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Jack-O-Lantern

Poor mans guillotine fuller and something I'm not sure what to name

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I do not have welding equipment, nor do I have a square hardy hole. I spent some time thinking of how I could weave and wrap up rebar to act as a slide on spring fuller. All the ideas were pretty complicated and I realized none of them would work very well. SO; I chopped up an old stake bar for concrete forms and made this simple yet effective guillotine fuller. Its ugly but it works.

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Any improvement recommendations (many I'm sure) are welcome and requested. Remember I don't have a welder or a square hardy hole.

 

Our next item is......I dunno. A thingy? I made it with a hand grinder. Its purpose is to help draw out blades and such. I thought it would be much easier to stamp several peen marks at once rather than do it by repetitive strikes. Once the work piece is formed by whatever I should call this, I flip it over and smack away for a much quicker drawing out process. Is it a fuller block, a mini swadge, junk? I'm not sure.

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Again, please recommend improvements. I hope these little monsters can assist fellow newbies, and maybe even vets if they make the grade or whatever.

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Do you have a round pritchel hole?  if so taking a longer section of your rod and bending it to fit down in the pritchel hole will work instead of a hardy hole.

 

Sell 8 S hooks and buy an old lincoln tombstone welder!  (Mine cost US$40 and is probably older than I am---and I just celebrated my 30th wedding anniversary this week!)

 

3rd way:  take a section of angle iron and drill and bolt a piece of say 1/4"x 2" strap on it: drill holes in the strap at intervals and bolt two sections of your grade stake to it at the appropriate offset for your project.  This tool can be held in your vise using the downward section of angle iron.

 

Next your "peening swage" has WAY TOO TIGHT AND ABRUPT troughs----think of a sine wave---you want to move the metal to the sides not shear it.  You will also find that just forging with a properly dressed peen is faster and easier, where such tooling helps is when you are using a power hammer or press.  However a similar tool can be used for making an even ladder pattern in pattern welded billets using the "deformation, then stock removal" method (vs the stock removal then deformation  method...)  It is still too sharp edged though.

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Do you have a round pritchel hole?  if so taking a longer section of your rod and bending it to fit down in the pritchel hole will work instead of a hardy hole.

 

Sell 8 S hooks and buy an old lincoln tombstone welder!  (Mine cost US$40 and is probably older than I am---and I just celebrated my 30th wedding anniversary this week!)

 

3rd way:  take a section of angle iron and drill and bolt a piece of say 1/4"x 2" strap on it: drill holes in the strap at intervals and bolt two sections of your grade stake to it at the appropriate offset for your project.  This tool can be held in your vise using the downward section of angle iron.

 

Next your "peening swage" has WAY TOO TIGHT AND ABRUPT troughs----think of a sine wave---you want to move the metal to the sides not shear it.  You will also find that just forging with a properly dressed peen is faster and easier, where such tooling helps is when you are using a power hammer or press.  However a similar tool can be used for making an even ladder pattern in pattern welded billets using the "deformation, then stock removal" method (vs the stock removal then deformation  method...)  It is still too sharp edged though.

 

Yeah I got 7 pritchel holes! I was gonna try a bend but I thought the fuller would just spin all over the place. Thanks for the lincoln tombstone welder info. I had no idea such a thing existed. I was thinking the peening swage (thanks for the name) would make alot of messy folds and such. Im gonna knock some teeth out of it. Again thanks for the welder heads up.

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I see used AC only stick welders all the time on CL from $50-150 depending on condition and brand. I've seen them even cheaper at yard sales. ( guess most don't really want to be bothered selling for less on CL.

 

The old Craftsmans, Daytons, Century or Montgomery Wards ones are just as good, if not better in some cases, than the Lincoln or Miller counter parts. Those old transformer stick units are built like tanks. They just keep going and going despite a tremendous amount of abuse. Even when they are "broken", most times it's something as simple as a loose wire or a bad switch and it costs next to nothing to repair them.

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Stick is very versatile and they make sticks in almost any alloy.  The old welders can be better than new ones too as they were copper wound instead of Al; check the innerds for mouse nests and if they have a fan make sure it's still working. 

 

Now if you are really lucky you can find an AC/DC welder and pretend you are a pro.

 

I'm a pretty, hmm anything I can think of here will be removed, weldor but it's still great for making tooling for the forge and armoury.  I do NOT weld on trailers, load bearing structures, etc. I know my limitations!

 

My old tombstone plugs into the electric stove plug (then thence out the kitchen window) so most of my welding gets saved up till my wife is out of town...

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If you have lots of pritchel holes make tools to mount to two and they can't turn.

 

About the thingy. Intuitively it's a good idea but blacksmithing deals with really basic physics. One fuller with X joules of impact force will move X amount of steel X distance. Divide the force over two fullers and move it 1/2 as far, divide it over 7 and you'll get less than 1/7 the movement because you'll be trying to compress the steel between the fullers.

 

Your thingy is a good thing but probably not for what you thought it was, I see a number of swages rather than fullers. The sharp edges do NEED to be softened or it's a cold shut machine. You can grind the fullers to different radii for a more versatile tool.

 

Keep thinking of things, you just never know when an idea is a gem.

 

Frosty The Lucky.

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Jack,

 

Does your fuller work?  If it does, you've solved a problem for yourself.  I've seen some spring fullers made out of round stock with the middle section forged into a thin ribbon and bent so the whole thing is like a bobby pin.  The round "ends" are the fuller section with the springy middle holding them apart.

 

As for the block tool. You could probably convert it into a swage block with enough grinding.  I saw a similar set up at a hammer in where the block was pre-heated in the forge prior to forge welding two thin round pieces.  The block was set on the anvil just before the pieces to be welded were ready.  The heat from the block helped "buy time" for the weld and the groove kept the pieces aligned so it was easier to tap the weld together.

 

The "Tombstone" name refers to the shape of the welder not it's model name.  It's an AC/DC arc welder.  Make sure you've got a 30A 240V receptacle you can plug it into.  Most electric clothes dryers use the same size receptacle as the smaller welders require.  

 

I know Chicago requires everything to be done in conduit so hiring an electrician to properly install an outlet is going to run considerably more than the $40 bucks to buy the welder.  I suspect the reason tombstone welders are so cheap is because most homes don't have a place to plug it in.

 

Depending on what you have to work with it might actually be cheaper to pursue an oxygen acetylene torch set up.  It's capable of welding, heating, brazing, and cutting.  

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Nope the old tombstones were AC welders; they sell both varieties nowadays with the AC/DC about US$100 more on the used lists. Sometimes you can find someone selling of an AC/DC for the DC only price....they tend to go fast

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 Make sure you've got a 30A 240V receptacle you can plug it into.  Most electric clothes dryers use the same size receptacle as the smaller welders require.  .....

 

Depending on what you have to work with it might actually be cheaper to pursue an oxygen acetylene torch set up.  It's capable of welding, heating, brazing, and cutting.  

 

 

Most welders that are 220/240v use a NEMA 6-50P plug that is different than the older 3 prong dryer plug, or the newer 4 prong ones. However they will run using the 30 amp circuit of the dryer, at least at reduced output. As Thomas mentioned I used to run my tranny stick unit off the 50 amp stove outlet in my old apartment, and ran a 230v extension cord out the kitchen door to the drive way. Later I changed the range plug over to match the dryer outlet in my new apartment, and ran the cord out the basement window. If you have some basic knowledge of electricity, it's not real hard to make up an extension cord or "adapter" to run off a dryer outlet.

 

OA kits can be very useful for a number of things, but avoid the small "kits" with tiny cylinders Depot and other places sell. They are fine if you are a mechanic and just need to cut or heat one or two bolts, but for what we do, you need bigger cylinders. I'm working right now on converting one of my OA sets over to oxy propane. You can't weld with Oxy propane, but you can heat with it just fine, and you can use bigger rosebuds than you can with mid size acetylene rigs.

 

I often see complete rigs with cylinders on CL relatively inexpensively. Just make sure when you buy it, that you can exchange the cylinders at where ever you plan to get gas. Some places are picky about exchanging large cylinders. They often are lease/rental cylinders and places won't exchange unless the cylinders are from their company, and you have an account. Small to mid size cylinders usually aren't as big a deal to get exchanged as most are "owner" cylinders.

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DSW,

 

Good catch, I should have mentioned that welders range in size. My Dad had an old Montgomery Ward one with 30A plug on it. There was no welding on laundry day before I became an electrician and installed a proper receptacle in the barn.

 

Making an extension cord isn't free either.  #10 is rated for 30A but by the time you add the total circuit length, you've lost some capacity to voltage drop.  #8-2 SO cord is running about $1.75 a foot so a 50' extension cord costs more than the used welder. Stepping it up to #6-2 SO cord would likely double that.

 

Plus it can be a significant risk having a high amperage cord running through the house.

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A lot of places are even selling 230v 25' or 50' ready made extension cords, though they almost always are rigged for the NEMA 6-50 ends. As mentioned though they aren't inexpensive. The  8 ga 25' one I just looked at was about $70 and the 50' one was about double that. Still, it's possible to get welding for less than $200 for a used AC tranny stick machine and 50' of extension cord. Less if you are a good scrounger and know where to locate the cord for less, say you have a buddy who works on heavy electric stuff...

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DSW, could you name some places that carry pre made  230v extension cords?  I had to make up a 10 footer but for $70 I would sure get a lot more freedom around the shop.  Right now all my welding and plasma cutting is restricted to one corner.

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I have bought premade 50' 230V cords for work from Airgas welding supply, so somebody out there makes them. Any good industrial/welding catalog should have them.

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DSW, could you name some places that carry pre made  230v extension cords?  I had to make up a 10 footer but for $70 I would sure get a lot more freedom around the shop.  Right now all my welding and plasma cutting is restricted to one corner.

 

 

PM sent.

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Just make sure its a 220 volt welder and not a 110. Those 110's are cheap for a reason. They make better boat anchors than welders.

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Well gang, they did'nt work. That desperation fuller did'nt bend but requires God like hammer control to stay put. The piening swadge actually did o.k. with all those teeth, but I think it needs more support then my weighted cable hold down. I'll figure it out. Currently I'm aggravating myself with tongs of all things. I'm sick of my pliers and want to move away from spike knives. I know I shoud'nt blame tools and materials but....rusty rebar is terrible! Its my nemesis!!! I saw that dude Brazell or whatever work some good stock and it behaved like clay. I do however know that conquering rebar will beef up my skill greatly. Oh well. Keep smakin!

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Jack,

 

I suspect a lot of people find their progress limited because they start with rebar and pliers.

 

Rebar can have all sorts of stuff in it that can dramatically change how it behaves under the hammer.  I had a couple pieces that were very hard, and one that was quite soft.

 

The difference in workability between a simple mild steel and a high-carbon steel can be amazing.

 

Stuff like car coil springs can be very hard under the hammer and it doesn't like to weld to itself.  High carbon can also burn at lower temps than mild so it's much less forgiving as you're learning fire control.

 

It rarely get's mentioned so I'll add this as well.

 

Beginners are often encouraged to make S hooks, drive hooks, nails, and other small scale stuff.  The idea is that you'll develop all hammer control and techniques with smaller stuff that's easier to bend and move.

 

Nobody mentions that if you start with little stock, there isn't much you can do to fix a screw up.  You mentioned Brian Brazeal.  His youtube video's are very good because they show how he progresses from high speed rough shaping to final smoothing or planishing.  He does a lot of forge to finish demonstrations which I really appreciate because it's what I'm striving for.

 

If you're whacking on a piece of 1/4" stock there isn't much opportunity to make that transition.  Smaller stock requires more hammer control than the thicker stock.  It burns easier and it goes cold faster too.  So it's my opinion that beginners should start with heavy mild steel stock and progress to thinner stuff as their skills develop.  3/4" round or square stock is a good starting point.

 

There are blueprints for tong making that don't require welding or special tooling.  Using a length of bar stock you could forge the mating sides on opposite ends of the same bar to keep from having to use pliers while you make them.  Brian Brazeal has a youtube video demonstrating that as well. 

 

Finally, I don't know what you're using for drawing out but I modified my cross pein to have a flatter profile on the advise of Thomas Powers, and Peter Ross's video's.  It seems like a sharp pein would work better but it really doesn't.  The flatter peins don't mar up the metal so much which makes it a lot easier to get to the final finish.  It also seems to act more like a rolling pin than a chisel.  

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Something to think about is your wasted effort with your swege tool.  A hammers peen puts all its force from one strike into one peen.  Your tool divides that energy between 8 peens. So it is not really saving you any work. Just a thought.

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Yeah Steve I getcha. The block was to make up for hammer control. I'm better than I was but still. I thought a sledge whack or 2 with the block would spare me some marring. I think I'll just make a long ways valley and use it to color temper blades and the like after I heat it up. Thanks to all for the useful info as usual. I like my little setup as of now, but I'm interested to see if improvements would be made by using actual coal, a heavy anvil, good stock, a welder,  and a much wanted hardy hole. Oh and a vice that works. If absolutely nothing changes then I know I just need practice. :)

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