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What did you do in the shop today?

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Someone in an earlier post said something about being being sure they would fail. 

This is my first, and so far, only attempt at making a pair of tongs. I think I had been forging for at most two weeks at the time. As you can see, I have a natural talent for blacksmithing. B)


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Any one remember that show on PBS called "The Woodwright's Shop" ? From what i gather it is still being filmed and and episode i just watched was with Peter Ross making a lock from the 1600's found in colonial Jamestown (? i could be wrong about the town) Anywho it is available on the you tube thing (dont know if it is frowned upon to link so...) It was pretty cool to watch, Peter Ross is in a few episodes of that show, worth watching. Not too in-depth but just fun and historical. 

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Links to YouTube videos are generally okay, so long as they generally fall within IFI community guidelines (especially with regards to bad language) and don’t advocate unsafe procedures. 

Anything with Peter Ross is probably just fine.

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DHarris I still have my first pair too. I like to keep all of my first attempts as a reminder of how much they have improved over time.

Rather than SOR (Square Octagon Round) I see you were using the less often mentioned, but occasionally employed "Square Helical Intervolved Terminate" method. We've all been there ;)

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The first tongs I made were scrapped, I have them somewhere, but they are not usable, the second pair is still use once in a while, the only fit 16 mm round but they are very good at picking that up.


Yesterday I finished the hot cut that I started working on with a friend. I used an old ice hockey stick as handle wood. It works great so far! However, I might have forged the hot cut too thick, and might forge it thinner if need arises.



Furthermore, I finished restoring my great-great-grandfather's post vise today, the details of which I posted in the thread in Vises.

~ Jobtiel

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I figured out the trick to using liver of sulfur to patina mokume. Instead of using warm, dilute LOF, you need to use cold, relatively concentrated stuff. It makes the nickel a light gold and the copper black. I love the contrast on this. Polished, patinated, and clear coated with rust oleum. Like most patinas, it’s not super durable. It’ll do fine for me, though.


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I’ve got a pile of old ruff sawn oak that Was shelving in a spring house without the spring lol. Its an old building that they used to keep all their canned goods in there before they had refrigerators. When I bought this place I must have found a truck load of mason jars in there and around the property, even In The summer that building is significantly cooler than the outside temps, anyways I saved it for future projects but I’ve never got around to doing anything with it yet. Cant wait to see your coat rack it’s nice to see reclaimed lumber projects 

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While contemplating door lock parts, I had the opportunity to bang out another boat part. Called an "open fairlead", it's basically a 1/2-inch hook  that one loops a line (aka "rope") around to change its direction. A bit simpler than a pulley, to say the least. Used on the early versions of the boat I'm building.


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I took one of the smaller pieces of WI I have and drew it out thin and narrow to make a cross. After cutting into two pieces, I used a small fuller to form a spot on each piece where they would be joined. (Not sure what the actual term for that is.) I made the slot too wide on the horizontal bar.

The bottom leg of the cross is a little long because I had thought I might fit it to a base. The top is long as well in case I decide to put an eye in it. 

I haven’t finished sanding the front. No matter what I do I expect when etched that weld line will show. The grain will also be going the wrong way. Even though it was a fairly tight fit on this side, the horizontal bar moved up and down into the vertical bar. That large rectangular depression is from the wire I had wrapped around the joint. Too deep to grind or file out without getting too thin. 

The back is still pretty rough, but I am ok with that. I am planning to cut out a copper or brass cross and rivet the WI cross to it and a wooden cross underneath both. 

As on the front, the vertical bar moved out into the horizontal bar, but the joint is even more obvious because of my having made the slot too big. 

The entire thing is not exactly off as far as straightness of lines go, but it is off just enough to give it a general appearance of a child having made it to give to his Mom to stick on the refrigerator. 

How can I fix it, or at least get the joints better next time?





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>> open fairlead. What is it made from? <<

It's 655 Bronze.

>> Do you have any pictures of the boat you are building, other than the one in Introduce Yourself? <<

Just a few. The photo of the fairlead is #356. :D I've been documenting the build in a thread on the plan designer's website. If you google "hybird moonfish" (including the misspelling) you'll find it. Registration might be required.

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I got to finally spend some time out at the forge yesterday.  We had several days when the wife didn't have anything planned and there was good weather, but then the winds came up, so outside fire type activities were not a good idea.

New Firepot shape is working well enough and I'm getting better heat when I don't skimp on fuel.  got to practice some drawing out on a leaf stem and then started working on my first tongs.  I cut some 3/4 ish strips off of some 1/4 inch plate my son brought home months ago.  I established the bit and a curve on one half all the way to the boss (is that the right word, where the rivet goes through).  I intend for these to be bolt jaw tongs.  Next time I'll work the other half and begin drawing out the reins.

Noticing I still need to work on the hammer control.  I guess that will come with time and practice, just like any other skill.

Slight aside.  Indoor projects have been with a lot of wood, and even though I'm still at the 'wood butcher' stage of carpentry, I am improving and I have been watching some youtube videos on archery.  do we have any bowyers out here?  From what I have been watching, that particular art looks interesting too. 

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Paul, i have a friend who is a bowyer. He is the one who made my long bow. Hickory with a bamboo backing. He traded me the bow for a tomahawk. I tried to make one but it ended up in about 3 pieces the first time i attempted to bend it. 

As far as archery goes, the only danger i am to anything is to bystanders. I cant hit the broad side of the barn on a sunny day at 10 paces myself. :lol: 

He also uses a drawknife i made for him to make his bows. Which led to some work for some local craftsmen who do traditional wood working. Making them drawknives and small carving chisels. i guess that is what they are called, used by hand not hit with a hammer. (Any carpenters out there please correct my terminology if i am wrong)

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