Aaron J. Cergol

A regal rounding hammer

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Admanfrd-I used 3/8" diameter 4140. Forged it to an octagonal cross section, and tapered the struck end. For planishing tools and more specialty shaped tools I would forge them down to shape and then file/grind, but these chisels I just ground the edges on. Heat treat; brought the business end to non magnetic and threw it in oil. Left the struck end as normalized. I tempered with a small propane torch, heating about half an inch down the shaft from the business end. Watch the colors run until I hit a dark straw. I would usually temper something like this to a bronze, but that proved to be too soft and I needed to re heat treat. 

 

Mitch; I have a professionally done video in the works of the forging of a claw hammer. Should be complete in a few weeks. 

 

Aaron

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Ever thought about nitriding it as well? I have heard that you can with 4140. also, do you anneal the piece you are working on when you carve it?

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Did you by chance use a belt grinder to get the surfaces ready before the chisel work? I believe I'd hang that beauty on the wall!

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Nitiriding, is that similar to case hardening? I heat treated the hammer after doing the chisel and filework as it was 1045.

dntfxr; yes, I anneal before any of this begins. after annealing, I pickle in vinegar, or heavily wire wheel the scale off (It KILLS files). Then I go to the belt grinder and prepare the surfaces. I rough it out at 60G and then do a pass of 120 over that. This gets the surface good and even, making it much easier to file on.

Another note, after chiseling, and even center punching, the metal will "pucker up" around your design. Be sure to file this smooth after. Otherwise it leaves a somewhat sharp burr and looks unfinished.


btw-I'm working on another one of these at the moment, a smaller one though, would it be worthwhile to take some progress pics?

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oh yes, I'm currently working on one for myself (meaning it might get finished this millennium) It has file work, and will be browned with silver inlay. 

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Nitriding is basically surface hardening on steroids. NH4 fumes put hydrogen onto the molybdenum and this creates a SUPER HARD casing.

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Nitriding is basically surface hardening on steroids. NH4 fumes put hydrogen onto the molybdenum and this creates a SUPER HARD casing.

 

 Actually that would ruin the steel, the problem is called hydrogen embrittlement. and why do you think moly is needed in the alloy for nitriding to work?  It works on many metals.    Nitriding is a process that puts nitrogen into the surface to create case hardening, which is only a surface treatment.

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Aaron could you please enable the Macro function on your camera and take those photos again? It looks like you camera was set to lake distance shots so it is difficult to see the profiles on those chisels.

Thank you, the hammer looks great. I want to do this on my next rounding hammer.

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I read a heat treatment book section on Nitriding and it said very few select alloys such as the 41xx series can do it. It said that it is a process of creating a file hard case on the metal. How this ruin it? And excuse me, I meant to say that it puts NITROGEN on the surface, not hydrogen.

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