ThomasPowers Posted January 12, 2021 Share Posted January 12, 2021 The interesting thing is that most bloomery furnaces can produce anything from a relatively zero carbon iron, through high carbon steels and even cast iron. Sometimes the bloomery might produce all three in a very inhomogeneous mess. This is why the Japanese swordsmith evaluates the metal produced by the tatara and builds up billets of different carbon contents. This, of course was an issue in earlier times---you forge a sword one day and it's soft another day and you get one that shatters in quench or burns at a lower temp. Took a long while to figure out how to effectively work higher carbon steels---till they did figure it out Not quench hardening was a lot safer. Not only blades, when looking at European Armour over time, the size of the plates got larger and larger until they started using medium to high carbon steels and hardening them by quenching---then the plate size dropped to much smaller ones easier to work and heat treat. As the technology advanced the plate size went back up. (The Knight and the Blast Furnace, The Royal Armories at Greenwich a History of their Technology; Alan Williams.) Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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