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I Forge Iron

Autoclave stainless steel small propane tool making forge


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I have finally come up with a revolutionary way to incorporate both high temperature and high pressure into one forge.... well not exactly.  But I did find a shiny stainless steel portable autoclave at the scrapyard that is about 10" diameter and 12" long, with a cool bolt on removeable top lid which should make changing insulation a snap.  I did not have the ability or tools to weld stainless steel so I had to bolt on all the accessories, which in retrospect added a lot of work to the build, but I am happy with the results and the stainless' reflectivity may add a tiny bit of efficiency to this forge.. and definitely some flux resistance. 


The forge opening is 5 by 4" and again is about 12 inches long, so a chamber of about 250 ci.  the lining is 3 inches of kaowool plus a little extra wherever I could get a little more in.  the kaowool was rigidized and then coated with itc-100.  it does have a 1/2 inch kiln shelf bottom.  the rear opening is a piece of channel, and the front opening is just a flatbar supported with angle... I do believe I will make this shelf larger so that I can place firebrick around the opening.  the flange that the burner sits on is 1 1/2 inch pipe that is welded onto a circular piece of metal that I robbed off of a home satellite.... space-aged huh?   the bottom support is also the base of the satellite.  I plan on making a bench mount stand that this  flange fits into as well as driving a piece of pipe into the ground in my back yard, because outdoors is my favorite place to forge... when it is not 20 degrees below.  This should make a very stable and flexible mount... maybe eventually I will even drill a hole in my concrete in the garage and have a "post mounted" forge. 


I did what beginners should not do and modified frosty's T-burner design, but it turned out quite well.  It is actually kindof a "crucified" frosty's burner since I used a 4 way pipe instead of a T-connection..  this allowed me to make a compression fitting that allows the jet to be inserted at different lengths into the mixing chamber which is absolutely not necessary since once it is tuned it is never moved again.  Also I used a holesaw and cut out the threads on the horizontal portions of the four way fitting to add a little smoother air flow there.  The forge runs pretty hot, and I have been forging some 4140 with great success. but I have not gotten it to welding temperature, so I think the burner design is not perfect or maybe I just need to crank it up past 10 psi.  I may be switching to a Trex hybrid burner when money allows.









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That's a down right pretty looking forge, mount some gears on it and it'd be very steampunk.


You modified the T into a cross burner!?! <GASP!> Good for you, I've only tried it a couple times without much success so I just went with what worked. 10psi isn't very high, turn her UP, let's see what that baby'll do.


Well done.


Frosty The Lucky.

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yes, the workmate is temporary, will eventually mount it on a pole driven into the ground.  I would never abuse my workmate! it has served me well and is a great design, for lightweight and general handiwork.  they should make a blacksmith version that weighs a couple hundred more pounds

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