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James Higson

Rock Solid Refractory

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Dear All,

 

Master Samuel Ecroyd and I have encountered a problem while building his first forge. My previous was much similar, however this one has a few improvements. In mine I was able to drill the castable and then remove the door portion. However, in this one I believe we have got the castable mixture perfect and therefore it is absolutely rock solid. A drill won't touch it, neither will and angle grinder. I was wondering if the hive mind had any ideas on how to cut the door out of this?

 

Thank you for any help you can give,

James and Sam

 

 

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They make discs for hand held angle grinders meant for cutting ceramic tile. You can pick them up an any Lowes or Home Depot or Amazon. Sorry, don't know UK equivalent to those stores.

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Brilliant, cheers Dave, I'll have a gander at Amazon! Will it matter that this refractory is about 95% grog? (not sure if that's the correct name for it but it's mainly little rocks!)

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No, those discs will cut just about anything, they're diamond bonded to steel. My first thought, however, is if you can find a hammer you can make a hole. It won't be pretty and you risk breaking the whole thing, but it'd be quick! ;)

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Ideal. Yeah, we stood scratching our heads for a while and using a hammer and chisel crossed our minds. Neither of us had the cajones to risk ruining it :)

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I'd try chain drilling out the corners with a masonry drill bit used without hammer, or perhaps a tile drill if you can find one long enough, then go at the straight runs with an angle grinder.

 

The diamond disks for angle grinders are cheap and extremely effective. Screwfix or Toolstation are probably the best source over here. Buy the cheap ones. The expensive ones are better for specific tasks, but only really worth it if you need to cut 300 slabs for an awkward-shaped patio.

 

Don't use your best grinder. Work outside. Wear a mask. Expect a huge amount of extremely fine dust.

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Cheers Tim. Would the ones with the cutouts on the edge or the solid edge be best do you reckon?

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The continuous edge for tile cutting does not seem to clear very well on anything but thin tile, so avoid them.

 

Either the segmented ones or the ones with a continuous edge but alternating thick and thin bits when viewed edge-on should work well. The "turbowave" ones from tool station at 3 quid would be my choice.

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Perfect, cheers guys, I'll give it a go and keep you in the loop with whether we resorted to towing it behind the car out of frustration!

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Gentlemen, thank you for all your help, the recommended grinder blade went through like a hot knife through butter with minimal need for hammer waving! The forge is now set for it's maiden voyage!

 

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Edited by Sam Ecroyd

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