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I Forge Iron

New forge and burner

Rylan Fletcher

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I recently picked up a new forge from a local knife maker to replace my old one. It's a peice of 10" pipe 24" long mounted vertically on 1" plate. He was using it as a salt pot to heat treat in before he built a new one and gave me this along with a Bag of 1" koa-wool insulation to reline it with. For a burner he was using a 2x1 swedge with tubing going through with a hole drilled in the tube. I was wondering whether that burner would have the right atmosphere for regular forging? He had no way to adjust it at all that I could see. Should I make a burner like that or would I be better off using my 3/4 frosty t burner? 

Thanks in advance.




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You need to tighten up your questions a whole lot before we can provide useful answers.So, I will start with a couple of questions you didn't ask.

If you are planning on using that pipe as a forge shell, than don't. It is going to cost a lot of effort to cut and drill through its thick wall.

The one photo that looks interesting is of a very nice looking reducer fitting; it would make a fine beginning of a linear burner.


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Sorry for not being clear enough mikey, the forge shell is already cut and drilled, that's how It was given to me. All it needs is a new lining of koawool. I was wondering if I should use a frosty burner that I have built already from a previous forge or build a new linear burner using the pipe fitting in the picture 

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Rylan: You aren't going to be forging anchor chains or other really heavy stock you do not need heavy pipe like that. Vertical cylinder forges Ala Don Fogg's design are good forges especially for bladesmithing with old type burners. The newer burner builds don't run oxidizing flames to reach useful temperatures so you don't need the deep burn chamber to consume all the oxy. Don designed this type forge to prevent scaling and decarb of the steel.

What are your plans for a forge? Most of a forge's design has to do with what you need to heat in it. Once we get past the basic reality of hot enough with the correct atmosphere. Sure, you can use a T burner but look at how big the chamber is before you get to the door. You'd be heating 3-4 x the usable volume for reasons that no longer exist.

That fitting will make a fine linear burner though unless the small end is about 1 1/4" dia. it isn't going to heat that much forge to useful temperature. 

Frosty The Lucky.

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