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Curious Question.


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i know how you make wrought iron, and i watched this video on you tube of them making a samauri sword, and they make steel in a furnace, is there anyone who could tell me or point in the the right direction to make steel, like wrought iron, do you just use iron ore, and then add carbon to it?

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A bloomery can produce anything from wrought iron to cast iron with steel in the middle. It's a function of time the charge has in contact with the charcoal fueling the furnace and temperature of the furnace. So you can make "natural steels" that are high carbon blooms. Certain areas in Europe were famous for them---usually famous for their armour and blades too.

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really? wow your adventurous, I would love to see how it works out. This is a process I am extremely interested in as well..
I heard on a documentary that it took something like 4 days of un broken attention to the fire to yeild good results.. I could be wrong though lol.

one little question, do you need fire brick? or will red brick suffice?

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I'm just using the brick that i use for everything else, it could withsatnd about 2800F without anything going wrong, so ill take some iron and break it up and make it small and start this weekend, fun....just kidding....it takes like 3-4 hours from what ive learned.

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Cast iron *is* crappy stuff. if you put it into the furnace you will NOT get steel out of it. You need to *REMOVE* carbon from cast iron to make it steel. Stuffing it into a furnace full of hot carbon compounds and CO is *not* the way to remove carbon from it! Look at "puddling" or the osmund or waloon processes for making steel/wrought iron from cast iron.

If you put small bits of wrought iron or mild steel into a furnace you could get orishnahagahne out of it (steel), this can be done in a simple stacked firebrick forge as well. Ric Furrer did this as part of his Quad-State demo on "Three ways to make steel" (Crucible, blister and orishnahagahne). I got to pumb the box bellows for this as I was his assistant for the demo.

One problem in building a smelting furnace is you need to have it insulated enough that it can get to the high temps needed for a large enough area to do the reduction necessary to turn the ore to metal. Stacked fire brick is usually not good enough to work very well. We've use cob a varient on adobe and had the walls 4-6" thick and dried out!

On the NOVA program they were making hundreds of pounds of wrought iron-steel-cast iron at one time. When we do a run for a 15 pound bloom it takes 4-6 hours of "fire time" usually.

Please find out what is actually going on before trying this.

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dont worry Mr P, I strongly suspect it wont happen. Theres a fine line between B.S'ing, and B.'S'ing

However mate, If you do get round to making a couple of hundredweight of charcoal, and building a furnace and smelting a bit 'o' steel before this weekend (working round your school day of course) be sure to take lots of photos - I would love to see them.

I might have a new toy in a day or so, not used the tpaaft , but the 'JNTMAIAHFTB' (throw money at it and hope for the best :) - fingers crossed for me, its a lilttle (well 450#+ darling)

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If you get a $ 5 / disposable camera they burn you a DVD of the film / pictures when you get them deveolped - saves a load of hastle, you can upload them dead easy.

You will want photos of your first smelt - go to that much effort and you will want to look back on it.

Most mobile phone cams will upload to laptop via I.R, pics are pretty good quality (someone with your programming expreience could sus this im sure)

Heck, if youve not got a spare $5/ get the smelt done and I bet a few of us would paypal you a $1each to cover it when we see the smelt pics uploaded.

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