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I Forge Iron

Steeling a hammer face


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I've read about welding a steel face to the iron or mild steel body of a hammer. Bealer and elsewhere talk of cutting barbs into the face so the two stick together physically before you weld them, but I've been unable to find any details of this or pictures. I'm curious how many one should put on a side, where exactly etc. Any advice out there?

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A diamond point chisel is used on the steel face at about a dull red heat to raise a couple of barbs, The iron main body is brought up to a bright red or often a yellow heat and the face is laid on the anvil with flux on it and the main body is tapped down on the barbs, the whole thing is put back into the forge and brought to a welding heat and the main body is set on the anvil and the hammer used to lightly weld on the face. The main problem with this type of hammer face is: after much use they usually crack and break into 3 pieces. This was the common way of steeling a hammer face in the old days before modern steels were developed, the face was usually improved blister steel.

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Ah, a diamond chisel, that makes sense! The places I read never specified
, just 'cut barbs on face with chisel'.

I read an interesting alternatve method in Basic Blacksmithing by Harries and Heer; make a short spike out of the sma type of steel you're using for the face. Place the face on the body and use the spike to join the two, befor bringing the whole to welding heat and welding.

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