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Poz tong corrections

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Hi. I have been having a lot of trouble with creating clean bends on tong jaws. It always seems like something is bending that is not supposed to be bending.

Recently, I saw an article on afc-abana on how to make "poz tongs". The bend is done with a U shaped bending fork, and there are instructions to isolate the heat to keep the bends precise. It looks good, but I don't think that these tongs can be made in 20 minutes.

Doing a search on "poz tongs" shows the following interesting page:

The Best of "Theforge" - Vol. 1 of 3

It give a correction to the fullering orientation. Is the EC valid? It does look that way.

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Try getting it hot, isolating the heat zone with water by selectively cooling the area you do not want to bend, and bending against a jig. Another way is to use a ox/ac torch to produce a short heat and bend against a jig. Photos of what you have now would help us understand what is happening.

I just located the link to Poz tongs
They are using a bending fork from 1/2 inch rod with 7/8 idside spacing between the rods. They isolate the heat zone to a short heat, or short length of heat in the metal, so it bends around the 1/2 inch rod only in the heated area.

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I have made numerous pairs of poz tongs and use the directions from Rob Gunther from the AFC. I use a torch to isolate the heat. The trick is the isolated area has to be "HOT" and if the metal creaks while your making the bend stop and reheat or the metal will stretch and thin in the bend and weaken the jaw. Hope that helps. I really like them and they are probably my most used tongs.
As far as making them in 20 minutes I've never timed myself making them. I suppose it's like anything else if you make enough of anything you pick up short cuts and some things become second nature and things go quicker. I don't get to wrapped up in project time, I spend to much time sitting in my chair enjoying the moment and looking at my progress:p to watch the clock.
I did time myself making a batch of roses once just so I could see how much time to figure in on the price. I probably couldn't make poz tongs fast enough to make any money selling them.
As far as the "correction" I have seen that too but never tried it.


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Hi John, and others. I just got some time at the forge, and made a set of 1/2" Poz tongs. The fork and isolated bending heat really cleans things up, but I still did not get the bends quite right. I located the fuller marks with soapstone (which disappeared) and nicks on the edge of the anvil. The problem is that the isolation of the heat determines the curve of the jaws. So, if making the tong ends on opposite sides of the bar (to avoid using tongs), it is difficult to make them exactly the same. Also, the second taper is hard to get quite right. It does not go all the way through the length of the section, but rather ends about half way. This affects the length of the jaw and the width of the boss, two very important dimensions.

As for the EC I mentioned above, Ron Reil's site is correct. Unlike the original instructions, the fullers should be on opposite sides of the bar. The first fuller is the inside of jaw curve, and the second fuller is the offset of the handle on the inside. So, both fullers face in across the rivet. Therefore, they must be on opposite sides.

Also, there is a slight error in the dimensions. It is better to use the overall length in the drawing and not the text. 7" going from 5/8" down to 1/4" will more than double the length of 1" stock when drawn, by volumetrics.

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It takes lots of practice to get consistant results for making tongs, making anything for that matter. My instructor's take on it, was to make 50 copies of whatever you are making, throw away the first 45 and make 50 more based on the best 5 of the first batch. Repeat. Once you've done this about 5000 times you can consider that item mastered. Repeat the process for everything you want make in a consistant manner.

About 30 more and I'll have my first 50 tongs made!

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  • 9 months later...

Had some "me" time at the forge the last couple of days and since we needed some more tongs for the 4H program this coming year I made 2 more sets of poztongs consisting of 1/4",5/16",3/8" and 1/2" poztongs.
I followed the steps in the AFC best of the bits which is basicly the same as on the AFC web site and put the fullers on the side it says to and used a torch to isolate the heat. I have more trouble splitting the bits than I do anything else but thats just me. I started with 16" of 1/4"x1" so my reins would be a bit longer because we use propane forges for the majority of the classes. I have 2 more sets to make. It takes me about 30 min a pair more or less(usually more even with a power hammer for the reins).
Here are some pictures of the finished sets. I still need to stamp 4 pair with the size and my initials. These are my favorite tongs for holding small round and square stock.







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