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Both bars are down to about 4mm, I do not dare go any thinner..I am forging with charcoal- learning how to economize fuel. The carbon has begun to move.

I may try for 3mm during the heat treatment...forging a little cooler has slowed down the decarb phenomenon. Now I will look at posible blade shapes.

#1,3rd.jpg bar from ingot #1

#3,3rd.jpg bar from ingot #3

 

Jan

Edited by Jan Ysselstein

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Jan:

 

The steel looks good. For Niko's movie download "VLC Media Player." It will open and play almost every format known to humanity.

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Alan,

Thank, I will give it a try.

 

Jan

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Ingot #1 will be forged a bit thinner using a charcoal fire and a fast hand hammer..I will be forging from bright yellow into the dark red color.. and back into the fire ( forging to final shape ) . The #1 bar and the #3 bar will be cut length wise into two pieces and will hopefully grow from the 3/4" wide to about 1"+ wide. The reason for this method is ( I still have a delicate shoulder ) I will not be in control trying to hand forge a thin 1 3/4 " wide blade. The widening particularly of ingot #3 should bring the pattern more in line with images seen from the past.

The big ( long term) question is ....can I control the value of the bright/dark ratio in my forged out blades?....we know the brighter areas carry a bigger weight visually, regardless of the actual geometric ratio.

I am desperately trying to salvage some of the ingots assumed to be of low value... #2, #7 and #6 looking at the melting notes, it would be nice to have some info they could provide.

 

Mean while, since we are thinking long term, preparations are being made to assure there is a supply of homemade ingredients to complete the project.

DSCN0825.jpg DSCN0828.jpg

 

Jan

Edited by Jan Ysselstein

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The forging of the fragment (1/4) of ingot #1 went well...I do have some surface pitting which may be due to experimenting with a flux to slow down decarb, . I will post some pics of the forging setup soon. Here are a couple of pics showing cementite on the move. There are large fragments of cementite...if I keep cycling they will eventually dominate the pattern.

frame4.jpg

frame55.jpg

 

Jan

 

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Thanks Niko.

 

The pattern here is very fine as expected by looking at the ingot.

 

Jan

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Jan, this is a great post and thread, I have been following with enthusiasm, like everyone else!

I may have missed it but how did you set up your heat source for the crucibles to be intially melted? By that I mean, propane forge, coal forge?

I am assuming a blown forge and if so, what pipe dimensions and and PSI did it best use? If coal, then I assume it would be like Zagro?

Also to maintain correct temp ranges while forging, what are you using to measure with? My Pyrometer will cover up to 1315C, which should cover this as a probe into the oven but obviously not a contact to the metal.

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Jajimi

 

Thank you, I use a simple crucible furnace fired with propane and forced air...I know I am at temperature when I need my welding shade 5 glasses to look at the heat ( I do use a variable transformer to regulate my blower and it gives me an idea of how hot I am running, there is hot and very hot). I have used coal (coke) and charcoal..I am hoping to use charcoal for one of my last melts. If you are thinking of doing something like this , I suggest to just do it and post your questions when you run into problems.....post some pics as well. All that psi stuff is irrelevant when using a regulator and an open gas line..just turn it on and run fast enough to avoid flashbacks..pipes from 3/4" to 1.25" should work for a small crucible furnace.....my typical psi is 2-4 lbs but I am controlling with a needle valve.

 

Jan

Edited by Jan Ysselstein

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I am not happy with #1 ingot's pattern and will move to #3 . I am finding a tremendous amount of surface decarb during the hand forging process. I still have half of #1 to forge out.

 

Jan

 

 

 

Edit,

I think I have the reason for the #1 pattern failure....the large cementite particles have taken over and I now have cementite 10 x the size I should have. The charcoal heating is a learning curve I hope to get over soon. I have some pics and will post them when I have the cure.

 

Jan

Edited by Jan Ysselstein

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Jan.

 

What happed to the pattern? Im confused?! in pic 55 it looks really good and Cm is

small even I dont have a clue what is the skale of it.

So did you forge it after that and failure happend...over heat? Crack?

 

Lets hope that you can replicate it whit rest of the ingot.

 

Niko

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The overall pattern is not good even with the finer cementite particles. After more forging the (fine) particles began to coarsen a bit so I thought I would austenize/quench all the cementite and start cycling. All the cementite did not dissolve and the cementite dissolved during the cycling was attracted by the remaining cementite particles which had not dissolved during the austenizing attempt.

 

I should be able to replicate the finer structure and would like to see if I have enough material left on that piece to go back. Now I will have to go to 1100 C+ in charcoal...and will have to have a reference object at that temperature to avoid turning some of it to liquid.

 

The bigger problem is..all the samples 1-10 were made with the same formula ( some are even higher in carbon content) and all will have cementite I will not be able to dissolve.

 

Judging temperatures away from 723 C in a charcoal fire is a bigger challenge than I thought it would be.

 

Jan

Edited by Jan Ysselstein

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These pics are of the same bar (#1 ingot) and show the sharing of the light by large cementite fragments and small ones. This often looks pretty good if it does not get out of control. I do not want to spend any more time on this one and am forging a bar from#3 this afternoon.

bar1.jpg

bar1b.jpg

 

Jan

Edited by Jan Ysselstein

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Bar (ingot 3) 3 will aslo have the dual modality in the spheroid appearance.....I will play with it a bit, the real solution will come with the next set of melts. Here is a pic of #3 just getting past the decarb layer. A little more grinding and mixing a new acid batch and off we go to the other ingots ( next week).

bar 33.jpg bar333.jpg

 

Jan

Edited by Jan Ysselstein

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I had to go back to another 1/4 of ingot #1 and hand forge in charcoal. I think I am getting away from large cementite to smaller cementite and larger cementite mix.

I have a mental checklist of what I need to be able to do, using charcoal as a heat source...and I have a long way to go..

 

The first 1/4 of ingot #3 got too hot and failed ( broke in the fire ) (Edited from ingot #1 to ingot#3)

 

Ingot #6 and #7 seem to be a bust as they are cracking all over.

On to ingots 8,9,10.

frame7.jpg coarse cementite difficult to dissolve, about a ( 2mm wide field)

frame9.jpg finer and larger cementite mix, the field is about (7mm wide field)

 

Jan

Edited by Jan Ysselstein

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Ingot #10 has been forged to 3/8" thick....lots of problems, cracking and voids...I don't think I can salvage any of it. I will try to flatten some of it , to chase what the pattern may have looked like. The current pattern is mostly large cementite particles. Here are some pics of the pattern of #10 at 3/8" and the simple charcoal forge I am learning to depend on more and more ( Murray Carter forge, from his book). Today , I ran out of propane while forging #10 and finished with charcoal ( and preferred it in the end). The forge vents directly up and not to the rear as Murray's forge does...the horizontal draft with the rear vent was burning too much charcoal in the passing daft.

Ingot#8 has ben partially forged and does not loo much better/

frame9.jpg

forge.jpg

frame13.jpg

Edited by Jan Ysselstein

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Estoy en la luna

 

Hay una gran cantidad de fósforo que hay....

So I guess I will be slowing down and forging at a lower temperature or lower the P content of the ingredients. I am very content with the way the tests are going in spite of the fact there are no blades ( the steel is just beautiful). Ingots #8 and #10 must have gotten mixed up...as one was a control and the other a test ( things are not adding up). Forging ingot #9 should shed some light on the matter. Ingot #9 will be forged very slowly at a lower heat. Both bars (ingots 8 and 10) are loaded with tears and openings..I was grinding at almost every heat ...we will get past that.

 

Decarburizing of a shell will assist in reducing edge cracking but internal tearing will not be stopped.

Verhoeven states the lowering of the phosphorous content helped the forging process and did not affect the pattern development. I will find out for myself if the pattern is affected.

 

I will be preparing for the next series of melting, hopefully 6 crucibles at 1200 grams each ...2, to confirm information taken from the last 10 melts can be repeated.......2 comparing phosphorous levels......if all is well 2 for charcoal melting and taking the process from ore all the way to blade using historical methods.

 

The "No Outside Open Burning" season is almost here...I need to step away from this thread a bit and start using some of the charcoal made this year to make iron ( preferably cast and soft iron). So it will slow down for a while. Enough charcoal will be set aside to process the last 2 of the ingots planned.

 

Jan

Edited by Jan Ysselstein

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Back to La Luna,

 

Three runs of iron were made creating about 30% cast iron per run ( I will be in good shape for a while ), the blooms are not at zero carbon but well below .3% C. I am still using that funky little furnace with the flared top but have not been able to get it to work as conceived.... The iron making process amounts to an Interrupted Catalan Forge Process .....I have used this method before and will stick with it. I can post some pics but the Pit Charcoal thread pretty much covers it.

 

Reviewing where we are with the ingots:

 

#1 forged out to a pattern, undesirable...large carbides difficult to dissolve, we are learning to accept a mix of carbide sizes

#2 not completely forged out, internal tearing during cooling, will need to be welded shut

#3 major cracking on the exterior of the central area near final forging, pattern looks pretty good, lost 1/2 of what remains to overheating, trying to dissolve large carbides

#4,#5,#6 and #7 are either defective ingots or only indirectly related to the main topic ( no follow-up planned)

#8,#10 cracking during forging , currently the cause is assigned to high phosphorous, but we keep an open mind..no finished blade is expected , maybe a sample of the

pattern will evolve..... these results are very encouraging

#9 to be forged out in the next day or so...the phosphorous content is unknown as I mixed ingredients, now assumed to be high and low phosphorous ( unaware at the time this

might become an issue)

this ingot has some problems ( black inclusions and cracking near the surface ) I will do some heavy grinding prior to forging again, forging will be done below 970 C to avoid

a liquid phase in the ingot.

 

The next set of crucible ingredients will be staged this week-end somewhat dependent on the #9 ingot results..maybe I am just not holding at the molten state long enough.

current.jpg

Edited by Jan Ysselstein

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We may have he tearing during forging under control ( I hope so)...by forging at a lower temperature. Ingots #8 and #10 do seem to be correctly labeled and ingot#9 is forging without tearing and cracking. I am holding off forging #8 any thinner until I get another ingot which matches it..it may be an unusual one for me.

 

The big problem is still the large cementite which I am trying to dissolve during the slow forging/cycling.

 

During forging coke was added to the fire as the charcoal is so light it allows the ingot to quickly sink to the grate. (edited)

Edited by Jan Ysselstein

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Next week I will try to get some pattern development for what remains of Ingots #1, #3, #10 #9 and #8. Ingot #9 is a mess ( left in the fire while I was etching another bar) but I should get a sample out of it. Basically, I will go to a textbook and pick a spheroidizing route..I am working with a fire or gas forge creating lots of limitations ( Verhoeven's book is a good reference for spheroidizing methods).

 

Two crucible charges will be melted this week end.

 

Meanwhile I am trying to get as many cast iron runs in prior to the burn regulations ending them. The blooms are two part (mostly) cast iron below, mixed bloom on top and slag in between. I am shifting variables to try to reduce the slag quantity. The little furnace shown here is still doing it ( looks like a Greek furnace, but who knows)..the cleaned bloom is sitting on top of the cast iron,.

 

DSCN1059.jpgDSCN1060.jpg

 

Jan

Edited by Jan Ysselstein

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The bloom formed in the furnace shown in the picture above consisted of about 17% slag by weight ( not tapped). I carefully cleaned it and found the connection linking the cast iron bottom to the iron top was made of slag.

 

Jan

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The first two crucibles of the second set are ready to melt...just need a little glaze. I will be attempting to duplicate #9 and especially #8. The carbon will be slightly lower than the first set. I will be holding a bit longer at liquid temperature. The reason I picked #8 as the pattern to go to, is very subjective. I am looking for a "regular" pattern..most of the time I find myself saying this is not it...hopefully I will get lucky and the pattern(s) can be discussed.


Forging/Spheroidizing first set samples will start on Monday.



Between the two melts I hope to make a some iron ( one of my last two runs). The little furnace is now giving 33 lb blooms 50/50 cast and lower carbon iron (possibly tamahagane) . I will post some pics tomorrow should the ingots be photogenic. The bloom will not come out until Monday.



litttle.jpg this is the configuration I settled on and is working well , the height above the air inlet is 24" , the tube diameter is 14".



Jan



Edited by Jan Ysselstein

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Iss our last post the way you came up with the homemade wrought you mentioned in earlier posts?

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Michael,

 

The wrought I make from blooms is made ( the blooms are made) as shown in the Pit Charcoal thread. Right now I am using homemade cast iron and anchor chain as the wrought. I have several types of chain...one has more phosphorous than the other ( all guess work). I am now using them at 50/50 high and low phosphorous. My own wrought has almost no phosphorous..I will point it out when I make the switch.

 

Jan

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Ingots 8a and 8b were melted today ( 1200 grams each ). They look to be fairly solid, some bottom defects which I will try to fix by making the bottom thicker in the next set of crucibles. No time for iron making..I had to watch the crucibles the whole time and am glad I did.

Here is a pic.

 

On of he samples may have some unincorporated soft iron.

 

8a&b.jpg

Edited by Jan Ysselstein

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