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I Forge Iron

Quieter blower


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Hello all, I have been using my homemade ribbon burner for many months now and it can get hot enough to melt steel if I want (not that I ever want that). I have been using a 5 peak hp shop vac as my blower and it's very loud, I'm looking to get a quieter one and saw the blacksmith blowers. How would these compare? I can find the cfm on my shop vac (115) but no indication of pressure/ inches WC. All I know is it practically flaps my cheeks if I put my face in front of it lol. Here is the link to my shop vac: link removed Just wondering because I don't want to have to do a ton of fiddling and redoing my burner design to work with a new blower, I'm very busy and simply can't spare the time for that.  I'd rather have a loud forge that works over a quiet one that I spend weeks troubleshooting. 

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Unfortunately it is difficult to give you a good answer without more information about your custom forge burner that we don't know.  You piping configuration and burner head characteristics will influence the blower you need in complicated to calculate ways, but easily subject to measurement.  Make yourself a U tube manometer (or slant tube) and measure the static pressure downstream of the blower.  If you can lay your hands on a pitot-static probe you can even test the active flowrate as well with a duct traverse.  Most of the 5 HP Shopvacs I saw were rated to push 60 CFM.  Most likely this is against zero static, but possibly including the filter.  Your burner assembly and ribbon head will have some friction losses, so if you want to match your existing output, measuring both quantities will help.

That being said, I ran one of the small 160 CFM Blacksmith depot blowers in my gas forge and it worked fine for me.  I then upped the blower size to a 1/2 HP Dayton radial I had from another project and that works better, but I have a unusual burner system as well.  A ShopVac is rarely the right choice for a forge blower IMHO (solid fuel or gas).  They run at too high RPM for their bearings and construction, are not rated for continuous usage, and  as you say, are bloody loud.  

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  • 5 months later...

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