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Found 57 results

  1. Joe Howard

    Melted file

    Hi, I was hoping someone could help me with a problem. I am making a knife out of an old metal file which I bought from a car boot sale. Because I’m going to work it by hand, I tried to remove the hardness of the file in my homemade charcoal forge. I got the file to a bright yellow in colour, but when I removed it, it seems to have broken into two pieces, and partially melted! There is also a mound of metallic stuff attached to the bottom of my forge. Is there a reason for this? Did I screw up somewhere? Do you think the steel is still salvageable? Thanks, Joe
  2. Kyle Etheridge

    Charcoal forge insulation

    Hello everyone. This is my first post on the forum, and had two questions about charcoal forge in genreal. I have completed 80% of my forge build so far and have decided on a clay/ ash mix for insulation. My first question is what minimun thickness of insulation should I apply at the bottom of my firepot? And the second, how deep of a fire pot would you recomend? also any recommendations on width/ size would also be helpful. Thank you, I love projects and am already having a blast, can't wait to start hammering some metal.
  3. Eric Dennis

    Defend your Firepot

    So... After years of using a modified rivet forge I want to build my own forge for burning coal that is more functional and hopefully one that holds a better fire. I have plans for the forge body and chimney, but I'm still undecided about the firepot, so Instead of asking about a specific design I would love to hear folk's opinions on what they recommend... I want you to defend your firepot! Do you prefer cast iron? Side drafts? Swedish styles? Whatever it may be I want to hear what you like about a specific design in the hopes of gaining some insight. I'm not currently interested in hearing about gas forged. I've build a ribbon burner forge and love it, but ultimately solid fuel is where my heart is. Much appreciated, Eric
  4. Rick Haibach

    Propane Forge Question

    I have a scrap 8" x 24" air tank that I am planning on building into a propane forge with my brother in law this weekend to give to him for his birthday. I have an adjustable propane regulator and the pipes/fittings to make one venturi style burner. I was planning on lining the inside with 2 inches of kaowool and skinning with refractory cement then having a fire brick or two to set the metal on. This would leave a 4" diameter hole in the center of the tank. Here are the two options that I would like an opinion on though since for now I only want to do a single burner setup. Option 1: Shorten the tank to 8 or 12" and run one burner in the center or offset towards the front. Option 2: Leave the tank at 24" and run one burner about 5" from the front but leave the option to add additional burners if he sticks with the hobby and wants to do longer items. Will I have heat or combustion problems if I have such an offset burner and nothing behind it for the last 19 or 20"? I don't care if the back of the forge doesn't get hot enough for now since he is just learning and probably playing around with smaller pieces of metal. Other question. Is there any standard/formula for hole size in the front and back of the forge? Should one be larger than the other? I see a lot of guys putting a moveable plate on the front to hold some heat in. Any tips/feedback would be greatly appreciated! This would be my first attempt at a forge and I am guessing some people on here have learned a lot of little tricks to improve things...
  5. JoeM

    Starting a smithy...

    Just starting to build my smithy and I need some advice. I recently abandoned my previous hobby of home brewing and after selling some of my equipment, I would like some experienced direction on where to spend wisely. I’ve managed to find a few anvils, make an anvil stand and purchased a decent MIG welder. So now I’m looking for a forge and possibly a belt grinder? - Forges Would it make sense to purchase a professionally built gas forge? If so, what would be a worthwhile investment? I’m located in British Columbia, Canada and its not something that is locally available. I understand that forge that uses a blower is far more efficient. If building is a better option: 1. I’ve read that soft firebrick (kiln brick) is the best choice IF taking the brick route. I could probably weld a frame together to keep the firebrick together, but should I mortar them together using refractory? And should I be using a harder brick as the floor of the forge? 2. I have a few stainless-steel quarter kegs left over from my brewing days, which I could convert into a forge. Would this make a good forge body? In this case, should I use kaowool and refractory cement? - Belt Grinders I’ve seen belt grinders being used extensively. Is this something that is worth purchasing? Over the years, I’ve been collecting electric motors and managed to find a 220V adjustable speed motor recently. I think that’s it for now, thank you for your help. Joe
  6. JamesK

    Noticed warp

    Just finished up what I would call a hunting/camping knife so I started to temper it but realized it had a small warp on just the edge, and if I grind it out I’ll lose at least a few millimeters off the edge, which is already lower than I want it to be...is there any risk or permanent effects of heat treating twice, even after a first temper? So far I heat treated and tempered it but now it kind of has to be hammered straight again
  7. Farmer Mark

    Propane forge troubleshooting

    Howdy, my name is Mark. I built a propane forge about a year ago. The chamber does not heat properly. It has cold spots and doesn't get the metal as hot as it should. I need to remeasure it, but I'm pretty sure the mouth is 6"x6" with a depth/length of 18". 6" from burner to burner. I used the common ez burner style. 1.25"x.75" reducer. 8" 3/4" pipe with a flared end. For insulation I used 2" soft firebrick. And then it's kiln shelfing on the bottom (3/4" thick) and sides (1/2-5/8" thick). The propane is a high pressure 10psi regulator When I thought the problem was that too much heat escaped, I closed up one end and it did not help. I also tried raising up the floor, but this just made smaller hot zones and larger cold zones with no improvement. I can't really raise the burners higher or lower the floor without cutting welds out. I made a steel box all around it out of angle iron and plate 1/8". Before trying something like that I was hoping to get some advice from you folks. I remembered reading a lot of forums here when I was making plans and constructing this. Thanks in advance for the help. Please let me know if there is any more information I can add that'll be useful, and if you want me to post pics of attempts of changes. Thanks again, -Mark
  8. JamesK

    Fullering Device

    Just finished my fullering device, a tool I only recently learned about and only recently learned how necessary they are. So I went ahead and bought a 36 inch steel rod 1/2” and it pretty much turned out just as I planned. The spring section is crudely forged and ugly but it’s very springy, and although some stuff is unaligned the two rods are aligned and fit well, so any suggestions or comments on it? Thanks. Spent about 25-30 mins on it PS: I know my anvil is ugly and tiny, it’s onlt $85 and all I can afford right now, the next best is way over my budget for tools
  9. Hey guys, I’ve been working on a Bowie knife from the second half of an old prybar (that hardens well), and this is my first real Bowie and I want a hidden tang to stay true to the classic Bowie shape. I’ve never done a hidden tang before and thought I’d ask a few questions before I continue to hammer out the tang because the last thing I want to do is ruin this knife because it looks good so far. So here is my knife after about an hour and a half (2 days of forging). I like the shape and think it can turn into something nice, but the tang is weird right now. It is not centered and it’s almost aligned perfectly with the top...how can I drop that tang down so that it is centered with the knife? I was thinking I can put the bottom part on the horn and just hammer from the top but I’m not 100% sure... this is really my only question but feel free to add additional tips I should know before attempting my first hidden tang
  10. Yesterday evening I finished and heat treated my mini tomahawk head made from an old rusted prybar, and it successfully hardened to my surprise. I just did some research on tempering and wish I knew to temper the blade sooner, or that I had time to do it after the quench, but now it's the next morning and I don't know if tempering would be safe. The steel is fine and did not crack overnight and everything seems to be okay, but can critial damage be done during a temper similar to that of a heat treat? I heard 400F for 3 hours, cooling it every hour is the way to go, but this late after a treat I'm not sure how dangerous that would be, any suggestions? Thanks!
  11. JamesK

    Did I forge weld right?

    Just finished the first step in making another tomahawk head (4th try so far), and it looks good, I just can’t tell if it successfully welded. I used borax and got most of the scaling off and then just hammered it shut and heated and hammered again, then I turned he forge off to ground rough edges. I got down flat on the edge and it seems to have welded, it’s flat and no crack I can stick anything into, but I can see the slightest line through the middle, a tiny line I couldn’t see it at first. Is this any indication that the weld is not closed? It seems like it obviously is I just don’t know if it’s something else, I’ll send a picture but it’s hard to see! also, some areas the line is easier to see than others, and some spots I can’t even see the line so maybe I just haven’t ground down far enough if this isn’t completely welded, would another couple of heats and hammers close it or is that window now closed?
  12. Jaro Petrina

    Venturi blower once again

    This is my take on propane blower. It takes about 2 hours to make. The big tube is 2" nominal, the small is 1" nominal. The cone between is bought black metal "weld fitting" 2" to 1" and the end is the same thing but just 1" to 1 1/2". The air intake is regulated by flat round cap on piece of 10 mm screw. The jet is again 10 mm screw, which I drilled very nearly through with something like 6 mm hole along -on my lathe and then drilled one side at the end just 1 mm hole. Tunning is very primitive or nonexistent. It runs very well from 1 bar of pressure up, it really shines at 2 bars. That is about OK for 1" nominal I suppose. It has tendency to go off if the jet is badly positioned, the hole must go downstream. I think it could be also shorter, as it might actually have tendency to go supersonic. Should this be improved and to get different flame pattern I suppose custom end flare 1:12 will be needed. Jaro
  13. So I finally finished my axe head and I was an idiot because I fit the handle (after multiple polyurethane coats), attached a leather handle too, but I just now noticed the wave in the hatchet edge, near the bottom (it has a slight Viking beard to it). Any way to straighten it without affecting the wood or leather handle? Again the wave is at the edge so my thought was to maybe buy a propane torch and heat up the edge, then lightly hammer it out to a better shape, then just re-treat it buy running the torch along the edge and heat treating it. Im open to any suggestions, but as a beginner who has never researched this topic I don't know what many things are so if you could explain I would greatly appreciate it! and again, the head is firmly epoxied and wedged into the handle by this point, and being a small handheld hatchet the edge can't be fit into the forge without ruining the handle completely! So that is not an option! thanks everyone! I spent days preparing to finally finish this axe and I'm super proud of it, now I just have this last hurdle to get over until I'm done
  14. JamesK

    "Viking" Axe - Head Done

    Hey everyone, just finished, or finished the rough finish on my "viking" axe, which now looks slightly more like a generic tomahawk sort of. As a beginner with only weeks of experience, I'd call this a major success and boosts my morale for gaining more and more experience. Obviously compared to most work on this forum this is in the range of bad to mediocre, but I'm pretty proud of it. Since I used a new hatchet head for the start, I had a lot of extra steel to work with for a smaller axe, and it was very hard to work out the shape I wanted from it since it needed a lot of modifying, might've honestly been easier to make one from scratch. Honestly I ground most of what's seen in the final product, but spent a few hours of forging beforehand to get a rough shape going. Please feel free to leave HONEST feedback! I know it isn't that great and I want to hear that! Honesty helps, criticism will make me better! As a beginner with very low experience, criticism and honesty will really make me better! Also suggestions on how I can modify it before I mount it on a handle, I plan on using epoxy so yes It might be "permanent"! The top picture is day 2 (earlier today) of my work, and the second is (obviously) my work at the end of day 2 (later today)
  15. JamesK

    Viking Axe - In Progress

    Hey guys, as a beginner, forging for only a few weeks with only a few finished knives, I decided to maybe do a modification rather than a knife from scratch. Can't say it's good so far but after about 30 minutes in day 1 I'd say it's a start! I'd love to hear some honest feedback, how to make it better, and if it's a good start! Please no nasty comments, I'm very new at this and would like critique and not harshness, thanks! I'll continue to post my progress, may take a while to complete! Also, if I sprinkle some borax on the axe before I decide to treat it, will it make it look cleaner? I've heard that
  16. JamesK

    Removing Axe Head

    Ok so as I mentioned in my last post I screwed up making a handheld viking style hatchet, so I went to Lowes and picked up a pretty cheap wood handle hatchet. It's not a bad hatchet, but the handle is on there good and I don't really want to ruin the handle or make it unusable incase the other handle can't be fit on. So I was wondering if anybody had suggestions for how I could get this handle out, most likely epoxy used too. Epoxy I could just heat up and soften it, but I have to loosen the wood first. I'm fine with drilling into the handle and patching it up later with glue or something, but I don't really want to cut the handle off because I may use it again. Below I posted three pictures showing the unique wedge in the handle (That doesn't really look removable) as well as the shoulder that appears to have glue on it...any ideas? Thanks
  17. So I was planning on turning an old, rusty, cheap camp axe into a shiny Viking style axe with a modified handle. All was going well but then I noticed that around the beard of the axe the steel got way too soft, like almost play-dough like soft, every strike would send it back super far and I got a lot of folds and the steel ultimately started deteriorating. When it cooled down it looked almost powder-y and I don't know why. Could it have gotten to that point because it was too hot? Or maybe it was just really cheap steel? Also, when I tried grinding it to shape (and failed), it produced a lot of sparks so it was definitely very high in carbon. My three guesses are it was either too hot and I overheated the steel or it was a very low quality steel that deteriorated over time
  18. I've mentioned before in my other posts that the steel I use is sort of thick, like maybe 1/4", so not too much but for my case too thick to make a tang out of. I don't want to make a hidden tang as I prefer scales so I have to forge/grind out the shape in the metal. How would I draw out the steel for the tang in a way that I flatten it but don't change the width much? I would experiment but I'm low on steel and would like to ask before I potentially waste what I have left, so my guess is to hit one side, then turn 180 degrees to hit, then 90 degrees to flatten, is this a good strategy?
  19. JamesK

    Help with Bevels

    I already asked about the tang and tip of a knife and I'm beginning to get the hang of that, but one issue I have now are the bevels of a knife. I understand it's about holding the knife at an angle half of the angle of your strikes, like if you hit straight down hold the knife at 45 degrees so both ends flatten the same. Obviously this just takes practice but does anybody have any tips or video links? Thanks
  20. Hello, so I'm a beginner bladesmith, like few weeks a beginner and although there are a ton of helpful videos online to get me and my less than $500 shop in a spare space started, I still have some questions I can't seem to find answers for. One big issue I have is forging the tip. I know how to forge the shape but since when you "fold" the steel at the ends in and basically compress the metal, the spine at the tip, and even the blade, are much thicker and the rest of my metal. Obviously this makes sense but are there any ways to flatten that area out without making the tip wider or without just grinding it all away?
  21. I just finished building a ribbon burner forge, fired it up, and I'm not getting the heat from it I would expect. I can bring it to a bright orange, but it's having a hard time getting past that. I feel like the forge build should allow for forge welding temps as I followed a pretty standard procedure. So, my guess is an issue with the burner/blower, plumbing, etc. At this point I think my blower is a bit too strong, so I need to set up a second baffle after the blower it seems that I need to keep the gate on the front totally shut. Also, as I bring the atmosphere toward neutral (no dragon's breath), I begin to get an intense, low, vibration noise. I'm assuming this is the burner beginning to blow itself out? Because of this it feels like I can't quite bring it to a true neutral flame. So far i've been running it between 2-4 psi propane. I will give a very quick low-down on the forge build otherwise I can answer questions. Also I posted a pretty detailed forge build over at iforgeiron with lots of pics and a video of it running the first time (in the video I didn't quite have the atmosphere correct) , etc. HERE: https://www.iforgeiron.com/topic/50761-questions-on-ribbon-burners/ Forge: 20# propane tank shell, 2" rigidized kaowool, 1/2"-ish kast-o-lite 30 over the wool, high alumina kiln shelf floor, everything covered in plistix, insulating firebrick doors. Burner: Followed Emmerling's design, used mizzou to cast with. Blower: https://www.blacksmithsdepot.com/products/forge-fan-fuel/blowers/gas-forge-blower-2.html I can post pictures here, but I already have on the thread linked above, so unless someone asked for a specific photo I will wait for now. Ok, that's a start. Looking for suggestions on tuning this thing up to its full potential, which I believe is attainable. Thanks in advance, Eric
  22. Hi I´m new to this forum and far from a pro, i have made my first forge and was wondering if any of you had some suggestions on modifications i should make to my design to avoid future problems. I have made a video about how i made it and hope it gives a clearer picture of the design. I am looking forward to any suggestions Best Regards René A
  23. Good afternoon everyone, the store that I purchase my refractory from does custom casting of refractories, and after talking to one of the employees there came up with the idea of pre-cast forge liners. Is this the king of thing that people would be interested in? (the more interest, the cheaper it could be since they have to build a mold for the castings) I figure that the kit could include- 1- cast 3000 degree refractory cement cylinder (with a 2"hole centered for the burner) wrapped in 1" kaowool, and sized to slide into a propane cylinder forge 2- 2" thick piece of kaowool sized to go inside the bottom/ back of the forge 3- small container of IR reflective to coat inside of forge I am waiting on a quote for the cost per package, but I feel like this would be a nice simple setup for beginners, and god knows it isn't easy to find refractory products locally...
  24. Good evening everyone, I am getting ready to start a forge build this weekend, the body of the forge will be an 11 gallon compressed air tank ( I only chose this over the 5 gallon because I am hoping to work on some wider pieces that might not fit in the narrower body after insulating) My current plan is -a rectangular door in the rear with angle iron top and bottom so that I can slide a brick in to block the hole. -larger rectangular door on the front, also with angle iron so that I can close most of it off to allow higher temps. -I currently have 2" ceramic wool, 10 x 1/2 cut bricks, and hercules brand furnace cement (home depot's only refractory cement, but it is listed as a "3000 degree cement") The plan is to start with the wool, paint 2-3 thin (and thinned) coats of the cement, followed by a couple of slightly thicker coats (hoping for 1/2-3/4 inch?), and use a row of 1/2 bricks to line the bottom. Total should be around 540-600 cubic inches. I have looked at both of these double burner setups ( both from ebay ) as well as a ribbon burner ( I decided against the ribbon so that I am not tied to an outlet for the blower ) Any recommendations, suggestions, things that I am doing completely wrong etc... suggestions are appreciated. My other concern is, how necessary is an IR reflective coating? (plistex, metrikote, ITC100) Can it be added later?
  25. Nflanders

    Brake lines to run propane

    Good afternoon, this may sound like a stupid question, but does anyone use brake lines to run propane for their forges? I found a set of burners for sale on ebay, but he says to use brake lines to run the propane...
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