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I Forge Iron

Blacksmith Calipers

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Here is my project for today, a pair of blacksmith calipers. They are almost done. I still have file work and scale to remove. I'm thinking of making a wing nut to hold the assembly together instead of using a rivet, this way I can adjust then lock down tight.

It's still in the rough but what do you think?


Thanks for looking! :)

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They are a little rough as you said, but very functional as is... I would probably try taking a low heat on them and run a flatter across the length of the arms and see if you can remove the thickening at the edges, especially as you get close to the pivot point. Save some bench work, and I like problems I can solve with a hammer;-) If you leave a smooth enough hammer finish, you can power wire brush it hot, and not need to do any bench work at all. I would probably mess with the shoulder behind the fork until it made a more graceful transition, but I am picky about that kinda thing, and slow because of it;-) You could even add a bit of file work right there at the transition, a couple of chainsaw files might be interesting:-) A wingnut is definitely a good idea, and can add a lot of character to a piece like this. This is another one of those projects on my to-do list, but so is finishing my gas forge... ;-)

The rest just gets in the way... and some of this is slipping;-)

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Nice job. A few comments if I may? Hard to tighten a wingnut without one of the arms moving, but can be do-able with crown (belleville) washers. I prefer them riveted separately with one arm longer than the other so I can tell at a glance which is width and which is thickness. Sometimes they are set rather close like 1-3/4 and 1-7/8. I'm sure you'll be happy with it in any event. A cool piece to be able to say "I made this"!

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Grant, your analysis is interesting and true. I had the same problem with the temporary bolt, hard to tighten down one arm without the other moving. I was already thinking how to solve this. You gave me the answer!

I was debating whether to make this caliper with the two arms riveted seperately on the handle as seen with so many. I chose this design, well, because I like the looks better... I'm starting to wonder if I shouldn't have designed it to the former.

Just to finish this piece, I'll go ahead and make the wing nut and just for fun hand make a couple of crown washers! :blink:

Thanks Grant for the advice!

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