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SLAG   

Thomas you are correct.

It was a slip of the "pen".

Sorry folks for being sloppy/careless.

SLAG.

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That is interesting that the charcoal from soft woods burns faster and hotter. Does make sense and would not have thought so. The coconut husks we have are mostly air though, as it is a mesh like material to begin with. There is a 1 mil outer shell that encases the husk that is hard. It burns very fast as a charcoal and is hard to make into charcoal because of the shape and some funky substance that burns it slow. Traditionally here in Kerala they use the hard inner shell, what we know in the west as the actual coconut shell. That is what I was told. One tries alright to get hands on material were possible, but yes you just end up using what you got if you can get it to work that is. 

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Just thought to post the wood fire I did today, here on this thread if you guys don't mind. I let it burn without any air from the hairdryer for 15 min and build up a lot of embers that way. See first picture. Just to say though that I did pile some new wood on top and it may be difficult to see from the pic that there is a 10 inch by ten inch blob of embers in the middle of the fire. The next couple of pics after that are the hairdryer on and some heat I got for a weld I was trying out. 

fire 2.PNG

fire 1.PNG

forge weld.PNG

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I like that anvil! (though vertically would be a bit more efficient.)

How did the weld go?

Slag; we could get into a discussion of making brass through a cementation type process; Biringuccio mentions it in Pirotechnia (1540) under the section on "coloring copper". (Smelting of zinc is difficult as it reduces above the vaporization/burning temp, in India they came up with a neat way to do it: the ore was reduced in alembics and the zinc vapor was piped into a cooler chamber kept with a reducing atmosphere so the gas cooled off and became a very fine zinc dust that could then be melted using standard techniques.  "Metal Technology in Medieval India", Jafar.)

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Remember being an expert smith doesn't mean you don't make any mistakes as much as it means you know how to recover from making them or hide them!

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