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I Forge Iron

Material Safety


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Usually you want to avoid any metal with coatings, zinc, cadmium etc. There are other metals such as valve stems etc that should be avoided. Always use caution when cutting into closed containers. Who knows what was in the container originally, or what was put into the container just before you got it?

Best way I have found is to post the specifics of the metal (where it was found etc, and photos) in the IForgeIron forum and ask the membership for suggestions. They most likely can assist you with precautions.

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It's a bit simplistic but the old rule was "if it rusts it's OK" is a good starting point.

Note that as well as plated/coated steel; older paints, particularly on steel, tend to contain quite a bit of lead that vapourizing in the forge and breathing is *not* a good idea.

The other one you might run into is a Be Bronze. Be can be very toxic so if you are unsure on a piece of brass/bronze---like it was an old tool---I would skip using it for anything but a tool.

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