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What did you do in the shop today?


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39 minutes ago, DSW HandCraft said:

I've twisted the jaws 90 degrees counter-clockwise. I wasn't very happy with the way it looked, so I've ground the sharp edges of the twist, and filled the gaps with the welder and ground and filed it so it looks nice.

One good thing to do with twisted jaws is to knock the sharp edges down with hammer and anvil before you make the twist, and then hammer any remaining ridges back into the bar before you proceed. 

Here's a pair of side-grip tongs I made thus, with a bit of ridge still visible between the bosses and the jaws:

957BAB12-F7B3-44B1-9375-88D2581A7760.jpeg

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55 minutes ago, Steve Sells said:

looks great DSW i would buy them B)

Thank you very much. You are among just a few people that said something like that to me. Unfortunately, I live in a country where this kind of work is totally unappreciated by the majority of people, so selling my work is not an option for my situation. The best I can do is share it with you guys here on IFI, or on my Youtube channel. I guess I was born on the wrong side of the planet :)
But nevertheless, the main thing is to enjoy my passion for blacksmithing, and maybe have the chance to pass on my knowledge in the future, to someone willing to take up the adventure of manipulating hot steel.

 

Thank you very much, blacksmith-450

58 minutes ago, JHCC said:

One good thing to do with twisted jaws is to knock the sharp edges down with hammer and anvil before you make the twist, and then hammer any remaining ridges back into the bar before you proceed.

You've got the point on that... Although I would nevertheless use the welder to fill the gaps, so it would just be less welding to do.
I will try that on a future set of tongs though...

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IForgeIron wants you to succeed and encourages you to go beyond your comfort zone to get to bigger and better things.  It then causes us to do better in order to keep up (grin).  Very nice work.

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A Railroad forge was usually larger in size, depth and firepot.   Typical was 4FtX6Ft- 5ftX7Ft about 8-10" deep side wall and a firepot that was about 14X16" and deeper by an inch or 2 and was about 1" thick cast iron body/hearth.  1050lbs IIRc for a particular Buffalo forge model. 

A smaller cast iron pro smith size was maybe 30X36.  and about 1/3rd the weight. 

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I have an old larger forge; spends most of it's time as a workbench. The previous owner damaged the firepot when he burnt a piece of RR rail in two running to answer the phone and leaving the blast on.  You can see it to the left of my travelling forge that gets the most use of my solid fuel forges. It was originally a down draft forge with the smoke sucked down and generally run out the building through ducks under the floor.  Allowed use of jib cranes and A frames for heavy work and not running into a chimney.  When I got it the owner was using a VW hood as the "hood" for it.

forge1.jpg.d534654f723ee0b1c281d63dcfe30fb0.jpg

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Well, finished up my wrought iron hammer. Not happy with it at all.

It’s a little bit wonky. Actually broke my spring fuller working on it. (I keep thinking about making a butch tool, know may be the time.)

D193BBDF-88EB-4295-B5E9-D619E36E8BE8.thumb.jpeg.5ff0559fa6a4ac14ca9d5689bf7c5407.jpeg

The eye came out crooked. 
8C65D3F4-E178-4DB7-B5AA-FEFB54CF1C33.thumb.jpeg.a957836b2d17c75c7c44734f72516fc0.jpeg
 

Those problems I can live with. I’ve made several handles to match crooked hammer eyes, and wonky is not an issue, it was just going to be a working tool for myself.

Here’s the real problem:

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You can see the spring steel only goes 2/3 of the way across the face. Guess I burnt some of it off...

So what do you all think I should do with it? Should I try to weld another face, grind the rest of it off and use it as a soft hammer on one end with a rounding hammer on the other, or just leave it as is for a reminder to pay attention?

Humbly,

David

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David, nice go..  Overall I give you a 10..    You kept it all together..    Personally I'm not a fan of the rectangle punch/slitter. but thats just me.. 

I've got nothing on the face problem..  In the old days wrought iron hammers for the most part were just hunks of square stock.. the Germans did it up right.. Well, Germans and French and Swedes as the faces when worn and cracked could be just welded back on. 

The modern design concepts makes putting a face back on once forged a problem as the mass behind the face is not that much  so there is no good way to weld it back on without completely destroying the eye and cheeks.. 

If it were me.. I'd make it a wall hanger to show all my buddies so they could make fun of me..  I hang with a tough crowd. 

You did great..   They are fun to make but tough just the same..  Well done and welcome to the wrought iron, steeled face makers club. 

 

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Well, it’s not my 1st, but it is my worst! I had planned to have had made several more in practice for our state conference, where I’m expected to do a demo, but I never seem to have enough time. Conference, planned for June 5th~7th, will most likely be delayed or cancelled anyway. Hopefully, I can get one more done before then for practice, just in case.

I may make an eye punch and go that route, but I’ve had decent luck with slit and drift.

Thanks,

David

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Just as a mention  "Slit and drift"  is just the technique.. You can choose what ever shape you want..   round, oval, square, recangle, 8, diamond. etc, etc. 

All the eye punches I have and all the descriptions of use of eye punches is strictly as a finishing tool.. Much like a drift.  they were not used to punch the hole, just to finish the eye shape. 

The only time I slit and drift is with thin materials where I want ample cheek thickness so it can withstand being hammered on like a top tool.  Handled punch and such. 

99% of the time I punch round and flatten unless the cheeks need to be forged, then I still punch round on larger sections and will use a mandrel to forge against to spread the cheeks. 

Its just a technique like any other.    Slit and drift is very popular today. 





 

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Forge/grind it into a fuller or straight peen?

I don't recall this being mentioned and as more folks are experimenting with WI:  As wrought iron is generally produced by stacking and welded, the lower grades tend to want to split along the welds---especially Merchant Bar. Some of the old books recommend that you do any slitting&drifting or punching at 90 deg to the stack orientation to help prevent splitting along the welds.

Also you can refine coarse wrought iron by stacking and welding and forging out.  This was the method used to get Merchant bar from muck bar, singly refined WI from Merchant bar, Doubly refined from singly refined and triply refined from doubly refine WI.

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Thomas, I’ll have to think about the option of reforging it into a cross or straight peen. That may work for me.

This WI was pretty course. It started out as two 15”x3/4” dam spikes. Both spikes we forged back to completely square cross section along the length, then folded and welded twice, to make two larger square cross section short bars, and final forge welded flat together and squared up again. I was aiming for a heavier hammer, but it looks like I lost a lot of mass to scale.

Do you think this welding has refined it enough? It seems pretty solid.

Thanks,

David

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"Enough" is an opinion.  If it works for YOU then yes; if it fails then no.   Unfortunately the more you refine it the less "pattern" it shows. I've had folks not like some of the highly refined WI I have; they wanted wagon tires of merchant bar!

 

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i was in a rush prepping to put in a bit on the hawk im making and made a shallow cut and didnt taper the bit enough. i think another forge heat should fix it still pretty bummed. it slipped out a but on the first or second one

if im to finish it i have some truing up to do, i ran out of propane right before i was gonna do one more heat so i didnt have time to do much in the way aesthetically 

hawkweld1.jpg

hawk22.jpg

hawk23.jpg

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I have some that I refined to pure iron..  it completely lost all grain structure. 

Great idea on the peen Thomas. 

David,  you could pretty much push the carbon area over as in a side upset and it would move the steel right to the top of the peen.  

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As a friend of mine says: "There are no mistakes in Blacksmithing; there are only mid-project design changes!"

As I got the final side cleaned and repadded and back in the swamp cooler last night, (and we have COLD air blowing through the house!) I get to go back to working on my 25# LG.  Next step is removing the clutch assembly and seeing what state it's in.  Working on the LG sure makes me wish I was a machinist at times!  (Or hadn't moved away from my machinist friends...)

Tomorrow: high 93 degF, winds 10-20 Mph, humidity 22%-7%, Sunday a lot similar.

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