (that's the second).

I necked it down with the edge of the Anvil and my smallest ball pien.

First one... I'm happy.



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Way to go Willy, I would suggest mounting the flowers and/or leaves to their stems before fixing them in position, they are easier to clean up when in isolation, tweak them to the shapes required then tack them on as an assembly rather than trying to stick them on the ends of the existing bits you have welded on
(I have made a presumption here that that is what you are trying to do seeing as you have empty unfinished ends sticking out, if this is incorrect I apologise)

Tool tip if you haven't got a guillotine tool, make a spring fullering tool

Take a length of round bar about 12" long 3/4" or 1/2" diameter flatten the centre portion to approx 1/8" thick or slightly smaller by 3/4" or therabouts wide, heat the centre flat portion and form it into a eye, leaving the round portions parallel with one of the ends slightly in front of the other, quench to make it springy.

Weld on a block to the top leg (The one protruding longer than its mate) so you can hammer on this,

Weld a piece on the bottom leg so you can mount it where you want, (Hardy hole or vice)

Mount it securely then when your workpiece is hot, lift the protruding top leg and insert the work in between the legs where you want to neck it in (Fullering) on the workpiece, Hit it gently and rotate workpiece between blows this will produce a nice waisted effect, if tube is used you can form the diameter in the base to a suitable size to rivet or thread to allow mounting onto another part

This also works for fullering marks into square bars

Safety Note, when forging tube, seal cool end and dont quench in water as steam and heat will scald/burn your wrist/arm

Edited by John B
Tool tip added
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John B.

You've assumed correctly.

VERY good point :cool: It's obvious which of the two of us has done this before!

Although those branches have just small tacks, I was curious to see how they might look. Of course when I passed it by Quality Control I was told they need to be a bit flatter to look nicer. (Quality Control = My wife and my Mom - Wimen.... they know what they will spend $$$ on, So I check with them)

St. John,

I was planning a wire wrap for at least the the top. The flat steel suggestion will work perfectly at the Y type joints.

Thank all of you for your Help.

Willy.... (building tooling today)

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Hey Willy Its easy to point out these items when something is in front of you, the hard thing is conceiving it and putting it together to allow it to be put before others gaze. I applaud you for that.

The man with hindsight has perfect vision,

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Hey John B.

I've been thinking about your suggestion. I have a question that will help clarify.

Here is my thought. Imagine the intersection where 2 branches separate. I wrap some 14/16ga(?) shaped like a leaf around that joint, as snug as I can, starting a half to three-quarters of an inch below the joint, and continuing up to hide all the welding. Then weld the bottom, only around the immediate place where the covering leaf piece goes around the single branch. Clean it up some, then heat by torch and smooth with a light planishing (?) hammer to smooth/hide weld.

Is that what you had in mind?


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Hi Willy, that was not my suggestion but it would work fine if you wished to adopt that method.

Personally I would not wrap it at a join as it may highlight that area rather than blend it in to the overall scheme, it may not look natural as you are trying to simulate vines/nature. (unless you are thinking of a bit of fungus growing at the branch joint)

I think I would weld, dress and then planish if I thought it needed it.

Another problem you may take into consideration is the siting of the piece, if it is to be located inside then you only have to consider the dust problem that may arise for your quality control department to deal with when maintaining it with a duster.

If it is located outside and subject to rain, then there is a danger of the wrap holding water and being a potential rust area

Its your project, and your call, I appreciate you asking my opinion and I hope that it may help you to come to a decision you are happy with.

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Well, here is the Flower (Rev.2 using a small guillotine tool).

I made the guillotine tool thinking to use it in the vice... My big vice is too high for consistant blows with the hammer; I'm welding a hardie post to it later.

I wanted a nice tight neck, and because the thicker flat bar ends have been used up, this one is made completely of 3/16". It does a good job of necking 1-1/8" (1/8 wall) tube down enough that a 1/4" drill shaves it nicely for quarter inch rod.







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Well it's finally done and sunny enough to take a picture of it.

I really had to re-think this back to simplicity. I can always get fancy after I have a few more under the belt.

After considering the stems of the flowers, I left them dead straight instead of making a more natural bent stem because to me is gave them an almost surreal (sp?) apearance. For some wierd reason I had a sort of Edward Scissorhands (or something) thought going through my mind.

I made a little socket for the bouquet to sit in so they can be removed easy for moving the thing from place to place without catching the flower petals on stuff.

I added one hint of colour at the top where the two uprights come together in the form of a Brass Wrap (Brazing Rod).

I need to work on symetry (sp?) - I think next time I'll draw a pattern to follow instead of trying to lay one on top of the other.

Comments and critiques welcome.

Anyways, here's some pics at last.









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Nice one Willy, only other comment I would make is that depending on where it is going, that there may be a danger of the flowers catching someone walking past them and snagging their clothes or worse.

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Well done with the project Willy, it's turned out real nice, those flowers look great. My major project, my daughters day bed, has come to a halt at the moment:(, trying to get some money together for steel. I'll post some photos as soon as things get moving again.

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Ian, I hear ya about the $$ being tight these days! But, I was SUPER fortunate - a week or so ago a guy that I know, and runs a small two man machine / fab shop left a message for me saying, 'since he has had no time to get rid of his drops, and right now scrap is worth nothing, I could come by and help myself to his drops!" Mind you some stuff is odd sized, but hey, it's free, and he is very happy that his bins are getting lower!

Not sure how the price of scrap metal is doing where you are, but maybe asking a few questions to the right people might just net your daughter a bed frame.

BTW I'm not saying we ought to be beggers.... You could always offer to make something decorative for the company, or for the Boss if you can't offer $$

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