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Need help with Metalworking merit badge


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So I want to start teaching the Metalworking merit badge in my troop.  It all seems pretty easy except for one requirement which I have copied and pasted below.  If you have any suggestions I would love to hear them.



a. Work-harden a piece of 26- or 28-gauge sheet brass or sheet copper. Put a 45-degree bend in the metal, then heavily peen the area along the bend line to work-harden it. Note the amount of effort that is required to overcome the yield point in this unworked piece of metal.


b. Soften the work-hardened piece from requirement 3a by annealing it, and then try to remove the 45-degree bend. Note the amount of effort that is required to overcome the yield point.

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That's pretty straight forward. Finding sheet that light may be a problem but call around.


I'd cut strips about 1"=1.5" wide and 3"-4" long. Be sure to debur the edges or it'll turn into a 1st. aide class!


Now you have the stock what is the point of the merit badge? It's several fold:


#1, Estimate or gauge a 45* angle.


#2, Make the bend to spec after deciding how.


As scout master YOU are the one to decide what the bend should look like, sharp corner or round, etc.? You'll need to take into account another purpose of the badge test.


#3, determine how much hammering it takes to work harden the piece by hammering till it's hardened. A 2oz. ball pein, fast light blows taking into account hammer marks and counting blows. They'll be able to determine how hard it's getting by the effect of the marks left and by how it gets more resistant to flexing.


Part 3 makes me think a rounded bend is preferable, I'd have them use a piece of 1/2"-3/4" round as a mandrel and let them hammer over it to work harden the piece. A round bend will also be easier to straighten. It'll be much easier for the boys to gauge how it's hardening up as well as being easier to fatten back out.


#4, You do know how to anneal copper alloy yes? A Coleman stove, butane torch or charcoal BBQ fire (think lunch) works just fine. Then let them flatten the curve out and agai note how much work it takes to do it.


Having them keep written notes would be another positive learning experience for you all. <wink>


Hope that helps.


Frosty The Lucky.

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Always good to see guys working to help scouts learn. That reminds me that I have to talk to a friend of mine and remind him that I'm available to bring mt forge and anvil out to a troop meeting for to do a demo or let the scouts try some blacksmithing.


I had a lot of great experiences in Scouts and had the opportunity to do things I never would have been able to other wise. Everything from getting an inside tour of Gran Coulee Dam ( inside the turbines even!), to tours of Navy ships and subs as well as SAC bases, a chance to do spelunking, rock climbing, ice caving, shooting and archery, as well as many many others Scuba I never got to do in scouts, but later II got to help others scouts learn.,


Have fun from an Eagle Scout.

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