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VaughnT

Forging a Row Lock...

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In my eternal quest to find new and interesting videos on the internet, I ran across this little tidbit.  Of particular interest is the tongs used to secure the piece to the form for the final shaping.  A bit ingenious and definitely useful in different applications.

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Interesting video surprised their still using the old belt drives , good suff 

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Thanks for the video, I love seeing stuff like this.

Frosty The Lucky.

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What struck me was how heavy the stock they started with. Maybe it was just my eye but it looked they were trimming way more parent stock than was in the lock.

Frosty The Lucky.

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What struck me was how heavy the stock they started with. Maybe it was just my eye but it looked they were trimming way more parent stock than was in the lock.

Frosty The Lucky.

I noticed the same thing,  Could they be worried about fish mouth under the light hammer?

 

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Looks like he used a pair of open ended wrenches, closed one up and made tongs from them! That's great thinking there!

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I noticed the same thing,  Could they be worried about fish mouth under the light hammer?

 

I don't know. The hammer would only be light if you're forging that size stock too cool and it seemed slow for the straight forward drawing they were doing.

Personally I would be making the shafts two at a time. Rough forge one shank, then the shoulders and pins, then the far shank and part the double shaft from the parent stock. Finish form with tongs and part the pins. The cradle is easy enough to just forge but I don't know why such heavy steel for it, the finished cradle is no where near 3/8" x 1".

Yeah guys I'm critiquing a process I've never done myself. Not so different from everybody with a "better" idea for an old job. Eh?

Frosty The Lucky.

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It's a very modern style process with period tools. Excess length seems to be to keep the power hammer off the weld between the handle and billet. Then the pin forged out enough to be able to strike the steel over the hardy without hitting the shoulder, excess tennon length provides a more stable end to hold while working the end of the pin. I'd imagine these were probably upset in some sort of header and not drawn.

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What struck me was how heavy the stock they started with. Maybe it was just my eye but it looked they were trimming way more parent stock than was in the lock.

Frosty The Lucky.

I was thinking the same thing. If nothing else, I'd have almost wanted a bit more material and made 2 back to back out of the same blank. Cut between the two tenons after shaping the boss with the spring die.

 

I was also thinking how basic most of this was compared to their statement about needing to be done by a "Master". I'd think any qualified Journeyman, or even an experienced apprentice trained to do those functions over and over again, could do much of that. I haven't done a ton of power hammer work, but I expect that if I spent a day or two doing it repetitively, I could pound out respectable bases even at my limited skill level. I'd bet the same would go for the hoops as well.

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I would like to have seen an original one, if they were wrought iron, I would think they could have been made from one piece, 

All just speculative of course, but different strokes for different folks,

Neat useful video though.

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I would like to have seen an original one, if they were wrought iron, I would think they could have been made from one piece, 

All just speculative of course, but different strokes for different folks,

Neat useful video though.

Most of the oar locks I'm familiar with are cast bronze.  Wrought Iron would be less corroded by sea water than steel but would have needed extra care.  However whale boats were intensively money conscious operations with limited life expectancy and highly industrial dirty operations.  It could have been bronze was too expensive for a disposable item. 

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I was also thinking how basic most of this was compared to their statement about needing to be done by a "Master". I'd think any qualified Journeyman, or even an experienced apprentice trained to do those functions over and over again, could do much of that.

I thought the same thing.

 

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I was also thinking how basic most of this was compared to their statement about needing to be done by a "Master". I'd think any qualified Journeyman, or even an experienced apprentice trained to do those functions over and over again, could do much of that.

Well shoot, ... how could they justify the "authentic, period correct reproduction" pricing, ... if they didn't treat it like it was Ye Olde Rocket Science .....

 

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Most of the oar locks I'm familiar with are cast bronze.  Wrought Iron would be less corroded by sea water than steel but would have needed extra care.  However whale boats were intensively money conscious operations with limited life expectancy and highly industrial dirty operations.  It could have been bronze was too expensive for a disposable item. 

I understand whaleboats spent long periods at sea, and carried their own blacksmiths for making and mending all the equipment in use aboard, flensing irons, harpoons, fixtures and fittings, probably a bit of dentistry etc etc, Certainly would be capable of bronze casting rowlocks, 

Did the rowlocks fit in sockets or just plain holes in wood ? if sockets, bronze would allow more efficient rowing when in pursuit of whales.

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The skill is not so much in pounding them out but in designing the tooling and determining the starting stock size. That is not what I would describe as basic blacksmithing knowleged. Once you have the tools and know how to use them then yest, the job is pretty straightforward.

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And there's where it gets a bit "sticky" .....

Those extremely weight-conscious, shipboard Blacksmiths, could never carry "specialized" tooling, ... or waste material and fuel, in the fashion we see in the video.

While much of a Ships Ironwork was made "ashore", and therefore not limited by the strict "economies" imposed on shipboard operations, ... Whaleboats in particular, were "expendable", ... and subject to routine repair and replacement, during a Voyage.

I suspect the two-piece "design" of the Oar Lock in the video is correct, ... but have reservations about the "authenticity" of the techniques employed in it's production.

 

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