WELCOME to the anvilfire Guru's Den - V. 3.3

THIS is a forum for questions and answers about blacksmithing and general metalworking. Ask the Guru any reasonable question and he or one of his helpers will answer your question, find someone that can, OR research the question for you.

This is an archive of posts from March 16 - 21, 2009 on the Guru's Den
[ THE - GURUS | ABOUT THIS PAGE | Getting Started in Blacksmithing ]

Hi everyone,
Long time, no post. I want to graduate from my trusty brake drum forge and have a new firepot welded up from ¼ inch plate. Can anyone give me a tried and tested set of dimensions? How deep? What angle should the sides slope to?
   Craig - Sunday, 03/15/09 21:57:47 EST

Hi Craig

Why don't you buy a new cast firebox? It may cost you less than the steel and welding giving you better results. They are affordable from Centaur Forge.

If you still want to make one I can go out and measure a firebox all up for you. I have a new one I have never used sitting in the shop. I wouldn't mind measuring it if you want me to.
   - Rustymetal - Monday, 03/16/09 00:06:12 EST

Rustymetal: Given the value of the Aussie Dollar at the moment, I doubt that buying a pot from Centaur Forge would be a cost effective option.
Why exactly is it that cast pots are so much better than welded ones? I have only had the experience of my brake drum and a welded pot in the forge where I did my short course in ornamental blacksmithing.
   Craig - Monday, 03/16/09 02:04:44 EST

Further Thoughts on Wood to Charcoal in Forge; Duncan:

I'm not sure how this would work on a bottom-draft forge so I'm assuming some sort of mid or side draft. The heat would be on the wrong (up) side to be effective, and the sand would probably insulate. Also, as/if the wood coaled, it would shrink, probably opening gaps in the sand. A more solid clay cap might work, but where would the off-gassing, if any, go? There is a LOT of off-gassing when converting wood to charcoal. It would certainly help feed the fire, but it would mostly be the volatiles and particulates that you use charcoal to avoid.

When we were up at L'Anse aux Meadows in Newfoundland for the Viking Millennial celebration, we pretty much took over the Norstead forge building. They had the building and Viking age style anvils and we had the bellows, soapstone tuyere, and all of the tools. What they didn't have was charcoal! We ended up feeding local softwood and driftwood into the fire at the far end and then tending the coals at the working end near the tuyere. It was horribly smokey and inefficient, but it worked after a fashion, and we did a lot of demonstrations and even some repair work on some weapons and equipment form the other Viking camps.

You can make pit-clamp charcoal in relatively small holes in the ground, covering them over with turf; or (the cheapest and dirtiest method, and consequently my favorite, method) you can rick the charcoal by the simple expedient of setting up a pile of hardwood, setting it on fire, and, when you have a good bed of coals, douse it with water. Then once things have settled, you set it out to dry, shovel it into a container (preferably fireproof if you're in a hurry; no problem if you wait several days) and use as necessary. It certainly makes the inside of the forge building a lot more breathable! :-)

An interesting idea, but as Jock pointed out, not very workable.

Cloudy, cool and very damp on the banks of the Potomac.

Visit your National Parks: www.nps.gov

Go viking: www.longshipco.org
   Bruce Blackistone (Atli) - Monday, 03/16/09 08:34:33 EST

Hi Craig

I am headed out to measure up the firebox for you. There are some reasons that I will let Guru explain to the advantage of cast vs steel. He can do it much better than I.
   - Rustymetal - Monday, 03/16/09 11:18:00 EST

Bruce; or just sift the ashes from your wood stove before discarding them...

   Thomas P - Monday, 03/16/09 11:33:34 EST

Howdy Craig

The outside of the firepot is 13 3/4" side to side and 12 1/2" front to back. The opening of the firepot is 10 1/4" side to side and 8" front to back. The depth is 4 1/2". The bottom measures 7 " side to side X 6" front to back.
The casting is 7/16" thick. The tuyere tube is 3" inside diameter.

A shallow pot 4" to 5" works much better than a deep one.

I hope this helps. :)
   - Rustymetal - Monday, 03/16/09 13:29:22 EST

ASTM Standards: The problem with many ASTM speces is they often cover more than one alloy OR when you have ONE known alloy there will be four or five ASTM specs to cover it (and these ALWAYS refer to others as noted above). Then when someone refers to an ASTM spec such as A36 then often leave out the all important qualifiers such as A,B,C or paragraphs 1, 2, 3. . Which result in the actual number being ASTM A36.4.A or some such.

A collection of ASTM standards is a bigger investment than a complete set of ASM references. I have a few ASTM standards and the ASTM standard definitions book that every ASTM standard references. Due to the complexity of the standards there are also MANY circular references that do not answer the question. An example is the OSHA reference to ASTM safety glasses specification which in turn references the same OSHA document. . .
   - guru - Monday, 03/16/09 14:19:22 EST

Craig: If you are going to go through all of the trouble to weld up a firepot why not make it out a thicker stock to begin with.

And don't let wet ashes sit in the forge.

I am just finishing up a repair job on a trailer mounted BBQ (large enough for two hogs). Fuel is firewood. Replace grate. Drawer underneath it had about 80% rusted. What likely happened is the sulfure in the wood ashes, when wet, created a mild sulfuric acid which simply ate away the thin metal pan/drawer. Some thing can happen with coal or charcoal. My recommendation to them was to empty the drawer/pan the day after each use.

On the grate bowing, my recommendation was to watch it. If it started to bow, turn it over for the next fires.
   Ken Scharabok - Monday, 03/16/09 14:47:00 EST

Ahhh Ken, you have it backwards wood ash is the source of Lye, NaOH, which is a corrosive base. Coal ashes can have sulfur and create an acid if left wet. Either one will rust out steel fairly fast.

   Thomas P - Monday, 03/16/09 16:57:54 EST

Re sifting through the ashes from thestove I always do this. Original idea had been to make a large anvil out of the screws and other ironmongery I find. I have now altered this. I am going to make an aircraft carrier instead.
   philip in china - Monday, 03/16/09 18:00:13 EST

Bruce; concerning wood to charcoal ideas

Thanx for your input concerning my wood to charcoal idea, for some strange reason my thoughts seem to be returning to finding ways to make this work, I don't know how yet but rest assured, I shall post my findings here for all to see and ponder. It'll probably be a failure but hey, I like a good challenge. By the by, as much as I'd like to visit the national parks, the potomac etc. I'm afraid I live in Scotland, a bit far to travel hee! Hee!

   Duncan - Monday, 03/16/09 18:40:56 EST

Duncan, You have to know that Bruce AKA Uncle Atli works for our National Park Service:) Of course he will invite folks to visit and view his work, won't you? :)

Bruce added any ne qupote to UAVTBOW? I would think a few may have arisen from the shop build/move:)
   ptree - Monday, 03/16/09 19:54:32 EST

Guru I don't know what all those letters and things you wrote mean. It sure sounds good to me!!
   - Rustymetal - Monday, 03/16/09 22:02:37 EST

Wow!! Over my head!! Was that a forging rap by the Guru of metal? BOG OK just having fun.
   - Rustymetal - Monday, 03/16/09 22:06:53 EST


Actually, I meant to send you (and anybody else on the board that's interested) a copy of Uncle Atli's Very Thin Book of Wisdom, which includes your contributions. If you send your e-mail address (under the subject line of (UAVTBoW) I'll kick out a copy over the next couple of weeks, between crises.


Duncan: Well, if you never get over here, you can at least use the site to "tour" our parks by computer. Loved Gretna Green when I was over there; a little bit of a tourist trap, but all of our women know the romantic connotations of the old blacksmith shop. :-)
   Bruce Blackistone (Atli) - Monday, 03/16/09 22:15:06 EST

I'm sure it's been ask before but haven't seen it. I to sift my woodstove ash, but since going to a gas bbq I've got 3 bags of charcoal briquetts. Any good for the forge?
   Carver Jake - Monday, 03/16/09 22:38:18 EST

Yes Jake, spend all day forging over real fuel. Then light up the briquettes and have a bbq. Otherwise they are pretty useless!
   philip in china - Tuesday, 03/17/09 02:05:10 EST

Most of charcoal briquettes is not charcoal; lots of crud in them designed to keep the temperature *down* and make it cheaper than using real charcoal. Things like clay, startch anthracite, sawdust, etc.

They are my *least* favorite forge fuel---shoot I'd rather build a wood fire and work with that than charcoal briquettes. BTAIM if it's the only fuel you have, you can forge with it. Very bad for knifemaking as it's usually quite an oxidizing fire; but for simple coarse forgings it will work to a point.

   Thomas P - Tuesday, 03/17/09 10:55:37 EST

I have a supplier of fine wrought iron. Flat stock of 3/16x1-1/4 and 5/16x1-1/4. About a quarter ton at least. The owner is a fence maker friend of mine who acquired it from a demolished building in North Philadelphia. It is really composed of gates and window gates, sections weighing about 80 pounds. He really wants to sell them as whole pieces, but I am trying to convince him to chop it up and let me sell bar stock to knifemakers and the like for him (he's cheap and has no computer, so I'm the middle man).

It's delicious iron, VERY fine... will post photos soon. Am I right about trying to talk him out of attempting whole item sale? He got a bit angry when I cut a bar from it (it still looks decorational) but agreed if I can sell many small pieces quickly that it's better than waiting for someone to buy (and pay shipping) for such large pieces.

So, what is the market value of this?
   - Nippulini - Tuesday, 03/17/09 11:23:13 EST

Nip, From a dollar to a couple dollars a pound for clean bar stock. However, antique gates, grates and such often sell quite high if in good condition. I would not scrap finished work unless the value has been ascertained.
   - guru - Tuesday, 03/17/09 11:33:15 EST

How can I do that? I know a high price is good, but finding a buyer that will pay isn't easy. I know it's not Yellins work... at least I'm pretty sure it's not.
   - Nippulini - Tuesday, 03/17/09 11:34:43 EST

I forgot to mention, it is all encrusted with layers of black paint flaking off.
   - Nippulini - Tuesday, 03/17/09 11:35:19 EST

   - Nippulini - Tuesday, 03/17/09 11:43:56 EST

Selected excerpts from: ASTM A36-08, Standard Specification for Carbon Structural Steel

Scope: Covers carbon steel shapes, plates, and bars of structural quality for use in riveted, bolted, or welded construction of bridges and buildings, and for general structural use.

Appurtenant Materials: When components of a steel structure are identified with this ASTM designation but the product form is not listed in the scope of this specification, the material shall conform to one of the standards listed in Table 1 unless otherwise specified by the purchaser.

Table 1
Material ASTM Designation
Steel rivets A 502 Grade 1
Bolts A 307, Grade A or F 568M, Class 4.6
High-strength bolts A325 or A325M
Steel nuts A563 or 563M
Cast steel A27/27M, Grade 65-35 [450-240]
Forgings (carbon steel) A668/A668M, class D
Hot-rolled sheets and strip A1011/1011M, SS Grade 36 [250] Type 1 or
Type 2 or A1018/A 1018M, SS
Grade 36 [250]
Cold-formed tubing A500, Grade B
Hot-formed tubing A 501
Anchor bolts F1554, Grade 36

*Note: M after and ASTM specification indicates a metric version of the specification. ASTM A36 is the English measuring units version of the specification and ASTM A36M is the metric version of the specification.

Materials and Manufacture: The steel for plates and bars over ½ in. [12.5 mm] in thickness and shapes with flange or leg thicknesses over 1 in. [25 mm] shall be semi-killed or killed.

Chemical Composition: The heat analysis shall conform to the requirements prescribed in Table 2, except as specified in section 5.2 (FYI section 5.2 deals with bearing plates.)

Table 2
Product ShapesA Plates B BarsB
Thickness, in. All To ¾ incl. Over ¾ to 1½ incl. Over 1½ to 2½ incl. Over 21/2 to 4 incl. Over 4 To ¾ incl. Over ¾ to 1½ incl. Over 1½ to 2½ incl. Over 4
C, max % 0.26 0.25 0.25 0.26 0.27 0.29 0.26 0.27 0.28 0.29
Mn % ….. …. 0.80-1.20 0.80 – 1.20 0.85 – 1.20 0.85 – 1.20 ….. 0.60 – 0.90 0.60 – 0.90 0.60 – 0.90
P, max % 0.04 0.04 0.04 0.04 0.04 0.04 0.04 0.04 0.04 0.04
S, max % 0.05 0.05 0.05 0.05 0.05 0.05 0.05 0.05 0.05 0.05
Si, % 0.40 max 0.40 max 0.40 max 0.15 – 0.40 0.15 – 0.40 0.15 – 0.40 0.40 max 0.40 max 0.40 max 0.40 max
Cu, min %, when Cu steel is specified 0.20 0.20 0.20 0.20 0.20 0.20 0.20 0.20 0.20 0.20
AManganese content of 0.85 – 1.35% and silicon content of 0.15 – 0.40 % is required for shapes with flange thickness over 3 in.
BFor each reduction of 0.01 percentage point below the specified carbon maximum, an increase of 0.06 percentage point manganese above the specified maximum will be permitted, up to the maximum of 1.35%.

Table 3 Tensile Requirements
Plates, Shapes and Bars
Tensile strength, ksi 58 - 80
Yield point, min, ksi 36
Plates & Bars
Elongation in 8 in. min % 20
Elongation in 2 in., min % 23
Elongation in 8 in. min % 20
Elongation in 2 in., min % 21

Note, Table 3 was abbreviated; a number of notes and additional details were left out. FYI – tensile specimens can be formed to a number of different shapes and sizes. Properties measured can vary somewhat depending on the size and shape of the specimen. The above table refers to 2 different specimens with different gauge lengths, one with an 8 inch gauge and one with a 2 inch gauge. The gauge is basically the reduced section area of the specimen with parallel sides. A typical 2 inch gauge length tensile specimen is about 10 to 12 inches long.

Pasted from a Word document, so I hope it camr through OK.
   - Gavainh - Tuesday, 03/17/09 12:52:45 EST

Drat, Table 2 didn't come through as formatted. I'll try a reformat and try posting later.
   - Gavainh - Tuesday, 03/17/09 12:54:28 EST

Hey Nippulini

"To keep it real, you've got to feel the steel"

I Love you Man!! Not in a gay way!

Keep on a forging!
   - Rustymetal - Tuesday, 03/17/09 14:26:06 EST

Gavinah, Formatting with spaces or tabs dies not work in HTML. Such data must be converted to HTML tables (with or without lines). For security reasons our forums do not allow public users to embed HTML code.

I'll see if I can fix.
   - guru - Tuesday, 03/17/09 14:42:21 EST

Rusty... that vidoe will haunt me forever.

Anyone need any wrought?
   - Nippulini - Tuesday, 03/17/09 14:52:45 EST

TGN; could you figure a way to convert them to garden gates and trellesis and perhaps coffee tables and so sell them that way? I need some 3/8-1/2" sq stock in real WI but will wait patiently until some shows up areound these parts or at Quad-State.

Everyone I know of who thought to stike it big in WI has been sadly disappointed as the market is just not that big for it.

   Thomas P - Tuesday, 03/17/09 15:19:02 EST


what brand of anvil has a RR cast into the foot, or feet?

   cameron - Tuesday, 03/17/09 17:10:30 EST

So I've been practising making table knives from mild steel and thought I should try one in SST as I figured that is what I will end up making them in eventualy.
I know this topic has been discussed several times but I must have missed something.
I had a little crook in the blade and without thinking I tried to give it a little tap while cold.
With only two small taps it broke cleanly at the point of the slight bend.
I don't know what kind of SST it was but I would guess it is a 300 series as that is what is usualy on hand were I work and this was a drop from work.
I tried to work it as close to bright red as posible without going to yellow.
It probably took only another ten minets longer than a mild steel one and that was mainly due to it beeing larger stock than I normaly use for this work.
I did quench it in water, wich I thought may be a mistake as I was doing it.
So what happend?
Don't quench?
Don't quench without drawing back?
Over wrought?
Slow cool?
It's just a butter knife and doesn't need to hold a keen edge but, I didn't think that would happen.
Input? Answers?

   - merl - Tuesday, 03/17/09 17:47:27 EST

Just a quick remark about teflon tape. I worked for one of the industrial gas manufactures as supervisor for 20 years.
With tens of thousands of joints on highpressure gas cylinders our findings support Willie's.
1.) There is no substitue for clean Thread surfaces.
2.) Threads must be straight and accurately cut.
3.) No more than one and one half turns of tape is needed. More than that is more likely to cause than prevent leaks
4.) Do not over tighten.

There are actually three different pipe thread connections.
One for electrial equipment. One for water use. One for gas systems.

Incidently, I got interested in smithing 20 years ago because I wanted to carve a chess set out of black walnut and dogwood. I like rubberize abrasives for the gross sharpening, followed by arkansaw stones, and finished with a leather strop impregnated with jewlers rouge.
   Charlotte - Tuesday, 03/17/09 17:51:32 EST

Merl, you might want to look at the Admiral Steel website they have instructions for heat treating various steels.
I make ash shovels from 316 quite a often. This involves bending the material over a form, (thanks Jerry Hoffman) and upseting the excess into it self. I've never had the problem you describe but then I let them air cool over a hot form.
   Charlotte - Tuesday, 03/17/09 18:00:36 EST


Feelin a bit of a fraud here, I've never beaten hot metal but I'm aimin to get there once I get my forge made and something to beat it on, however I was a mechanical engineer a long time ago. used to operate centre lathes, capstans and milling machines, shapers, grinders and the occasional borer. wasn't a pro not by any means but a machinest I was. when do I qualify to join the fraternity for real?

   Duncan - Tuesday, 03/17/09 18:03:06 EST

Duncan, welcome. Your interest in smithing qualifies you here. However, I suggest you go to the home page, scroll down to the Anvilfire Story Page, then scroll down to a poem entitled "Under the spreading cyber-tree" by yours truely. We have all been there.
   quenchcrack - Tuesday, 03/17/09 18:24:24 EST

Merl, without knowing exactly which 300 series SS you were working, it is not really possible to diagnose the problem. 300 Series include the 18-8 series of Chromium-Nickel steels that are commonly used in cookware. These are low carbon SS and not hardenable by quenching. 314 is a .24C steel that might harden but the very high nickel makes this unlikely. I would bet on either work hardening it from pounding on it cold, or maybe you pounded in some scale and it make a weak spot that broke when you tried to straighten it. Or maybe you just didn't hold your mouth right when you did it. :-> )
   quenchcrack - Tuesday, 03/17/09 18:34:02 EST


Did you write that specially for me??? Ha! Ha! seemes to be the case.
However I thank you for the welcome, and hopefully I will be able to post something of use or of interest on this site instead of leeching info from the rest of you
Many thanx
   Duncan - Tuesday, 03/17/09 18:39:00 EST

Merl, without know the exact SS as Quench notes it is hard to say. BUT, 304 is the common SS for sinks, pans ansd flatware. It is sensitive to Chloride cracking, and if from old used SS say from a hot water tank, deairator etc it may have been cracked before you touched it.
   Jeff Reinhardt - Tuesday, 03/17/09 18:44:46 EST

Charlotte, welcome, and who is Willie?
   Jeff Reinhardt - Tuesday, 03/17/09 18:45:11 EST

The problems marketing WI and Fe is expense and supply. For there to be a market in a material it must be available in enough forms to complete a variety of projects. For architectural work you need everything from 2" square, round, flat bar and plate down to 1/4" round and square, rivets and welding rod. There was once an age when only a few cross sections were needed and labor to change those shapes was cheap. Even bladesmiths have preferred cross sections.

Consistency of supply is also important. Modern businesses live and die by the supply of raw materials. Not every project can be custom designed around randomly available materials.

Cost of better or superior or historically accurate or intrinsically interesting materials can be included in the cost of a product or project if the supply is reliable OR if the value of the product warrants the use of such material. But so far the suppliers of wrought and pure iron have not had much selection. Thus the high price has not been justifiable to many artisans.
   - guru - Tuesday, 03/17/09 18:52:18 EST

Well, if Thomas needs 3/8 - 1/2" I can draw it down for him, but it will add cost to it. Or you can do it yourself.

So I guess my only option is to seek out bladesmiths and artisans in need of the material. At least the owner of this stuff NOW knows to not sell it as scrap.
   - Nippulini - Tuesday, 03/17/09 19:24:39 EST

Thomas P. - How much length of WI do you need?
   Judson Yaggy - Tuesday, 03/17/09 19:46:54 EST

I have a hay Budden 170 lb. anvil with 2 prichel holes. Can you give me any history on this anvil and why 2 holes?
thanks, Martin
   martin - Tuesday, 03/17/09 19:51:12 EST

Thanks Rusty. Big help!
   Craig - Tuesday, 03/17/09 20:44:05 EST

Guru- Iam fairly new to blacksmithing, and I am trying to estimate the age of my anvil. The only writing on it is "Peter Wright Patent 0 3 6 " There aren't any other markings: circles, ovals,ect. From what I've been able to find out so far the weight is 91 lbs. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
   Jeff Williams - Tuesday, 03/17/09 21:13:24 EST

Hay-Budden Anvil: One of the best American made anvils, Made in Brooklyn NY from 1880's to 1927. If two pritchel (round holes) it is a farrier's pattern OR it has been modified. Early ones are wrought with a steel face, later ones are all tool steel from the waist up and arc welded at the joint.

Peter Wright: One of the more popular British made anvils. Made of wrought iron with a steel face. Made for about 100 years from ~1830 to ~1930.

If you want the complete histories of these companies, more specific age identification based on serial numbers and style plus much more more about anvils you can find it in Anvils in America (see our review and store).
   - guru - Tuesday, 03/17/09 22:00:29 EST

QC, and others, sorry for the lack of complete info but I was pressed for time.
If it will make much of a differance the material is either 304 or 316, 5/8dia. round stock.
It was brand new drops from the short rack at invevtory/clean-up time so I took them home.
I wonderd if they just got work hardend but, as you say QC the way it snaped so easily maybe a scale inclusion was the culprett.
Besides, I always squint my right eye half way closed and bite my lower left lip... it's never failed me yet...must be the Moon cycle...
   - merl - Tuesday, 03/17/09 22:01:43 EST

SS Problem: It could be overheating and burning the steel, or it could be the result of a cold shut (fold) in the steel while reducing the bar. On thin forgings it could also be a thin spot.

THEN there is always a possibility that it was not a non-hardening SS. Short drops could have been almost anything. In our small shop we have 416, 304, 302, monel. All hard to tell if not clearly labeled.

Not only does stainless need to be forged hot, it needs to be forged fast in as few heats as possible. When making blades you should leave it thick enough to grind off the the HAZ (burnt, scaled, decarburized). That also reduces the possibility of cold shuts and other suface defects that may lead to a crack.
   - guru - Tuesday, 03/17/09 22:49:48 EST


From what you describe, you wree working that SS too cold. Forge it at a yellow and stop when it drops to high red or deep orange. If it was 304 it won't harden other than by work hardening, and quenching will anneal it, if done from a yellow heat.
   vicopper - Wednesday, 03/18/09 00:11:38 EST

Hi everyone, i got offered an anvil its 110 pounds and the only mking on it is RR on the front or back foot on the right side foot any ideas what company would have made it? it looks in good shape andseems to be a london pattern anvil, i have pictures if anyone wants,

thanks alot,
   Cameron - Wednesday, 03/18/09 00:28:06 EST

Judson; I'm wanting to make a tripod in the style of a viking example from one of the ship burials, (Oseberg IIRC) so I'd like about 3 pieces 5' long in 1/2" WI. It's the shipping that's the problem. If this project hangs a bit longer I might just take down the 1" WI I have to hand already. (requires the new shop extension built and wired and the triphammer on line---or trained minions with sledges...)

I'd rather spend money on the shop than stock for a long term project.

   Thomas P - Wednesday, 03/18/09 10:31:24 EST

Thanks, Guru and Vicopper.
I think I have the answer from what you bothe describe.
I know I didn't burn the material because I never got it above high red. So I was clearly working it too cold.
I'm going to have to get the right size stock (1/2") because there is no way I can make the pattern from the larger stock without the extra heats for drawing down.
Part of the finished piece is to leave the whitness mark and texture from the original stock size on the edges of the handle, especially if someone is standing there watching me make one. People realy like to see that piece of stock turn into a fork, knife or, spoon right in front of them.
Having the power hammer available when doing the club show will let me do them in SST in a timely manor but, at home it will be a chore fer sure...
Thanks again.
   - merl - Wednesday, 03/18/09 10:39:33 EST

Cameron, RR doesn't ring any bells. I looked it up and didn't find anything. However, there have been hundreds of short run farrier's anvils and private branded anvils made.

The 110 pound weight often indicates that it is a 50 kilo anvil which makes it an import. Many new nameless or unknown names in this weight category are ASO's. Send my a photo if you can and I'll see if I can ID it.
   - guru - Wednesday, 03/18/09 10:42:49 EST

I gotta old car with four wheels on it, can you tell me the history of it? Is it worth a lotta money?
   - Joe Bob Nasel Splunker - Wednesday, 03/18/09 11:07:01 EST

I had hear that hay budden made a farriers anvil with two hole, I was wanting to know what purpose the second hole served?
   martin - Wednesday, 03/18/09 12:25:34 EST

merl, If you want the utensiles to maintain a stainless quality, you must passivate them after you forge them. Grind or pickle away the forging scale, heat to a high heat (1850F+) then water quench it. If you don't, it will rust like plain carbon steel.
   quenchcrack - Wednesday, 03/18/09 12:53:31 EST

Anvils: Martin, London pattern or "standard" (there really is no such thing) anvils have two holes in the heel end of the face, a square hardy hole in the middle for holding square shanked tools and toward the corner a round pritchel hole for punching. The term "pritchel" refers to a farrier's pritchel punch which is a rectangular punch for making horse shoes. So, in some respects all London pattern anvils are farrier's anvils.

However, after the London pattern became more or less standard a second round hole on the opposite side not so close to the corner was put into some anvils specifically for farriers. Some of these anvils had modifications to the step extending the horn, or had bulging additions known as "clip" horns added to the horn. Others, instead of extra pritchel holes had narrow tapering heals. Since then there have dozens if not hundreds of specialized pattern farrier anvils.

Other anvils, particularly modern European anvils have holes in different positions. Most have a square hardy hole but instead of a pritchel hole they have one or more round punching holes.

Most of the major anvil makers made sawyers anvils, double horned anvils and stepless patterns as well as farriers' anvils. While many of the more exotic types are shown in catalogs the odd ones were sold overseas and almost never found in the U.S.
   - guru - Wednesday, 03/18/09 15:11:45 EST

Why an Extra Pritichel Hole? Convenience, work methods, wear and tear spread over two holes. . .

   - guru - Wednesday, 03/18/09 16:20:47 EST

Hi Folks,
A friend wants to build a natural gas forge. He is in a commercial building. I was wondering what size gas line and what pressure is needed. The forge will be under 2000 cubic inches in volume, kaowool, and ITC 100. Burner design is undecided, so input on that would also be nice. Most likely it will have a blower.
Thanks Bart Trickel
   blackbart - Wednesday, 03/18/09 16:49:45 EST

Blackbart: Not "most likely", It MUST have a blower. Some commercial buildings have high pressure (10-15psi) NG most do not. "Normal" pressure is less than 1psi, it's actually measured in "inches water column or ounces per square inch. If the forge is not too far away 1/2 inch standard pipe should be fine. There are building codes that must be met and might require a licensed plumber.
   - grant - Wednesday, 03/18/09 17:31:16 EST

NG Forge: Blackbart, I would guess from 3/4" to 1-1/2" depending on the openings and such. Due to the cost of running low pressure lines I would not run less than 1".

On the pressure you have no choice even in commercial buildings. The local code will set the maximum pressure for gas measured in inches of water column. The only way to get more is to store and compress it. This is a very expensive option.

There can also be problems getting the gas company to hook up a DIY device. Codes call for UL rated devices and that is the first question the gas company is going to ask.
   - guru - Wednesday, 03/18/09 17:37:17 EST

In Kentucky at least, high pressure Natural Gas is available in commercial buildings. In Louisville I have worked at two industrial forges with 22.5PSI natural gas. At the valve shop our industrial sized power boilers ran at that same 22.5 PSI. Of course when the boilers are making 82,000# of steam an hour (850 Hp for you old timers) 1" of water column just don't work:)

We ran a decent NG forge at the axle shop and it ran at 22.5 psi feeding into a mixing blower, and that fed 6 burner orifices. We also ran the half block long HT furnace on 22.5 PSI NG.

Think a leaking hose or cracked fitting in a house is dangerous? Stinks? try a 22.5 PSI 6" line with a failed flange gasket!

Even at 1" you just have to size the line up for a small forge. But the building may have undersized service.
   ptree - Wednesday, 03/18/09 18:13:07 EST

Thomas P- 5' would be a pain to ship. I have some 8"-14" pieces but you'd have to do a bunch of forge welding, may as well draw down your bigger stock. Also IIRC those Viking tripods legs are twisted along their entire length, a cruel thing to do to a forgeweld.
   Judson Yaggy - Wednesday, 03/18/09 18:26:00 EST

Thanks for the info QC. I have it writen down this time.
I was planing on makeing the utensiles from mild steel and then seasoning them with a vegitable oil. A freind sugested that not everyone knows how to maintain a seasond finish and maybe I should make them from SST.
I'm begining to think doing them in SST may not be worth the trouble.
Someone here (one of the regular contributors) has purchased a home electro plateing set-up a while back. Any report on how that is coming?
I am looking into nickle plating as well.
Thanks again QC
   - merl - Wednesday, 03/18/09 18:43:34 EST

I never had any (well, I had to be obstinant) trouble getting high pressure (15psi) natural gas in three different locations. The pipe running down the street has way more than that. I have run a 1 million BTU forge on low pressure and I "think" it was 3/4 pipe, but might have been 1".
   - grant - Wednesday, 03/18/09 18:55:15 EST

Two pritchel holes theory. A horseshoe has from three to five holes on each side. Using two pritchel holes allows the farrier to move the shoe along while pritcheling the holes with less chance of the shoe becoming unbalanced and perhaps toppling off the anvil. I'm "reaching out" here, and it really doesn't seem to make that much difference.

The features that Hay Budden brought to the farriers' design was a narrow face, swelled horn, clip horn, a thinner heel, and the two pritchel holes. It seems that they were experimenting little by little. I have a 140# HB farriers' anvil that has no horn swell, nor does it have two pritchel holes. It does have the narrow face and clip horn. I had one 158# that had two pritchel holes, a clip horn, but on horn swell. Eventually, they began to manufacture them with all the features mentioned at the beginning of this paragraph.

On all of thte HB farrier anvils that I have seen, the rectangular cutting table has been eliminated.
   Frank Turley - Wednesday, 03/18/09 19:00:02 EST

Australian Bushfire Memorial Gum Tree Project.

We are calling blacksmiths from all around the world to help us build a gum tree to stand as a memorial to those who lost their lives to the recent bushfires in Victoria and to those who help defend us against them. We ask that you forge a gum leaf from stainless steel or copper to be added to the tree. Further information can be found at www.treeproject.abavic.org.au or contact me for details.

Paul Mills - TheDrift@abavic.org.au
   - Paul Mills - Wednesday, 03/18/09 19:27:28 EST

To Guru,

Sent you an email of my forge. Thanks,

   Matt Hunter - Wednesday, 03/18/09 19:43:59 EST

Matt, I got your photos. Will have to respond later.
   - guru - Wednesday, 03/18/09 22:41:38 EST

Ok, thanks
   Matt Hunter - Thursday, 03/19/09 03:12:39 EST

Nice article on local smith (I never heard of him before this article).

   - Nippulini - Thursday, 03/19/09 07:45:27 EST

Merl, SS is defintely worth it. I've been forging 300 series steel for a few years now, and nothing beats it. PLating can flake off, but I did recently purchase an electropolishing kit from PlatingSales.com. I got the 2.3 gallon hobby kit for $350. Set it up, broke it in by running it overnight with stainless scrap in the tank. SO far I haven;t had time to play with it and figure the best way to use it. A lot more involved than I previously thought. I have aLOT to learn with it.
   - Nippulini - Thursday, 03/19/09 08:39:27 EST

Well when you think about it all wrought iron is forge welded as a part of the making process. Gotta do it really hot with WI but it will be as soft a butter at the correct temperature.

I'll wait on the triphammer and do my own though unless I can find some stuff locally that will take less work.

   Thomas P - Thursday, 03/19/09 10:07:31 EST

I've seen Jim demo several times, and have been impressed. Here's the video


And I agree with what he says about making hardware vs. sculpture. Guru, you will not agree with his preferred finish - none!

He reminds me of the smith in the cartoon that pops up on the Anvilfire homepage
   Dave Leppo - Thursday, 03/19/09 10:10:33 EST

If sculptors want their work removed from public view and put in permanent storage OR scraped because of rust or corrosion then its their legacy. It is the buyers that are often using public money that buy such junk that really bothers me.

Public art and architecture often define a society's values. Maybe rust a decay reflect ours.

The fact that we build half million and million dollar houses today that are made from temporary materials (chip board, plastic siding. . .) may reflect on what finishes are put on hardware. A house that may be bulldozed in 40 or 50 years doesn't need permanence.

Jim Kiefer is a great blacksmith. I met him about a decade ago. To those that know him he is known as the most famous unknown blacksmith. His work has been standard catalog work for decades but is never connected to him. He rarely deals direct with his customers.
   - guru - Thursday, 03/19/09 11:22:37 EST

I know you're right Nipp, it's just me beeing lazy trying to find an easy way out. This is blacksmithing by hand, there is no easy way out. I think it would be too impractical to try and do the SST during a demo though.
Most poeple don't have the attention span to stand there and watch for much more than 15-20 minets. I had planed to make a bunch ahead and get them properly seasoned to sell at the show while I made new ones.
Like I say, I find people will stand and wait for about 15-20 minets while you work on somthing but if it's going to take longer they want to know when to come back and get it.
You can't very well make them pay in advance at a show and then you have to hope you get it done by the time they do come back. That's why we usually encorage people to buy what is on the counter (A bird in the hand...)
Of corse if they want one right from the anvil they get it but, only with a bee's wax finish. At home I always polish them with a fine wire wheel befor seasoning too that they don't get during the show( the line shaft just doesn't turn fast enough for that)
I guess I'll have to make bothe ahead and offer a choice. 'Corse the SST will cost a bit more...
I'm going to go check out PlatingSales.com
   - merl - Thursday, 03/19/09 13:03:08 EST

Hello- all, well here I am again.
three months ago I was in a horrible car accident.
I thought I would take some time and clean up my tools and reline my forge.
Here is a little history of my problem: i could NEVER get the damn thing to heat up to forge welding heat.

I have a whipser Daddy three burner forge with a front door and a back door (usually closed).

anyhow, after I relined the forge I coated the new lining with HTc-100 and changed the burner orifices to larger ones that I bought with my reline kit.
after I was done (meaning the ITC-100 had cured fully) I stuck a piece of steel in it to see if this made a difference in getting this thing to welding heat- NOPE- still won't get hot enough to weld.
Can these things be tuned - I am stumped after screweing with this thing for two years now and still think there must be something I am doing wrong.

Any successful suggestions anyone??

   - Ed Green - Thursday, 03/19/09 14:19:55 EST

If the general public can't drop it in the dishwasher or leave it in the sink for a week in water then they should not be offered it. I'll sell plain steel or WI stuff to LH folks who should know better and be expected to maintain their kit.

Hey I made my eating set from Ti so I can abuse it at will; but I'm a lazy cuss.

   Thomas P - Thursday, 03/19/09 14:51:51 EST

Tuning NC-Forges: Ed, All you can do is increase or decrease the operating pressure and give it time to heat. You could add a restrictor plate on the inlet but the burner design makes that difficult AND you can only reduce the air not increase it. There is also a lot of different configurations of these forges that is not in the description, Front port in door, side ports, back port. At least one port needs to be open. However, cracking the door may let out too much heat.

Generally the problem with these forges is oxidation of the steel making it difficult to weld. They are also not generally suitable for welding small bits and pieces like you do in a solid fuel forge. Many bladesmiths use these forges for welding laminated billets but that is under protection (usually an SS tube or wrap) so that they do not oxidize.

I know these forges achieve welding heat because I have seen stacks of billets become a solid mass and bars stcik together in them. But there is a difference in welding heat, and welding condition. Welding condition is when there is sufficient heat and proper atmosphere that does not burn the metal.

To adjust the atmosphere in gas forges folks have been noted to toss in some coal or charcoal . . .
   - guru - Thursday, 03/19/09 15:28:48 EST

Coal makes a mess and there is more sulfur to deal with too.

However I have floored the bottom of a gas forge with industrial coke before to moderate the atmosphere when heat treating. Worked quite well.

   Thomas P - Thursday, 03/19/09 16:25:48 EST

Merl, I started playing with gas forges 20 years ago and so I can say this with some great certainty.
The name of the game is btu's in and btu's out. The problems with your forge is that the heat is leaving faster than the volume is heated. The Chili Pepper forge, advertised here, has an excellent design and a burner from a seperate vendor, who in my opinion, is making the most sophisticated and efficient atmosheric gas injector available.

The forge you are using is better suited for light forging.

Jerry Hoffman produced a design for forges in Blacksmiths journal that featured both burners and portablity.

Essentially burners entering at a tangent to the volume to be heated allow the gas to remain in the "hot zone" longer and thus heat more.

There is no substitute for a corretly adjusted burner. One of the problems with the burner you are using is that they do not permit the kind of exact adjustment that is needed to produce what you need.
   Charlotte - Thursday, 03/19/09 19:03:06 EST

I once made a nice carving knife out of 440C, brass guard and Ivory Micarta handles. I sold it for about $75 (20 years ago) and the guy took it home. A week later he brought it back because the handles were separating from the tang. Yup, dishwasher did it. I fixed it for nothing because I just didn't want to see that knife abused. I think he learned to wash it by hand.
   quenchcrack - Thursday, 03/19/09 19:04:10 EST

Brings up an intresting question Quenchcrack. What is the most suitable material for kitchen knives that doesn't cost more than you can make on the sale?
   Charlotte - Thursday, 03/19/09 19:27:00 EST

I have been told that there is a register of touchmarks on this site. Is there? If so how do I access it please?
   philip in china - Thursday, 03/19/09 19:59:21 EST

Phillip, Its on the drop down menu and on the home page side bar menu as well as others.
   - guru - Thursday, 03/19/09 20:13:53 EST

Philip- On the upper right is a pull-down menu titled NAVIGATE anvilfire. In there is the Touchmark registry. Don't feel bad, I forgot that menu was there till someone else pointed it out a while back.
   Judson Yaggy - Thursday, 03/19/09 20:14:49 EST

Oops, too slow. Sorry.
   Judson Yaggy - Thursday, 03/19/09 20:15:13 EST

On my atmospheric forge I have an extra line, controlled by a needle valve, that bleeds gas directly into the burner inlet. That permits me to create a richer mixture at will. Does the same thing as adding coke, but it's easier and neater. Of course, it will increase the forge temperature only if it's running too lean to begin with.
   Mike BR - Thursday, 03/19/09 20:48:41 EST


I am a cutler

440A stainless is what is mostly used for kitchen cutlery. It is very affordable. 440C stainless is better, but cost much more.

420 and 420hc stainless is a step down from 440A, but a good material and used often. The 420 is most affordable.

Then the standard 1095 HC steel has been used for over 100yrs in cutlery. Being steel it will rust if you don't care for them properly. It is about the cheapest material and gives the best ease to sharpen, better edge retention and more durable.

AUS6 & 8 stainless is ok and affordable. I would rate it below 420 stainless.

There are hundreds of newer alloys used. Then you are getting into exotic costly materials.
   - Rustymetal - Thursday, 03/19/09 20:54:09 EST

Oxygen Getters: In some heat treating operations a carbon or graphite box is used to prevent oxidation much the same as in case hardening. The boxes are eventually consumed.

A few bits in the corners or a bed of coke in a gas forge will change the atmosphere considerably and even perhaps increase the temperature in doing so. This will make an adjustment much like adjusting the burner.

As Charlotte noted, these small atmospheric burner forges are best for forging and are great for heating billets to feed a power hammer. Blown forges are slightly more pressurized and run a good bit hotter.

While some bladesmiths use off the shelf atmospheric forges for billet welding I suspect that more are using blown forges as it is easier to adjust them and produce higher temperatures. They are easier to build and their only down side is they require power for the fan. If you add up all the parts needed to build a couple good atmospheric burners you can just about pay for a fan.
   - guru - Thursday, 03/19/09 21:53:08 EST

Stainless: I've worked a bunch of it and had no problems. Hand forging is a little harder than mild steel but it works well enough at high heat. Being a bit harder to forge makes it MUCH harder for the inexperienced who has not developed good metal moving skills. If you are having difficulties forging 304 SS then try smaller stock. Often paying more for the best size stock is cheaper than labor. Otherwise. . think power hammer or rolling mill.
   - guru - Thursday, 03/19/09 22:11:22 EST

I have forged a fair amount of 316L SS by hand by power hammer. Force yourself to heat to a nice lemon yellow, and put the darn thing back in the fire at high red or a little before. By hand hammer you will quickly learn this:)
In the Carpenter book I believe they rated 316L at 40% more force required to forge, and 410SS at 50% more, as compared to say C1023.
   ptree - Friday, 03/20/09 06:47:56 EST

I have an old NC one burner gas forge that is limited in it's uses. I've considered getting another gas forge and have been reading about the Chillie Forge. The testements on the web site all say that all the chillie forges, one and two burner forges, can get to 2600 degrees within 15 min. Any discussion would be helpful if these claims are correct. I 've read on this site that there is a difference between welding temp and welding conditions. Any problems with these forges from anyone who has used one would help?
   David - Friday, 03/20/09 13:10:59 EST

Finally got the electro polisher putting out good results. The phosphoric acid bath needed to have a significant amount of SS dissolved into the solution for adequate transfer. Also had to add an extra heater. Scale removal is a MUST... I put some body nails in, scale still on. The process removed most of it, but formed some weird sticky black scale in a spot or two. Now I can do full scale jewelry production. Next item on my wish list: small bead blasting unit.
   - Nippulini - Friday, 03/20/09 13:21:52 EST

I just submitted a post, saw it, left and came back, and it was gone. So, I'll try again. I have an old NC one burner gas forge. I like it, but it has it's limits. I've considered another gas forge and have read about the Chillie forge many places. Do they perform as claimed? Are there any problems with them not stated in their web site. I have read by the people here that there is a difference between reaching welding temp and welding conditions. So, Chillie forge claims to reach 2600 degrees in 15 min. Does it also eat the material being heated? Any discussion would help especially from people who have used the Chillie forge.
   David - Friday, 03/20/09 13:35:35 EST

David, in intrests of stepping back from recommending any particuliar supplier I recommend that you go to www wardburner.com. They supply burners for ceramic kilns of many kinds and volumnes. Their technical information give formulas for calculating the number of btu's need for a given volume to reach a particuliar temp.

Armed with this information you can better judge anyone's claims.

The burners use in that forge are manufactured by HybridBurners. com. they are burners designed by a blacksmith for a black smith.

There are many forges and designs for forges available.

I don't recommened any because I make my own to suit my need.
   Charlotte - Friday, 03/20/09 13:43:46 EST

David, I think I have the same forge from NC. I gave it a full rehab using the ITC products and while it heats faster and more uniformly, it still does not get to welding temperature. I contacted Larry Zoeller at Zoeller Forge about using his new Z-burner (about $55 ready to use) and he felt very confident that the burner would raise the forge temperature to welding heat. Now what that does to the refractories is not known.
   quenchcrack - Friday, 03/20/09 13:50:38 EST

Incidently, for those that look at the ward burner sight and try the btu calculation. Cone 10 is approx 2380 deg F in most applications.

The big problem with weld heat is that Borax attacks the ceramic. It goes through insulating brick and wool like a hot knife through butter. There are a number of products which resist attack by borax flux.
   Charlotte - Friday, 03/20/09 14:20:35 EST

Thanks everyone for the info. I will do my research. I am interested in what happens to Quenchcracks rehab model with the Zoeller burner and if it gets to welding conditions, and what it does to the refractories? What about the claim by Chillie forge that there is little scale because of the neutral flame? Any general thoughts on that claim?
   David - Friday, 03/20/09 15:14:57 EST

i have inherited a canedy no. 0 drill press from my grandfather and was trying to find out some info on when it was made. Plus i have eight original bits with it too
   james - Friday, 03/20/09 15:22:53 EST

my email is jamesarthurshaw@yahoo.com if you have any info i would like to hear it thanks for your time.
   james - Friday, 03/20/09 15:24:02 EST

The damage done by flux in a light weight refractory lined forge is a good reason NOT to attempt forge welding in them. Forges for repeat forge welding should be designed to either be disposable or easily relined. Some folks use replaceable trays made from kiln shelf, some use ceramic tile. But these often get glued into the forge by the glassy flux. Removal must be done hot.

Good reasons to keep a small solid fuel forge for welding. . . or a special gas forge.
   - guru - Friday, 03/20/09 15:30:15 EST

Scale in a forge is the product of oxygen and hot iron.
if you are running a lean fire you will get a lot of scale. If you run an neutral to reducing fire you will get litte scale when in the hot zone.

The same principal as a coal fire. If you have coke under and over the piece you are ok. Too much air not enough coke you get scale.

For what it's worth, unless I have a particular purpose or the ventilation is not good I run my gas forges on rhe reducing, fuel rich, side.
   Charlotte - Friday, 03/20/09 15:43:49 EST

Flux in a gasser-

I have a stainless steel pan that I slide into the bottom of my forge when forge welding to catch borax. It's sort of disposable, when it starts to get really ugly I make a new one.
   Judson Yaggy - Friday, 03/20/09 16:32:14 EST

David, until I can determine the maximum operating temperature of the refractories in my Whisper Baby, I will not put the Z-burner in it. However, for details of the rehab of the forge using ITC products, stay tuned.
   quenchcrack - Friday, 03/20/09 17:13:37 EST

James, Accordidng to the Directory of American Toolmakers, the company started in Chicago in 1894, but I've no idea when the quit manufacturing.
   Frank Turley - Friday, 03/20/09 18:33:43 EST


I've seen the Chile Forges and they're a good unit. The maker of them is an honest guy who does not exaggerate his product's abilities so I'd feel confident in purchasing one if I were in the market for a ready-made gas forge. He has a very good understanding of what makes a forge a decent working tool for a blacksmith and has obviously tried to put this in practice in his forges. The Mike Porter-designed burner used is a very tuneable burner properly sized to the forge volume, so you should be able to achieve pretty much whatever atmosphere you want/need.

You will definitely like a Chile Forge better than the Whimper Baby.

Note: I am not affiliated in any way with Chile Forges or Mike Porter, for that matter.
   vicopper - Friday, 03/20/09 20:22:52 EST

I have a need to make a bucking bar out of tungsten and would like to know if Tungsten is something I can forge or not. Are their any dangers, problems with forging Tungsten?
   Louis - Friday, 03/20/09 20:24:31 EST

I can also say the Chile forges are pretty good, because I own one as well. Everything about them is really all positive in my experience, althought I find it difficult to get them hot enough to forge weld mild steel and wrought iron. Billets are fine, just not so good for lap welding
   - John L. - Friday, 03/20/09 22:16:43 EST


Getting tungsten hot enough to forge may be a bit interesting - what are you planning to use for a forge, a nuke? We're talking some seriously red hard stuff here. Also stuff that oxidizes really readily at remarkably low temperatures and needs to be coated with something like ITC-213 prior to heating above a few hundred degrees.

The short answer is, I seriously doubt you can forge something that is generally only made by powderedmetal technology.
   vicopper - Friday, 03/20/09 22:40:33 EST

John L. What type of Chile Forge do you have? I wonder if one or two burner makes a difference in getting to welding conditions?
   David - Friday, 03/20/09 23:59:19 EST

Forging Tungsten: Pure tungsten is forged at 2200 to 3000 F. The thoriated tungsten alloys at 2400 to 2500 OR 3500°F depending on the alloy. The forgability is not rated. Initial forging is done at 3000F and and finishing at 2600 to as low as 2000 depending on the alloy.

Note that arc cast billets cannot be forged unless extruded first to condition the metal.

Note that tungsten is used for high temperature hot work tools and is very tough even at a red heat.
   - guru - Saturday, 03/21/09 06:16:03 EST

Hey all,
Got a hardie tool question for ya--wondering if properly welded, would that 1/16th inch wall, square tubing from one of the major home improvement chains be sufficient for hardie tools? (also assuming it's something like 1018)
   Chris F. - Saturday, 03/21/09 15:05:54 EST

For the bottom of the tools--the part that goes into the hardy hole, that is.
   Chris F. - Saturday, 03/21/09 15:06:37 EST

Louis--just saw your inquiry about a tungsten bucking bar. What size are you in need of? Various aircraft tool suppliers carry these items, however I think the heaviest one that's commercially available is somewhere around 3 lbs. They are also VERY expensive when compared to steel bucking bars. (I'd love to get one, as I have used one in the past but don't do too much aircraft sheet metal anymore)
   Chris F. - Saturday, 03/21/09 15:38:25 EST

Sorry for all the little posts--kinda distracted today. Anyhow, this one is for Louis--check out: http://www.tungsten.com/bucking.html
   Chris F. - Saturday, 03/21/09 15:58:14 EST

On the subject of handle material. What is the best, most practical for kitchen knives. That is least comeback from clients, relatively inexpensive in time and labor to fabricate, and obtainable in quanity sizes rather than single sets of scales.

Comes to mind from re-reading one of Quenchcaracks posts.
He mentioned that Ivory Micarta came apart in the dishwasher. (Over the years I've notice that some people don't listen to the maker until something messes up.)
   Charlotte - Saturday, 03/21/09 16:04:25 EST

* sorry Quenchcrack's post
   Charlotte - Saturday, 03/21/09 16:05:12 EST

As a knifemaker of 38 years experience, there is no dishwasher *proof* handle material that I know of.
Kitchen knives used by women have to be the WORST product for a knifemaker to make. Buy them a five dollar plastic handled Japanese thing and make using knives for those much more likely to appreciate the craftsmanship, skill, effort and labor that goes into creating a very nice tool.
Anyone that stuck one of my knives in a dishwasher would be taken off the customer list in a hot second. Such a cleaning would be considered abuse, IMO.

That said, linen micarta and Conap epoxy with positive action mechanical fasteners would probably withstand the abuse for many years.
   - Jack - Saturday, 03/21/09 17:14:32 EST

David- I have a one burner Chile Forge, and I really like it. I bought it at Quad State 2 years back, very nice, knowledgeable folks to deal with. I dont try to weld in it, but it does come up to forging temp very quickly.
   Brian C - Saturday, 03/21/09 17:22:02 EST

Hi everyone,

I have just won a copy of machinery's handbook 10th edition, 1941 I believe. Its as immaculate as the day it was printed and still has it's original cardboard cover. Could someone tell me if this is a good edition to have? I know some of the older ones are better to have than the newer ones. I also missed out by 16 seconds on a double bick anvil (bummer)got beaten by £2. still keeping my eyes open tho. trouble is any available are too far away from me and would cost too much to have shipped to where I live. Anyway thats my moan over with for the time being. Anyone care to comment on my book please?
   Duncan (aka Maddragon) - Saturday, 03/21/09 18:37:18 EST

Duncan, sounds like a deal to me. The newer MH seem to have left out a lot of the practical stuff of the earlier editions. I have a very fine copy from the 1960's that I will keep, thank you.
   quenchcrack - Saturday, 03/21/09 18:50:53 EST

Charlotte, sorry I just saw your posted question about knife material. Heck, I don't know. 440C is readily available and the various poly resin scales hold up well as long as you make sure the customer knows that dishwashers will void the warranty. I always used an epoxy under the scales but it has poor hot strength.
   quenchcrack - Saturday, 03/21/09 18:55:30 EST

Once again I thank you Quenchcrack, This edition cost £10, not sure what that is in U.S. Dollars, but I'm well chuffed with myself. And your input helps that. In my engineering days, we used a "Zeus Chart" don't know if you guy's have that over there? it contains all the info about threads, bores and machine speeds for various jobs, that sort of stuff. It was more of a booklet we all kept in our top pockets for easy reference, and more often than not became very threadbare through time and much fingering of pages. Very handy tho.
   Duncan (aka. Maddragon) - Saturday, 03/21/09 19:02:44 EST

Duncan, I have a 1946 13th edition, that I use extensively. I received it as a gift from my Father, who saw it at a yard sale (Tag sale for you lads) He paid the grand sum of $1.00 at the time the cost of a gallon of gas.

The biggest issue in using the MH is learning how they indexed. The first thing that comes to mind when looking is often not what the info you want is indexed under. It helps the put youself to sleep by reading through it every night for a year or so:)
   ptree - Saturday, 03/21/09 20:00:10 EST

Ptree, Damn but thats a hell of a way to send yourself under everynight. I certainly take on board what you say about reading it so often though. The Zeus Chart I mentioned (although not as extensive) became a cinch to just open at the right place for referencing cos we used it so often.
   Duncan (aka. Maddragon) - Saturday, 03/21/09 20:14:39 EST

Its 0142hrs where I am and well past bed time, but one last question before I hit the sack. Are there any other books for the beginner to be recommended as well as whats mentioned on Guru's getting started page?
   Duncan (aka. Maddragon) - Saturday, 03/21/09 21:23:01 EST

[ CSI - anvilfire MEMBERS Group | Getting Started in Blacksmithing ]
Counter    Copyright © 2009 Jock Dempsey, www.anvilfire.com Cummulative_Arc GSC

Get anvilfire.com GEAR.

Get anvilfire.com GEAR.