Jump to content

tatara smelt at bush fire forge


Recommended Posts

Hi Everyone,

I had the privilege several weeks ago to attend a tatara building and smelting session at Owen Bushes forge, with Owen Bush, Mic Maxen, Jack Hobson, Janet Lang and Colin.

I'll leave the specific details for others, but it was a pretty successful run, Owen decided to try leaving the furnace intact to cool over night before breaking it open and we where able to disassemble the furnace without destroying the building materials too badly and the bloom seemed less oxidized than I expected. I only have got images formatted until the beginning of the second day, so pictures of the bloom and some consolidating will follow.

0smelt3.jpg

0smelt4.jpg

0smelt5.jpg

0smelt12.jpg

0smelt24.jpg

0smelt37.jpg

0smelt27.jpg

0smelt28.jpg

0smelt30.jpg

0smelt31.jpg

0smelt38.jpg

0smelt40.jpg

0smelt36.jpg

0smelt42.jpg

0smelt48.jpg

0smelt50.jpg

0smelt53.jpg

0smelt56.jpg

0smelt57.jpg

0smelt58.jpg

0smelt59.jpg

0smelt73.jpg

0smelt60.jpg

0smelt62.jpg

0smelt63.jpg

0smelt69.jpg

0smelt74.jpg

0smelt70.jpg

0smelt80.jpg

0smelt82.jpg

0smelt81.jpg

0smelt83.jpg

0smelt85.jpg

Edited by Jake Powning
Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow! Shame I could only be there for the first day (that's me in the pic with Jake dancing onna charcoal) looks like a blast & I've seen the resulting steel, looks like the best we've done, Good Job!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Ah,

It was a good couple of days for sure .

the figure on the furnace is Weyland ,any resemblance is coincidence or possibly me trying to resemble the Archetype of "Blacksmith".

We Managed to get 17 kg of bloom from 50 kg ore and 110 kg charcoal .

the bloom is High,med and low carbon steel (looking to be the same quantity of each) very little iron .

I will be forging a Large (as in heavy "Martial") Wackyzashi form some of it as a Demo at the forge in in a couple of weeks .

some will be kept and some distributed (I am sure Mick will make another blade with the stuff soon).

So far I have a piece to use as a paddle for the rest of the consolidation and the beginings of a blade billet.

Having to stand on our own two feet (Without the watchfull eye of Mike Blue) made us think about this one a bit more and as a result I and I know Mick are working over improvements /variations for the next one we do .

Building a tatara sober is a good plan (cant honestly say we stayed that way as the evening progressed)! and not pulling it down in the dark with sledge hammers saved us £200 worth of bricks .I don't think one brick was destroyed making this .

Link to post
Share on other sites

I am looking forward to see what Niko does that is different for next time . It is good to have a couple of these happen so close to each other in time .

Link to post
Share on other sites

It was good to see you again Jake and a good time was had by all. Here are a few more photos.

 

a_DSC2226.jpg

 

a_DSC2235.jpg

 

Three wise men. Fin the dog was looking a bit sheepish as he was in disgrace for stealing one of the wooden formers for the air blast holes. When we eventually found it there were tell tale signs of it having been chewed, and I don't think it was one of us.

 

a_DSC2245.jpg

 

a_DSC2256.jpg

 

 

a_DSC2261.jpg

 

The mourning after. The cut out area showing the bricks is where we managed to remove Jake's artwork, and in one piece.

 

a_DSC2285.jpg

 

Before and after.

 

before_and_after.jpg

 

 

Mick.

Link to post
Share on other sites

That is a very cool photo Mick, I think you got a flame sprite there !

Its an Omen !

Link to post
Share on other sites

Should have used some of Colin's hair on that furnace! Get a hair cut ya girl! :P:lol:

Link to post
Share on other sites

What did you use on the bottom of the stack? Was it the usual mix? looks like bonding plaster!!

Link to post
Share on other sites
What did you use on the bottom of the stack? Was it the usual mix? looks like bonding plaster!!

 

Yup ,

Very traditional don't you know ! (around these parts anyway).

 

We pre heated this stack gently with a blow torch before adding any wood and the lining was completley intact after the burn .

 

lining was ball clay turkey grit and portland cement .

Link to post
Share on other sites
That is a very cool photo Mick, I think you got a flame sprite there !

Its an Omen !

Now. The writing's on the wall!

Ok, here is day two, we disassembled the furnace after cooking breakfast on it. We took the hot charcoal that was still in the chimney and put it in a steel bucket and it was still hot enough to cook on by supper time.

after separating the bloom from the slag and charcoal, Owen squished in under his 200 ton press to pop out the slag and charcoal left in it, and then he heated it up and squashed it in the press again and quenched it. then we broke the quenched bits. It was interesting talking with Janet Lang (who is an archeometalurgist) at this point. It is quite easy for a bladesmith to have a pretty good idea of the hardness and qualities of the material at this point just by seeing how it reacts to being banged around and broken after quenching it. You wouldn't have to understand metallurgy to tell that this was knife or sword iron if that's what you made, back in the day...

Then Jack graded the chunks that we had broken up into medium high and low carbon by spark testing, while Owen started working on consolidating the material, withOUT using a wrought iron paddle.

0smelt86.jpg

0smelt87.jpg

0smelt88.jpg

0smelt89.jpg

0smelt90.jpg

0smelt91.jpg

0smelt92.jpg

0smelt94.jpg

0smelt95.jpg

0smelt96.jpg

0smelt98.jpg

0smelt99.jpg

0smelt100.jpg

0smelt101.jpg

0smelt102.jpg

0smelt103.jpg

0smelt104.jpg

0smelt105.jpg

0smelt107.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites
Janet Lang (who is an archeometalurgist)

 

Thats awesome, i did not even know that field existed, something for me to look into in grad school :).

Seems like a great yield for you guys. Did you end up getting it forged into anything yet or was this just to make the steel?

Link to post
Share on other sites

Gutted that i couldnt make it!

 

looks like you had a fantastic time

 

best regards

Link to post
Share on other sites
Gutted that i couldnt make it!

 

looks like you had a fantastic time

 

best regards

We missed ya Toby. Hopefully next time I'm over I'll get to see you, we can discuss Boudician conflagration, and suchlike.

Link to post
Share on other sites
We missed ya Toby. Hopefully next time I'm over I'll get to see you, we can discuss Boudician conflagration, and suchlike.

 

 

Boudicas Beard was certainly burning that weekend !

Link to post
Share on other sites
The next time I should come over to visit the Kingdom.

 

All the best, Cyrus

 

 

You would be most welcome .

Link to post
Share on other sites
×
×
  • Create New...