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Found 5 results

  1. Greetings! I am looking at offering Bloom Steel for sale on a consistent basis. The results I have been getting are very consistent, and I am really dialing in on being able to offer a consistent material for use in your projects. I currently have two pieces of raw bloom for sale. Both weigh 11.6 pounds, and I am offering them for sale at $232 each plus shipping. Almost all the areas from the inside cross section spark with carbon, most areas are high but not cast, and they should forge out nicely! My offering needs two major upgrades, First is switching to a consistent ore source. I am currently driving 3 hours north one way for half my mix, and 2 hours south one way for the other half of my mix. Pretty sure there is a way to streamline that inefficiency! Second, I would like to offer bloom that has been flattened, surfaces cleaned, and cut into strips. I have enough ore for two more smelts, I plan on setting up my preliminary forging station this week, and will be shooting a video to launch a gofundme campaign to determine interest, as well as run through the process twice to get a better idea of how to price processed bloom. If there are any parts of the smelt that you would like me to try to capture, please let me know and I can plan to try to have it captured.
  2. Hi, everybody! I was never too active here, actually I guess I never posted anything on the forum, but I'm trying to change! =) This is a video I made sometime ago about a bloomery furnace I did on my workshop. I'm a complete newbie on this stuff, this was my fifth try on making a bloom, the first one that I got an actual bloom, after I decided to read some more material about it. Anything you can say about it will be very, very useful for a next try. I talked with some more experienced people on the web and they already told me to make improvements on the process, but other people, other minds and anything you can say about it will be great for me, so I can grow on this path. The main stuff I would like to ask is how to get a result with a lower carbon content. I tried to put as much ore as I could, with just a few charcoal between the charges, I tried to blow more air inside it, but even so it wasn't enough and I got a very high amount of carbon. It was useful for the project I had in mind, but for a next run, it would be nice to get a more "carbon free" result. Hope you like the video, thanks for watching!
  3. Hello all! I'm a knife maker of seven years, a serious hobbyist. I stumbled upon Jesus' smelter project some years ago and saved it for a "one of these days" project. This past Saturday, July 26th, I celebrated my 31st birthday with a BBQ and smelt. I had been reading around here and recognized Jesus' name, hopped over to his website and shot him a message on some particulars to doing this thing right...and I got a partial success, I think. I must reconsolidate my very slaggy bloom in a hearth, I think (guide me!). So thanks much to everyone who has shared so much on unlocking these mysteries for us adventurous types and especially to Jesus for taking the time to reply so quickly. I am attaching these files, so I apologize that its not quite as clean of a post as possible. I don't have my images uploaded anywhere...yet. The charcoal was hand chopped to about silver dollar or a quarter of a tennis ball size (it was hardwood, commercially available). The ore was 81% and 95% iron oxide, mixed to an average of 88%. 55lbs was mixed to 5lbs of flour. This was mixed and spread on a stainless sheet to dry in the sun. Then the pieces were broken to pieces about the size of quarter or the cap of a water bottle (I believe they should have been crushed smaller). What was not shown here (a lot is not shown here), is that the bloom formed in the middle of the stack, clinging to the wall and I believe it started where the tuyere entered. The tuyere, per Jesus' instructions, was placed 5" above a 4" ash bowl at the bottom. I burnt about 32" of iron pipe. For reference, it was placed 5" in the chamber, so that it was centered. The fire just consumed it...lots of it. I'll be forming a cone 10 clay tuyere until I can cast a copper one. The body of the furnace was made with bricks, covered and mortared with cone 10 clay. I lost most of the clay on the inside of the chamber to spalling, so I'll be using far less water next time. I also had flames "leaking" on the outside so I know that I was loosing heat. Because of these problems, what I believe I have made is a mostly slag bloom that needs to go into a hearth to be reconsolidated. I've sawed it in half on an industrial saw with coolant and there is definitely iron present, but a spark test isn't very feasible due to the high content of slag...its a grey, porous, slightly glass like, and capable of fracturing mostly with hand pressure. It is magnetic and there is a few pieces of charcoal and clay stuck in it. Please advise. Heres the photos. The last is not an operating photo, its a drying clay with scrap lumber photo...I didn't get any operations photos because, well, I was the operator.
  4. Hey Guys this is one of my first posts and my first show and tell on this website. I am not doing a reproduction of an archeological find but a sword of my own design following strict guidelines of style that the Romans used. I understand some of you will have different ideas of what "historical accuracy" is but this fulfills my own idea and here is my reasoning through the description. The blade is probably the most accurate part. It is made from bloomery and hearth steel me and my friend Jeff Pringle made from ore and recycled wrought iron exactly as the Romans did. I folded layers of the bloomery iron and hearth steel together and forge welded more steel around the edge. This "piling" is precisely how most roman swords were made. It also leave a beautiful and subtle pattern showing off the many layers of forged steel, in total about 800. I estimate the carbon in the steel to be around 0.5% which is historically correct. Right by the hilt I inlaid a star and moon which is my blacksmithing touchmark and a common Roman motif. The moon is silver and the star is bronze. The hilt is made entirely of antler and held together by a resin and the peening of the tang. The glue I used to hold this together was made with pine pitch and beeswax just as the Romans did. The bolster, pommel cap and ring are made of bronze. I made the scabbard out of wood and riveted a bronze jacket to the surface. It is chased and reposed with different scenes I created, however all the images themselves are taken from Roman mosaics or other artwork. The baldric is made of veg tanned leather. The buckle and rings on the scabbard are tinned brass and copper. The chape is carved antler with Mars under a crescent moon and star. All of the rivets are silver. This sword is for sale, and the current asking price is $3000. I am also available for similar custom work so feel free to PM me or check out my website. www.underhilledge.com jack.mcauliffe@comcast.net
  5. While I have known Jeff Pringle for quite a while, I got to know him much better in 2009, while I was attending a university in California for my Masters degree. I was invited several times to drive up to Oakland for the weekend, slept on his couch, fondled his artifacts, read from his library, and worked in Jim Austin's shop down the road. During this time Jeff and I started tossing the phrase back and forth, "the price of knowledge." It might apply to any sacrifice one had to make in order to learn something. Usually it's our time, or the price of rare books, or the cost of a bribe to get a more experienced smith to open up a little more about closely-held information. At this year's Axe-n Sax-In, we used the phrase liberally, and many got to hear it for the first time. During Jeff's excellent presentation of his original artifacts, there was a brief nod to the work I was starting to undergo with an Axe I'd bought back in 2009, and I've just recently decided to pay the price to know more about it. So, to the grinder we went. First, actually, I sand-blasted the piece, removing most of the original protective coating. I wanted to really see the structure, and instead of the smoothed-out paraffin product used to conserve it, I prefered to apply a thin coat of Renaissance Wax while it was warm, which protects the iron from oxygen (not as durably) but lets me see much more of the structure. Then, in a fit of whimsical desire, I took the axe over to the stone grinder in Jim's shop, invited a couple friends to witness a rare event, and sparked not just the blade, but the neck, and the back of the eye as well. We found that it was very uniform, and depending on how your Mark-1 Eyeball is calibrated, we figure it's between 0.3 and 0.4% C, and observing the slaggy nature of the entire piece (with only some refinement from heavier forging near the edge), consider the axe to be made entirely of steely bloom. No inset bit, no lap-welded edge, no carburized bits apart from others, just a well-built piece made of material just hardenable enough, probably water quenched and not tempered. Not unlike a RR spike of today, if a RR spike were made of wrought iron and was otherwise generally alloy-free. I ground a window open on the piece and applied a little ferric etchant, and we saw a wonderful hint of what was to come... non-homogeneous carbon distribution in the metal, clear layer boundaries as the folding up to make a large enough piece was accomplished, and clear evidence in the way the layer lines flow of how the material was pushed around a bit to get the shape established. Last night, I completed the exercise, and opened most of the right face. The lower beard is too pitted to get completely down to clean metal, but there's enough flat and polished you can clearly see what's going on. Having observed the grain from the top, the left face is clearly the bias side - there are no end-grain boundaries to observe, everything slopes off the right. We had previously supposed it was an asymmetrical eye wrap, and this work confirms that - the weld line is just forward of where the neck begins to slope down the beard. What I did not expect, though, was another very clear weld line forward of that, angled from far forward at the top, to back about halfway down the beard, just behind that corrosion artifact that looks like a river system. After pondering this, tracing the line back to the top grain, what is obvious now, is that the full beard, neck, and eye were made with a piece of steel about the same thickness across the entire profile. This new piece seems welded into place to add thickness to the neck where it was needed, terminating at the front of the eye, and upon which the lap weld of the eye was forged. It is very suggestive that the maker worked with bars of steel of generally the same thickness, and upsetting wasn't much part of the process. There is still speculation that the beard is the result of an "L" bend in the original bar, and my examination of the right side hasn't gotten that far, but from these images you all are free to speculate. Anyway, that's my report. It took spending a few hundred dollars to get this piece, and it took wanting to know about it's guts more than a desire to preserve it forever in black wax, in order to learn what I've shared here. I've paid the price of knowledge on this one, and hope you enjoy my take on it. The polished face is waxed against the weather, and I think I'll put it away for a while now and ponder, while I finish other work that's still on the bench and in my head.
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