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Forging 4" billet


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I would think a 500 lb ram would move metal that thick faster than that but I have no experience in that size range. The biggest I ever tackled was 3" round 36" long in my 135lb say-mak hammer. It was hard work. I have messed with some small hunks of 4" but it was really too thick for my machine to forge effectively.

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4x4 is alot of seel to move. Those dies are 5 or 6 inches wide. that means 20 to 30 square inches of contact. Also pretty close to flat.
The hammer is doing a pretty good job, look at the end of the bar it is bulging a sure sign it's being forged clear thru the entire cross section.
I think there may be something to be gained by opening the dies a little farther , and maybe increasing the stroke, But on that size hammer
that is a fair amount of work. Maybe not worth it if you only need to do 1 piece. Michael thanks for sharing this I have a 125# they are great hammers.

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This is one of two identical pieces that are part of "Aileron" public art sculpture for Nashville. They also will have a 3"x6" mortis on the other end, I'll post some progress in my Aileron thread when I get a bit further.

Your right Tim, it should hit harder! I have struggled with the hammer since I set it up. When I purchased it ($2000) it came with the 10hp motor which is under powered by 1/3! I had to jackshaft just to get it to work this well. Hopefully shortly I will have the funds to replace the 10hp with a 20hp/VFD. Oh yea, the stroke is also half of what it is capable of but I have the die to material set up pretty xxxx close. Anyways this is what I have for now and I'm not complaining B)

Kevin, both are good but I would choose either of my air hammers, if they were set up!

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I see nothing wrong with what that hammer can do....I have yet to own a hammer that is big enough, hits fast enough or is cheap enough to repair.....and when I find one I'll hit work too hard, to fast and break something...probably me.

Visiting Scot Forge in Wisconsin and watching them upset a 3x3x6 foot ingot of stainless to a cube in one push at 60% power put many things into perspective for me as to what is possible vs what is likely.

Ric

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hey Danger
When you are getting up to these sizes it is easier on the body to use tongs that have had bar/horns/handles welded onto the reins to assist you with holding and turning your job (see photo) if you dont want to go welding bars on to your tongs you can make your link have handles on it as shown or else the place that I got these handles from used to have a wedge that would wedge the handle onto one rein (thats why the handles are offset to the link)
The other thing is if you are using a crane/lifting device with a forging sling to support your work, as you forge the bar down you need to keep lowering your sling so as to keep the centre line of your forging horizontal,( thats why it is bending as you are forging it)

Keep on forging

Phil

post-5537-0-84403300-1318482392_thumb.jp

post-5537-0-90105800-1318482502_thumb.jp

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Michael,

If I counted right, your hammer is running around 160 blow per minute. Mine is up closer to 200 and the one time I forged a piece of 4x4x8 stock I did not have any trouble moving it. It took me one heat to rough that out into a squre taper for a square anvil horn to replace a conventional heel that had broken off and a second heat to clean up the forging. Given the really wide range of blow speed and hardness that you can get from a Bradley Guided Helve, I would suggest you consider the 200 bpm set up when you get your new motor. I do not think you will be dissapointed. Also, when forging stock like this, you don't need any more than 2" of die contact with the work piece. That is the minimum amount needed to prevent a suck in type crack from developing on the end of the billet. A die bite any bigger than this just makes the stock bulge out on the sides requiring that many more passes to get to your final size.

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Thanks Patrick, one these days you going to make the trip and show me some techniques in massive metal movement! :D I hope to revise my mode of powering up the beast soon, as well plant my other instruments of destruction! I really did try and pinch off but when I got to the back it seemed a waist not to pull it back through, or should I be trying to turn every pinch?

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Michael,

Some guys do turn their work after every blow, but I don't follow that habit and it is not one that is used at work except when breaking corners. I do pull my work back to the near edge of the die if I am trying to be most efficient in drawing down big stock. To skip that is really making more work for you in the long run.

Patrick

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As Patrick said it is far more efficient to pinch off little bits at a time that your hammer can forge easily then to go in big bites that your hammer struggles with. As he said, take say 2 inch bites at time, that will increase the amount of tons per inch in contact with the steel, move the metal quicker and help to keep the job hotter cause of the heat the forging process produces. Pinching in small bites also will get you length, taking big chunks and basically flattening will get you width. (a usefull rule to remember) A small boy can eat the worlds biggest pie if he just takes little bites and works his way through it, if he trys to stuff it in, in one go, he will just choke.

Phil

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