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Building up


Racca

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Hello again everyone.

 

I have started to make my forge and gather the related equipment and some material to work with. I have part of my forge built, it is based on my Lively's design but will be modified as soon as I can get the rest of the pieces. As it sits right now I don't think it will get hot enough to forge weld anything but the modifications should fix that for me. I also have a 3lb. cross pein that I grabbed due to a great price. I would have gotten a 4lb but I was in a motorcycle accident a couple of months ago and my shoulder isn't strong enough to wield the 4lb for very long. I might grab a 2lb sledge. I need some chisels for cutting and some files. I'm working on finding a place that sells clay here so I can make the filler for my forge and let it dry. I also need to find some tongs if anyone has some recommendations on what tongs I should get please let me know. I have a blacksmith supply shop about an hour south of here called centaur forge that I can go pick up the tongs. Here are some picks of my forge so far.

_MG_4987.jpg

Edited by Spiritbear

 I have heard that those who celebrate life walk safely amongst the wild animals.

When they go into battle, they remain unharmed, the animals find no place to attack them

and weapons are unable to harm them.

Why? Because they find no place for death in them.

 

Shamanic Proverb

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My charcoal forge is the lively style. All you really need is some kitty liter, sand, and wet wood ash. It works for me anyway.

My life is like shaving with a razor sharp machete. It's a bit awkward and I feel a sting every now and then, but in the end I'm happy with the results.

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I have use the cheap(est) kitty litter as a source of clay. No charcoal, sents, no nothing in the way of additives. I've tossed in a couple of handfulls of alfalfa hay (about the only kind that can be found in the pet supply section) to reinforce. Some people have added in pearlite. One note, kitty litter is one place that you don't want to use recycled material, not unless you live waaaaay out in the country near a hog farm.

 

Doug Lester

HELP...I'm a twenty year old trapped in the body of an old man!!!

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Do you guys have photos of the items you are talking about?

 

I would really like to see your Forge Mike. Are you able to forge weld in it?? What do you use for an air supply?

 

So I got a couple of files, still debating if I should get a regular sledge so I have one of them with my cross pein or if that one would be good by itself. I also need to get a ball pein hammer and a couple of chisels for hot cutting the steel. Any suggestions on what kind of chisel would be good for that of if a regular chisel would work. I found a steel wedge that might work but am not sure.

 

Thank you for the advice.

 I have heard that those who celebrate life walk safely amongst the wild animals.

When they go into battle, they remain unharmed, the animals find no place to attack them

and weapons are unable to harm them.

Why? Because they find no place for death in them.

 

Shamanic Proverb

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Once I'm able to I will get a pic for you. I have a handcrank forge blower. You can use an old hair dryer with the heating element out of it. Believe it or not you could just use wet wood ash for the insulation.

Edited by Mike Sheffield

My life is like shaving with a razor sharp machete. It's a bit awkward and I feel a sting every now and then, but in the end I'm happy with the results.

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One advantage we have as metal-workers: we can make our own tools. The forge is the simplest one, and you're already on your way. Tongs you'll probably want to buy until you're more comfortable with your own skills. All of my punches and chisels I made myself, using sections of an old crowbar for the stock.

"I'm not anti-gun. I'm pro-knife." Molly Ivins

NT Limpin' Cat Prokopp

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Hi There,

 

I was looking at the picture of the forge base and it appears that you have a Zinc coated tub. I wanted to note that Zinc when heated hot enough to burn puts of an incredibly toxic fume that will literally "kill you on the first burn". YOur lungs essentially get burned by the fumes and your dead within a weak. I don't want to be alarmist on this but it is a serious threat. Can anyone with experience in the charcoal forge building realm help out and this one? Can he use a zinc coated tub for the base with this type of build? If not what inexpensive options would Spiritbear have to use for a base for his forge?

 

Clay Walker

Ragnarok Forge

Clay Walker

Ragnarok Forge

When your a Bladesmith, Stupid Hurts

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The instructions on Lively's site specify that the tuyere pipe could not be galvanized and nothing about the tub. The tub is going to be filled with Adobe, I'm not sure that is why he didn't specify anything about the tub, or maybe it's because it won't heat up enough to effect the tub and cause any problems like that to occur. It looks just like the one that Lively uses to make his. Hopefully Mike with know about this he said he built the same forge.

Edited by Spiritbear

 I have heard that those who celebrate life walk safely amongst the wild animals.

When they go into battle, they remain unharmed, the animals find no place to attack them

and weapons are unable to harm them.

Why? Because they find no place for death in them.

 

Shamanic Proverb

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zinc doesn't burn until 780F and the forge body should not get that hot. even if some of the zinc around the edges starts burning it shouldn't be an issue as long as you don't huff the thick yellow fumes.

Edited by Ty Murch

.

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Thank you Ty for that clarification. I was really hoping that it wasn't going to be a problem considering the time it took me to put everything together without having all of my tools moved down here with me. I had to do some creative work to get everything cut so I could get the pipe in there. I think I have found a place that sells some really good refractory and is close by. I'm also meeting with one of the Balcones Forge members to drop off my membership application and see his shop. I'm looking forward to that. I'm also bidding on a hand crank blower on ebay so I might have one soon if not I'm going to have to find one somewhere. I don't want to have to plug anything on my forge in.

 

So I'm hoping that I will have the items soon and will be able to start working on my first blade and have something to show everyone.

 I have heard that those who celebrate life walk safely amongst the wild animals.

When they go into battle, they remain unharmed, the animals find no place to attack them

and weapons are unable to harm them.

Why? Because they find no place for death in them.

 

Shamanic Proverb

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Thank you Ty for that clarification. I was really hoping that it wasn't going to be a problem considering the time it took me to put everything together without having all of my tools moved down here with me. I had to do some creative work to get everything cut so I could get the pipe in there. I think I have found a place that sells some really good refractory and is close by. I'm also meeting with one of the Balcones Forge members to drop off my membership application and see his shop. I'm looking forward to that. I'm also bidding on a hand crank blower on ebay so I might have one soon if not I'm going to have to find one somewhere. I don't want to have to plug anything on my forge in.

 

So I'm hoping that I will have the items soon and will be able to start working on my first blade and have something to show everyone.

 

 

It is good to hear it won't be a problem. I just wanted to make sure that you wouldn't get caught by something that wasn't brought up. I commend you on your efforts and desire to keep it simple. The start of the forge looks well made. I just completed my first forge / propane forge that is shown on another post, I am really excited to get some steel hot in the new forge.

 

Have fun with the build and make sure to post some shots of the process and the forge in operation once you have it up and running.

 

Clay Walker

Ragnarok Forge

Clay Walker

Ragnarok Forge

When your a Bladesmith, Stupid Hurts

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I'm telling you you really don't have to spend the money on really good refractory. The kitty liter will be a lot cheaper and will work. Save the good refractory for when you want to do a gasser.

My life is like shaving with a razor sharp machete. It's a bit awkward and I feel a sting every now and then, but in the end I'm happy with the results.

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I too started with a Tim lively inspired forge. I used the cheap kitty litter fro mthe food store. It comes i na brown paper bag and says "all natural" or something like that. This is one of the cheapest ways you can get your clay. it's something on the order of about $7 for a 40# bag of it. I then mixed this with some water, some sand, and some wood ash to make the adobe. you'll be suprozed at how much of this you need to make. I used about 130# of sand, 150# of ckitty litter, maybe a gallon and a half of wood ash, and enough water to make it all go together.

 

I mixed in a 5 gal bucket and then spread out in the big tub. One thing to consider. this will not be light when you're done with it. I realized this wehn i had to move my set up. i decided to take it down from the 55gal drum I had it sitting on. this was do-able, but gravity was going to win. I just steered it and slowed it. I used an engine hoist to lift it back onto the drum. I later modified it without thinking and made it very hard to move. I cut the darn handle off of one side to make it easier to put metal in and out of the coals. This work great for the forging, but not so great for lifting. I had to weld up a sling for it so it can be lifted and then wheeled into place on the engine hoist.

 

The first day I fired this forge up I made a set of tongs. The first set was hard to make, but after that, it's quite easy....since you have soemthing to dold the metal with.

 

I don't use tongs much now. I simply weld some 1/2" rebar to whatever I'm messing with and use the rebar as a handle.

Have you ever thought about the life of steel? It's interesting to think that you can control the fate of a piece of metal.

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I have a neighbor that has some good refractory fireclay that she is going to hook me up with.

 

What size tub did you use for your forge? I am using a 3.7 gal. tub for mine. I am going to be working on it again in a couple of days. I cut the handles off of mine already.

 

I will post some more pics as soon as I can.

 I have heard that those who celebrate life walk safely amongst the wild animals.

When they go into battle, they remain unharmed, the animals find no place to attack them

and weapons are unable to harm them.

Why? Because they find no place for death in them.

 

Shamanic Proverb

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10 gal for mine. I just cover the holes to make the fire smaller. The reason I went with the big tub is in case I wanted to heat treat something long. Your 3.7 gallon will do just fine...it will probably be easier to deal with than mine.

My life is like shaving with a razor sharp machete. It's a bit awkward and I feel a sting every now and then, but in the end I'm happy with the results.

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Spiritbear, as tempting as it may be to just use the fire clay alone as the refractory it will save you alot of time and bother to mix it with sand and wood ash. I lined my Livley style forge with fire clay without adding anything to it and as it dried cracks appeared and started to get worse even after they had been patched. In the end I had to wet all the clay down and start again, this time I mixed up some adobe and so far I have had far less cracks and the few that have popped up have been very minor.

Good luck!

Josh Forrest

 

Persistence is to the character of man as carbon is to steel.

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I was planning on making the adobe. I'm just going to use that clay instead of the kitty litter seeing that I can get it from my neighbor. I'm making the ash in my fireplace and getting some cheap sand from home depot.

 I have heard that those who celebrate life walk safely amongst the wild animals.

When they go into battle, they remain unharmed, the animals find no place to attack them

and weapons are unable to harm them.

Why? Because they find no place for death in them.

 

Shamanic Proverb

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There you go! Cheap is good and free is better. You have a good friend there.

My life is like shaving with a razor sharp machete. It's a bit awkward and I feel a sting every now and then, but in the end I'm happy with the results.

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Ok so I got the sand earlier today as well as another hammer. The hammer is 3 lbs. and flat on both sides. It feels really good in my hand and not to heavy to hold. I'm going to pick up the clay tomorrow and on Thursday I'm going to be meeting with one of the representatives from Balcones Forge. I will be giving them my membership application and fee.

 I have heard that those who celebrate life walk safely amongst the wild animals.

When they go into battle, they remain unharmed, the animals find no place to attack them

and weapons are unable to harm them.

Why? Because they find no place for death in them.

 

Shamanic Proverb

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These are the things I have so far. I've got 2 3lbs hammers, my forge (waiting for me to mix all the adobe to put in it), clay and sand for the adobe, and I have a bbq blower on its way from ebay along with an electric one (I'm still going to try and convert the electric one if I can as well as looking for an older one). I'm still working on the anvil and I'm not sure how I'm going to get one and still working on the steel to work.

 

I have called all the junkyards I can find in the area but they all want $50+ for one leaf spring. Being that I don't have that much cash to get them I'm at a block in my progress. How many knives on average can you make from one leaf spring?

 

I found some railroad ties that someone is giving away on Craig's list but they haven't gotten back to me. Not sure how I'm going to cut it either. What would you guys recommend to come some railroad ties so I can use it as an anvil? I have tried to get my hands on a 4x4 piece of mild steel to make one like Lively's, but I have had no luck. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

 

Here are some photos of what I have now:

_MG_4990.jpg

_MG_4991.jpg

_MG_4993.jpg

Edited by Spiritbear

 I have heard that those who celebrate life walk safely amongst the wild animals.

When they go into battle, they remain unharmed, the animals find no place to attack them

and weapons are unable to harm them.

Why? Because they find no place for death in them.

 

Shamanic Proverb

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Get your leaf spring from a spring shop. Tell them you want to buy their drops to use for making knives, and sometimes they'll even give you all you want. They'll usually have a dumpster out back full of short cutoffs, which is all you'll need until you decide to take on a sword. ;)

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Speedi dry is clay, as is kitty litter, just dried out and crumbled for packing and use. If you wet speedi dry it turns to mush clay you can make things of.

 

The forge base can be wood... I have seen them like push carts before. The wood gets blackend, but doesn't burn, so I don't think you will burn the galvi. If you want to see toasted glavi look here

http://s290.photobucket.com/albums/ll275/M...arin/?start=all

 

Any picture of this sugar stove where the smoke stack is yellow is where galvi burned. That was bright pipe, just like you pan, and in an instant it burned off as my sugar rig runs red hot.

 

I can't believe you can't find bits of tool steel for FREE. I have never paid over 50 cents for a hunk of tool steel as scrap, and then it is for a rusty file, and other yardsale tool in a box and I get the whole bloomin box.

 

If I were you I would seek out old buck board springs which are probably better for your projects anyway, but still go after dead ball peen hammers to forge, not not forge with.

 

I am a x foreign car tech, we used to be mechanics then, and no one but no one really build leaf spring packs anymore.

 

Truck springs will murder you in effort. There is lots of other farm steel too, like harrow rakes usually setting out back on a farm. These have long gracful arcing spring steel rake blades and are some of the best of the best 'unknown tool steel' anyone can find. Getting these off the rake frame might be harder to do with out cutting torches, but if you can get any do it.

 

Old crow bars work, horse shoe rasps, files, lawn mower blades, old hot and cold chisels, but use them for what they are first, and don't forge them into other things unless you have these tools as better; there is just so many free sources I can't understand why you can't come by free tool steel.

 

If that add on Craigs list id for rail road ties these are oak a kind of wood, and will not be a very good anvil, and you mean rail road track I hope, but getting a whole length of one will be difficult to move .... You need a hunk 4 feet long maybe, or less, which means finding it is going to be harder than finding tool steel.

 

On that score I would seek out old machists still tinker on the Bridgeport, and see if they have any 4 inch square stock in mild steel about 8' or better long and when you get any set up a joint compound bucket of cement and float the steel in it till it sets up good and hard.

 

I can tell pretty easy that you never worked steel much, if ever, so really you need to build a few smaller things first and work with alot of metals that are not even tool steel.

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How may want to consider getting a couple of 2' long pieces of rebar from home depot or the like. they are quite cheap and easy to forge. I've made a few pairs of tongs out of them and they work well enough for me. One of the problems I found using my charcoal forge of similar design to yours is that it gets darn hot grabbing things with pliers, vice grips, channel locks...etc Also, making the tongs gets you a bit of experience moving metal where you want it to go, and you'll end up with something usefull.

 

As for the leaf springs, the junkyard near me sells them $11 for the pack. $22 for the pair. I've found that they take quite a bit of pounding to shape. In addition, cutting them without power tools is a time consuming process. A cut-off wheel works well as does the torch, but a hacksaw isn't great for them. Anyhow, you can make a couple dozen knives out of a spring pack.

 

Railroad spikes are low carbon and make a poor metal choice for a good knife, but they are easy to shape and free/cheap to obtain. I hammered out a dozen or so of these practicing. I "hardened" a few of them, but they never get all that hard. All the same, it was a valuable experience.

 

As for the "anvil," heavy and flat is all you need. scrap yards are a great source for this at low cost.

Have you ever thought about the life of steel? It's interesting to think that you can control the fate of a piece of metal.

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