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AJ Prime

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  1. My latest, a W1 integral. I've been really enjoying the process of producing a hamon, and refining my technique aiming for better results each time.
  2. That's validating to hear. I've had a few people say they think the oroshigane will be too dirty but I've found it comes out of the smelt really quite clean, and I assume putting it in a crucible will only purify it more. I'm using the pieces that were too small to mess around forge welding, so it's as good a use as any for it.
  3. @Daniel Cauble, I've been following your oroshigane exploits which I find very interesting (it's another rabbit hole I'm slowly tumbling down). Do you use charcoal for your crucibles melts too? Thanks you Sir
  4. I might explore that option Garry. Might give Corin a bell too
  5. I know right, imagine my disappointment. I was envisaging pulling out a puck of steel made from steel I made. It just looked like the top of a very hot lasagna. I'm hoping I can just remelt it once I figure my heating source out properly
  6. Thank you! I gave it a prod and stir every now. I think what happened was I pushed that un-melted piece flat to the bottom so when I went prodding at the end I thought I was hitting the bottom of the crucible. Can you explain what you mean by a carbon rod?
  7. This weekend, a friend and I attempted to produce crucible steel for the first time. It's something we've both been keen to try for a while so a couple weeks back we decided we'd put a plan together. We were confident we could build the foundry but I wasn't sure my forge burner would be able to produce the heat required. We both have the same burner and they're sort of modular and could be easily transferred from a forge to a foundry so we figured why not use two burners and see how that goes. We set out expectations at a realistic level and decided that this attempt would be to see if we could even melt steel. We filled our crucible with cast iron (donated from resurfaced brake rotors) and small pieces of mild steel to bring the iron ratio up. The cast iron content was an unknown but we worked on the assumption of 2% carbon, aiming for a final level of 1.3%, though it could end up higher. Total mass was 600g. Green glass was put on top. Once it went in we were both surprised how quickly the glass melted. The crucible stayed in the foundry for a little over an hour before we killed the fuel supply and dropped in a little Aluminium. We left it sitting in the foundry for a few more minutes the took it out to cool. An hour later the glass was cracked open and little puck fell out. It looked a little porous too it untrained eyes but we were still really happy we had seemingly pulled it off. High-fives were had. I cut it in half to reveal what looked like a mostly solid puck but a quick polish and etch revealed that there were a couple pieces of unmelted mild steel in the bottom. Despite that we were pretty pleased with ourselves. So we attempted melt number two. This didn't go nearly as well. Melt #2 was 900g of small bits from oroshigane smelts. After 80-minutes only the glass had melted. Here's what I think happened: The first run had depleted our gas bottles somewhat so at the second run our 9kg gas bottles were low and quickly freezing, dropping gas pressure and heat. Essentially we just weren't as hot the second time around. That, and powdered cast iron probably melts a lot easier than chunks of carbon steel. So in the end we determined we need a hotter fire source. LPG is expensive and will always have the freezing issue so well be exploring a waste oil burner for future attempts. When we've established a system that will reliably melt steel we'll begin looking closer at our recipes. All in all, we're pretty happy with the mornings work. All feedback welcome A.J. Prime *Edit* Photo seem to have published in the wrong order
  8. Thank you Gentlemen. I'll be making the attempt later this morning with this 1095 slicer.
  9. Ok, so most of us know what one looks like, right? But metallurgically speaking, what is it actually? What is the ghosted line made of? And what makes it visible? Is it fundamentally different to a quench line (edge-quench, etc)? Sorry for spewing a bunch of questions out, I'm not sure what the right all encompassing question is. Just looking for a better answer than Wikipedia can give. TIA AJ
  10. The checkering was a nerve-wracking first too
  11. Greetings All, This was my first attempt at a hamon, from January this year - a 1095 boner with stabilised Swamp Kauri scales. I was pretty happy with the outcome but will change things up a bit next time to hopefully get more activity.
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