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I Forge Iron

Center Punch


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Good example of a skill-builder that beginners should try--it's a lot harder to get a good even hex than it seems and it looks like you hit that very well.  To clarify, I'm not implying you as a beginner but that the skill of a parallel and even hex is a good one for beginners asking for skill-building projects.  Lots of hammer control needed.

In the case of the center punch, that brings it from just fiddling around to a useful outcome with purpose.  I like what you did.


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Thank you, Dave. I tempered the point to straw yellow. I had normalized the entire thing before quench. Then after I quenched it, I took my little propane torch to it a few inches up the shank and ran the colors. I couldn't tell you if that is the proper method or not but it seemed to work. It holds a point well. 

I actually recorded this one as I made it to upload to my YouTube channel. I made a channel in the hopes that I could get some critique of my processess as I'm working. I can make something that looks good but maybe I used a harder than should be way to get the result if that makes sense. And, that's actually how I came about trying that hexagon. I have a pry bar and cold chisel video that a smith from Indiana had commented on trying a hexagon, and that resulted in this center punch. 

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I only quenched the tip. Only about an inch or so from the very tip. The back is soft so it doesn't shatter upon striking

I only quench the working end of my tools. As you can see on my cold chisel from one of my videos that gets used very regularly at work, the strike end is soft and slightly mushrooming while the cutting end is still as was after quench and temper. 



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Yeah I kind of try and be cautious about heat treatment. If only one part needs to cut, like the end of an edged tool, chisel or something, for example, I only harden and temper that section. The whole thing is normalized beforehand. I rarely anneal unless I'll be filing on something right out of the gate. I figure just the act of heating it to forging temperature is enough to soften it for hammering on, depending on what SAE grade of steel you are working, of course. 

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