In the modern world, forged products are very popular. They can be found everywhere. For example, thanks to them, fireplaces acquire a more original look, flower stands become an excellent decoration of the room, wrought iron stairs make the house look like a castle. And the most interesting thing is that all this can be done with your own hands with the help of a homemade hearth. Its various modifications differ only in the type of fuel used. The remaining differences are not significant.
The need to get high temperatures at home (more than a thousand degrees Celsius) for forging metal leads craftsmen to the idea of assembling a homemade furnace. If you have a great desire and do everything according to the instructions, then no problems should arise.
In forges, it is used to heat the metal before heat treatment and can take the form of:
To date, classic designs involve the use of coal or firewood as fuel, but a homemade forge can also be gas. As practice shows, the most economical fuel is coal, which must be processed before use.
The mechanism of the blacksmith's forge is quite simple. By design, the horn resembles a furnace with three partitions and one open side. Its main function is to maintain the highest possible temperature inside.
The device of its own assembly hearth differs little from manufacturing devices.
The classic design should have:
- refractory table;
- hearth with grate;
- device camera;
- air chamber, valve and drainage;
- quenching bath;
- a hole for feeding blanks;
- air duct for oxygen supply;
- gas chamber;
- removable crucible.
How the device works
Before you build a blacksmith forge, you need to determine its type. The closed hearth has a chamber for heating the workpiece. This model is considered the most economical in terms of fuel consumption. But in this case, the workpiece is limited in size.
In an open type blacksmith's furnace, fuel is poured from above onto the grate, and from below a stream of air is supplied. The heated billet is placed on the fuel. This allows you to heat large workpieces.
In order to be able to build a self-made horn without losing its quality of work and at the same time save money, you should understand the principle of its functioning. The device is based on a significant increase in temperature due to the chemical method of burning carbon.
This process provides a high energy yield and has been used for many centuries to smelting various metals. So that the cupola does not allow the material to burn, a little less oxygen should be supplied into it than is necessary for complete oxidation, otherwise the products will be too fragile, and, accordingly, will last only a few years.
This kind of hearth is not easy to make at home. Homemade blacksmith forge will function perfectly on gas, but for this you only need to take propane, butane or refined monogas. Household blue fuel is not suitable for use in a roaster, since it contains both saturated and unsaturated carbons, which leads to uneven heat generation.
Also, household gas contains particles of silicon, sulfur and phosphorus, which can adversely affect the metal. For example, sulfur will only spoil steel upon contact, changing its operational advantages to disadvantages. And this can lead to significant financial losses.
Given the above, a home-made gas forge for forging can operate on domestic gas only if it is pre-purified from sulfur. To do this, you need to pass the gas through a container with naphthalene, which will take all the excess into itself. It is also advisable to forge on blue fuel only decorative elements, rather than parts that will subsequently be subjected to heavy loads.
Materials for the manufacture
As a rule, a self-made forge differs from an industrial variant by a large saving on materials. That is why for its lining you can freely use fireclay bricks,
rather than quartz. It will also last quite a long time, because at home, the daily operation of the device is not required. And the costs of making the hearth will decrease significantly.
Assignment of components
The main working body of the cupola is the lance, consisting of:
- air chamber;
- feed tube;
At home, all this is assembled into a single, non-separable structure mounted on a table. The grate in this case can be perforated with round holes. Drainage in the structure is simply necessary to control the oxygen supply to the workpiece.
The removal of gases is carried out by means of the chimney, umbrella and hearth chamber. Since the windows of the tent are always in the open state, the self-made hearth must be provided with the maximum chimney draft.
Depending on the type of forged material, it is possible not to equip a gas cell and a quenching tank in the fryer. The crucible is also used only for forging precious or non-ferrous alloys. It is a heat-resistant hood, which at home is folded onto a dry chamotte brick.
The best fuel is small coke, which, although it costs more than ordinary coal, is consumed to work in minimal quantities. Since it requires high temperature to ignite, a homemade forge forge needs to be pre-heated with wood. Only after burning the main fuel into the hearth enter the workpiece for ripening, reducing the blast.
In order for the horn to work correctly on ordinary coal, it must first be roasted to completely evaporate coke oven gas, which will become clear by changing the color of the flame. Usually such fuel is used to make large original products.
To forge figures from Damascus at home, it is necessary to use charcoal for the furnace , but this fuel requires jewelry work, because it instantly responds to blowing and quickly burns out.
You can also use ordinary hardwood firewood for the furnace, but before burning them in the shell to completely prevent unburnt chips from getting on the metal. This method of heat production is considered the most economical.
Before you make a homemade horn, you should decide on the optimal dimensions of the future design. A miniature design of six fireclay bricks is enough for making small decorative elements made of steel or melting precious flowers at home.
The grate and shelves for it in this case are made of steel strips and pipes. In this embodiment, conventional coal or coke is used as the main fuel, which should be ignited with a blowtorch or burner (gas, gasoline). You can work on such a device only in the open air, and a homemade gas burner for a hearth, like a blowtorch, must be protected from the main focus by an asbestos partition with an opening for the passage of the flame. In addition, with the help of this hearth it will be possible to make products of small sizes.
Stationary hearth models should be made taking into account the anthropometric data of the master. This is necessary to ensure maximum comfort during forging, because a red-hot piece of iron weighing several kilograms is a serious danger for the master and others. The most important thing in the process is to ensure maximum safety and comfort.
To correctly determine the size of the workplace, the help of a second person is needed. So, the height is measured from the floor to the elbow bend of the master, whose hand is in a relaxed position, and the legs are shoulder width apart. To the resulting figure, you need to add another 5 cm, which will become the optimal height for the workplace.
The shape of the table is best square for the work of one master, for activities with an assistant you can make a rectangular. In the case of a square shape, the length of the side is determined by defining the diagonal. To do this, the assistant needs to measure the length from the master’s abdomen to the end of the largest ticks in the outstretched arm. An additional 10 cm is added to the resulting number and half the diagonal is obtained. Further, if desired, you can simply multiply the result by 1.414 or determine the length of the entire diagonal and solve the equation from the school curriculum C 2
= a 2
+ a 2
, where C is the diagonal obtained, and is the side of the table.
The first step is to assemble the table frame with the grate in the center. It is important to make it from a single sheet of metal with crossed hollows to accumulate soot and ensure uniform distribution of air. After that, an air receiver with a retractable damper is assembled at the bottom of the table. The supercharger can be used from an old car stove.
This model is the easiest to use. It can be assembled using the gooseberry as a basis. For this, a car snail or a fan from a hand siren can become supercharged, which will distribute air through the pipe with holes in the center of the tank. Its sides are finished with a lining of chamotte sand and marl. The advantage of this design is more features than the mini-horn and the ability to move, unlike a stationary table. The master is not tied to the place of activity and can safely go to various part-time jobs.
Among the disadvantages:
- there is no way to disassemble for cleaning;
- low working temperature;
- high fuel consumption;
- work only on coke or charcoal.
Previously, such designs were used for forging horseshoe horses during military campaigns. The horn was used for this mobile and more convenient, since both hands of the master were free to work with the product. This was provided by a crank mechanism, which was actuated by pressing the foot pedal.
The modern version of such a hearth can be assembled at home from a foot sewing machine.
A self-made hearth, a hearth burner, possible types of fuel for work, and other features of metal forging at home were described in detail above. It is important to remember that a home-made design is not able to fully replace professional equipment, so it is not suitable for all types of work and metal.
The blacksmith's forge is now a pretty popular phenomenon, despite the huge market for things that are easier to buy than to do. However, if there is a desire, then you can make the device at home using improvised means. Thanks to a small forge, it will be possible to create unique steel products that can be used to decorate private courtyards.
In fact, assembling the forge with your own hands from improvised materials is simple. The most important thing is to adhere to the instructions, have a tool, observe safety precautions, and then everything will work out.