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  #1  
Old 07-21-2013, 10:48 AM
ejnovinsky Male ejnovinsky is offline
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Default First forged knife blade

My first ever forged blade. Made from what I think was a railroad spike someone had repurposed to a cold chisel. Theres alot of filing and shaping yet before I attempt to temper it. Its a good start though. Im going to leave the hammer marks in it for the most part.

http://s1285.photobucket.com/user/ej...0bdd9.mp4.html
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Old 07-21-2013, 11:03 AM
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Nicely done! I would love to see a picture of the forge you used as well.
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  #3  
Old 07-21-2013, 11:19 AM
ejnovinsky Male ejnovinsky is offline
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Here is the setup. The forge is up in the left top its the bottom of an old compressor tank plumbed to a rummage sale air pump that was part of a bathtub bubble massager. The anvil is just a 55 pound cast iron jobbie from harbor freight. Its really just a hacked together setup to see if I could do it. Ill upgrade as I go. Heres the pic
http://i1285.photobucket.com/albums/...psdbeb6602.jpg
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Old 07-21-2013, 11:38 AM
ejnovinsky Male ejnovinsky is offline
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I used hardwood lump charcoal as my fuel. Today Ill be setting up a kiln to produce my own. Ive got a stack of pallets and a 55 gallon drum with lid and a band lock. Though I would like to try real coal sometime
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Old 07-21-2013, 11:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ejnovinsky View Post
Here is the setup. The forge is up in the left top its the bottom of an old compressor tank plumbed to a rummage sale air pump that was part of a bathtub bubble massager. The anvil is just a 55 pound cast iron jobbie from harbor freight. Its really just a hacked together setup to see if I could do it. [/url]
"Hacked together" is good. I've been gathering similar parts and could probably make one . . . my project list is way too long!
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  #6  
Old 07-21-2013, 12:11 PM
ejnovinsky Male ejnovinsky is offline
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Im building a better version with a cast iron truck brake drum and a couple of 4 inch computer fans wired to a 12 volt adapter and a rheostat (all recycled and free!) but before I went hog wild on that I wanted to see if it was worth the effort. The anvil is junk honestly and I wouldnt waste the money (60 bucks) if I had it to do over. Id scrounge a piece of railroad rail. but a real anvil is crazy expensive. I hear you on the project list. Mine is huge as well. I have a ton of stuff Ive made lately that Ill post on tonight sometime
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Old 07-22-2013, 07:33 AM
ejnovinsky Male ejnovinsky is offline
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here is the finished product. heated red hot then quenched in oil, then drawn back to a straw color quenched again. Hopefully I did it right....Used a strider wrap with paracord for a handle.

http://i1285.photobucket.com/albums/...ps22c142be.jpg
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Old 07-22-2013, 11:47 PM
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nice setup. i've been trying to get started in smithing, life gets in the way and then runs you right over LOL i'll get to it one day.

nice knife by the way

dean
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  #9  
Old 07-31-2013, 12:03 AM
ejnovinsky Male ejnovinsky is offline
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it sure does, and thanks for a first attempt Im pretty happy with it, its holding a fine edge, and has found a home in the little survival pack I stash in my kayak....
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Old 08-15-2013, 09:37 PM
ironmonger Male ironmonger is offline
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Default railroad spikes

I started the blacksmithing addiction over fifty years ago, then had a time where my interests went else where. I rekindled my interests about 25 years ago and have been active since then.

The charcoal fire is high maintenance, followed by coke; (the kind made from coal... :>) then coal. The thing you may find is that using charcoal consumes more time that might better be spent learning to forge iron instead of learning fire management...

Regardless of all that, welcome to the honorable craft of metal mangler's.

A lot of guys use propane forges. They heat up quickly, don't get so hot that you melt the metal if you leave it in to long, and when you are done you can just turn off the gas and pretty much just walk away.

Not sure what the actual carbon content of a railroad spike is, but there are some that are marked HC on the struck end of the spike, you may not even have been able to see this on your stock. I have heard that the HC spikes are about 1035 or so. In non-alloy steels the last 2 digits indicate the carbon content of the steel.

What we call mild steel is typically 1018, automotive axle shafts are typically 1045 or so.
see
Carbon and alloy steel
section here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SAE_steel_grades

Don't know where you live, but there are blacksmith clubs all over the US and Canada.
for more info see:
http://abana-chapter.com/
http://www.iforgeiron.com/

Jerry is no longer publishing these:
http://www.blacksmithsjournal.com/back_issues/
but his magazine was amazing. Ask him for a sample issue.

In the words of a buddy of mine:
"Hit it like it owes you money"

have fun

paul
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  #11  
Old 08-15-2013, 11:21 PM
ejnovinsky Male ejnovinsky is offline
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Its crazy you posted this today. My wife and I went to a farmers market this afternoon which is set up near some RR tracks. When I got bored I left her wander the market and went spike hunting. I found 4 right off the bat plus a weird huge bolt that must have popped of a train car. So I was keen to research spikes tonight. Though these spikes dont have any marks on them. Maybe they were pounded off?

As for charcoal. I wanted to use it because I could make it. Though my neighbors put the brakes on that venture. What is a source for coal?
How much of a smoky mess is it to burn?

Thanks for the welcome and the info. Im looking forward to learning some more and getting some more work in
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Old 08-16-2013, 01:53 AM
ironmonger Male ironmonger is offline
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Default Coal

Hey ej
Where about are you located?

There is a guy in our group, Upper Midwest Blacksmith Association (UMBA at umbaonline.org) that has coal on occasion.

The neighbors most likely won't think much better about the coal... I like coal but live in the city. I understand the idea of making your own fuel, but that may not be practical as you have found.

The propane forges are much easier on neighbors. I have always believed that the old time blacksmiths would have welcomed propane... what we think was tradition was more likely the best fuel choice that they had available. They were metal workers and simply need to get the metal hot. What they had was coal and charcoal, but if they had something less expensive and would have made feeding the family's easier, they would have used it.

See:
http://bigbluhammer.com/forges
http://www.propaneforges.com/
this is an excellent burner book:
http://www.amazon.com/Gas-Burners-Fo.../dp/1879535203
some folks like these:http://www.zoellerforge.com/sidearm.html
but I prefer:
http://www.hybridburners.com/products.html

But just about any of them will work. You can build a forge out of insulating fire brick or castable refractory. If you don't have the stuff to do any of that, the NC forges have a good reputation.
Part of getting involved with a local group is to find out what others are using and the chance to purchase used equipment. Most any of the modern smiths, unlike those of the 1930's and earlier, will share knowledge quite freely. Those that won't don't seem to hang out in the many groups that are located around the country.

paul
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  #13  
Old 08-16-2013, 07:35 AM
ejnovinsky Male ejnovinsky is offline
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hey paul
Im located in northern Ohio, up near Toledo.
Im not adverse to using propane, especially if it will keep everyone off my back about having fires. Scouting materials was the issue there. I hate having to buy things I can make. I agree with the sentiment that old timey folks would have used this tech if it was available to them. Why wouldnt they? life was hard! Also when I started this project part of the idea was to see if I could do it with found materials. That goal is accomplished for the most part so switching to propane would be a possibility now. A friend brought me a cast iron semi brake drum so right now my forge is in rebuild mode while I redesign, and try to figure out how to cut into that monster.
I have a vacation coming up though in the end of august, and I plan to do some work during the day while the rest of the neighborhood is at work

thanks for the links Ill check it out!

ps
realized my link for pics was broken, here is the new one
http://s1285.photobucket.com/user/ej...forged%20knife
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