Blacksmithing
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Thread: Blacksmithing

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
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    148

    Blacksmithing

    Hello and good evening!

    This isn't really welding, but since I share some of my welding on here I thought I would share this as well. I took a full-day intro to blacksmithing course today. At the end of the day, I walked away with a coat hanger that, in my opinion, doesn't look too bad for a first effort.

    It was interesting watching the blacksmiths demonstrate the techniques we were learning. They made it look easy. I learned real quick it takes lots of practice like anything else.

    The hooks look crooked in the picture, but they aren't. I couldn't get a good angle on the camera.

    Thanks!
    Attached Images Attached Images    
    Last edited by wicrules; 03-02-2013 at 07:24 PM.

  2. #2
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    That looks great to me!


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  3. #3
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    Re: Blacksmithing

    Gotta agree, looks great. Also looks like it could be addictive.
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  4. #4
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    Re: Blacksmithing

    Nice job.

    I enjoyed the blacksmithing class I took last summer. I hope to take another one this summer if I have the chance.
    .



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  5. #5
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    Re: Blacksmithing

    Well done, Looks great, Particularly like the scrolled ends on the mounting plate.
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  6. #6
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    Jun 2005
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    148

    Re: Blacksmithing

    I really enjoyed the class. I'm already talking to them about setting up another one.

    I agree, it could be really addictive. I'm already looking for a small forge, anvil, etc.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Ontario
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    139

    Re: Blacksmithing

    Good job.

    I learned welding from a blacksmith........when something had to be strong he didn't weld it but used his blacksmithing skills. He didn't trust the welder.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Gatesville, Texas
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    307

    Re: Blacksmithing

    looks great wicrules forges are easy to make for your self out of a brake drum some pipe and a blow dryer google it.....a good anvil will run you around 2.5 to 3 dollars a pound for a nice hay budden or fisher anvil make sure any anvil you get is cast steel not cheap cast iron i play with black smithing ocasionallly but being in central texas i have to be creative with my fuels lol deer corn will work you cant weld with it but it will let you heat and beat if i could get my hands on some real coal i would probably never let my forge cool

  9. #9
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    Jun 2005
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    148

    Re: Blacksmithing

    For this course we actually used propane fired forges. They are easy to carry around and use. The instructors had their coal-burning forges there, but it was 28 degrees and blowing snow outside so they didn't want to open all of the big doors. With the propane we were able to at least keep it above freezing inside while we worked since we didn't have to open all the doors for ventilation.

    I'm keeping an eye out for the parts to a forge now. My grandfather had a nice anvil in his basement when he died and I think my uncle grabbed it. My uncle no longer welds or does anything with metal, so I think I am going to try and get it from him.

  10. #10
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    Re: Blacksmithing

    A propane forge is fairly simple to build. The most costly part of the one I did was getting the propane regulator, and probably the larger propane cylinder I'll eventually want. There are a ton of info out there on how to make your own propane burners. Google "Ron Reil burner" and you'll get plenty of info.

    The 1st link is to my gas forge build. I'll probably add a 2nd burner to the build eventually as one seemed to be a bit light as far as quickly heating material went. Part of it might be the burner flare. I'm still trying to play with that some. Commercial gas forges aren't hard to find. Any farriers supply will most likely have some you can order. Off the top of my head I think the 2 burner ones I've looked at run $450-600.

    http://weldingweb.com/showthread.php?t=64084



    This next link is to my coal forge build. Several others here have done coal forges. There have been at least two brake drum forges done within the last 4 months. A search will pull up plenty of info. A coal/wood forge can be done very inexpensively. Most expensive part is usually the blower, but a simple shop vac with an outflow hookup or hair dryer will work for a small forge.

    http://weldingweb.com/showthread.php?t=146321

    I'm mostly working with my coal forge simply because A: it's all set up vs my gas forge, B: because I have 3+ 55 gal drums of coal I was given by a friend of mine when we cleaned out the old farm house he used to live in, so "fuel" costs me nothing at this point. When I start running low on coal, I'll probably revisit whether I go gas or stay with coal. C: because the way I have everything set up right now it's easier to break out and set up the coal forge vs building and tearing down the brick gas forge since I don't have a permanent location for my forge right now.

    Iforgeiron and anvilfire both have lots of info on forge building. If you are serious, start keeping your eyes open at flea markets, yard sales, antique shops, craigs list etc for hammers, tongs, anvils and vises. You can often pick things up cheap if you keep your eyes open and have an idea what things should go for. AMny times anvils and other forge tools are way over priced because they are "antiques", but you can often find them cheap as well when people clean out family members homes after they pass away and just want to get rid of the "junk"


    Any questions I'll be happy to help.
    Last edited by DSW; 03-03-2013 at 10:25 AM.
    .



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  11. #11
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    Jun 2005
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    148

    Re: Blacksmithing

    Thanks for the info. I'll take a look at the links when I get a little time.

    Our house is on the market, so I am going to hold off on buying anything until after the move. Once that happens, it will be full steam ahead.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    1,864

    Re: Blacksmithing

    Coal forges are fun to work with, but good blacksmithing coal is hard to find at least in CA. I think it actually has air quality regulations restricting it. Look for a farrier, or farrier supply house. A simple venturi burner propane forge is nice, not quite as hot as an forced air one, but good for most things. There are clubs in each state, ABANA is the national one that probably has a list. It is a very addicting hobby.

  13. #13
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    Jun 2005
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    Re: Blacksmithing

    There is a local blacksmithing club where I live. The instructors for the course I took are in it. They build and sell the forges like we used in the class. They are fairly small and easily portable. They handle flat stock up to 3" wide and about 2" thick. For the type of projects I will be doing they are sufficient. They run $75 for the forge.

    The propane cylinder, regulator and fittings will cost more than the forge most likely.

    Once I pick one up I will post a picture.

  14. #14
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    Re: Blacksmithing

    For $75 I'd buy two... That's well worth the money if it's ready to go less cylinder at that price.
    .



    No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!

    Ronald Reagan

  15. #15
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    Jun 2010
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    1,864

    Re: Blacksmithing

    I'd like to see the pic or specs on a $75 forge also!

  16. #16
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    Jun 2005
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    148

    Re: Blacksmithing

    The $75 forge is about the size of an army ammunition box. They are sufficient for smaller stuff like the item I did in the class, candle holders, etc. If you are working larger stuff, you would still need something larger and more open.

    Imagine cutting a 2" x 3" hole in both ends of the box, then putting a burner in through the side. It heats up really quick and according to the instructors they have run them for 6+ hours straight at fairs and not run out of gas.

    I'll send some pictures once I get one of them.

  17. #17
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    Re: Blacksmithing

    Definitely interested in seeing it. Most stuff on average can be done with a small forge. It gets tougher with scrolls and things, but even they can often be done if you are efficient and can do the work in one heat, or arrange your order of operations to work around the limitation.
    .



    No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!

    Ronald Reagan

  18. #18
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    Richmond, Virginia
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    Re: Blacksmithing

    When I was in the Peace Corps back in '77-'79, I worked with an old Thai blacksmith. He mostly forged machetes and hoes, things like that. His charcoal-fired forge consisted of two lumps of clay mud, each about the size of a loaf of bread. The "bellows" were two upright hollow wooden cylinders, like butter churns or overgrown bicycle pumps. The pistons were wood with chicken feather seals stuck on with tar or rosin. His anvil was just a big sledgehammer head sunk in a big log. Worked like a charm. He'd forge a spring steel knife, "machine" the edge down with a homemade draw knife, quench and temper. A new machete was maybe $2. but he'd refurb and old one for about 50 cents.
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  19. #19

    Re: Blacksmithing

    Sounds like fun, probably addicting.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
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    Alberta, Canada
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    2,330

    Re: Blacksmithing

    Some interesting stuff on this site. Did a search for forges and got 98 hits.

    http://www.homemadetools.net/site/se...forge&Search=+
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