Jasent

Let’s see some fire pokers

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Handle deigns are limitless..  I've done maybe 50 different designs based on old hardware handles..  I have only the pictures on facebook to show for it.. I didn't grab 1 picture otherwise.. somehow, poker handles just never met the picture requirement level of latches or other more unique items I've forged.. 

1 note or single music note I did for an Opera singer..   Different variations of the blacksmith twist (aka basket).  Different blacksmith diamond patterns..  

Where i find the limits are on the return hook.  Flat taper, sq taper. round taper.  


Nice poker by the way.. 

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Thank you jlp.  I’ve been surfing threw your face book photos and my head is swimming with ideas.  

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Thank you bud.  I’ve had a very busy work year so far but it’s starting to slow down a bit. Feast or famine 

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One of my first projects once my forge was ready. My mother wanted a longer-than-usual firepoker for my parents' outside firepit.

I made it from a 1/2" bar from a window grate from their previous house. The handle is from a piece of broken axe handle with brass pins.

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This fireplace poker represents my first attempt at making a twisted basket handle. It's not perfect, but it was a good learning experience. Next time I'll go for smoother transitions into and out of the basket and use a different finial design with more weight to it.

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I used four rods to make the basket and made it without using a mandrel rod. However, when I make another basket I think I'll probably use six rods and employ the mandrel method that Jennifer demonstrated in her video. She has made some truly elegant basket twist handles. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dBtnzbdZ93g

Al (Steamboat)

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Looks perfect enough to me Al. Quite nice for a first attempt. 

Fine work as always Jeremy. You should post pictures of your work more often for some added inspiration. :)

 

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Thanks, Das. I've done a sizable number of metal fabrication projects over the years, but not much in the way of blacksmithing, so now I'm trying to gradually build up my skill set in that area as time permits.

Jeremy, excellent work on the fireplace screen. What mesh and gauge of woven wire cloth did you use? Do you have a preferred source for wire cloth? I'm planning to make screens, tools, and accessories for at least four fireplaces and possibly five in the Federal-period house that we're restoring. By the way, the basket-handle poker that I posted above is NOT intended for our old-house project...it was just a learning experiment.

Al (Steamboat)

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Lots of inspiration, I borough, borough an borough with my eyes;). Every single picture nice work. Making a fire poker is usually my first work piece assignment the students make in beginners class.

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Mine wasn't as fancy as the ones you guys are posting, but I did make one last fall when I was first getting going.

 

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Oooh I LIKE it Ben! Great idea for something to do with those pesky twists.

Frosty The Lucky.

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Thank you Frosty. That’s yet another unfinished project. I’ve got the handles done for the shovel and tongs but that’s it. We had a very mild winter last year and burned very few fires so I had very little motivation to finish the set. 

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Been playing around with a couple of basket twist fire pokers. Thought it might be an interesting look to place a bearing ball in the cage. These pokers are done in two separate pieces mig welded together. I am getting better at disguising the weld (Pic3) , but any suggestions would be welcome. I am a pretty ordinary welder, but I am a wizard with a grinder!

The four bars of 6mm square were mig welded together. I would not back myself to forge weld four of those together. I would like to find a way of making a basket twist from one length of steel. Cutting through with a thin wheel would require great accuracy and may not be so tidy even if successful. Perhaps there are ways??

I have found that these basket twists make good demo pieces especially using the ball. Kids like to see the ball glowing orange in the cage for the final tweaking. I will do reverse twists on the next ones. 

ball poker1.JPG

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Suggest you stop mig welding them..  It's easy enough to slip  a ball in when the cage is made the old fashioned way.. 

If you are doing production and mig welding them together works out for you.. So be it.. But from my perspective.. learn to forge weld consistently and this will become a non issue.. 

Nice twists.. 


I did post a "How to" for this exact reason..  

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I forge weld thinner baskets with no problems using free wire from election sign frames that get abandoned after an election out here.  Practice helps.

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I have a buddy who made himself a 4" x 4" x 3/4" thick swage block with grooves on one large face of varying sizes.  The opposite side is flat and the whole thing has a handle welded on with a hook to he can hang it up.  Before welding small wire stuff like those basket twists, he pre-heats the swage block in the forge.  Then he sets it on his anvil with the grooved side up.  When forge welding the basket twist, he puts the twist in the closest sized groove.  That keeps the wires gathered while welding, while also keeping him from flattening the weld.  Plus the pre-heat helps to buy some time on the forge weld.  He never has to get the block above a black heat to serve the purpose.  It works very well.

 

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On ‎10‎/‎1‎/‎2018 at 7:27 PM, jlpservicesinc said:

I did post a "How to" for this exact reason..  

Jennifer, could you post a link to your 'how to' please? I have made all the usual searches with no success.

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this will allow for one to get a good welded handle.. If you want to use a larger rod like the ones shown you will need to add 5 I believe.. 

Because in the video I used smaller rods the scarfing  for the shaft side only needs to be scarfed on the horn.. But larger sized rods would need to be scarfed and aligned before assembly.. this can make it more fiddle faddy..  But if you want to just round the ends of the rods on the grinder vs forged that will work also.. 

A bottom swage of the appropriate size will be needed for the initial welds to keep the rods nestled to the shaft while welded..  

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Thanks Jennifer. I do have a few of those bottom swages in our display so I might borrow the appropriate sizes. I will try one with narrower rods - perhaps old welding rods.

And I admire greatly your skill in making that smooth round ball finial.

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