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I Forge Iron

*New to Blacksmsithing and First Forge


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Last summer while taking classes I got the bug to build a forge and get into blacksmithing. Mostly because I really enjoy working with metal and I have no power in my shed, I will eventually fix the lack of electricity problem. Anyway, I started searching for an anvil and explained to my wife what it was and how much it might cost, remember happy wife, happy life. At that point she was still not really onboard with the whole idea and when I explained how I would need to cut a hole in the shed roof for a stack-it was no chance, no way.

So portable was the only way to go. I researched online and found a couple designs available and chose to put one together of my own, borrowing bits from others. This past spring I decided to take all of the information and finally build one of my own. I started off by purchasing a hand crank blower for $50 bucks. It came with a modified masonry forge firepot and tuyere. I say modified because somebody decided to cut the heck out of the sides with and Oxy-A torch to lower them for some unknown reason. Originally I was going to use this firepot and I thought about building a case out of steel and cementing the missing areas with refractory cement. However, the more I looked at it the more it seemed like not a good idea and I read somewhere that clinkers stick to refractory.

Instead of doing all of that I decided to design my own. I started out with a 3










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The forge is only three weeks old so it still looks like I do not use it. I also swept out the firepot so you could see how it was made. Right now it is dirty and full of coal and coke. Last night I used it to roast my stuck leg vise. I got the 5 1/2" vise for $40US but the hinge was frozen fast and no mount. The guy I bought it from found it in his barn when he bought the place and never even knew what it was, what a deal! It took me about fifteen minutes of heating and beating to break it free, whoo hoo!

Picture is aweful, the wife took it but it gives you an idea of scale.


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Nice forge!
I like the way you've mounted the blower.
The hood and stack, I really like that. Does it draw good?
I have a similar forge except no hood. Been trying to figure out how to fix one.
I got some of my ideas on design from blksmth.com
Thanks for the pics

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Thanks I love it and it was a hoot to build! The hood works well, not perfect, but good enough. When I first light it or toss on some more coal it puts out a good amount of smoke and I far as I know that is the way coal is. As long as I am on the blower or the fire is big enough and the draft is good, it does what it needs to do. When the fire dies down the smoke wanders a bit. Another nice thing about the hood is that when the smoke does wander, it gives me a place to hide while cranking the blower.

Improvements could be made on the length of the stack, I know it should be higher and the mount. I went to Lowes and bought regular ductwork piping and a tab mount. The mount was as tight as I could get it but when I fired the forge up for the first time the heat loosened it up the thin metal. The stack height is 5' and it should be higher, but until I fix the mount I can't raise it. Hope this helps.


Edited by wd&mlteach
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That is a nice looking forge Billy. I really like the flanges on the front legs. The front legs on my forge are just vertical angle iron. So far they have not given me any trouble but the ground is pretty hard now. I thought about welding plates on to stop it from sinking but I was pretty sure they would end up chewing my shins up when I moved it. I also love the large work space you have on the table. If you put a hood on like mine it might limit your work space. Do you have it indoors?

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That shop is Priceless! thanks for the picture. If I could keep mine indoor I would opt for a detached hood that hung over top rather than one that is bolted down. But if you plan on moving it or demoing with it, then bolted down is the way to go. I someday, when I at least look that I know what I am doing, plan on taking mine to school to teach my metals kids how to forge some things. Right now we use an Oxy-A torch and a Johnson tempering furnace to shape stuff or just work cold. Not the best, but it works for some of the projects.

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Great job on your forge ! It's amazing what you can make a fire pot from. I have one build from a roof drain casting, looks similar to the one you found, except it had 4 large lugs on the inside of the "bowl" that had to be ground out. I'm finishing up a similar table type forge right now but it's not going to be portable. I have a portable type forge made from a farm disc, about 24" in diameter, with a 6" to 3" pipe reducer as a fire pot. I hope to fisnish up the table forge soon and get my smithy set up.

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