Picture of Make steel Forging Tongs
Once again, I had nothing to do (and i'm supposed to be a college student) so I made these. not to say that the other tongs instructable's a bad one, but I think these are easier to do. They're not better, just different. (I don't have a plasma cutter, for one) You'll need:
1: A piece of MILD steel big enough to make the tongs. I used some 20mm wide by 4mm thick by 1 meter long, giving me tongs about 50 cm long when I'm done.
2: You'll need a metal vise sturdy enough to stand all the bending that's going to be happening, 2 pairs of heavy-ish metal pliers, a hacksaw, for cutting the metal
3: You'll also need a blowtorch capable of heating this much steel into its plastic state (A fairly bright red colour) and the relevant protective gear. A drill and a bolt, to make the hole and hold them together are also pretty important.
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Step 1: Cut the steel bar to shape

Picture of Cut the steel bar to shape
Cut the steel bar to the length you want the tongs to be. Longer tongs are harder to use. I had 1 metre of steel, so i just cut it in half. Now the important cut: 5cm from the end of each bar, cut halfway through the steel. This will make the bend that forms the jaws of the tongs tighter. The bars in the picture haven't had the second cut made yet.
lawsno3 years ago
Hi. I'm an amateur blacksmith and I've made tongs very similar to these. They were my first tongs. This style is often made very long handled and used as pick-up tongs for grabbing hot stuff that falls on the ground. They aren't very good for pounding on in my experience, the cut and twisted jaws are weak. They work ok on really small stock, but if you are working with larger pieces or heavy bars for knifemaking too much force is transfered and the jaws will bend open. They can be adjusted back, but that gets annoying.

I eventually made a heavier duty pair with shorter handles and mated twists to turn the jaws. They are working pretty well and though heavy, they don't bend.

excellent work. thanks for sharing
Kroil5 years ago
I'd imagine this would also work with hacksaw blades if you were strapped for cash, although the length and strength would be disgnificantly different.
I'm a wannabe bladesmith myself. I've done some knives on the grinder, not much, just a file knife. It was pretty crummy. I got a book called the $50 knife shop by Wayne Goddard. It's pretty good. I just need a decent propane torch and a fire brick and I'll be good to go. Or learn. Thanks for this Instructable. AE
repareren16 years ago
wy don't you make a sand cast of a self designed tong
thoraxe6 years ago
I made some forging tongs myself, i used steel rod from a shopping cart and i actually heated and hammered the steel into shape. I have a Sony Handycam Mini DV cam, but i dont know how to get video and/or pictures from it. I have none of the software that came with it, because i "borrowed" it from my school(yes, i stole it) Why didnt i get the digital camera?
toogood7 years ago
u a black smith ?
Vendigroth (author)  toogood7 years ago
it's my hobby i suppose a more technically accurate term would be "Bladesmith" i don't do the horseshoes, y'see
u don't have to make horse shoes to be a black smith farriers make horse shoes.
thoraxe toogood7 years ago
blacksmiths created almost everything made out of steel in the old days. man, what i would give to live in the middle ages, especially in japan. after all, JAPANS BLACKSMITHS RULE!
Yes but as an outsider you'd see no smithing at all
well, i mean as a part of their community, or at least watch :)
I personally really like these tongs.
thoraxe7 years ago
Thanks! I will try this, and then try to make some out of some steel rebar
thoraxe thoraxe7 years ago
i wish i had a camera 2 make an instructable
thoraxe thoraxe7 years ago
Vendigroth (author)  thoraxe7 years ago
Beware the face that rebar's frankly crap.
rebar is really strong though, and you dont need super-strong steel to make tongs
Vendigroth (author)  thoraxe7 years ago
Nope, there's no quality control exercised over it, and the carbon content's a mystery. Hence: bear in mind the fact that it could be completely unpredicatble.
brainspater7 years ago
That is a good tool to use on metal that is yellow hot, lol!
toogood7 years ago
this is a very good site :
toogood7 years ago
i think it would be much stronger if u twisted the jors and not cut and twist the .. great instructable btw
Vendigroth (author)  toogood7 years ago
yeh...i've been thinking of making another pair, for slightly smaller work (there are quite big, really) I'll do that, thanks
Vendigroth (author) 8 years ago
I'm not certain that i've published this. Can someone comment please?
here's a comment...
Vendigroth (author)  jcpoczatek8 years ago
TY, seems to work now
You can see if it's published on your profile page (the "You" tab). There will be a box with "Published" "Unpublished" "Collaboration". If it's in the Published tab then, yup, it's published!
Vendigroth (author)  Legend7 years ago
yeh, i've got it now thanks anyway, tho
For future reference, and for others :-)
definately published
th3boy8 years ago
Nice, I'm actually thinking about forging a sword once the weather gets better. This should save me money.
canida8 years ago
Nice job! I'd recommend putting a picture of the finished product on the "intro" page, as it gives a better overview of the project and a larger incentive to click from the explore page. (The same applies to your previous Instructables.)
Vendigroth (author)  canida8 years ago
how do i do that?
Open this Instructable, click on "edit", bring up the intro step, and drag/drop a picture into the photo field just like you did for the other steps. When you hit save it will automatically update the published Instructable.
Vendigroth (author)  canida8 years ago
and doing that gets it put on the front page? you'll have to excuse me, i know practically nothing about computers. Ram, HTML, giggle-bytes, all of that means nothing to me
You've done it properly. Now when people are scrolling the list of projects through they'll see a thumbnail picture of your project instead of just a title and a blank space. (I seem to have used some vague terms in my first comment, but you figured it out.)
no, yours are better.
crapflinger8 years ago
you published it...nice tongs would be nice to maybe drill multiple fulcrum points along the tongs so that they could be adjustable? that way you can pick up bigger stuff without making new tongs?