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The Damascus Forum The art and study of Damascus steel making.

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Old 12-09-2012, 09:54 PM
shooter44 shooter44 is offline
Join Date: Sep 2008
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welding Damascus

Hi guys, can anyone tell me what color you bring your steel billet to for welding, and is there anything to put on my gas forge that will tell me what I have for a temp inside my forge while welding. and also what type of glasses do need to forge or do you need dark glasses to weld?
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Old 12-10-2012, 08:46 AM
Ed Caffrey's Avatar
Ed Caffrey Ed Caffrey is offline
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Much depends on the alloys your welding......different alloys require different welding temps. Generally speaking, you're looking for light yellows to white. Some alloys will weld at "bright orange". A general rule of thumb is that the less the carbon content, the higher the welding temp, and vise-versa.

One of the easiest things to show students is to heat the billet until you bring it out of the forge....and it's "smoldering" or looks like it has "fumes" coming off of it.

It's takes practice, and no two billets ever work out the same concerning time and of the most abstract things about forge welding, and the biggest beginner mistake is to view it in one dimension......trying to weld a billet based on judging the OUTSIDE have to remember that to be successful, a billet must be to welding temp ALL THE WAY THROUGH.....meaning that sometimes when it looks ready on the must let to "soak" for a few mins, which often makes the difference between a successful weld, and starting over again.

Many of us use a PID controller, attached to a type K thermocouple to create a pyrometer for our forges.....
Here's the PID I use for a "readout":

And this is the thermocouple I use:

Total you'd be around $65.....whereas if you go out and buy a pyrometer from a ceramic supply'll pay $200-$400.

I wear the same safety glasses at the forge that I do for all my other work. Whatever you do, it's critical that you realize that if you use dydidium (spell?) or other dark lenses, that you understand that once you become used to them, working at the forge without them will really mess things up.....colors appear different with/without the lenses, and after you've forge for a while, you become very dependent on the appearance, color, and your own instincts.

"Nobody cares what you know.....until they know you care."
See me at table 2Q at the Blade Show!
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Old 12-10-2012, 11:55 AM
shooter44 shooter44 is offline
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Posts: 5

Thanks Ed, I will look into those items. and thanks again for the help.
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abs, damascus, digital, forge, steel, supply, vise

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