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Comb gauges to measure the hot stuff


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Was looking at the world wide web to find some pictures of the comb gauges I inherit from my dad. Use them to measure hot square bars or flat material after fullering and reducing. All without burning my hands or turn in a (wooden) ruler into ashes.

My question, anybody use measurement instrument like them in his shop.

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There used to be somebody offering gauges like this, but I think they closed up shop.

I like the idea, certainly better than using wrenches.  Finding a large-ish comb with the sizes already stamped in.... that'd be dreamy.

I have thought about making one, but have enough irons in the fire as is.  I'll keep my eyes peeled for a commercial variant.

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There is always the shrink gauge issue,  Hot metal is larger than the same piece cold.  In foundry work they made scales that were offset so that when you made the positive for the mold the piece cast would be the correct size when it cooled.  (I once bought one at a fleamarket with multiple scales on it marked "for Aluminum, for Cast Iron, for Brass"  I gave it to a friend whose hobby was casting.)

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4 hours ago, ThomasPowers said:

Hot metal is larger than the same piece cold. 

My first experience with this was when making my first set of tongs. Sized the rivet hole perfectly to the (cold) rivet stock, but couldn't get it in once it had been heated up. Live and learn.

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I had one I made and I had one that came out of a carriage shop.   The ones in the picture are delicious...  I might still have one somewhere but when I moved a lot of the stuff got lost or was moved before I moved all the shop equipment out...  I had one for 1" to 3" I think..  And 1 that I made in 1/4" to 1".. 

If those are ones you Dad made.. He was a mighty fine smith..   From one of the books I read on vintage tools and apprenticeships. These were one of the tools needed before the Master would sign off on the apprentice.. 

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JLPServicesInc: Thanks Jennifer, got them indeed from my dad, like many other tools. Most of my equipment came from his old factory how’s partly closed in 1994. Hi retired closely after that. After I give up my construction shop in 2003 I only held the light blacksmith equipment but lost my heavy swage block and floor cone. Know how you and still feel sorry for that lost.

Stopped with professional metal work because of damage of neck spine after a broken neck caused by a diving incident. Regarding the scares I went from Saul to Paul (Work safety) after doing all the wrong things I try to prevent now. ;)  

Have a nice day, Cheers, Hans

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