Charles R. Stevens

Reviving a dead proforge.

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So my proforge is in need of a reline, and the burner assembly needs reattached for the 5th time. 

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So this is a $600+ forge, in witch the cheapest reline kit is $120 (I have seen the forge for $1200 and liners for $500). 

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As one can see, mounting said forge in a truck and hauling it all over is detrimental to this design. Whe I asked the manufacturer about how to beef it up so it would service, I was told not to mount it in a truck...

ok, you did sell it as a ferriers forge, and 90% of us go to the client.... 

Anyhow, in the forges defense it has a 2” 3 piece liner (tho I belive their is a one piece liner available) with a custom kiln shelf and a bit of k wool under the shelf. Plus the end ports and the door with ports. 

Tho the door is lined with in rigidized k wool and the forge comes with a wad of k wool to plug the unused end port.

 

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So here are the critical  dimensions.

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And the burner assembly 

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So on to my delima. Even with replacing the welded 5/16 studs with 3/8 stove bolts and cementing the ends and shelf in place the desighned isn’t very road worthy. Thus it is going to be regulated to the shop and I am going to a side blast coal forge on the truck. But even as a shop forge we can see the damage caused buy thermal cycling, the un rigidised door liner etc. 

thus I am opening the resurrection of this forge to the ideas from the general membership and the gurus of forge necromancy.

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Charles - re-lining is no big deal - burner mount - is it just mounted with just 2 threaded bolts welded to the forge body(is that what keeps failing?) - no problem weld on support to help hold the gas line end, which will be more stable during traveling down the road to your clients. To much offset weight is hanging off the 2 mounts - a support is all that would be needed.

 

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Currently the ideas on the table are one, buy a reline kit and upgrade the kit with a reflective kiln wash or two salvage what we can of the and go frankenforge...

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The forge body could be set on a cushion type mount, so direct vibration from the road stops before getting to the forge - could be with some rubber mounts mounted down away from heat effected area. 

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Thank you, Jeremy, I am considering replacing the 5/16 welded studs with 3/8 carage bolts threw the body. An additional suport bracket is certainly a good idea. 

This still leaves the mechanical damage to the liner (the kiln shelf won’t come out threw the door) and the damage from thermal cycling. It also dose not adress the unrigidised k wool and it’s associated dangers

 

A good idea to add to the list., you type faster than I do, lol

the aluminum cradle is threaded for 3/8 corse threaded bolts, and if I remember right Koller makes generator mounts that would fit 

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I understand your concern with the wool concerns from the manufacturer, but I'm sure you wont get far with them as far as your end of that issue - repair and ridgidize as per your needs - I still think the cushioned support of the body will solve that mechanical damage from the over the road vibrations(If this is what is causing some damage to the interior) Otherwise I would believe the deterioration of the liner is just normal user usage, and that is normal consumable results of any forge. 

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Oh, I have no doubt that the manufacture cares little for the dangers of the un rigidised k wool, lol. 

Any suggestions on how to reduce the damage from thermal cycling or a way to deal with the door seal? I don’t think applying rigidiser to it and closing the door over a piece of relise (wax paper) is the best answer. 

 

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I agree that spring feet, or a full spring suspension mount for traveling is needed. How much does it weigh?

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I had to look at some images to get an idea of what you have to work with Charles. What I see are a couple details that should be easy enough to solve. The screws holding the burner in place are kinda ill designed, two studs to carry that much weight and leverage is just . . . <_< I don't know what that part of the burner assembly is made of but I'd look into welding a couple or four tabs, one or two under the curve and ditto across from from them. That way there are the two original studs at the far ends and the new centered to prevent it from rocking against them. The current studs form a straight line like a fulcrum with a heavy lever bouncing against it. Make sense?

I see liners are single castings. You can just cast one in place, I ditto Mike, Kastolite 30 and a good kiln wash will outlive us all. You can carve Morgan K 26 firebricks with a hand saw and rasp to fit like a glove. Give it 1/4" - 1/2" of Kastolite for hard armor and a kiln wash and it'll last decades or longer and be well insulated. 

Rigidized Kaowool, 1/2" Kastolite floor and 1/4" roof kiln washed will do nicely but be a job. 

I wouldn't use the K 26 option for the door but I can't say why, something is niggling at the back of my mind. I'll come back if I think of it. 

Matching the door to the jamb with waxed paper is the easiest way to get a near perfect match. I'd use two layers of Saran wrap though Kastolite sticks to darned near everything, you can peal waxed paper off it but you end up picking the torn bits off and if Kastolite is stuck to both sides it'll be a Mother BEAR. Two layers won't stick to each other and you can just light the forge to clean it off what it does stick to. 

A door gasket is easy, use "Stove Rope," it's a refractory woven rope gasket material for stove doors. Home Depot sells kits or just but a tube of Stove Rope Cement. Run a bead of cement, press the stove rope into it and cut at an angle so you don't have a gap. Or just cut it, it's a forge a little leakage won't matter.

This should give you enough to think about for a while. Hmmmm?

Oh, a soft ride, I'll have to give it some thought and get back. Right off I'm thinking something like buggy seat springs that pivot on the screws. You can tighten the screws so they impart drag and act like shock absorbers so it doesn't bounce like crazy. I'm not thrilled with the idea though, I'll get back.

Frosty The Lucky.

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The only detail I would change from your advice is welding on cast iron parts; a recipe for ulcers. Thread on the tabs? I like the advice about forming Morgan K26 firebricks and a heavy finish coat of Kast-O-lite 30; that's a recipe for happiness :)

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Good point Mike, change that idea to bend up a couple tabs and screw them to the burner.

Frosty The Lucky.

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Charles, if you've got a boneyard nearby, you could possibly salvage some muffler hangers from some vehicles. These placed under the feet of the forge stand could give you a nice amount of shock resistance. And with the variation in sizes/shapes of them, you could easily find something that works well. They can be a beast to get off the car though, so it might be better to cut the bracket and try to remove at the shop with some spray lube and a punch. How about fabricating a little platform for it to sit on. Some anti-fatigue mat stuff from Grainger/HF/<insert store here> adhered to the bottom of a piece of plywood, and the muffler hangers as feet/bracers for the forge platform could do wonders to be a shock absorber. Might be enough to take a lot of the impact damage out of the equation.

Just a thought.

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So as to heavily reenforcing the burner mount (it is cast aluminum, aluminum tube and a couple pieces of 3/4” schedual 40 pipe). I think the only thing I will do is drill threw the body and replace the 5/16 weld studs with 3/8 garage bolts. I will be retiring her to a shop forge instead of a truck forge. 

As to the shock mounted/vibration mounted forge mount. Again I plane to retire her to a shop forge, so that should no longer be an issue. 

Know as to the reline options. How the heck do you cast a 1/4” liner of castolite? I mean if it was a moldable, I would roll it out like a pie crust and form it around a cardboard tube and be off to the races, but not being familiar with the stuff I hesitate. 

Casting a 2” tube with cut outs certainly is durable. 2” is a space I can see ramming or poring refractory in. How are the insulating qualities of cast-o-lite 30 compare to k wool or soft brick?  

 

As to the door, I would imagine simple casting the door liner and using release (two sheets of plastic or wax paper) would give me plenty of seal for this. 

I relies that refractory liners are a consumable, but if I can reline or overhaul the forge for the same money or less and have it have a longer service life I will be a happy camper.

So Mike and Jerry, is soft brick and castolite your final answer?

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Morgan K26 are not soft bricks; they are NOTHING like the typical foamed clay bricks that fall apart from thermal cycling. MORGAN k26 bricks are hard clay, which has  been so filled with holes by steam that there isn't a lot of solids to be carved away; what remains is just as hard as ever.

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I need to do something besides brick pile forges, I didn't know they are hard brick. Drats there goes my thinking. . . AGAIN!

I trowel thin layers of Kastolite. I've never cast that thin except a flat floor for a forge. I've never rolled it out like a pie crust and folded or rolled it over a form. I don't think it's plastic enough so it'd take something like a cloth support to roll it onto a cylinder. 

I don't have a comparison of insulating properties between: Kaowool, K 26 brick and Kastolite. That would be in order most to least though. That would be the order of durability, least to most as well. 

I'd have to lay hands on one to decide what I'd rather do to rebuild it. Sometimes casting is easy, others it's a major PITA. It's hard to tell from pictures. Carving K 26 only LOOKS good from here, I can't honestly say.

Frosty The Lucky.

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Glenn PMed me some specs 

I can give you want is in the specs of the product

26 bricks are thermal conductivity 2000 *F 2.6 Btu-in/hr2 -*F

Kast-o-lite 30 thermal conductivity 2000 *F 4.9 Btu-in/hr2 -*F

Inswool blanket thermal conductivity 1600 *F 8#/ft3  1.4 Btu-in/hr2 -*F

So as one can see how they stack up. 

I have considerd a hexigon or octiganalal forge from brick. If two boxes of k26 bricks are affordable that just might be the ticket.

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Working on the price and shipping for you now.

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Thanks for the numbers Glenn, I'll have to find a place to save them. I'd just print but the stupid printer . . . grrrrr.

Frosty The Lucky.

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