Fork Snails: How To

Introduction: Fork Snails: How To

About: I'm a designer/fabricator working in the Waterloo Region of Ontario, Canada. Currently working on practicing my TIG welding, CNC production, and working on bringing some small stainless steel products to marke…

Hi Instructables!  This is the actual ible for the slideshow that I posted a few days ago showcasing my Fork Art.  I wanted to share the way that I make fork snails.  I will also probably post another instructable on how to make a fork musician, but I don't have time for that now.  So, lets get started!

Step 1: Tools and Materials

To make your very own fork snail, you will need:
-a vice
-a hammer (carpentry or metalsmithing hammer will do)
-needlenose pliers
-a propane torch
-work gloves (unless you're feeling dangerous)

Once you have all that gathered up, head out to the garage and set up!

*in case you decide to build an entire snail army

Step 2: Making the Shell

Lets start with the shell.

First flatten your fork with the hammer.

Then place the flattened fork in your vice, with the decorated side facing you, and making sure that only about 7mm of the fork is above the grippers.

Hammer the fork to create a 90` angle, making sure that the bend goes away from you.

Loosen the vice and reposition the fork 1/2cm higher.  Then keep hammering until the angle is nearly 180`.

Reposition the fork 1/4cm higher and begin to hammer a new curve.  Try to hammer straight down on the curl yet sort of slide it along the top of the curl at the same time.

Keep curling the fork handle until you reach the prongs of the fork.  The end will take a few heavy blows to the curl to stretch it all the way.

Step 3: Creating the Tail

Now we will hammer back two of the prongs to make the tail.

Place the fork in the vice like it is in the image, with one prong above the grippers.

Then hammer back the prong.  Make sure to position the tip of the prong in the middle of the back so that the other half of the tail wont overlap too much.

Do the same for the other side.

Step 4: Giving the Snail Eye Stalks

Reposition the snail in the vice so that the tail is pinched between the grippers.

Using a hammer or your pliers, push the middle prongs backwards so that they  are almost parrallel with the curl, but not quite. 

Now for the fun part!  Heat up the antlers until they glow red using the propane torch.

They use the tip of the needlenose pliers to curl the stalk.  Repeat the process for the other side.  Using the torch colours the steel and makes it easier to give the snail tight curls.

To space out the stalks you can place the pliers in between them and open them up.

Step 5: Finish!

You have now completed your snail!  Be careful!  It is still very warm.  Use the pliers to remove it from the vice and set it down for a few minutes or run it under water to cool it.  I found that after I made seven of them I could make one every 5 minutes.  So keep practicing and make an entire snail army!

An Important Note:If you are putting your snail outside and you don't want it to rust you should give it a clearcoat!  Or you can leave it and the snail will rust beutifully.  If you keep it inside it should not rust!

Please Vote for me in the Makerbot Challenge!  Thanks!

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