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I Forge Iron

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Frazer

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Thanks everyone, I must say that after a few sessions I am quite pleased with new setup. I did some forge welding and I rather enjoy having the hand crank as an air source. It gives me much more control over the fire than I had before with the old furnace blower.

Also it turns out the fire marshal for my town is a welder and was rather interested in the setup and how it all works. Not a bad person to have on my side.

He left with one of my bench business card holders (seen pictured on page 2 of this thread).

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Fantastic..  

Getting the people in town on your side can go a really long way to freedom.. 

The inspectors once they knew I understood code and could jive with them it made it a lot less fearful for them and once they saw the work I was doing they realized I wasn't trying to pull anything over on them.. 

Few demos at events goes a really long ways.. 

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I agree wholeheartedly. 

As far as demos go, I don't think my skills are quite there yet. It would be something I would enjoy doing, but I have a lot to learn before I'd really feel equipped to not only do whatever it is i'm demoing, but also engage with people during that process.  

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I have discovered that at demos I can forge and engage with spectators.  I cannot forge, engage, and sell products.  Too many balls to keep in the air.  So, if you want to demo and sell items bring along another person to handle the commercial side of things.  You can occasionally talk to customers but you cannot do a sales pitch, make change, etc. and still have iron in the fire or be making something.

"By hammer and hand all arts do stand."

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The NMABA demo trailer has an active side with a forge station at either end and a covered center section for folks handing the selling of stuff.  Behind all this there is secure storage space for stock, personal items and "just to get away from it all" room.  Nice set up.  After retirement I hope to be one of the old codgers holding it down at the State Fair here in NM.  The club has had a deal where you can sell stuff from the trailer for the entire fair if you volunteer to staff it at least 1 full day at the fair. It means folks still working full time are generally there on weekends when the crowds are larger and folks of "leisure" are there during the work week.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Made my heaviest hammer to date coming in at 2lbs, 1oz. There are a few things I'll fix next time around, but all in all I'll call it a success. In the spirit of overkill, it's made from S5.

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After the customary wrap in hockey tape, alongside my go to 3# hammer...

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IMG_2021-06-23_22-04-03.jpeg.78b79ce99fa8e2629337cf904f414e85.jpeg

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Not that I've noticed. My hand is callused, but I don't know if I would describe it as overly-so.. I have however noticed that some of the synthetic handles with a rubberized grip will irritate my hands after a few hours. 

I don't mind a bare wood handle, I just find myself gripping harder than usual now that I'm accustomed to the tape. That's probably a psychosomatic thing.

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I did and thank you! The drift ended up working great. My main gripes with how it turned out are:

  1.  The rounding side is a little cockeyed and is out of line with the eye and the opposing side. When you put the hammer flat face down, that side looks a little wonky. I'm guessing that came from either the spring fuller or while I was drawing out the cheeks on the corner of the anvil rather than making an anvil block (I made an anvil block about half way through).
  2. My cowboy heat treatment for S5 could use a little tuning. Hardening wasn't as much of an issue. I did an interrupted quench staring in water for ~6 seconds and then straight into oil. It started out skating a file. I cleaned up the faces and started tempering, drawing the faces back to a light(er) blue. So ~600F. It ended up being softer than the other hammers I use. I have a hot cut whose striking end has been mushroomed over quite a bit and has work hardened. This particular tool put a few dings in the face, while others did not. 

 Neither items are deal breakers, one is aesthetic and the other is inexperience playing with tool steels.

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I have heard this can be the case with some alloys. I'm not sure about S5.

Judging by it's tempering chart, you only begin to increase the toughness by tempering beyond ~600F.

image.png.4402b8a92c03803ddafc89a6f8b160fb.png

Of course this whole chart is assuming one were to follow the hardening procedure to a T. Which I did not. Therefore, I may not have achieved maximum hardness for any number of reasons. I then tempered it too far by going to a teal-blue. 

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On 6/24/2021 at 2:48 AM, jlpservicesinc said:

Looks great..  The Hockey tape doesn't give you problems with over callusing?  I tried it briefly 30 years ago but never could get behind it.. 

i find that any time a handle is taped i get blisters... under the callus same with a varnished handel i like a charred  hickory handle with 3 coats of BLO

M.J.Lampert

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these where new varneshes and they ar bad for anything over a few min my father (a mechanic) has no problem  but he doesnt use them for long periods and when they bounce around in the truck they get the coating rubed off then rubbed in a grease coating

M.J.Lampert

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  • 3 weeks later...

I got another 3' section of pipe in. The top of the cap is now 7' above the peak of the roof and is almost as tall as my house B) 

I wasn't having any performance issues, but my 85 year old neighbor had called me complaining of a smell, so I said I would extend the stack up a little higher. Hopefully, this resolves the issue.

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IMG_2021-07-24_15-50-13.jpeg.253c0b85d385e88995132e93c4a68874.jpeg

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Ha. That's a good one. He's honestly a nice guy he often comes over to just talk for an hour or so, but he really doesn't like the fact that I burn coal. He likes the backsmithing aspect and says he doesn't hear any noise, but he doesn't like that he can apparently smell smoke... Even though his house is to the west of me and there is no visible smoke coming out of the stack (unless it's just getting lit or is dying out for the day). I'm not saying he can't smell it, but he must be extremely sensitive. No one else can smell anything while it's running.

He's 85, walks with a walker and just doesn't like the change. I totally get it and I think we have a good neighborly relationship where he knows he can come talk to me if he needs to. He has threatened to go to the town, and get a lawyer... but that was only once when he was really mad. He calmed down pretty quick after we talked for a little bit. I get it. 

I don't want the confrontation an try to work with him where I can. If it takes an extra ~$500 piece of pipe to make him happy then so be it. He really doesn't have much of a case since the town is already aware and there are no laws restricting me from doing what I'm doing. I just don't want to be a bad neighbor.

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Today was a tomahawk sort of day. Each one goes a little faster and turns out a little nicer than the last.

I bought several handles, but a failed to notice that they had a finish on them. That's a shame. I think I'll end up sanding it off, hitting them with a torch and refinishing with linseed oil.

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IMG_2021-07-30_17-27-37.jpeg.9babfe1d2bbb71a522c42f9c70c1c1bd.jpeg

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Why char them with torch?  I realize that it is probably for the look of the thing but that has never looked attractive to me.  Also, I'm not sure it was an 18th-19th century practice although I could be wrong about that.  I'd like them best with just an application of BLO.

"By hammer and hand all arts do stand."

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