This is my first instructable. I have always wanted to make hot metal into cool stuff. A forge has always been a dream of mine, and I finally made one. The best part, I didn't spend a dime. I used part of an old washer and the blower from an electric dryer. The washer died and the dryer ate $30 belts like they were going out of style. Replaced the dryer and the old one was asking to be salvaged.

Please be careful, this forge makes a lot of heat and embers could fly out. Make sure you do this outside in a safe area, so you don't burn your house down. Wear PPE gloves, apron, goggles, ear protection. Hammering is loud, and the metal is hot. Be smart. Keep water handy

Step 1: The Forge Itself

I had a washing machine basin sitting around that I had once used as a burn barrel. The holes in the side don't really help much if you're wondering. I cut the bottom off and cut the whole thing in half to make 2 half rings. I was going to weld it together but my welder is out of service currently. I riveted the 2 halves together. This gave me the base for my forge.

Step 2: The Blower

This is where the dryer came in handy. Electric dryer run on 220v, but that is for the heating element. The motor itself is only 110v. When you take it apart take note of the wiring diagram. Some motors have a separate wire for the starter coil. Luckily mine has its own internal switch. From the wiring diagram find out with wire is your hot, neutral and ground. Hopefully you have a power cord laying around to use. Wire it up and plug it in to see if it works. Try to use a GFCI outlet in case there is a short. If you want to get fancy wire it to a switch. As you can see in my pictures I had to downsize the pipe. For testing purposes I used what I had laying around(this included a Dr. Thunder can). The pipe coming out of the blower is 4" and the heavy steel pipe I used as a nozzel is 2". With the 2" pipe I drilled 3 holes every 3 inches to blow air around the burning fuel. Also cap the end of your pipe or it won't work very well. This blower pushes a lot of air.

Step 3: Getting It Going.

To get it started I used pieces of dry 1x2 lumber cut just long enough to fit in the burner without hanging over. Ithink charcoal might even work better. I have some nitro RC car fuel that lights up nicely, but lighter fluid, paper, blow torch and paper will all work. Paper make a lot of ash, so be careful. Once the fuel is burning on it's own you can go ahead and start up your blower. Watch out embers may fly out at this point. Please keep a hose on and handy, maybe even a fire extinguisher. Make sure you have some heavy gloves, eye protection, and tools to hold your masterpiece.



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    5 Discussions

    cycle ninja

    1 year ago

    You could use the other half of the wash tub to make a hood over the fire, which would help direct the embers away from you and help retain more heat within the forge.

    2 replies
    cycle ninjacycle ninja

    Reply 1 year ago

    Great idea, using the wash machine basin. I'm glad to see more people getting into blacksmithing. It was almost becoming a lost art.


    Tip 1 year ago on Step 1

    Left this out, once I laid my pipe into the basin I used some clay bricks to lay down as a hearth for the fuel to sit. Fire bricks would work well, but this is what I had. Make sure what ever you use is very dry or it might crack or explode.