How to Make a Forge

Published

Introduction: How to Make a Forge

not to forge a sword with, it's for small metalworking and aluminum melting.

Step 1: Materials

for this you will need;

brake drum
metal pipe 1 1/2 or 2 in
bathroom ventilation fan or other small fan (a hairdryer will work)
scrap metal
two 6 in by 5 in metal plate (1/8 in thick)
3 in by 3 in metal plate (1/8 in thick)
angle iron

tools;

plasma torch
argon
air compressor
arc welder

Step 2: Cut

cut two pieces of pipe, one about 7 in, the other around 18 in

cut a hole slightly smaller than the pipe in the small plate and in one large plate.

cut a hole slightly smaller than the pipe in the short pipe 2 1/2 in down

cut the angle iron into 3 pieces about 33 in long

cut the end of the long pipe at a 25 degree angle

Step 3: Weld

weld the top of the short pipe to the small plate

weld the small plate to the brake drum

weld the long pipe (angled side)to the short pipe

weld the angle iron on to the short pipe like a tripod

weld the large plate on to the long pipe

weld the other large plate onto the long plate at a right angle so it can hold the fan to the pipe opening

weld scrap metal (small rods) onto the brake drum to make a grate

Step 4: Finish It

put the fan on the big plate

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    45 Discussions

    Nice 'ible, this design looks similar to a rivet forge they used to use in steel work. It had a small fire pit and a hand operated blower to stoke the fire. Also it had a sheet metal cone over top to reduce windage and keep the sparks contained.
    A local blacksmith was demonstrating making hooks and small objects at the local folk fest . It looks like the basis of a low priced hobby for anyone so inclined or curious enough to want to learn smithing. Hammer on!

    Guys if your worried about "blacksmith quality Charcoal" make your own! Your on the path of the smith, so why not take it all the way by doing something just slightly different that will benefit your entire process. I make my own charcoal, after having tried the store bought brickettes which didnt work so well, found that a superior and higher quality product can be produced at home. Type in charcoal making in the search bar either retort or reduction work fine.

    thanks i will make if my parent will let me i need to make a anvil too

    You can use BBQ coals with lighter fluid to start it out ,but if you make your own in a fire pit and then transfer the coals over into the brake drum it works better.

    33_15_10---Fire-Flame-Texture_web.jpg

    OH PLEASE, YOU DONT NEED ALL THOSE ELCTRONIC THINGS. I MADE A FOUNDRY BEFORE, IT IS MADE OF CONCRETE.
    IT RUNS ON CHARCOAL/COAL/WOOD. IT NEED SOME SORT OF AIR SOURCE, YOU CAN USE A BIKE PUMP(DONT) BELLOWS (DO) AIR COMPRESSOR (VERY EASY, BUT COSTS LOTS OF MONEY/ LOUD LIKE DEATH METAL) OR A HAIR DRIER

    That's a pretty basic forge, and burning coal is likely to cause many issues for readers in cities. If you're seriously looking at building a forge, you should look at Ron Reil's work in revolutionizing propane burner design, and the updates by Rex Price, as well as the rest of the technical improvements in small forges, such as the use of Kaowool and ITC-100 as refractory material. It's not necessary to work metal in such a primitive manner anymore, and it ends up a lot less expensive, as well as much easier, to run a modern propane forge than a coal one.
    Particularly regarding that "to forge a sword with" comment at the top, I'd suggest a thorough reading of <a href="http://abana.org/ronreil/Sword.shtml">this page</a>. (let's see if Instructables allows links in comments)

    3 replies

    I built my forge from an old wheelbarrel,some clay,firebrick,a few pipe fittings and a squirrel cage type fan,works pretty well and I had most everything I needed laying around,I got the Idea watching a show called forge and anvil,at least I think it was.Burning regular coal can be o.k. for those first starting out as long as they got a good supply of air stoking it,so they can get a feel for it,but youre right if youre to do anything serious you need blacksmiths coal,which can be found or gotton through a welding supply,and if they dont have it they will point you in the right direction.I myself have only been at it for about a year,and consider myself a novice,but one things for sure,its adictive and will make a better person out of those who give it a try,I think youll agree.

    precisely what i was going to post. Furthermore, you don't need to worry about the smoke that coal forges give off

    First sentence grammar mistake

    Not to forge a sword with,

    Error: Dont end a sentence or clause with a preposition

    Fix: Not suitable to forge a sword, but...

    2 replies

    Yeah
    Grammar mistakes are everywhere. Newspaper, TV, ads, signs, news articles. Everywhere

    Just check out the book Eats, Shoots and Leaves to find a few great examples.

    ex:
        Slow
    Kids at Play

    This could be a warning, or an insult to the kids where slow is the adjective, not the command.

    anything i can use as an anvil for hammering and can i use a regular hammer used for nails. and can aluminum foil be melted? i am new to forging so...

    I am wondering if any one who has forged a sword/knife etc. has had problems with sulfur from the coal causing havoc with the steel? Or if you use a charcoal forge do you have issues with too much carbon and therefore brittleness?

    5 replies

    I haven't actually forged a knife or anything like that, but I'm just starting to blacksmith, and I was wondering if you're using just ordinary coal that you might find in a grill. Because I read in a book that normal coal would do that, and you should get something called "blacksmith coal", it'll solve your problem

    Don't even try to use briquettes, if you want to use charcoal, use lump charcoal, made by burning wood, not by compressing charcoal dust (sawdust) with glue, clay and whatever else they put in the briquettes. You can even dig the old coals out of a campfire or fireplace. If you're getting yellow (or whatever) smoke, you haven't cooked the sulfur and other impurities out enough to turn the coal into coke (where your real heating is being done). As you heap more coal (or charcoal) on top of the fire, you get more smoke as it cooks down to coke, but you put your steel down in the middle of the coke, so those cooking off impurities aren't a problem for the steel, as they're outside the coke "fire" burning off in the outer flames.

    You need to use a thing called "Pea Coal". Pea is the size of the coal. its the type you would use to heat your house.

    actually you are probably using store bought charcoal which has impurities like sulfur. what you have to do is make your own by blackening hardwood in a slow burning fire