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Tim Scarlatti

Possible Wrought Iron Disaster

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So I had some iron or mild steel my brother discovered. He gave it to me and I was processing a bunch of curved and round bars the other day to be squared and straight for various stuff not for blades, but when I got to this one, something went wrong.

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It completely crumbled between cherry and orange hot. The whole thing just flew apart after a few hammer blows. I quenched it, put some WD40 on it, cover it in borax and attempted to weld the big crack back together. This time more of it fell off so I quit while I still had bar left.

I can't seem to get the picture of the end of it. Strangely it seems to have a difference between the structures of the very edge and most of the center, kind of like carburized steel. What is this? Is it wrought? If so, how do you forge this without it crumbling?

Thanks!

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Tim,

If I was a betting man, wait a minute... I am a betting man I would put my money on it being cast iron. In which case... there is no salvaging. If by chance you are not discouraged by my first diagnosis, then try to get it up to welding heats as you forge it out. If no further crumbling occurs and it want to stick together then you have wrought, and if it is wrought then you would have all my betting money. But don't get your hopes up... I never said how much I bet.

 

This is also my limited knowledge of smithing iron though. I am by no means and authority. So... I have been know to be wrong on occasion... but my wife would say more often than not. :lol:

 

-Gabriel

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A quick spark test should tell the difference.

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