Sign in to follow this  
Janghas

Practicle learning in Tin Smelting

Recommended Posts

Hi! I'm Janghas from London and I am looking for help in learning to smelt cassiterite concentrate (tin). I'm looking for any schools, courses or private teachers from were I can get a hands on feel of the process involved. I can travel in the UK and would like to have any feedback that could help. Thanks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Welcome aboard Janghas, glad to have you. Sounds like you're set on who to talk about smelting tin. Please post pics as you learn the craft. I'll probably never have occasion to smelt tin but it's a cool thing to have a handle on. B)

Frosty The Lucky.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We have bags of cassiterite here, as our town was founded on the discovery of tin ore. I know that Brasso has managed to smelt some to metallic tin but I'm not sure of the process involved. I'll ask him if he would care to comment on this post.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Have you read up on it in De Re Metallica by Agricola?  Does the tech level you want to smelt at make a difference:  Ancient world, Medieval, Renaissance, Industrial Revolution, Modern?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Janghas, as Aus said, I did manage to smelt some metallic tin from cassiterite, although not a lot. All I did was mix the cassiterite with fine charcoal and a spoon full of Borax for good luck, threw it in a crucible with a layer of fine charcoal on top to keep oxygen out, and set it in the open forge. I wound the handle for about 15 minutes, allowed it to cool somewhat, then tipped the whole mess out and allowed it to cool right down.

Not expecting results, I was quite surprised to find a few blobs of shiny metal among the rubbish. A few bits the size of corn kernels and more like bird shot. 2 or 3 trials later and I had just over an ounce of metallic tin.

Next time I will grind my tin finer as I was using alluvial stuff that I panned myself and was a bit coarse. Also I would not charge the crucible as much because it expanded on heating much more than I expected.

Good luck with your experiments and stay safe.

Brasso.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I thought the original poster may have replied to your comment, Morris, but I guess it's an old post and he's long gone. I would have been interesting to learn of his experiences smelting cassiterite, but I doubt he'll be back.

Meanwhile, I think you should refine your technique and produce small engraved ingots of metallic tin for the tourist trade here. You would do very well!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

Sign in to follow this