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Hi from a U.K Newbie


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Hi guys / girls , first off what a great site , a wealth of knowledge and brains for me to pick :lol:

I'm Dwayne from Essex UK and work in construction , I've been lurking now for a few weeks trying to find a forge design for a first one I am going to use solid fuel , I haven't seen much about using anthracite but as I have an anthracite fuelled boiler and have it delivered at 5 ton a time, so it's cheap , I guess first question any thoughts on using this fuel , pro's /cons ?

So I started building the forge today , big thanks to Leeroy ( aquamanir ) for his design I just loved it jumped out of the screen at me , it's simplistic and aesthetically pleasing . What's more all materials to build it came free from work ,so just the cost of mig wire .

I still need to fit the blower and pipework to the freon tank following Leeroys' design it looks like 2 inch pipe. I was thinking to line it with an adobe mix of clay , kiln dried fine sand and couple of handfulls of ash . and place a used 4 inch diamond cutting disc with holes drilled in for airflow to the fuel . Airflow will come from a powerful 12v blower fitted with a variable speed control .

Freon tank is 300mm/12 inches in diameter , it's been cut to a depth of 6 inches with the cutouts at a depth of 4 inches . Nuts are welded on the side and threaded 10mm bar used for the legs , and I have a circular plate for the bottom of the legs to give stability and somewhere to place tools .

So these are my plans , now for a few questions .

1 How thick should I make the side walls of the adobe? , should it be cone shaped or bell shaped ?

2 Assuming after adobe I have 8 inches of hearth size left should I be aiming to blast air to all of the coals or say a 4inch hotspot in the middle ?

Well I guess thats about it for now , thanks for your indulgence , and look forward to your thoughts / comments , a couple of piccies of work so far


Last one 12 inch diamond disc , perfect for utilising the last of the heat for a sweet tea :lol:

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Hi Dwayne. Welcome to IFI. Looks like you have a good start to the forge. I can't answer about the mix to put in it, because mine is cast iron and I don't have it lined with anything. On the bottom of the forge pot make sure that you have a way for the ash to be raked out and fall down into an ash dump below. Good luck on your first projects and make sure to post pics of them. :)

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Hey Dwayne,

Welcome to IFI. Nice start on your forge. I burn coal (bituminus) and use a 55 forge. A 55 gal drum with a brake drum in the center. It also doesn't need any adobe/clay. I like the look of your forge. That is one that I may try for a portable forge. Of course everything I see that I like I want to build. Don't know if there is enough time in one lifetime to make all the things I like or want to make. But you have to have dreams I reckon.
Anyway, welcome again. Look forward to seeing your progress.


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Thanks for the welcome guys , I will make a home forge from a brake drum , as soon as I come across one , but ideally I would like to forge out and about , love to get out in my VW camper and wild camp so hence the 12 v blower and legs that screw off .

Ahh Mark , dreams are what make a man , my life has gone off on lots of tangents because of dreams , made for an interesting life and one hell of a ride

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Hi Dwayne, welcome to the site. Anthracite will work, not a personal favourite of mine, as Owen says it looks like a good forge for charcoal use, Check out our website www.blacskmithsguild.com and see if you can make it to some of our open iForge days, or we would be glad to see you any other time, if we can be of help with information relative to the UK feel free to ask.

Good luck with your forging, and I look forward to seeing how this project turns out, on the face of it I would have a few doubts ie leg diameter and a cutting disc for tue plate may be a little thin, but give it a try and see how it works first, after all the price is right.

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I am sorry that I have not seen your post soomer, I have been out of action for awhile, surgery, I am just starting to be able to do things again.

I think that the adobe should be in some what of a cone shape. I use charcoal so no experience with coal. I made the adobe about 1"+ thick, the bottom a little thicker, so that it keeps the air flow free moving. As with all adobe it is going to crack as it dries.
I just keep filling the cracks and rubbing them out with damp slurry until it had dried.

Yes the pipe that I used is 2", you need to go into a tee so that you can have a ash dump.

The fan-blower need not be powerful, just a adjustable for volume of air flow.

The holes in my grate are pointed to move air to all parts of the fire pot.

I hope that this helps.

Have fun with your new addiction ( blacksmithing ) and that is what it will become if you
enjoy it.


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