Benjamin Gitchel Posted September 11, 2015 Share Posted September 11, 2015 (edited) Hey there, you can call me Ben. This looks like a great forum full of knowledgeable people, I glad a place like this exists. I've recently decided to try my hand at some bladesmithing because, afflicted as an artist of types, once I get an idea into my head I'm insufferable until I can make it a reality. That said, I've done a little research and think the Lively washtub forge is a good place for me to start. But I have some questions, and I tried searching for the answers but still have some to ask. I've included a picture, hopefully it helps. So I'll start with the washtub itself -- it's galvanized, so do I need to worry about the heat vaporizing the zinc and killing me? Should I paint it with some furnace cement on this inside or will it not really be an issue? Do I need to cut a place where the handles are on either side, or is it better to keep the lip in place? how high off the bottom of the washtub should the opening for the pipe begin? About the 'refractory cement' ... I bought 2x 25# bags of unscented clay cat litter ... 'all natural' I also picked up a bag of playbox sand, 50# bag and a small bag of perlite I saw at the garden store, but it's not a large quantity. Should I pick up some more? [edit: it's 8 qts.] Is there anything else I should add, such as wood ash? [edit: I have plenty if need be, as I have a wood burning sauna -- I burn off-cuts of kiln-dried alder, oak, mahogany, cherry, poplar, pine as well as filbert branches] what ratios to mix the above (or other) ingredients in, and is there a 'cure' time or just build a fire over it for a few hours? Also, how wide across and how deep should the U be of the clay? Just lay the pipe in at the right height, and sculpt the U down so the pipe holes are just exposed? Should I include some firebricks along the sides of the U shape, and in doing so, avoid cutting the lip of the tub? If so, should I just set them in the clay when I make it and how deep? And the pipe ... I have a 2" black steel pipe with a cap on one end, 3 ft long. Once set in place, I think it'll be about 4 or 6 inches past the tub face. [edit: it's long enough that I can actually have 3 or 4 inches sticking out of either end -- that way I can uncap the end and clean it if need be] how many holes should be drilled and how far apart? what size hole is best? [edit: I read somewhere that the hole should be smaller the closer they are to the blower, so overall the pressure is the same throughout the length -- anyone with insight here?] Is it fine to just lay it on some bricks or something before putting in the clay mix? should I drill the holes before hand, or could I wait until the clay is cured? Might be better since I don't have a drill press on hand, just a hand held drill. I appreciate any insights that will save me trouble in the long run. Have I left anything out? I will be attaching a hair dryer to the pipe, though I have access to an old hand cranked one at a friend's farm. Ben Edited September 11, 2015 by Benjamin Gitchel Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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