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I Forge Iron

First forging


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         Well, I had been lurking on here for it seems like years. I have collected a few anvils, hammers, and tongs in the time being but never built a forge due to uncertainty on which route to go and of course getting side tracked with other project. Well i finally built a burning a few weeks ago and to my surprise it works pretty dang well but I did not have a forge to put the burner in. I have once again stalled due to over researching to the point I was not sure what method to use in building my forge. I am border line perfectionist and i will research something to death. Anyhow, I bought a couple large kilns a while back in hopes in using the firebrick and coils to make a small aluminum melting furnace but that too had stalled but, I did put some of the fire bricks to use. I just stacked the bricks to make a little forge and I must say this little setup does impress me for being just hacked together for now. I have no idea what temp these fire brick are rated at but I have enough from those kilns to put this make shift forge together numerous times if the bricks starts to crumble too bad. So now I have no excuses, I have an anvil, hammers, and now a forge to heat some steel in. 

So yesterday i got a wild hair and figured I am going to the local salvage yard to see what all they had I may be interested in. I ended up getting about 200lbs of coil springs in various sizes, a pair of leaf springs and also a semi axle shaft. That was my first trip through the salvage yard but by far the lightest. I ended up talking the yard owner into selling me a couple HUGE forklift tines. One is 6" wide x 2.5" thick and the other is 4" wide by 2.5" thick. The pair came to just over 500lbs and yes today I am sore from the tugging and lifting of those forks out of the junk pile by hand. I had to go get one of the employees  to help me load the big tine as I just not eat enough Wheaties to get it loaded by myself. Now Not only did I have the anvil, hammers, and forge but now I had a huge pile of various steel to cut up and start hammering on. This is my first real forging which started as a .5" coil spring. I must say I was impressed with just how little the steel moves under the hammer. I had really never forged anything of this size so it took me a bit to start seeing how to get the metal to move easier. I do think possibly I need a wee bit more heat in my forge as well but overall hamming out this knife wasn't too bad for my first one. I know the next one will go much faster. You will notice the tang area I did not flatten out as I honestly did not expect to get a decent shaped bade at first but, it started shaping up. I hammered in the bevels and tried to get the blade as close to the final shape as possible. I ended up just using a file to fine tune the profile and honestly I am almost afraid to start grinding on it on my belt sander (belt grinder build is next on my list). So after the file work on the profile I discovered a slight bend in the blade edge but the spine is nice and straight. I also thought maybe I should throw it back in the forge and hammer the tang out for a full tang and i could fix that very slight bend in the edge of the blade. I think if i was grinding the blade down completely the bend would grind out but I want to leave the rough scale texture on as much of the blade as possible. Anyhow, About an hour total forging and filing for my first time and I was already looking at my pile of steel thinking of how much propane I am going to be burning. 

I am sure there is plenty to critique so have at it. I think a little more time with the hammer and hot steel will sure lead to knowing how things move and in what direction which will result in a much nicer product and I have 700lbs ($46) in steel to practice on. 


20171216_180354.jpgAfter some file work on the profile 


20171216_172059.jpgRaw forged blade 




20171215_152110.jpgYep, those forks are solid, haha

I figured I would share a picture of my anvil and my temporary forge. 



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