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4 hours ago, Alan Longmire said:

Don't bother heat treating a hot cutter.  1045 will lose temper the first time you use it.  That's not a big deal though, it will be much harder than hot steel.

Awesome that saves me time.  So I can just use it as is once I get the edge made.  Hopefully I wont break it right off the bat lol.  So don't bother with quenching either then?  I'm only assuming.

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Agh I was going to go outside and forge today.  But I think the break drum forge at this point is unsafe to use.  It looks like my air intake pipe and ash dump pipes are so bent from taking forging heats for so long that it has melted don to the point everything is sideways.  So I guess I'm sol on forging for the time being.  Man am I upset about this.  Guess I gotta build a new one.  I'm considering having a proper one built but I can't afford the fire pot or exactly really the metal table that I actually need.  My forge is already in bad shape.  Probably due to poor construction.

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3 hours ago, AndyB said:

Awesome that saves me time.  So I can just use it as is once I get the edge made.  Hopefully I wont break it right off the bat lol.  So don't bother with quenching either then?  I'm only assuming.

Forge, let cool, grind, and you're good to go.  You can quench and temper, but as I said, it'll go soft the first time you use it.  Mine is made from 1045, and other than sharpening it once a year it's held up fine for ten years.

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Just now, Alan Longmire said:

Forge, let cool, grind, and you're good to go.  You can quench and temper, but as I said, it'll go soft the first time you use it.  Mine is made from 1045, and other than sharpening it once a year it's held up fine for ten years.

Okay that works, that's great info to have on my end.  I'm stuck having to put together a new fire pot this afternoon lol.  Pipe bent too much from the heat I suppose.  I'm mad about it but meh it happens.  Fortunately for me I don't have to go out and buy new pipe lol.  Also too the drum I picked up today the walls on it are lower.  I think they are about 2 inches high intsead of about 3 inches.  So I'm probably going to be a bit better off with this one simply due to the fact I'll be able to set the work piece evenly in the fire and properly with out having to angle my piece down into the coal bed.  So it should work out okay.  I'll have to see how it looks but I'll have to re think on how my blower is placed up against the intake lol.

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Ideally you want three inches of coal below the steel and an inch or so on top.  Getting the steel too close to the air blast causes excess scale and the sparkler effect.

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2 hours ago, Alan Longmire said:

Ideally you want three inches of coal below the steel and an inch or so on top.  Getting the steel too close to the air blast causes excess scale and the sparkler effect.

I re measured that's about the depth of the break drum.  Its roughly the same height as the other one just different model of vehicle so I was a bit off lol.  Opps.  But that's okay I'm actually welding up the air grate at this very moment.  I'm honestly considering laying in a small later of refractory cement at the bottom of the forge to save the welds a bit more.  That way it wont start bending the pipe to one side or the other like it did previously.  It wouldn't be a thick layer of refractory just enough to protect the welds and what not.  That should be a good move on my part if I did that and held off forging for a few days while it dries out right?  At least doing break drum forges if one breaks its easy to replace and fairly cheap unless you need pipe.  I've gotten the sparkler effect before lol it's actually pretty cool looking and interesting.  I saw it for the first time opps metals too hot and cooled it down a bit.  I realize with a layer of refractory yes would be less room for coal.  But I do not want the same thing to happen again after hours of forging.  I'd rather have this one last for quite some time.  Live and learn I guess right?  I went ahead and added it in now wait for a few days for it to dry out lol.  So that should help protect the bottom of the break drum at least.

Edited by AndyB
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Well as the previous post of mine in the thread says I had a failure in my other breakdrum forge fire pot.  So sadly I had to tear it down.  I’m not sure if it was a failure due to excessive heating and cooling during the forging process I don’t know.  But the drum failed and my tweeter or what ever it’s called the air intake started bending pretty dramaticly like the leaning tower of Pisa.  I’m glad break drums are in expensive.  I got a new drum for my fire pot welded the pipe to it and welded on the grate for the air intake.  I just got done putting the layer of refractory cement on the forge.  I put a layer on the flat surface first waited for that to dry a bit and then I just as I said finished off the vertical sides of the drum.  So I’m hoping that with that refractory in there.  It will hold up to the types of heat that I want it to get to including welding temperatures.  So I won’t get to forge for a couple of days at least while that dries.  I should be able to get my break drum forge with the refractory to welding temp and have it safely hold together right? 

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Yep.  It'll crack, and it might fall off the walls if I understand you did it vertically, but you can patch the cracks if they bother you.  On the sides it should be sloped in towards the grate.

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2 hours ago, Alan Longmire said:

Yep.  It'll crack, and it might fall off the walls if I understand you did it vertically, but you can patch the cracks if they bother you.  On the sides it should be sloped in towards the grate.

cracks don't bother me much at all.  The only thing that I wanted was to keep the bottom of the break drum from melting lol. That was my main goal.  I didn't put a huge layer of refractory in the drum.  It does not like sticking to metal.  I had to let the layer on the bottom of the drum dry out first.  Then once it was dried out enough do the layer on the sides.   I just want to have this drum last for a while lol.  Not only that I'm also considering painting the outside of the break drum with the high temp krylon paint just to help protect the drum from rusting up.  I'm not sure if that would be okay to have it on there if the refractory is inside the drum itself.

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48 minutes ago, AndyB said:

The only thing that I wanted was to keep the bottom of the break drum from melting

Andy,i think that maybe your main trouble comes from running that blower unrestricted...It's WAY too much air for what you're doing...

A quick&dirty way to check would be to restrict the Intake on the blower itself with a pivoting plate of some sort(or even tinfoil as an experiment).

Ideally you'll have a slide-valve of whatever kind in one of sections of pipe connecting that blower....

Also,if you could get a bucket of ash,i'd try piling it into the drum on two sides,to make your fire more of a trough,closer shaped to the work you're trying to do...

That's,generally,how forging worked,you shaped your fire to the work.Depending on the fuel and other factors it was done in a number of ways.Like those that work with soft bituminous coal shape the fire with wetted green coal,allowing it to dry and moving it in towards the fire as need dictates.

Your anthracite is loose,much like coke,and not coking sort itself.So you'll have to use something else to shape your fire.Ash, kitty-litter ,any other kind of clay/dirt...Got any driller friends?Ask them for half a bucket of drilling mud...

It none of it has to be purty Or permanent...Like this one crazy person i used to know said :"High-tech Principle/Low-tech Application".Much in forging science is just like that.

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10 minutes ago, jake pogrebinsky said:

Andy,i think that maybe your main trouble comes from running that blower unrestricted...It's WAY too much air for what you're doing...

A quick&dirty way to check would be to restrict the Intake on the blower itself with a pivoting plate of some sort(or even tinfoil as an experiment).

Ideally you'll have a slide-valve of whatever kind in one of sections of pipe connecting that blower....

Also,if you could get a bucket of ash,i'd try piling it into the drum on two sides,to make your fire more of a trough,closer shaped to the work you're trying to do...

That's,generally,how forging worked,you shaped your fire to the work.Depending on the fuel and other factors it was done in a number of ways.Like those that work with soft bituminous coal shape the fire with wetted green coal,allowing it to dry and moving it in towards the fire as need dictates.

Your anthracite is loose,much like coke,and not coking sort itself.So you'll have to use something else to shape your fire.Ash, kitty-litter ,any other kind of clay/dirt...Got any driller friends?Ask them for half a bucket of drilling mud...

It none of it has to be purty Or permanent...Like this one crazy person i used to know said :"High-tech Principle/Low-tech Application".Much in forging science is just like that.

Well the only time I'm usually running the fan is when I'm heating the work piece.  As soon as the work piece is done being heated I shut the fan off.  I'm still going to be puting in more refractory in.  I'm letting the stuff I have in the drum dry now and I'll put more in to get the slope.  So I'm basically still working on it.  But the more refractory I have in there the less room I have for coal.  All I was wanting to do was give the break drum a layer of protection from the fire itself.  I was looking around for some rubber tubing that would meet my needs and no luck lol.  I'll probably wind up running to home depot and picking up a bit of duct tubing.  Not exactly sure on how I would make the air gate for it.  I'm just trying to protect the drum itself.  Which is my fire pot...

IMG_20181108_075906193.jpg

Edited by AndyB
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Hmm...Well,running it full blast even shortly,while raising the heat,may well be too much...

There's a number of ways one can make a slide,or a gate valve...(slot the pipe and slide in a piece of tin with a wedge-shaped opening cut in it,to make it adjustable?).

But for an experiment you can just block the intake on the fan itself with a piece of cardboard or whatnot...

Ducting is plenty good for the air system...I have an awful mess myself,made of ducting,tinfoil,duct-tape and such crap...(i actually had duct-tape start melting and smoking and stinking yesterday,first time ever!:)...not sure why...).But my blower is hand-cranked and Very adjustable.

Best of luck,man,it'll all settle into a sensible pattern for ya,always kinda rough at the first.You're doing good.

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1 minute ago, jake pogrebinsky said:

Hmm...Well,running it full blast even shortly,while raising the heat,may well be too much...

There's a number of ways one can make a slide,or a gate valve...(slot the pipe and slide in a piece of tin with a wedge-shaped opening cut in it,to make it adjustable?).

But for an experiment you can just block the intake on the fan itself with a piece of cardboard or whatnot...

Ducting is plenty good for the air system...I have an awful mess myself,made of ducting,tinfoil,duct-tape and such crap...(i actually had duct-tape start melting and smoking and stinking yesterday,first time ever!:)...not sure why...).But my blower is hand-cranked and Very adjustable.

Best of luck,man,it'll all settle into a sensible pattern for ya,always kinda rough at the first.You're doing good.

This is all kinda trial and error for me and ask a hell of a lot of questions at this point lol.  The first drum failed.  This drum I'm hoping will last longer.  Are you talking about an actual air gate in front of the blower output itself?  Or are you talking about the one that's on the side of the fan.  I do have an air gate on the fan itself which I can turn and it will either shut off the air flow entirely or I can have it open full for the full effect.  

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1 minute ago, AndyB said:

I do have an air gate on the fan itself which I can turn and it will either shut off the air flow entirely or I can have it open full for the full effect.  

Absolutely try doing that then.Aim for the Minimum of air to raise any given heat.

And if it takes longer(within reason,of course),so much the better.There's lots of thinking and planning to be done between heats.

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2 minutes ago, jake pogrebinsky said:

Absolutely try doing that then.Aim for the Minimum of air to raise any given heat.

And if it takes longer(within reason,of course),so much the better.There's lots of thinking and planning to be done between heats.

I'll give that another shot as well, because previously I was running it with it wide open. So it was getting nothing but oxygen.  Which in turned probably the fire and over exaggerated which caused it to over heat everything.  That's only my assumption.

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Just now, Jeremy Blohm said:

Instead of refractory you can use just plain clay

Clay I didn't have refractory I had plenty of.  I didn't want to spend any more money than I had to.

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7 minutes ago, Jeremy Blohm said:

I use 100% clay kitty litter. It's really cheap.

Clay would suit  the purpose fine, but after I stopped on the gas forge and started the coal forge I still had a ton of refractory left over.  It would have just gone to waist not using it.  I'm about saving money as I can not having to spend and waist money.  So I'm using what I have at the moment to do the work.  Lol I still have to order my belt sander as well.

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This afternoon I'll plan on working out the bowl shape for the fire pot inside the forge.  I understand that it has to be sloped in towards the grate.  I have to figure out how I'm going to keep the grate from getting covered up with refractory.  Just ran over to home depot I got a 3 foot section of 3 inch diameter dryer pipe and man did I ever get lucky it fits snugly over the 2.50 inch pipe.  I'll have to clamp it down to the blower outlet but at least I wont have to place my blower right up next to the forge any longer.  That was money well spent at least.  I'm going to attempt to get the shape of the fire pot so I can have at least a 3 inch depth of coal for the fire to be happy and at least an inch of coal above the works piece.  So I'll have to figure out the measurements on that and hope I can manage the refractory to that.

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2 hours ago, Jeremy Blohm said:

I use 100% clay kitty litter. It's really cheap.

I was just looking at the clay kitty litter 5 bucks a bag yea that's dirt cheap lol.  I'll have to look into that next time.  I'm just trying to use this refractory cement so it doesn't go to waste.

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3 minutes ago, AndyB said:

I'm just trying to use this refractory cement so it doesn't go to waste.

Just so you know, I am still using a bucket of refractory that is about a decade old to patch/reline my forges.  Take care of it and it will keep.  

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1 minute ago, Jerrod Miller said:

Just so you know, I am still using a bucket of refractory that is about a decade old to patch/reline my forges.  Take care of it and it will keep.  

Well at least it lasts a long time lol that's good to know as long as it keeps for ever I'm golden lol.  Eventually if I ever get ahold of some decent funds I was considering investing in one of the Centaur Coal Forges.  Just a wish at this point lol.

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