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I Forge Iron

Alternate fuels for a gas forge.


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I have a diamondback, as far as gas forges go it's soposed to be a good one.  It still can't even come close to the heat coal can produce.  I'm just curious, has any one ever tried propylene, Ametalene or Mapp.  These fuels get much hotter than propane and since I work for a welding supply and have access to these I've got a wild hair to try one of these.  My gas forge just does reach low end welding temp.  I'm thinking with propylene I can get an extra 300F and I can get sounder welds.  Or am I just crazy? :rolleyes:

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I did use up a leftover tank of propylene in a Diamondback just because I am cheap, and we needed it out of inventory. Worked fine, just not a great deal of difference. 


Any fuel will produce enough heat to melt steel, the major difference in most forges is the amount of insulation and the reflective qualities of the surfaces. AFAIK, only the Sandia/Gunter plan forges preheat the combustion air to wring more work out of the fuel/air mix.


When all is said and done, blown forges are more fuel efficient than venturi forges. However, the fan adds an extra level of complexity, as well as requiring a power source. We use a venturi forge at school because a blown forge would cost thousands more to get one "OSHA approved". A sudden power failure can cause a lot of "excitement" on a blown forge.


Relining and/or recoating the forge should be your first step after fine tuning the combustion mix. You did buy the choke plates and idler with your Diamondback, didn't you?

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