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I Forge Iron

Safety Question


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I'm not sure if this is the right place to post a safety question, but here it goes. I made a small forge out of a galvinized oval tub and lined it with a thick layer of a combination of clay and sand. The pipe for the air delivery is black gas pipe and it is attached to the bottom of the tub with pieces of aluminum. The fire in the forge only touches the clay and the black pipe. My question is, is there any danger in using the tub? When it heats will the nickel coating burn off and become dangerous? Also, should I remove the aluminum, even though it is under the clay? I am very new at this, and don't want to make a mistake in the beginning. Also, what is the best scrap material to use in a forge that would be safe and fairly plentiful, and not very expensive? Thank you for your patience and advice.

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Hundreds of people have used such forges with no problem. If you are worried remove the Al as the clay will act as a good insulator.

"scrap material to use in a forge" Do you mean what metal is best to forge?

What are you making---what's good for a knife is lousy for ornamental stuff.

I used to go visit an ornamental iron co and get permission to raid their recycling bin for plain iron for ornamental stuff. (But it's pretty cheap to buy new *IF* you don't get it at big box stores and buy it from a steel dealer. (I can buy 3-5 times as much from a dealer than a big box store for the same price).

For blades car coil or leaf springs---the uncoated ones are a good source of material.

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Minceyjs, I've been using a forge like yours for about three years now. I burn charcoal and use a hair dryer for a blower and have had no problem.
A cheap source of metal I found is our local flea market. I pick up a lot of old files, read knives and fire steels,
Good luck

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Flea Market:
Ball peen hammer heads for hawks, handled tooling
Cold chisels, rock chisels, star drills: knives, punches, drifts
Wood Chisels: (socket chisels---small spear points), knives

Just remember not to pay too much---you generally *want* the trashed rusty ones and so should not be paying "good using prices"

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you definately do not want the "galvanized stuff to burn off" it will make you sick if you are inhaling the stuff...but as long as you protect it from the high temp u should be alright....the only thing wiht the aluminium is it melts way lower than what your forge produces ...again as long as its protected from reaching those temps you will be fine

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