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Hi gents, I am going to forge a couple of Braces to use at our summer camp in the pioneering program and was wondering if regular 1/2" diameter cold rolled 1018 would be strong enough to resist the deflection of applied force while drilling medium sized holes in beams say... 1 1/4" holes in green timber. This pic is what I am after making.

 

Bill

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Cold rolled will be a lot softer after forging.  If you are concerned about flex, bending and "give" I would suggest using automotive coil spring and normalize after forging for a tough tool.

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first no picture. Second cold roll 1018 is twice as expensive as hot roll

I cannot get an image to load and the url for one like it is not allowed. There is no option available to edit the post (as the image did not load the first time) so it is basically a simple brace with nothing other than a 4sided chuck for an auger type bit. 

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Here I attached the picts from that link for you if they pull it down.

 

 

post-25608-0-07878300-1421137487_thumb.j

 

post-25608-0-21494700-1421137499_thumb.j

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Here is a video a friend sent me the other day of a brace made from re-bar. Not sure if re-bar would be a good material.  But might help with design ideas.  

 

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I usually see braces, slightly more modern versions of the pic you posted, for $5 and under at most flea markets and swap meets. Not trying to disuade you from a project you want to do, just pointing out that this is a tool that is readily available on the second hand market.

 

The style you posted is sometimes referred to as a Gentleman's or Gent's brace.  A smith made version is usually all metal, with a "cage" style pad (top handle) similar to this.post-182-0-85330000-1421178666_thumb.jpg

 

That said, this could be a fun project, akin to making your own hacksaw frame. Drifting the tapered square chuck  and getting everything aligned would be key I think.

 

And once the braces are done, it would be a snap to make some center bitspost-182-0-22940700-1421178704_thumb.jpg

 

I just made a square tang tool for a friend who needed a specialty brace attachment and was surprised at how easy getting the square tang taper was.

 

 

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Drifting using the shank of a messed up bit would be my first try. (I buy trashed bits on a regular basis and the ones that are not recoverable become parts of plant sculptures---flattened they look a lot like octillo.)

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I am sure wrought iron would be perfectly able to take the torque let alone MQ mild steel. Especially if you are drilling green wood.

I certainly don't think that my hands would take the roughness of spinning rebar through them for very long as per the video. Just asking for blisters. While on the video I would also stick with the classic design and make a mushroom shaped top handle so you can push it with your chest rather than requiring strength of grip.

The lower brace handles that I have seen were turned and drilled, then split rather than sawn and glued back together in between two upsets on the brace if that is of any help.

You may consider making a couple of braces with different offsets/throws, one for speed and one for torque. If people of different strengths and skill are going to be using them, or you have different diameters of bit.

Alan

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Of course the older drills were simply T handles for doing timber framing.

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sweet thanks everyone. Yes one of the reasons we are going to forge them is so that we can tell the kids (8-17 years of age) that we made them just to make real to them the way many pioneers had to make their own tools.

Bill

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A-36 maybe 1018, summer camp---maybe not what age are the campers? Why not use 5160?

 

How about a jack handle?

 

About 9/16 dia and tougher than MS.

50 cents or a buck at the flea market.

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