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I Forge Iron

Show me your twisting machine

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Mine looks exactly like a 13" x 40" Jet gearhead metal lathe. Kind of spendy and not even the ideal improvisation but it's what I have.

One of the preferred improvs is a Rigid pipe threader, they're very strong and go very slowly so it's easy to control the twists. That's the problem with my lathe, even in back gear it turns about 3x faster than I'd like and when you shut it off it rebounds so you can't even make a template of the twists where it stopped.

For large scale I like twisting in full 20' lengths, it takes less power and is much easier to get consistent results. This is true for a pipe threader too of course.


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I saw one that was made from the rear end of a truck. The ole boy had a four jaw lathe chuck attached to differential and then he would heat the section he want a twist in then have his apprentice spin the one remaining tire until he had the desire appearance he wanted. If he was doing plain twists for window guards and fences he would do them cold and get very even spirals. When doing the hot work he would get nice results with reverse twists too.

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