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I Forge Iron

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Hello everyone! Long time no post. ..

I know the info is here somewhere, but haven't time to sift through everything to get to it.
I will be quenching some long blades in oil. One is spring steel and one is mistery steel (just found it, made it into blade and even unquenched it seems to be flexible, but it WILL sty bent in I put all my weight on it)

I experimented with some quenching on small sample pieces of steel so that's ok.

My problem is TEMPERING. Please give me some advice on whether I need to temper each blade after quenching and how.
All I have to work with is charcoal, blowers, random tools and a lot of yard space. How can I tell when I should pull it out of the fire before the hardening is ruined?

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I have read that you can take a HOT piece of steel and place the back edge of the blade on it and watch the colors run to the 'business' end. Once you see the right color quench. I'm sure there are better ways and you better hope some else chimes in with them :)

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Yes you don't want to draw temper in a fire as the blade edges will heat up faster than the center---the exact opposite of what you want!

You may want to build some "tempering tongs" tongs with sideways steel masses on the ends that you heat and then grab the center of the blade with them to let the heat soak towards the edges.

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When you do not have the time or do not wish to take the time to research this subject it will set your work back alot. Let me explain: Both of the answers you got were to the point and informative. Basically this matter of heat treatment including hardening and tempering is a very complex one. However I am proof that anyone that wishes can learn to be effective in using basic shop tools and equipment to do that part of blade or tool making and have it work out well. It is not a matter that can you can get by on without a bit of study. Everything you will need to learn is in this forum. Looks for stickies. They are permanent and will give you the information in a basic form to get you going.
It is simply easier for you to review them than it is for anyone to type all of that information in a reply to a question such as yours. That answer surely would let you know and others that read it. what to do. However it will just as surely be lost as the list of q and a's in the forum roll on out of site. That is why the Stickies are made permanent. One more thing to think of is that whatever you do you should keep notes on what you did, what the steel was and how it worked out. You will want to repeat some of your work and not repeat some of the things you were not happy with.

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