dphigh

Bottom or side blast

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hi
i know it depends about what work you do but what is best , side blast or bottom blast.

can you say what you use and what kinda work it is best at.

thanks

P.s the reason I'm asking this is that i have to make a quick decision for what to buy because the offers aren't permanent.


thanks
alec

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hum well in america you usually dont have much choice in factory made forges at least pretty much all you see is bottom draft . benefits of bottom draft easy fire maintainance ... downside klinkers can clog um up if your coal creates a lot of klinkers requireing you to clean um out.. i built a side draft forge once and found the fire a lot different to manage .wasnt real inpressed but it might not have been setup correctly ...some love side draft cause the airway does not get clogged with klinker .if you dont have a forge any will do .... have fun

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You can easily make a bottom blast forge operate as a side blast by just adding an air pipe. To convert a side blast to bottom blast would be a challenge and take some cutting of the forge.

Why not look at BP0133 the 55 Forge. You should be able to make that forge in short order and try it both as bottom blast and then side blast to see which would work best for you.

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Thanks so far but it would be greatly appreciated if i cold get some more replys very soon.

sorry for being naggy but I now have 2 days to make the decicion

Extra things
i use coke
the side blast forge i'm looking at is quite big and at the moment its at

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Personally I vastly prefer a bottom blast. With the air coming in the side I tend to have a very small fire. Bottom blast just seems to make better sense. Heat naturally rises so by forcing air into the bottom you are pushing the heat in it's natural direction!

Dave

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I prefer side blast. Having used both I find as soon as the BB starts to clinker up your air flow has been restricted and so forth. With the SB when the same happens the clinker gathers under the outlet of tuyere and doesnt interfere with the airflow for a longer period. To get a bigger fire i simply add more fuel. Either way hope your close to making a decision.
Michael.:)

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in the uk the firms using a large number of fixed hearths ,chainmakers ,jobbing shops, toolsmiths ,farriers ,millwrights ,the wet side blast was universal in fires working hard all day. Did the big shops running large number of fixed fires in the usa ,use side or bottom blast ,or were the bottom blast hearths usualy portable in jobbing shops,

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in the uk the firms using a large number of fixed hearths ,chainmakers ,jobbing shops, toolsmiths ,farriers ,millwrights ,the wet side blast was universal in fires working hard all day. Did the big shops running large number of fixed fires in the usa ,use side or bottom blast ,or were the bottom blast hearths usualy portable in jobbing shops,

from what ive seen bottom blast was the rule here .. at least all the historic forges ive seen have been bottom blast .. side blast is older. i think that things like the champion 400 blower which was sold with a bottom draft tewere were common here and were extremely popular (by 1913 they sold over 500,000 of them and there are patent dates on um from 1902 ) also the industrial forges with side blast have a water tank to cool the tewer in the north where winters get real cold that can be a problem with freezing .

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Off the beaten track! Water freezing in a bosh of a tuyere can be treated with a rubber ball hence when water freezes and expands, ball takes the brunt of the expansion forces and not the cast iron.

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from what ive seen bottom blast was the rule here .. at least all the historic forges ive seen have been bottom blast .. side blast is older. i think that things like the champion 400 blower which was sold with a bottom draft tewere were common here and were extremely popular (by 1913 they sold over 500,000 of them and there are patent dates on um from 1902 ) also the industrial forges with side blast have a water tank to cool the tewer in the north where winters get real cold that can be a problem with freezing .


Pardon me for putting forward a theory, and no offence is intended here,

As your country is relatively new and the native Americans I believe had little or no knowledge of iron smelting whether by design or requirement, when these 'invading' forces (Known as explorers and pioneers) chose to exploit the new lands and introduced their cultures on the scene, they brought with them the ideas and history of their old countries of origin.

With regard to the side blast forges in use at the time, many did not use water tanks, but had problems with their tues having to be replaced due to constant use, and if it was a problem, then water cooled tues were made in the foundries which were relatively easily accessed in industrial areas, they also had to have a supply of water available and a tank of some form to contain it in.

Bottom blast forges don't need to be the size or more importantly the weight of a side blast forge, and consequently would be more attractive to transport via the means available at the time, horse and wagon, mules, canoes etc, and by individuals who needed to be as self sufficient as possible. In point of fact as we all know, all you need to make a forge is a hole in the ground, an air supply and some fuel of whatever type may be available in the area. Hence a bottom blast is the easiest option in those circumstances.

This may explain why they were originally apparently more favoured than the side blast versions.

No doubt other members with an academic background may have other ideas, but this seemed plausible and common sense, (probaly delete common sense, it seems in short supply these days and they don't use it in the education systems or political scenarios from what I see)

Blacksmithing is simple, you can only heat so much metal at a time,
You can only do one thing at a time when it is hot,
And if you make a mistake, you can leave it in the fire and destroy the evidence,
Brilliant, for an idiot like me what more can you ask for?

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No offense taken - I'm not sure anyone knows the answer for certain but I think the bottom blast pot came along as a natural product of the industrial revolution. I expect the early settlers used what they were familiar with from the old country (wherever that was) and those were typically side blast. It's also easy to build a very serviceable side blast using bricks or earth without a separate tuyere so you could set up a forge most anywhere if a bellows was available.

MT Richardson's "Practical Black Smithing" has several chapters on forge design and many examples shown are side blast but there are also some comments about bottom blast forges. I personally suspect they were probably invented when casting iron in large melts became more common so they could be produced in quantity.

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Oh man, I love side blast forges. Simply amazing. I've always been able to do what ever I wanted in a side blast. Can't say the same for a bottom blast. The problem for me with bottom blast forges is typically the fire pot. It's limiting. You have to size your metal so it will actually fit in the darn thing. Side blast I've always found accommodating. I brit friend of mine welded up the tuyere for me.

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I hope I am not to late to help you with your choice. I have both types and I prefere side draft over the bottom draft. I like the fact in a side draft you can shape your fire pot any way you like because of the dirt bottom. I built both of these for under $500.00 each.

HH

19595.attach

19596.attach

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Thanks guys

i decided to buy the side blast.....

i got it today!!!!!!:)

i will make a thread once iv'e set it up wit pics the thread will be called............... My new forge

thanks again
alec

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I have seen drawings of the tweer ? but I need advice on how far off the bottom should I set the outlet?

And just how big should the fire box be ( I'm not working on RR wheels Just Hammers Knives and such Nothing so large one person cant lift it.

I'm commited to side blast because I have to use Coak not Coal due to the smoke when starting coal. ( Neighbors > UG)

Thanks

Chuck

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Chuck,
Just out of curiosity, where are you getting your coke? I live in Sacramento and have been having a hard time finding coal (well, at least at reasonable prices). And I have a bottom blast forge that works very well--haven't tried the side blast. Let us know how it works.

-Chris

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