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All very helpful info guys, thanks.

Of course, books! How strangely unsettling it is that it didn't even cross my mind to reference books. The advent of the vast internet can sometimes be quite limiting with its immediacy of information, it seems. That's my excuse, anyway haha.

I hewed some of the maple tonight with plans to make the charcoal tomorrow. I have made about 10 batches since I started a few months ago and that experience has led me to find that, with the can-in-barrel technique, there is an ideal size log that I should try to achieve. In the attached picture, the chunk on the left is about 1/2" thick by 2" wide and the one on the right is near triple that. Not only will it be easier to break up and thus provide more manageable bits in the forge, but the smaller chunk will also burn (bake?) in the can faster and with less tinder. Here's hoping that the same is true with a harder wood like maple. 

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Fleamarket report: 1 ballpeen, 1 crosspeen hammer US$1 apiece, 4 soldering coppers $5, small rockbreaker digging rod $3

Yesterday I helped a fellow smith pick up a band saw from an old junk filled garage, and this is what followed me home, some letter and number punches, and some old tractor drags or something, not sur

I have a smallish spalling hammer I "converted" into a straight pein and the balance isn't good. the Face side is too heavy making it darned tiring to use. I have given thought to cutting the face sid

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On 10/5/2020 at 5:07 PM, JHCC said:

I remember seeing a historical film about a group of First Nations people in Canada making a canoe. One thing that stuck out was that they put all their gathered pitch in a burlap bag and put that in a pot of boiling water. When the pitch melted, it flowed through the bag and left all the bark residue behind.

JHCC - check the National Film Board of Canada website, search for canoe - one film that comes up is "Cesar's Bark Canoe." Could that be the one you saw?

Don

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There’s also an excellent book called “Understanding Wood” by R. Bruce Hoadley that includes an excellent section on wood identification. He recommends making a clean slice on the end grain with a razor blade and examining at it with a magnifying glass to see the identifying features. He also provides sample photos of many different common (and uncommon!) woods. 

9 minutes ago, Don Shears said:

one film that comes up is "Cesar's Bark Canoe." Could that be the one you saw?

Found it: 

 

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"Kemppi Oy, is a Finnish family owned welding company, founded in 1949 by Martti Kemppi. It designs, and manufactures manual arc welding equipment, welding safety equipment and software, and comprehensive automated welding solutions. It also provides expert services in this field." Wikipedia

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46 minutes ago, Savage11 said:

I've never heard of this welding machine before, are parts and consumables readily available?

Yes it's a finnish made welder and I am in Finland. Kemppi is relatively common in europe and this machine uses euro plug torches so I can buy those from almost anywhere in europe. 

I'm not that worried about support when I buy a welder, I personally think it's most important that it's technology is primitive enough that I can repair it myself if something breaks.

That usually means simple enough control boards, transformer and rectifier based switching rather than inverter based. This welder is probably the last one by Kemppi before the tech becomes too digital, I wouldn't have bought a more modern one than this and had actually been looking for it's older cousin the Kempomat 250 initially. 

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A quick trip to the industrial surplus place got me a set of letter and number stamps, a heavy-duty rubber floor mat, and two boxes of 14” x 112” 80-grit ceramic belts that I will cut down and reglue at 2” x 90”. When that’s done, I estimate my cost per belt will be about $0.45. 

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(Not shown: a nice big snowblower.)

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Is one a favorite, John, your dear letter?

Uh . . . no, nothing interesting has followed me home if you don't count groceries, mail, etc. 

Frosty The Lucky.

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I will get myself 2 trunks from plum tree.

Neigbhour told me  that i can hack two of plum tree and make charcoal out of it.


He have it.

And good thing his house is half minute from mine :D

I will be making some charcoal.

Here old blacksmiths traditionaly  consider plum tree to be king of charcoal fuel.

 

 

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First garage sale in I don't know how long on Saturday.

Picked up this little bit of kit.

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I'm assuming this is one end of a machinist clamp I have vague memories of seeing.

 

 

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On 10/19/2020 at 1:52 PM, Michael said:

Picked up this little bit of kit.  I'm assuming this is one end of a machinist clamp I have vague memories of seeing.

I think your assumption is correct. They usually come in pairs, and are used to support clamping bars on machine tables to secure workpieces.  This block has sixteen different increments, (if used at 90 degrees)

The clamp bars have a slot down the centre to enable them to have a tee bolt pass through to locate in a tee slot on the machine table.

They are an alternative to a screw bottlejack as they accommodate smaller heights to suit component thicknesses.

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John has the right of it. Another use is to support a side of a part that isn't of even thickness so an area can be machined on the desired plane. Dad had a box of the things, tool box.

Frosty The Lucky.

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A 210 kg (463 lbs) S&H from 1940 followed me home in two ways. I found it for 400 Euro ($470) just days befor the movers packed my house. After 10 years of being stationed in Europe my family is heading back to the US. I masked the face but gave the sides a quick and light coating of spray paint since movers can complain about rusty objects.

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That’s a fantastic find and will be a great reminder for you.  However, shame on you for not being back a bunch more to take advantage of free shipping!!  What are the current weight restrictions?

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3 hours ago, Branding Iron said:

That’s a fantastic find and will be a great reminder for you.  However, shame on you for not being back a bunch more to take advantage of free shipping!!  What are the current weight restrictions?

That is just my resent find. The weight restrictions for an E-6 is 11,000 lbs, and I  am a bit over that. My other blacksmithing items that I  picked up over the years are a coal field forge (pictured just behind the anvil) 2 German post vises(40/50 kg), 1 French post vise (kg), my first anvil (80kg, WW2 German army) plus BLO'd oak stump, looks like a nice furniture piece,  and many tongs and hammers. If this was an antique furniture forum I would have even more to post!

Blacksmithing equipment is about 10-20 cents on the dollar out here, but if you have to pay for shipping that is the deal breaker. 

 

A couple day before the movers came my wife told me that she wants/needs to buy 400-600 Euro of clothes before we go, I told her "only if I can buy the equivalent in tools". She agreed, not knowing that I  was watching that anvil for a few days trying to think of a way to get her to buy off, and not be upset with.

Since my flight out of here is delayed 24 hours I will try to find time to post pictures of the above listed equipment that is following me home to the US.

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Shoot just shipping in country can be rough.  When I moved from 1500 miles from Ohio to NM, my company gave me 20K pounds allowance. We came in at 19700 and didn't move a bed, a couch or a TV; the majority of it was books and bookcases. 

I had to pay to move my blacksmithing equipment myself, palletized it and then more than 1 flat bed semi; (4 pallets went common carrier), and then it had to sit in the desert till the first part of the shop was built.  Luckily smithing equipment is pretty tough!

My wife then informed me that the cost of shipping it came out of my "new shop fund" and so my shop was smaller than I planned for and I even sold some irreplaceable items to get it 5' longer. (She got the house she wanted; but since it didn't have any outbuildings, I was to get a shop building.)

Currently my Daughter and her family: Husband and 4 boys; are in Okinawa and we are trying to chose presents that are either easy to ship back when they return or can be passed on to others.

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