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Alan Longmire

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Everything posted by Alan Longmire

  1. Most excellent, sir! Good to see you posting stuff. I like everything about the whole package. Hope the smoke's not too bad where you are.
  2. Steve brought one up to Harley's hammer-in the last year Don Fogg showed up, 2007, maybe? Don used it to forge a small blade and pronounced it to be black magic not to be messed with by mere mortal bladesmiths. John N brought one to Owen's in 2011 and it had much the same effect. The cool factor is undeniable, though. I suspect if I had one I'd use it more for casting precious metals than forging steel.
  3. In my opinion, it's good to do a single normalization at 1500 (assuming critical for your mix is ~1475) at the end of each forging session. Letting it cool in the forge doesn't do much, but it's not wasting fuel either. As long as you're not holding at or above critical you shouldn't have grain growth issues. With 1095 or the W series hypereutectoid steels, a very slow cool may cause laminar carbide precipitation, or sheet carbide that eats drill bits rather than the spheroidal carbides that machine well. A lot depends on the steel you're using with that one. I see you starting that at 12
  4. Pretty much. You just want to make sure the transition on the way down is complete.
  5. Steve Kayne (a local-to-me supplier, owns Blacksmith's Depot now) would sell them with a roll of ceramic fiber paper like a toilet paper tube you could put inside the coil. You can buy a small roll of (or sheets of) the paper from any kiln supply place, it's cleaner and tougher than refractory clay but you can't see through it. Now I sort of wonder if you couldn't find a fused quartz tube... Steve also didn't use flux with them. His selling trick was to do a butt weld on 3/8" round mild by holding one piece in each hand, sticking into the coils, hitting the power until they tur
  6. I find the wax isn't heavy enough to prevent dye from taking, or at least from wicking in from the stripped spots, so I may not be waxing it right. So, I just use the natural linen on most things. I do have some black nylon I use for certain non-sheath things, like when I'm forced to fix something for someone because my wife thinks I can fix anything (I can't) and that I am more than happy to do it for anyone (depends on for whom)... If you want true black thread, there's nothing wrong with buying black thread, or whatever color you want. In my own experience, I just don't ofte
  7. https://campbell-randall.com/product/linen-thread-5-cord-left-twist-natural-1 Something like this. Chuck Burrows always recommend the 5-cord, saying you could strip out a few to make it thinner if needed.
  8. You need some ceramic fibre blanket with a higher temperature rating. I bet they used the 1800 degree F stuff because it's cheapest. You will want the 2600 degree F kind, and a refractory topcoat rated at least that high, if not more. If Tim (or any other of our UK smiths, for that matter) drops by again he can help you source it in the UK.
  9. Thanks for the level-headed assessment, Geoff! That's pretty much what I've heard from the other guys I know who've done the show. Niels, that's kind of my reason for not wanting to do it. That, and I do not perform well under pressure. Although, I probably could've won the coal forge episode...
  10. In theory you go critical+100F, cool to black, critical, cool to black, critical -100F, cool to black. With 10XX series steels you can get fine results doing it either way. The "critical-200F" is a subcritical anneal. I suggest you make a bar of 1/4" square from your steel of choice and do the break test at every step of the way. Or at least try it with both methods, done all the way. You can then look at your grain and see what, if any, difference there is.
  11. Nice setup, Garry. And good job on bending the guard. It's tough to get that right without any flat spots or sudden kinks.
  12. I think a pair of Chili burners would do it. The "furnace" ventilation might need some tuning, since a blown burner doesn't care about exhaust port size, but the Chilis are good burners.
  13. I was thinking the handle would have those 90 degree short bits shown...
  14. Ooh, with that last one it could even be a three pour casting. Slug, handle, helmet. The shrinkage of the helmet would lock the handle pretty solidly, no?
  15. Nice! If you've gotten that far on your own, you'll go far with outside help. That's a sort of hybrid Japanese/Iron Age Norse forge setup, so a stout thick knife from either culture would work as a charcoal chopper. I use whatever's handy (axe, hatchet, seax, random piece of flat bar), but I know Dan O'Conner ( a fellow Texan of yours, and a serious follower of Japanese techniques) made a sort of thick heavy vegetable knife to chop charcoal with. About 14" overall with a square tip. No idea if that's traditional in the Japanese style or if it's just what worked for him. I o
  16. No video that I know of, but it's appeared at almost every Fire and Brimstone, and also at the 2013 Oakland axe-n-seax. Here it is in Baltimore in its disassembled state for pulling the crucible: You can just see the end of the burner to the right of the crucible, and that wad of kaowool is the body of the furnace. I know I have more, but here's some from elsewhere: http://elementalforge.com/blog/wp-content/gallery/oasi2013/000300thursdaysmelt.jpg http://elementalforge.com/blog/wp-content/gallery/oasi2013/000301thursdaysmelt.jpg
  17. I think you'd be cheaper and better served by building a Jeff Pringle-type Nuclear Marshmallow furnace. That's just two thicknesses of kaowool wrapped into a cylinder and held with wire. Lid of the same, but with a hole in. Crucible sitting on a firebrick plinth inside, run a blown burner in the bottom at a tangent for a swirl flame. Can be scaled up. Fire until contents are fully liquid, pull the burner, lift off the lightweight wool furnace body, fit the pouring shank, pour. These last for several firings. It's what Jeff uses for wootz runs. They hold up to impacts and sausage grease qu
  18. I'm glad Jerrod chimed in, because I have no experience of how the big things are done. I knew it was a bunch of rosebuds ganged on a sled with a water spray follower, and I know that with the three or four torches you and me can wrangle on short notice that's still not enough to do one of those blocks of 4140... especially if AirGas won't give us bigger cylinders. The piece I did is on here somewhere, it was a big single-edged sword. I rigged up a mister that blew water on both sides of the blade, and a guide block to keep the blade level. Heated a couple of inches of the edge
  19. Generally speaking, this forum is limited to knives you made yourself. Sometimes we'll allow people to sell knives by others, if the "other" is a well known custom bladesmith. You're kind of on the edge with the two knives you've listed. Tell you what: as long as you don't bump the threads, they can stay. Bump them without either new information OR a price change, and they're out of here.
  20. I prefer slightly damp. The real leather folks call the condition "in case," which is just damp to the core, not wet enough to drip when squeezed. The guy who showed me would cut out the sheath blank, run it under the tap for a second or two, then put it in a plastic bag for a couple of hours prior to working on it.
  21. Indeed! Carry on, I think that will be awesome in bronze.
  22. That makes me happy.
  23. Thanks, Niels! Perhaps later today I will monkey with the colors, that will fix the white bar. Other than that, though, it does look good.
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