How to forge: Part 1
Definition of forging:
Heating a piece of metal until it’s red hot and then bashing the life out of it with a hammer. ᕕ༼✿•̀︿•́༽ᕗ
Naturally, I was pretty excited when I found out that we’d be forging this year at TAFE. Yes! We get to heat a piece of metal up with a huge ass oxy-propane torch, until its ridiculously hot – so hot in fact it goes a red and bright yellow colour – then we get to bash it into shape to form a chisel. 💪💪
1) Start out by cutting a long cylindrical rod into smaller pieces (about 10cm long) and linish the edges to get rid of the burs (<3 the linisher)
2) Heat the rod in the little make-shift ‘kiln’ made of stacked up fire bricks, until its red hot. Then use vice grips to hold onto the rod, whilst you pound it with a hammer.
3) When the rod becomes cool and no longer red hot, re-heat it again and so- continue this process until the entire rod is a squarish shape.
4) Once the rod is hammed into a squarish shape, begin to work on one end only and begin to hammer it to form a taper. Heat this end and continue hammering it, to lengthen and flatten it out.
Before I continue, I have to say… forging is hard work!! Not only is holding the torch to heat the thing, damn hot (pun intended), but also the amount of strength, precision and concentration required – is quite something. When my teacher was doing the demonstration, he told us a story about a guy he knew when he was working in Germany. This guy was forging something one day and wasn’t careful with where he was letting the hammer hit. The hammer missed the piece of work, landed on the anvil by accident and the force from the hammer caused it to rebound up and hit him in the face. He broke his face. Ouch. Needless to say, something that took the teacher under 30 mins to do, took me a good hour, haha. Aaaaand the following day, some invisible arm muscles I never knew I had, ached from the pounding. But at the same time, that means my mini guns are growwwwing! 💪💪
Stick around for Part 2, where I twist the chisel to form cool swirly patterns and finish making it!
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