TRR1143

First Forge Build Plans

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Back at it today. I cleaned out the mig tip on the rear burner and reinstalled it in the burner. Lit the forge and the back one is rather green still, probably the copper I think. Pictures below are right after lighting and then after coming up to temperature some. 

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I ran it for around 10 minutes at around 10-12 psi or so and it seemed pretty hot, hard to get good pictures at that point.

The link here is a youtube clip of it running.

Let me know what you think. I see what you mean about the near flame burning off the nozzle, do I need to adjust the burner's position within the shell to address that or is it a pressure thing?

 

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Today was the first time I actually got to forge after finally getting my anvil mounted. The forge will heat steel up to a bright orange color at around 12psi but it's still short of the welding heat goal and I don't know what steps I should take to get there. I would imagine that two half inch T burners should be able to bring the volume, ~240 cubic inches, I have to welding heat.

I'm pretty sure that the burners still aren't running optimally. The pictures in the above post are still more or less true today but I'll attach some recent photos of the flames. The rear flame still seems to be under less pressure than the front one and is still green from the copper. Also, they seem to stutter a lot more than I would expect. Any dragon's breath is orange when the forge is up to temperature. I'm not sure if it's an air:fuel mixture issue or something else. I've cleaned the mig tips out and everything in the propane lines is as close to the same as I could manage.

I would appreciate any advice with this, welding temperature really is the goal now from a functionality standpoint and for personal satisfaction. 

Thanks!

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You need to move the blocks about 1" away from the edge of the exhaust opening. You are trying to get as much if the radiant heat to bounce back into the forge, WITHOUT blocking the exhaust cases, and backing up your burners.

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Mikey,

That was definitely a concern of mine, and I'll be grabbing some wider angle to use to hold my block walls with later this week. 

Probably a loaded question here, but how much of a difference would you expect that to make?

Thank you

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I'll definitely change that soon.

What do you think of the idea of having two pieces of angle iron welded to the forge shell to allow the blocks to slide from side to side for the opening? Would you think that the top piece would interfere with the exhaust still? Similar to this model, not to scale.

 

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What Mike said. The stuttering is back pressure interfering because it was closed up too tight.

The orange dragon's breath is the calcite curing in the refractory, it'll fade.

Frosty The Lucky.

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It is tempting to suggest that you drill holes in the top angle, but then, I'm well know as a picky.

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I was able to weld up some angle iron to form a track for my wall blocks so they sit about an inch away from the openings now. It seemed to help some with the sputtering and after adjusting the alignment of the burners in the forge and cleaning the castable in the flares out some (some loose pieces were in the way) the rear burner is running much better and louder, and the front one is still sputtering just a little, not as loud either. The forge heats well but still only gets into the orange range, closer to yellow than red, but definitely orange still. I'll attach more pictures of the flames below.

I don't know what else needs to happen to get more performance out of these things, and they definitely aren't as loud as other examples I've seen on this site. I just read another series of posts by a member who used a similar setup with two 1/2" T burners and basically melted a jack hammer bit at 12 psi in what seems like a similar forge volume. I want to be able to get there but I'm wondering if I may need to rebuild the burners (maybe the mig tip is just ever so slightly off center?) or if my forge volume/shape is too small and bad for pressure. I would appreciate further advice here.

On another note, after having the forge running for an hour or so the front flame started sputtering rather rapidly and the flame would creep up through the gap between the forge shell and the burner tube, igniting at the gas jet. My suspicion is debris in the mig tip and I'll clean that out in the morning, hopefully that's the culprit.

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3 hours ago, TRR1143 said:

The forge heats well but still only gets into the orange range

Ah, but have you painted a re-emissive coating on the forge interior yet?

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Mikey, I ordered some Metrikote from Wayne with the rest of my materials and applied that on top of the KastOLite. 

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I think with the "wall blocks" aka doors an inch away from the openings they are not as effective as they should be almost like having no doors. Ours are flush with the body and work very well just by adjusting the openings.

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I haven't noticed a huge difference either way I space the doors from the openings, certainly not any major temperature improvements. I've fiddled more and more with the burner tube alignments in the casted flares and I think the flames look pretty decent (pictures at the end). I'm trying to figure out what else can be done. Some of my current thoughts:

1. The forge chamber is somehow too small and is causing pressure issues that are limiting the capabilities of the burners/flames. Not really sure this can be fixed if it is the case.

2. When I applied the metrikote, it was probably a tad too watery. I made sure to keep the material in suspension when I was brushing on it though, all of the powder definitely got brushed on. Could this have caused anything? I would think this would just harm efficiency/time to heat rather than reduce the attainable operating temperature, but correct me if I'm wrong.

3. When adjusting the burner tube alignments, several small chunks of the KastOLite that were loose in the casted burner flare fell through. This actually seemed to improve the flames and also produced a notable increase in the volume of the roaring that the burners produce. Figured this was worth mentioning, but not likely to be the problem.

Not quite sure what else to consider, I can run the burners at over 15 psi and I just get into the bright orange range, no sign of yellow

Any advice is welcome, thanks!

 

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Where would you suggest looking? I’ve taken them apart and cleaned out the mig tips several times. Everything looks pretty well centered to me. The flames aren’t running rich are they? I thought they were decent. 

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Take a burner out, and run it outside of the forge, then post a flame photo. The first thing I would look for is that all three fitting openings are the same size, instead of the middle opening being one size smaller, like it is supposed to be. The second thing to look for is an off center MIG tip; third thing is the tip not being parallel to the mixing tube axis; the fourth thing is a MIG tip that has never been sanded back in length, which is how EVERY "T" burner is fine tuned. We await your findings :)

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Mikey,

All of the parts are the right size, the T is 3/4" run and 1/2" branch. Everything looks bang on centered and parallel to the mixing tube. I've never trimmed back the mig tips before because the flames didn't look rich inside the forge. Along with that, my burner flares were cast into the refractory so I don't have a physical flare to attached to the burner and it won't sustain a flame outside of the forge. Should I just go pick up a small reducer fitting for this purpose?

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It is okay that you don't have any flame retention nozzles, which the burners can use outside the forge, because you just zeroed in on your problem. You need to sand the MIG tips back until your flames come up to snuff. You are mistaken in your belief that the flames aren't running  rich, because that is exactly what they are doing. Maybe we can now sweet talk Frosty into taking it from here. Otherwise, you will have to go back over his directions and do the best you can.

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Sand off a little bit, run the correct wire file from a set of torch tip cleaners (about $4 per set) to insure the orifice is clear of debris and burrs, and then test the flame.

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Got it. I'll stick the burner back in the forge and start testing. Thank you for your help Mikey, I appreciate it.

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Anyone who has worked as hard on building a forge well deserves all the help we can give her or him. Unfortunately, forge burners are what mess most people up, causing them the most anxiety for the least reasons. Fine tuning a burner is always nerve wracking the first time around; its kind of like your first date. Afterward you wonder why you were so nervous :)

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What size mig tip are you running? I've only skimmed your last couple posts, Mike has a good handle on the things so I was responding elsewhere. We do however tune our burners in very different manners. 

Your burners are running very rich in the last pic. When you look through the air intakes the end of the mig tip (jet) should be close to 1/2 way back from the bottom of the air intake. 

How did you determine the jet is centered and parallel with the mixing tube? If they're still out of the forge please take a picture straight in the mixing tube from the outlet end.

Frosty The Lucky.

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