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I Forge Iron

Something we are working on...


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Steve:  Really?? That's good news to me..someone else can get crucified for "spilling the beans" for a change.. I have been nailed to a tree far too many times already...Would love to see your melt times and temps as well as how you make your crucibles. I have found that a C content of approx 150 to 175 points with various carbide enhancers like V or even Mo..seems to work best when coupled with a long soak above critic temp after the initial cooling to allow for the C to go into solution to enhance the dendrite formation prior to the initial forging .. Work times are very limited as the working temp range is very narrow or else you wind up with this:  A nice crack starting deep in the puck..no fun..

 

 

DSC07788A.jpg

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Steve:

 

The way I am doing is is a tad bit more involved than what you are doing. Using pure materials  and then adding a known amount of C as well as various trace elements like V, W, Mo and Cr to name a few with NO Mn. Mn I have found while it will work is not a friend when it comes to this as it can really darken the finished blade and it can get so dark depending upon the amount in there that it can start to mask the patterning. This is all covered as well as melt times. temp range, cooling rates as well as soaking temp and times.  fun fun fun...

The reason why I make my own crucibles is cause I am a cheap olde fart and I can do it for a lot less lucre than buying them..

JPH

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You put tungsten in your wootz? I know it's a trace but what's it do for blade steel?  PM me if it's :ph34r:secret, it won't go any farther, I promise. I'm just a curious, not a bladesmith.

Frosty The Lucky.

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Frosty: We have been doing some melts with W in  just a small amount...approx 0.015% by weight as a Carbide forming element and well..honestly V works better in the same amount. Either one will require a decent amount of soak time after the initial melt and solidification. We have found that about 10 hours at 1850 F allows for the C t go into solution and then re-arrange around the carbide forming elements into some very nice structures. Still puttering around with this though...

JPH

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That makes sense, at least as an experiment, W and C have an affinity for each other so using it to help C do what you want in the steel makes perfect sense. Thanks Jim, I don't make blades and doubt I'll ever use it but knowledge is knowledge and I never know.

Did you talk about W in your books? We have a member in our club that makes wootz billets and has been consistently successful. He's posted some microscopic photos of the carbide structures. When he and the other bladesmiths working with wootz start discussing the details it goes over my head pretty quickly. It does sound like he's experimenting along the same lines.

I'll have to see if he'll join IFI, at least post some of his pics.

Thanks Jim,

Frosty The Lucky.

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