territorialmillworks

What can I do with these?

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I'm now the proud owner of a 5 gallon bucket of 1.25" steel balls. They came out of an old ball mill used to crush ore for gold extraction from around 1950??? You're probably thinking the same thing that my wife said..Why would you bring them if you didn't have any use for them. So help me redeem myself in her eyes...she already said no to painting them for christmas tree ornaments......

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I think it's a great score! I would be more than willing to take them off your hands to save you any marital conflict :)
I think the saying, "if I have to explain, you wouldn't understand" would be appropriate here.


Mitch

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Glenn, that is an outstanding idea !!!!! I actually have a piece of round stock that might just be big enough. Oh, I am going to be in so much trouble....think I'll go and wake her up right now !!!!

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Weld onto a piece of 1 inch OD square tube and sell hardies.

Smash hot in a press with interesting shapes and call it artwork.

Make your own ball mill.

Are they high carbon, mild, wrought?

I'm sure there are more ideas out there.
Phil

Plan a funeral after reading the previous post
Phil

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Build a big set of those fishing string supported clacking back and forth curios like the small ones found on every insurance saleman's desk in the world, except build in a stand that allows the inertia to explode shaken up beer cans placed in between the balls.

Sink one into a hardy blank, and have a nice spoon swedge.

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I agree with the suggestions for making knives and hardies, as those are the two items I have heard people made from such balls.

Or you could weld two balls to a short length of 2" square and sell them to folks with trailer hitches. :D

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Fodder for the 1.25 inch bore cannon you always wanted to build?


Times two. When life hands you lemons, make a lemon cannon!!!

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Keith, ball mill balls are often high manganese alloy so if you're thinking of welding them to anything you might want to read up on the specifics of welding high manganese alloys.

I actually have several probably exactly the same from a concrete plant ball mill. They're all high manganese alloy. You won't hear ME ask you why you brought them home. No siree!

Frosty

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I like the ball on the hardie post idea.

You may want to keep several and (0H dare I say it) build a box. Fill the box with ball bearings and use them as roller bearings to move heavy objects. (Jr Strasil used golf balls but it is the same idea)

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I gt some balls like that from our local concrete/cement plant. they were between 1.5 and 3 inches in diameter, and not perfectly round.... I agree with the high manganese alloy concept,I used up half a 7 " cutting wheel to slice one in two.... but that being said... once in half you have the parts for a raising stake, and a dishing hammer. a little welding and viola... ( 6 times with welding.. high manganese is not fro beginners .. or me .. apparently..)

the only other thing I am coming up with is a flail.... or attitude adjuster... a stick a little chain.. would be great!
Cliff

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Step #1. Go to the flea market and buy a few rusty cast iron pans.

Step #2 Hang the pans from a tree in the backyard.

Step #3 Find a serious sling shot.

Step #4 Challange the wife...

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If they are so hard to weld, what about drilling and tapping? That could work for several ideas including hardies.

The sling idea is good, but then you need to learn about slings that you swing around, practice being David vs Goliath. 1.25 inch would be on the small size for a sling stone, but the weight might be about right. I understand that sling sized stones were about the size of a baseball.

You have enough in that bucket to try all of these ideas too!

Phil

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if you get sore from blacksmithing, or your wife "grounds" you from the forge you can always make abig sling shot... I got in trouble because I had some time, 4 foot 4x4's, bungees,leather, and the oaks beside the house prouduced good big acorns. I aimed at the cat and sang " another one bites the dust"...

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Not generally a good alloy for knives; stick with ball bearings for knifemaking!

However, armour makers in the SCA love them for stakes I recently shipped a large priority mail flat rate box of assorted ones to a fellow to make stakes from. (I built a wooden box that just fit inside the post office box and put a label on it as well as the cardboard box)

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They sound like they would be the right size for the top ball on a coat rack taper a 1/2" round down to 1/4" wild the ball on spared the other end and make a hook but 4 of them on a 4x4 make a quick base your in the chip's send the rest to me.

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pkrankow, I have also found them hard to drill..... the high manganese makes them very wear resistant... hence hard drilling... but cobalt bits and taps might do it.. any idea where to get cobalt taps?? I had a 1/4" 20 carbon or High speed steel tap I was using in annealed spring steel...and I broke it... need stronger taps...

Cliff

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if drilling and tapping, use a carbide bit, and use a drill size a little bigger than you would for mild steel. probably want to use spiral taps as well, they tend be harder to break. i usually use a 3/16 inch bit for tapping mild steel, but then my drill press is a pos with a lot of runout so it comes out just about right. i forget offhand what size your supposed to use for 1/4"x 20, i think a no 7? go up 1/64" from that and see how it works. pretty sure machinery handbook has drill sizes listed according to the % of thread you want, but i dont have it nearby.
if you're looking for drills and taps of every single variety and material, look to msc (Industrial Supply Equipment from MSC Industrial Supply) or macmaster carr. msc has a wider variety, mcmaster carr is easier to use.

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