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Ed Caffrey's Workshop Talk to Ed Caffrey ... The Montana Bladesmith! Tips, tricks and more from an ABS Mastersmith.

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  #1  
Old 04-26-2001, 01:26 PM
BCB27
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Vertical Forge


I have a question about something I saw in this month's issue of Blade Magazine. Instead of the usual horizontal position, a forge was set up vertically. A comment was made about the forge likely being more fuel efficient in this configuration, and it makes sense to me. The part that concerns me is the vortex effect. In a cylindrical forge configuration, wouldn't the center be 'colder', with it getting 'hotter' (into the main of the swirling gases) the farther from center you go? If I am correct, I would expect the using a vertical forge would create hot spots on the billet ends. Anyone have any experience in this area? Thanks.

Brett

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  #2  
Old 04-26-2001, 10:44 PM
Ed Caffrey
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I have a forge that is vertical in design, and it works very well. I set this one up in a vertical manner specifically for welding. The design allows the billet to stay off the floor of the forge, and also gives the flux a place to go instead of the billet laying in a puddle of it.
I have noticed that is does take a bit longer for this design to reach welding temp, but once there it holds the temp very well, and very evenly. I have had no hot or cold spots in this forge.
The best part about it, is that the inside diameter of mine is 10", therefore I can weld up to 10" at a time under the press. Fuel consumption is about the same as my horizontal forge.
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Old 04-27-2001, 09:52 AM
J Loose
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I have a vetical forge as well- I use it for welding, forging and heat-treating. I have a thermocouple I can drop in and measure the temp quite accurately- there is almost no variation in temp except when you put a large, flat piece of steel in there and disrupt the flow... (which is what happens when you put a big knife in there...) That difference was only a few degrees. Enough to cause a slight warp in a blade on the quench, but simply rotating the blade every few seconds has eliminated that problem.

I agree that it is nice for welding- you can put crumbled refractory or kitty litter in the bottom and replace it when it gets too full of borax. Also have heard the theory that with the combustion taking place in the bottom of the chamber you are getting a more reducing atomosphere. It makes sense to me but I have no evidence save that I can run this forge very reducing.
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Old 04-27-2001, 02:19 PM
BCB27
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Ed and Jonathan,

Thanks for the information.

Brett
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  #5  
Old 04-27-2001, 08:47 PM
Mike Sader
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Jonathan, in another post earlier you said you bought your temp. readouts and parts from ww grainger, could I impose upon you for the part #'s, I'm not really electronically inclined and will prob. never figure out what parts you used I would really appreciate the info.. Thanks Mike Sader
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Old 04-28-2001, 06:23 PM
J Loose
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Hey Mike,

No problem- I've been playing office all #### day so I know just where everything is... ;-)

See my forge on my web site www.jloose.com in the Studio section- it is deeper than most forges of this style. Right now you can see how the probe inserts in a small hole off to one side of the forge doors and goes in about 1 foot. The eventual plan is to put a larger hole in the top of the forge so I can drop a long blade in to heat-treat.

These are the parts- the first is the digital readout by Extech and the second is the actual probe from Fluke. Where the probe enters the forge it passes through a piece of refractory, since the handle is plastic... no meltdowns yet.

Anyway, these are from www.grainger.com

4PC60 ( $119.00 ) p. 1424 catalog no. 391 00-01 but 4PC59 would work ( $89.00 )

1T323 immersion probe p. 1427 ( $47.00 ) Doublecheck on this one when you call- I'm 95% sure it's right...

Total cost with shipping was $180.00 or something. Very useful!
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Old 04-29-2001, 01:57 PM
Mike Sader
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Thanks Johnathan, I really appreciate this, I have refractory in my forge and have used it to anneal some springs to use for a blade,I just figured if I had a readout & thermometer It might help in welding & treating later. Thanx again Mike
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