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gas forges


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Out of curiosity I would like to know why most gas forges I see built on IFI are mostly round--like an air compressor tank and after watching the infamous FIF on tv a few times that the forges there are square ended and long and have 3 burners that look like they could melt about anything you stick in them . I have never used a gas forge--coal, and a few times charcoal that I made for about 60 years has been all I wanted.  


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Some people build different forges, each for a different type and size of project, and efficiency of how much gas is used for the project, and in some cases how the heat is swirled around instead of directly *at* a project such as a knife. ...... Of course we know that a TV show would not design forges to make forging more of a challenge and to increase the temperature in a room... hmmm.  :-) 


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The cost of propane relative to the production cost of that show is a non-issue for them.  However, for most of us the cost of fuel is an issue.  As a result we generally try to get the best balance of efficiency and productivity.  Round forges tend to encourage flame swirl better than square forges, and that in turn can keep the heat in the forge just a little longer than without the swirl. 

Just for reference sake, in my freon tank forge I can reach forge welding temperatures with a single 1/2" Frosty T burner.  Obviously I have some stock size and shape limitations as a result of the forge chamber size, but I'm sipping fuel compared to what those forges on FIF are using.  If money was no object I would probably go a bit larger, but so far there hasn't been much that I've wanted to do and can't in that forge.  As long as the the stock is something close to straight and I don't need to heat more than 8 or 9 inches at a time I'm in pretty good shape.   I've actually straightened a tractor's drawbar that was one inch thick  and over two feet long using that forge.  It wasn't the easiest thing I've ever done though.

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FIF is entertainment.  It bears little relation to actual use.  They bought a bunch of forges with not consideration to the normal shop and use.  View that show as mere entertainment and nothing more

Check out the Build a Gas Forge attachment on the Forge Supplies page on my web site.

Let me know if I can help you .  You can get my contact info on my Profile page.


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Feeling tempted by the dark side Jerry?  Feel free to give me a shout if you need some advice.  ;)

Pipe forges are easy to build just cut the blanket a little longer than necessary and it holds itself in position while you armor it. Some of my early propane forges were  nothing but a layer of Kaowool held in place by chicken wire fencing and let the blanket burn. NOT a good design, I was lucky we were using them outdoors.

Anyway, cylindrical is easy to build and as mentioned already makes better flame patterns, vortices are your friends.

FIF depends on drama to a large extent like any reality show. I'm happy to see they don't inject contrived drama between the contestants, they rely on BIG fire, loud machinery and pick contestants for their levels of expertise. There are always a couple who will make the finals and produce decent blades and others who will make some dramatic fails. 

The forges they use make big fire, almost all unused. You usually don't see many contestants putting their work past the first burner. I can't recall the names of the forges but the brand has been discussed here a number of times. The company makes good commercial forges and the 3 burner is billed as a special, it looks like they sell a LOT more 1&2 burner models.

Frosty The Lucky.

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