Fire-welding

Whenever you see a photo of a blacksmith you usually see “sparks” flying out in all directions. This doesn’t happen in most forge work. It only really happens when you fire weld.

Fire welding. It’s one of the best things in the world.

In this photo I’m welding a piece of mild steel folded over around a piece of recycled car coil spring to make a knife. It’s been in the fire long enough that the surface of all the layers is molten. It’s gone beyond white hot, the surface is liquid steel under a layer of molten metal oxide. My task is to judge this heat just right (too cold: no weld, too hot: it burns away) and hit it together with just the right amount of force before it cools down too much. This pushes out the molten oxide (like too much jam in a sandwich when you squeeze the bread together). That’s what makes the lightshow. The molten metal surfaces should then fuse together as one continuous piece.

The finished knife is one of these.

Fire-welding

Fire-welding. I love it.

 

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Self-Portrait

I’d just finished off a knife and got the camera out to try to capture a self-portrait in the reflection. This was the best:

Self-portrait in mirror finish of a hand forged knife blade

Self-portrait

 

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Fire poker made from a recycled horseshoe

I made a rather interesting fire poker from a horseshoe. The horseshoe is still very much identifiable at the handle end and the other end tapers in and then makes a diamond point.

Fire poker from recycled horseshoe

Fire poker from recycled horseshoe

Fire poker from recycled horseshoe

Fire poker from recycled horseshoe

Fire poker from recycled horseshoe

Fire poker from recycled horseshoe

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Recycling old horseshoes

I’ve been given a big pile of used horse shoes by a local farrier. They’re really good quality mild steel and they’re an interesting starting point for creating interesting designs, such as the horseshoe trivets.

Pile of old horseshoes for recycling

Pile of old horseshoes for recycling

 

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Horseshoe Trivets

A local farrier dropped off a big pile of used horseshoes and I’ve been putting them to good use.

Trivets are perfect as a pot stand for cooking over an open fire but they find many other uses such as stands for pot plants.

I’ve been making them in 2 main versions: with plain legs and with forged legs (which are designed to increase the surface area of the feet to stop the trivet sinking into softer ground and I suppose to look great as well :-)

Horseshoe trivets

Horseshoe trivets

Horseshoe trivets - detail

Horseshoe trivets - detail

Horseshoe trivet with forged legs

Horseshoe trivet with forged legs

Horseshoe trivet with forged legs - detail

Horseshoe trivet with forged legs - detail

 

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More knives finished

I’ve just finished off a couple of knives that I forged a while ago and hadn’t finished off.

Both are 3 fire-welded layers (mild steel around recycled car coil spring). The sheaths are hand-made with locally made vegetable (oak bark) tanned leather.

Knife 1

Knife 1 front

Knife 1 front

Knife 1 back

Knife 1 back

Knife 1 in hand

Knife 1 in hand

Knife 1 sheathed in hand

Knife 1 sheathed in hand

 

Knife 2

Knife 2 front

Knife 2 front

Knife 2 back

Knife 2 back

Knife 2 in hand

Knife 2 in hand

Knife 2 in hand

Knife 2 in hand

Knife 2 sheathed in hand

Knife 2 sheathed in hand

 

 

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Blacksmith’s scroll tongs

For bending, unbending and correcting bends. I don’t use these very often but when you need them you really need them.

Blacksmith's scroll tongs

Blacksmith's scroll tongs

Blacksmith's scroll tongs close-up

Blacksmith's scroll tongs close-up

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Blacksmith’s vee tongs

Hand-made Tongs for holding medium sized (12mm to 16mm) square and round sections.

Blacksmith vee tongs

Blacksmith vee tongs

Blacksmith vee-tongs

Blacksmith vee-tongs

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Blacksmith’s flat bit tongs

Traditionally handmade blacksmith’s tongs for holding flat steel stock. They have a cross shaped indent in the bit to hold thin square and round stock.

Blacksmith's flat bit tongs

Blacksmith's flat bit tongs

Blacksmith's flat bit tongs close-up

Blacksmith's flat bit tongs close-up

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Blacksmith Tong Set

This is basic set of tongs for anyone who wants to get into blacksmithing.

Blacksmith tong set

Blacksmith tong set

The set comprises of flat tongs, vee tongs and scroll tongs.

Blacksmith's flat bit tongs

Blacksmith's flat bit tongs

Blacksmith vee-tongs

Blacksmith vee-tongs

Blacksmith's scroll tongs

Blacksmith's scroll tongs

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