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10 minutes ago, C-1ToolSteel said:

Should I tell people that I forge with coke instead of coal, because I'm converting it to coke as I go along?

 

If you were in Miami Florida and said that the police would be knocking on your door, looking for your stash of coke.:D

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I pertty much explain the process to visitors concerning coal to coke aka breeze vs other solid fuels available.

Never tried wood. I used to buy hardwood blocks, about 4" x 1"x1" for fire starters  and never thought  to try them in the forge as fuel source.  I may have to look for any leftover stash and try it.

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When I use my Whitlock forge I make sure I have a pile of wood ready.  I have a hairdryer hooked up to mine and it burns like no tomorrow.  It gets my metal glowing red.  I built a coal forge but it was to deep and not wide so it ruined my tips (glowing bright yellow with air burning around it)  If you have free wood its the cheapest way to go.  Takes a little longer, but for a hobby knife maker its fun.

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Were you putting your tips down in the fire instead of horizontally up in the reducing zone?

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On 1/4/2010 at 1:39 AM, reefera4m said:

One note, during this process you can create a lot of smoke, a whole lot depending on the type of wood. The same as converting coal to coke.

Is there a way to make charcoal without large quantities of smoke? It seems like a necessary by-product, logically, but I have illogical optimism.

I'm in a suburb with a 50 ft yard (thank God) and I'd like to keep the good relationships I have with my neighbors. A wood forge or charcoal-making setup would be ideal as far as fuel supply goes, but it sounds bad for smoke. Even with great ventilation the smoke will still end up in my neighbourhood. 

 

Thoughts?

 

Edit: this place really gets you thinking. I could, if smoke was a problem, go up to a relative's land 30 minutes from here and charcoal burn once a quarter. Make some kilns, perhaps!

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Would a regular fire be too much smoke? You can always build a fire and scoop hot coals from the fire to the forge. If that's too smoky you'd probably be better off going to your secondary location to make charcoal in large batches. I don't know how much smoke comes from a large indirect retort that recirculates the combustion gases to help heat the wood. When I make small batches using a small barrel in a larger barrel it's pretty smoky for about an hour or so until all the steam stops and thick white smoke stops coming out and I seal it up. There's still a little smoke from the fire that is in the larger barrel but not anywhere near the amount that comes out of the smaller barrel that holds the wood to be pyrolized in the beginning.  I think if you have somewhere you can go to make large batches that would be what I would do. Good luck and post some pics of the process if you decide to make a large kiln or retort. I think folks would be interested. 

Pnut

Edited by pnut

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Wood fires get uncomfortably hot when trying to forge in the coals formed at the bottom and tending the fire to maintain a coal bed to transfer coal to the forge ads a complication. If you google charcoal making, particularly the guys making willow charcoal for black powder you will find some exelent kids.

 

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