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Daniel W

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About Daniel W

  • Birthday 08/24/1982

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  • Gender
  • Location
    Pennsylvania USA
  • Interests
    Art, History, Mythology, Iron working and anything that deal with craftsmanship.
  1. The first one of these I've seen made is really simple. You need no refractory no nothing, you just need to keep the bricks together, allow a little bit of play as when these guys heat up they expand a little. If you hold them too tight, they will crumble on you. The guy who I seen using a forge like this igloo style - has used it for about 2 years with basically wire holding it together. You got the right stuff now, so you should be cookin' before you know it. I never meant to jump on ya when I seen the post of you drilling into that hard brick, through experience I know that those things are just a wast of a forge's time. Important- if you intend to weld, find some kind of sacrificial kiln shelf or something (make one of cast-able refractory if you have it) to put in the bottom of your gasser. Over time the floor breaks down first. Also if these bricks get wet, I think it's bad news. And yes, I have not yet got these for my forge yet either due to their cost.
  2. Daniel W

    dressing hammer faces

    I think, but don't hold me to it, that I read through an article of what might have been "hammers blow" that stated a good crowning to have on your hammer is 30 degrees. And of course eased and nicely rounded over. Another article also hammers blow or maybe the same one written by someone here I believe stated that if you could, it is better to forge the hammer's face and re heat treat it to keep mass. That's a little easier if your making your own hammer from scratch. Alans right about the face of the die of the hammer. A square faced hammer, you may want the left and right crowned a little more than the upper and lower. Working with a square faced hammer can give you a pein if you use the heel of the hammer face (the lower part) but still gives you excellent drawing out abilities when working from the left or right of the hammer face. I like square faced hammers, to me, it gives a little more direction than a typical round faced hammer. Also if you don't ease away the corners of any hammer, you'll find out real fast you smack your anvil quite a bit. Another down fall of flat faced hammers for the beginner, they let you know when you miss, or are even just a bit off. Gets to be a pain if you are working on small things. I've read over the years a lot about anvil faces need to be nice and nearly 220grit polished, but I believe it is more important for the face of your hammer to have the desired finish on it. My last few hammers I got, I usually make sure they are crowned to what I want. It depends on if I'm working with a rounding/turning/farriers type hammer or the general work hammer. I do this with a 36 grit grinding wheel on the angle grinder. Then I work with a few sand paper grits - up to 220, then I simply use a green scotch bright pad to buff it up. Type of finish you want on your hammer depends on what you want your finished work to look like. For me, I want a lot of texture in my work, so I don't have a polished anvil, nor hammer faces.
  3. That's a hard brick Andy, after your first firing, that brick will break in half. I know you said you want to work on something small, but these really are not the way to go. firstly, it will take that ONE brick about one hour to heat up and keep a forging temp Secondly, it will take hours for that one brick to cool down to the point that it's safe to store away. These are just not made to do the job your looking to do. You will replace more of these if you plan to make a brick forge than you expect. 2-3 firings and they will be done. Cracked up split, crumbled just not worth the time. Even using them as just a shell has trouble. Just make the soft brick forge igloo and it will work, for about a year, then you have to build something more lasting.
  4. Daniel W

    Sharpening Tips & Tricks

    This might be where the idea comes from, I was once a part of the myarmoury forum many years back when it was a really good research forum for European blades of all kinds, that's where about I head of the idea. Really wonderful research was going on there at one point in time, its where I learned a lot about geometry and how swords should act. theres a video out there, of a very learned antique sword guru maybe this one I believe he also talks about different sharpness for different tasks in swords and knifes historically. Fella's pretty interesting.
  5. Daniel W

    linseed oil

    I have heard of this happening. The guy who taught my flower making class was a pipe welder once upon a time, he swore to me that he had seen 400 series stainless rust. I took his word for it but never seen it. However I have seen someone attempt to forge a 400 series stainless at my local club last year. That was nothing but a mess. Even at a very high heat, a bright yellow, the steel continued to crumble. Industrially, I have seen it forged from start to finish (or rolled). Once upon a time the largest manufacture of Stainless steel was in the area and I got a plant tour. Wow . . .
  6. Daniel W

    using files not belt grinder

    As much as everyone likes their big 2x72 grinders, I grab a file first. Even when I did my last knife project, I did most of it all by draw filing - and enjoyed it more as with any grinder, one slip can make a mess pretty quick. There is no better way to make a section of blade or whatever flat and true than with a file. You may think you need a surface grinder and yeah it's nice - but the file is the first precision tool for the smithy. I'm making tenons pretty regularly with my work, I forge them with tooling these days to make a nice flush fit, but sometimes I still need to turn to my file to take out that 1000th on a inch for a good fit.
  7. Daniel W

    Sharpening Tips & Tricks

    There is nothing like that finish from planes or other wood working tools with a good polished edge. With veiners, and a good edge, you can even get good cross grain cuts if your not aggressive with it. And depending on what wood your working with. I'm remembering a post from another forum of sword collectors and remembering a general consciousness that sword edges should be honed down to a 4000 grit finish . . . I remember thinking - that's a little much. Geometry cuts, level of finish depends on what you expect to cut.
  8. Daniel W

    Sharpening Tips & Tricks

    I always find it a little odd, that somewhere between my 800 and 1000 grit stone, I seem to lose the edge all together (bur just gets worked over?). I wonder back and forth with my Lansky sharper how this happens? The bevel angle never changed. I've almost given up on that tool. However if I take a good old cheapo bench stone and by hand run it over the course and fine side things are fine. I would get stones for all the levels of grit, but recently when I was making gravers, I found that wet dry paper backed on a ceramic glazed tile works wonders. I also don't use paper as much as I use thin cotton rags to test from where the blade is sharp and not. If I can place an old tee shirt on a wooden table top and draw the knife across it and it cuts clean - that's sharp. It can also tell me where abouts the knife is dull as it will just drag from that spot.
  9. Daniel W

    wrought iron wagon wheel

    With wrought you can usually see the bands of grain in it. Date can also help to identify wrought in the states. After WWI, it seems like there was very little wrought, methods of production changed. If you cut it up, I kind of doubt anyone would miss a wrought wagon wheel. Wrought is pretty prized by the smiths just because of it's unique look, and because people argue it is more resistance to the elements. Cut it about half the depth, then bend it. The fibers of the grain will show if it is wrought.
  10. Daniel W

    Simple tomahawk

    I read threw Alans post there - and I would say the only thing I've done different during my file work was that I used a 3 corner file to layout the lines of the file work. You can use the corner of a flat file - I just found it a little easier to start the line with the smaller file. It's also a really good idea to take one of your files and grind the teeth off one of the edges to make a 'safe edge.' This way you can avoid the file biting into the borders of raised work. It's a challenge as there is very little flat surfaces to work on. If you go for the traditional file work of chevrons and scarf, I usually wind up with the little (x) at the tip of the chevrons. Just something that happens from the process, got to find a way to hide it.
  11. Daniel W

    1 or 2 burners?

    Getting to welding temp may take a few factors other than just the burner. Proper insulation is pretty key, as without it, the forge will only maintain a temp. In other words it may just get hotter faster with two burners, but never get to that welding temp if the insulation isn't the right stuff. However, chances of getting to welding temp is better with two burners as you've doubled the BTU's. I would put a pretty solid bet on the black beauty burner, and just about anything on anvilfire. That is a blacksmith resource wed-site made by blacksmiths. The guy on etsey may be OK, but if it's on anvilfire, it's probably tested and proved.
  12. Daniel W

    How do you acheive mirror bevels?

    lol, mcmaster sells just about everything, about 90% of the hardware tools and safety gear my company uses comes from there. Having seen so much stuff come in from them daily for the past 8 years, they have pretty reliable stuff.
  13. Daniel W

    Seeking advice

    I'm sorry I missed this post on my last day off to reply. Sanding sealer is used first on the wood so that the wood does not adsorb as much of the finish (linseed oil or poly) and helps to make that glassy finish in less coats of said finish. My old man uses this stuff religiously between each coat of finish. Sanding sealer, buff, finish, sand/buff - sanding sealer, buff, finish, sand/buff - continue. More of your oil will sit on the surface of the wood and make a hard looking finish. I can say that in comparison to me just using tung oil and light sanding, his stuff looks better because of his process.
  14. Daniel W

    Simple tomahawk

    That's really nice for your first wrapped eye, wish mine had come out that clean. Getting into file work will be really fun, it's such a nice way to accent these. A three corner file will be your best friend.
  15. Daniel W


    Very nice I wondered if that table was your own invention, or came with it. Shoot if I would have known that I might have gone after that saw rather than their portaban. There is a very large horizontal saw that has come available at work I'm thinking about placing a bid on it although I have no where to put the thing. I't a whole 1hp motor by the look of it, and has the coolant system on it already. Although cut off disks are nice, anyone mess with the more expensive diamond cut offs? The guy I get steel off of uses one in a big chop saw that is torqued down, I'm wondering if their worth getting into.