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I Forge Iron

Architectural work

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I have been working on my first large commission project since moving to Middle Tennessee from out west.
Usually do a lot of "lurking" but after following the thread started by Jake in Alaska I decided I should share.
This project included a lot of "1st's" for me including fireplace doors, range hood, and drawer pulls.










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Thanks for the encouragement and compliments.
Quik60, I needed a way to tension the brass screen after finish and assembly.I sandwiched the screen between the 3/8 back parts and the forged front parts and drove a 1/4 in round bar to tension the screen. Would love to hear if there is an easier way to get the brass screen tight. This trolley door is in the same house.



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Johnny,years ago there was this snippet in the Hammer Blow(i think...).The gist of it was a pair of tongs,with loose,rotatong pads for gripping surface.The bitts were long and bow-shaped,and the idea was to reach across the frame with the bitts,on some angle,and grasping the screen from both sides to tension it by prying,using the inside of the tong hinge as a lever against the outside of frame as fulcrum.(Is that clear as mud?).

To stretch a surface in general,an artist's canvas or vapor barrior on a wall.one starts from the middle of one side,them the same on the side across,then cross-wise.And so on,going toward all corners.Of course,one then needs a way to secure the gain locally,spot-tack it somehow,as with canvas and staples.Don't remember how that's supposed to work...

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Try heating it, slowly then letting it cool slowly it often 'shrinks' the mesh, if not try cooling with an ice cube i.e. quickly, if you have a spare piece of screen try experimenting on that.( depending on the material one should work)

Nice job by the way!


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fireplace screen detail.PDFI guess I need to share how I tensioned the brass as it sounds as if the way I did it was simpler. Now , I came into blacksmithing from the fab/welding side so don't laugh.I used socket head cap screws to sandwich my assembly together after I sealed and finished all the parts.
I then punched a hole in a soup can which I placed over the capscrew and like I imagine a "drop the tongs" forge weld would appear I mig weld the allen hole up and "quickly" use the heat to head the bolt into a rivet.(The soup can catches the spatter from the welding) Then after touching up and waxing I drove the second round rod into the slot. Actually worked quite well.
I use coreldraw so please forgive my drawing :rolleyes:
Thanks Jake and Ianinsa for your options.I'll keep them in mind.
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Here's what I was taught, I took an old rather useless pair of tongs. I cut an old caliper slide in half lengthwise. (tube shape about 3" long, 3/8th inch I.D.

I welded each half to one jaw of the tongs. Now, when I make a screen, I grasp the screen and the frame (3/8th inch round bar) with the tongs and make a wrapping motion. Works very well, holds the screen and provides sufficient tension to not need any fasteners.

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The way that you did it was simpler for one posessed of the right tools,but it is neat,secure,and very clever,in my opinion.
To tell the truth,i've once held a what would amount to a conversation (had we had a language in common)with a German smith.
He specialised in picture,and even window frames(not many standard size openings in Europe).They were very neat and rectilinear,but still managed to convey the strong IRON impression,if you know what i mean,even "hand-wrought iron".
Well,he used them allen-recess cap screws,but countersunk.They looked really good,did not detract from the work at all,but somehow balanced right in there...
(Maybe it was all the wiskey that we used to communicate that so disposed me toward his work,but it was the only tongue we shared,so in a line of duty,et c.,anyway,i really liked the stuff).
Idle thoughts.

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