HardHead

My First Project...A Forge

Recommended Posts

Those of you who read the newcomers thread may have seen a couple pics of my forge already. I wanted to post this thread to show the progress and to get some tips for the way forward. Glenn, I applied what I think you meant to the hood, the downward piece and the triangles. Hopefully that will work cause it's fully welded now! Here is my materials that were used;

-1/4" sheet metal table and hood

-1/2" x 4" fences ( had a piece laying around rusting so I fugured why not)

-3.5" pipe legs

-1 1/4" round stock leg supports

-3.5" pipe tuyere 

-Pot was found in a scrap yard, 1/4" thick round pot. 10" dia. 3" deep.

-1/4" sheet metal grate

-chimney is tied to 8" or 9" (can't remember) industrial vaccum designed to vaccum welding fumes. It's super strong and pulled smoke afrom a fire I made all the way at the end of the table.

-Blower is Ven Tech 190 CFM Variable speed with control box (not installed yet, it's in the mail!)

- Painting it in high temp black 

Anyway, I gave it my best shot based off what I have read in books and input from you all. Take a look and let me know if I'm on the right track.

IMG_1408.JPG

IMG_1411.JPG

IMG_1414.JPG

IMG_1438.JPG

IMG_1442.JPG

IMG_1446.JPG

IMG_1449.JPG

IMG_1451.JPG

IMG_1452.JPG

IMG_1453.JPG

IMG_1454.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 Hardhead, I see a lot of camo in these pics. I will assume you are in the military.....sooo, thank you for yer service !  The only problem I see...(and it may be camera angle) is you firepot is under the hood. Maybe I'm wrong, but will you be able to heat a 5' piece of stock in the middle over the sweet spot of your fire? If not perhaps a mouse hole door in the back of the hood will solve that problem. Nice build, I would be happy to fire that up and test it for you. Just a small distance problem.........         Life is Good          Dave

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Dave51B said:

 Hardhead, I see a lot of camo in these pics. I will assume you are in the military.....sooo, thank you for yer service !  The only problem I see...(and it may be camera angle) is you firepot is under the hood. Maybe I'm wrong, but will you be able to heat a 5' piece of stock in the middle over the sweet spot of your fire? If not perhaps a mouse hole door in the back of the hood will solve that problem. Nice build, I would be happy to fire that up and test it for you. Just a small distance problem.........         Life is Good          Dave

Dave, 

Thanks for the reply. Yes I'm in the military in South Korea. My guys and I run a Allied trades shop here. The fire pot is under the hood, so will definitely have to add the mouse hole to do longer pieces. How big of a hole do you suggest? Should I make it so I can close it when not in use? Thanks again, I will update as we do more.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You can always add a mouse hole later, after you run into that project where it is needed. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
23 minutes ago, Charles R. Stevens said:

So can we say it is a "milspec" forge? 

I suppose that you could! Haha although I have had many military items that were junk. Hopefully you meant the contrary! :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was a grunt back in the late 80's. Humped a lot of that "junk" lol. 

Most of us work from the side, so moving the fire pot out from under the hood (smoke will draw sideways) and then slot the sides of the table so a long bar goes threw the center of the fire. 

You are a welder, no problem...

On a side note, the quartermaster's movers are going to love you!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, HardHead said:

Dave, 

Thanks for the reply. Yes I'm in the military in South Korea. My guys and I run a Allied trades shop here. The fire pot is under the hood, so will definitely have to add the mouse hole to do longer pieces. How big of a hole do you suggest? Should I make it so I can close it when not in use? Thanks again, I will update as we do more.

 Heardhead.....Not to be snotty or anything but the size of the mouse hole will depend on the size of the long stock you wish to heat. As stated, you could move the fire pot, or wait till that long stock project comes along.

 On another note...I do appreciate your service, I trashed a knee in high school football and could not pass the physical to join up and have always regretted it....                   Life is Good               Dave

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow! That is built like an M1A1 tank!!! You could do a cut-out at the bottom of the hood to get long stuff over the pot. You probably will need to use a larger flue pipe...10" or 12". Can't tell just how big your current one is. Thanks for your service, HardHead!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I knew a guy once that was on a tank course and after hitting one of the targets he noticed a piece of leafspring had become disassociated and made them stop the tank while he ran got it---he later forged a sword from it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Make sure to take your feet out of the forge before you light the fire. Don't ask me how I know this.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ok the forge is complete. The Ventec blower came in yesterday. I thought I was buying an US made product but it was made in china.... It works great, the variable speed is worth the money alone. Added the access door to the end of the table as suggested. I will wait until the need arises to do a mouse hole. The forge is amazing, I have used it three times and have had no issues. The vaccum is awesome, Absolutely no smoke/fumes make it outside the hood. No stress or heat cracks in any welds. I intentionally burned a white hot fire in it with the blower on full blast to heat test the forge. No issues yet. All in all I'm very satisfied with my forge. I do wish it was lighter though, that way I can move it around the shop when needed. May put locking casters on it. The other scrutiny I have with it is I need to add something to hold my iron up when it's in the fire. In some cases the iron was too heavy to just put the end in the coal and have it stay put. I need something to support the other end. Maybe some sort of swinging arm. 

 

IMG_1479.JPG

IMG_1480.JPG

IMG_1481.JPG

IMG_1482.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Looking good! Some guys position their anvil as a rest (forge would need to be close in height) or fabricate a stand - there are many ways to skin that one! In the the last photo you appear to have the steel angled down into the firepot, this isn't ideal; you really want the metal going straight across the top of the firepot through the reducing section of the fire. Glenn has posted many times (sticky here:

) about the shape your fire should be and the reasons for not angling into the firepot. Also the bucket under the ash dump appears to be plastic, there is the possibility that the material coming out of there would be hot enough to set a plastic bucket on fire so perhaps change that out. Otherwise, happy forging!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

RobbieG,

The current ash catch is a heavy duty rubber drip pan. I would be extremely surprised if it caught fire, point taken though, we already have plans for a metal tray but haven't started it yet. I will have to read Glenn's post on fire shape. I know I have experienced a couple pieces exceeding critical point by pointing it down, other pieces seemed like they needed to be deeper to get it to a forging temp. I'm working on making a hammer from a axel from a 5-ton truck. That steel is extremely hard, I couldn't even mark it with a punch when it was cold. I had to take the grinder to it just to scratch the metal to mark the center point! That piece I had to bury it in the coals to get it hot enough. Thanks for the pointers, I will take them and add em to my tool kit!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Easy to make a 3rd hand to help hold longer stock.  Even something as simple as welding a short piece of pipe at a corner of the forge and dropping in a piece of round stock bent into an  L. push it next to the side of the forge when not needed, pull it out when you do need it.  In my shop I've used a chain from a ceiling beam with a hand forged hook I can move up or down on it to get the right height---or to hook the end of the chain up above head height and ignore it when not needed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

gallery_1_534_21953.jpg

Find the sweet spot of the fire, about 2/3 of the way up the fireball, and insert the metal level into that area of the fire. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 hours ago, HardHead said:

RobbieG,

The current ash catch is a heavy duty rubber drip pan. I would be extremely surprised if it caught fire, point taken though, we already have plans for a metal tray but haven't started it yet. 

No need to make a tray, just get a 3 to 5 gal. metal pail/bucket and slide it under.  The handles make for easy removal.  Keep it simple.  The rubber pan probably might not catch on fire, but if you burn a hole in it then you have to mess with escaped ashes (if you're inside on a nice concrete floor).  Great looking forge!

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