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Outdoor flue ideas?


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I'm not sure if this fits into the 'designing a shop' forum, but here goes. 

I have a very simple little outdoor forge made out of a lawn mower cover, with of course a t-pipe and ash-catching stopper. My air supply is an old hair dryer that works surprisingly well (It would get metal to yellow-white heat if I left it in the coals long enough). Thanks to an extremely generous gift from a blacksmithing friend I met last year, I have the tools necessary to do what I want to do in blacksmithing (Except, perhaps, more skill :)).

   Anyway, The one thing that really makes me NOT want to go outside and forge is that I have no way of getting rid of the coal smoke. There's usually at least a small breeze going outside, so I'm constantly dodging the smoke as it flies in different directions. It's toxic, and for some reason smelling it drains my energy real fast, even with the help of keeping hydrated while I'm out there. I need some kind of device, flue or no, to get rid of that smoke effectively. Does anyone have any suggestions for me?

 

Thanks! 

Matt~

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Matt: You bet a hood and stack will help. Go with a side draft hood, they can be as simple as a length of stove pipe on end standing right on the forge table. Just cut an opening in the side a little smaller in area than the stove pipe itself and face it towards the fire. Extend the pipe 6' or so and you're golden. Side drafts draw surprisingly well, search side draft hood here and you'll see just how well.

 

I know I'll never use an overhead hood again. Sure I'm primarily a gas forge guy but have used coal and charcoal and know what a pain it is to try keeping out of the smoke, ash and sparks. the breeze/wind swirls around YOU and just brings the smoke right to you. You're far better off getting the smoke well above you where the wind isn't effected by objects setting up turbulence.

 

That's my two bits YES, make a hood and stack.

 

How's the story coming along?

 

Frosty The Lucky.

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Thank you for replying, Frosty! Ok, I will definitely search the site for the side draft hood, it sounds interesting, especially since I've always assumed the overhead was the only way to go. :? Thanks for asking about my story--it's going really well, I've been taking classes from an extremely helpful and generous fiction writing teacher online, who has totally revolutionized the way I think about writing. I am in personal contact with him pretty much weekly through Facebook, so you bet my story has taken a turn for the better. The premise will still be the same, and the prison cell bar scene I described in the other forum may or may not be in it. If it is, it will be based on y'all's suggestions and input.

Thanks!

:) 

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Cool, there's  more craft to writing than imagination, as off putting as that seems to a person who writes. I caught a History channel show about Vlad the Impaler's castles in Walachia(sp?) and sure enough many of the dungeon cells had iron bars, including the one HE spent a number of years in. Of course those mountain ranges are much richer in metal resources than all the British Isles put together.

 

I've shifted my fiction writing to slightly more light hearted stories than earlier. I discovered I'm much better at irony than profound. Write what you know eh?

 

Frosty The Lucky.

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the last post i made in the topic has my side draft set up for my portable forge and that'?do=embed' frameborder='0' data-embedContent>> topic (see link below)   has my side draft set up for my portable forge and that's the draw on it with 4ft of ten inch wide pipe sticking out of the top of it so far i am quite happy with it i know if i had a bigger expansion chamber on it it would most likely draw better but that was what there was room for and even with a light breeze blowing it still draw 75% of the smoke up and away

 

 

the link was goofing up my post so sticking it down here and crossing my fingers

'?do=embed' frameborder='0' data-embedContent>>

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My first shop had big hinged windows I could swing out and prop open to catch breezes - but I always had a smoky shop because my overhead hood did not draft well. I finally hit upon hanging a sheet of iron from one edge of the hood that reached down to the hearth, which would heat up and start a column of air moving up the stack. It also created a natural wind break so ambient breezes were less of a problem. It was not as efficient as my current side draft but better than nothing.

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Matt, if you haven't recently checked out Bigred's link that's above I would recommend it.  He just uploaded photos that show the dimensions of his side draft.  My forge which I roll from my garage onto the driveway needs one for the same reasons as yours and I plan on making one in the next 2-3 weeks.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Side draft is fairly simple, for an out side set up you can stack two 25 gallon drums, and just cut an opening about 8x12 in the side, 8x8 will work if you put it 4 inches up. If you need a sun shade, wind break and hood, you might try a geriatrician on Glenn's turbo charged forge, use a 55 to make a wind shield and hood, then use a 25 for a stack.
As for inside the side draft works great, that's wear the design. Originated, it allows you to get large prices in and out if the fire, often with the help of a crane, with out hitting a hood.

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Turbo? It is a 55 Forge with a Supercharger attached. (grin)

 

And yes it does work very well. I had a student that used the forge with the supercharger. We built a forge to take home with them on the 3rd visit. The next conversation was where do I find the parts for the Supercharger. I never knew a forge could smoke so much. :)

 

IForgeIron.com > forges > solid fuel forges >  The 55 Forge Blueprints  > #3

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Mosley yup the set up i have could be and has been used inside as well as outside most of the welding i did on mine was cosmetic and convenience the only hard part i fabbing up without welding would be the ring to fit the pipe onto but i bet with a little fiddling it could be done as it is the front and back panel are just screwed on so that when they burn out i can replace them with minimal hassle

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  • 8 months later...

Well, like "novicesmith15" my learning curve on actual forging has come to a halt because I have to work the kinks out of my forge first. The forge itself works great and through trial and error I learned to build a bigger fire. But the smoke chasing me around the forge (because I have to move it outside) is too much to have a good hammering and learning experience.
I have a very small Buffalo Forge and my actual forge area is only 16" in diameter. So what I am going to try is a 6" side draft flue. I have the six in pipe and I am giving up that much area in my fire pan. I am also going to put a skirt half way around the pan which will help support the flue pipe and I am going to attempt to construct a small hood over all this. I'm going to try to rivet all this together so I can just pick it up off the forge and move it all inside when it cools but when I get it done I will post pictures and results - good or bad.

I am enjoying this hobby and a lot of it is the building this stuff for me but I also like to heat metal and get good and making shapes. But the coal smoke is the issue of the day now.

Good thread "novicesmith15" and hope all this moves us forward in this trade.

Lisa

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   one way to cut down on coal smoke is switch to coke, it doesn't smoke as bad & that's a good thing for a public demos 

but its amuch Hotter fire & will go out with out consent air input & can burn up your forge fire box if its metal

coke is also cheaper :)  Now my forges are side draft with a water tank fir box is brick lined in a clay filled box sand works as well

 

this my portable set up the shop forge is the same thing with side draft hood & Bigger

post-562-0-95264800-1398092153_thumb.jpg

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Well I am new to coal and coke. So I believe I have to take my coal, burn it and coke my own. Is this correct? I have a ton of Bit coal and am breaking it up and adding it to my "coked" fire a little at a time and then when I am finished with the forge I cool the coke for the next time.

More to learn..... ;-)

Lisa

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I buy a 55 lb bag of coke so theres no green coal to deal with,witch makes very little smoke compared to coal

one of my student is 70 + years old guy & he cant take the coal smoke @ all & my inside forge is vented real good but still

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Interesting that you can buy coke.  I think where I live I'm lucky to be able to buy coal.  So using pre-coked coal is probably not an option for me to buy.  But I will get a hood/flue system worked out and then I'll be fine.  There is a lot of good information out there on Flues and how they work and I am going to use that information to make a system that will work for me.  Then green coal won't be an issue.

 

Lisa

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The flue dosnt have to take up pan space, use a larger pipe, say 10-12" (two chimney pipes zipped to gether, a stack of 5 gallon metal buckets, colvert, 25 gallon grease drums, etc.) and set it behind your forge, but close to the fire, maybe 1/2 on 1/2 off, or hange it, a good stack will draw the smoke sideways.

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I "second" Charles's suggestion. 6" is not enough. A side draft hood doesn't need to be over the fire at all, just close. You could even make a separate stand for the flue.

 

Note: it does draw poorly until the flue warms up. I have an extra piece that hangs over the fire to help encourage the smoke to go in. I remove it after the fire gets going. That's probably a point you can ignore, as you work outside. I work in my basement and even a little smoke going rogue will get complaints from the civilized folk upstairs...

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