Impressive Custom Built Blacksmith’s Forge

[EssentialCraftsman] is relatively new to YouTube, but he’s already put out some impressive videos. We really enjoyed an episode dedicated to a fixture in his shop, his large custom blacksmith’s forge.

The forge is a custom cast vault of refractory that sits on a platter of fire bricks suspended on a heavy-duty rotating frame. Two forced air natural gas burner provide the heat.  The frame is plasma CNC cut steel welded together.

A lot of technical challenges had to be solved. How does one hold a couple hundred pound piece of refractory in such a way that it can be lifted, especially when any steel parts exposed to the heat of the forge would become plastic and fail? When the forge turns off, how do you keep the hot air in the forge from rising into the blowers and melting them? There were many more.

We were really impressed by the polished final appearance of the forge, and the cleverness of its design. Everything is well thought out, and you can even increase the height of the forge by propping it up on more fire bricks. We hope [EssentialCraftsman] will continue to produce such high quality videos. We also enjoyed his episode on Anvils as well as a weirdly informative tirade on which shape of stake (round or square) to use when laying out concrete jobs. Videos after the break.

The more you know…

28 thoughts on “Impressive Custom Built Blacksmith’s Forge

  1. Why don’t modern-day blacksmiths wear safety glasses to protect themselves from “glassblower’s cataracts” caused by the intense IR radiation from that hot iron? I guess if it were your day job instead of a hobby, it would be more of a problem.

      1. It’s just a generic name – the hot glowing steel is a black body radiator just as the molten blob of glass is, and at equal temperature it puts out the same spectrum of light.

    1. Might not work so well as a pizza oven. It’s giving most of the heat from above so it’d be hard to keep from burning the cheese before the crust is properly burnt. Though maybe you heat it up and then turn it off and toss it in, let the ambient 2500 degrees just cook everything in <30 seconds.

        1. About 1371.111 degrees celsius. ;)
          We use Fahrenheit in the USA.

          It makes more sense for us that 32° means frozen and 212° means steam. :S
          Yes, it makes no sense to me (a US citizen) either.

          1. The hottest cheese reflow (Pizza :-) ) oven I have seen once had about 450 to 500°C. It had a conveyor belt like a SMD reflow oven and the pizza was ready for take away in about 3 minutes.

  2. This is interesting. Really. He surely knows what he’s talking about and provides all the figures, measures and even the operating costs. Kudos to that!
    But I have never been more aware of the Imperial Gap. Not a single understandable measurement through the whole video except for the dollars at the end. It’s all yards, pounds, inches, PSI, Fahrenheit… Seriously, you might get along with this mess but the rest of the world has moved along and for good reason. It’s like watching a medieval report.
    I had to sit here with a calculator at my side watching the video.

    1. Hahaha! It’s not that bad, is it?
      When I need to convert something from sellseaus or metrack, I just copy-paste into Google.

      “It’s like watching a medieval report.” That seriously made me laugh hard. :D

      1. While watching a video I have it normally fullscreen. It would be very inconvinient to use google at the same time. You know, that there were already plane and rocket crashes because of confusion about this ancient units?

        1. Well I didn’t build the rocket! ;)

          It is weird; I’ve been hearing that “we will soon” switch to Metric ever since grade-school! We do use Metric for biology and chemistry class.
          Backyard hackers in the US tend to use the old system. I’m trying to use both when I’m experimenting but our ‘old’ length and temperature units are pretty hardwired into us.

          Acres never made sense to me; I still have no idea how large an acre is.

    2. OK, that explains the “2500 degrees” mentioned above. I did not view the video here in the office. And I could not easily enjoy a video while heavily using a calculator. :-)
      Mostly I just estimate it:
      Yard: about a meter
      °F: about half a °C
      pound: about half a kg
      inch: 2 to 2,5cm, depending on wanted precision
      the PSI: something between 10 and 15
      If it would be for work or otherwise more precision needed, then I would expect to get input data in real (SI, metric) units.

    3. Too bad the rest of the world doesn’t know how to use BOTH standard unit systems.
      I’m so sick of hearing people whine about non-SI units. Perhaps you’re just upset because you lack the ability to convert between them, something American elementary school students can do with ease?

      1. In elementary school, we might have been able to convert with ease, (I remember having to look at the formulas every time), however if I am an example of an average American, we just deal with the two units separately. When dealing with science, we use SI and for the rest of our lives we use Imperial. Since (at least for me) there is very little bead-through between these two parts of my live it isn’t worth trying to deal solely with SI when surrounded with Imperial units. When I do come across SI units [Martin]’s estimations usually work just fine for me to grasp the point.

      2. They seem to forget it when they get to college. Every year I get criticism (calls or emails from helicopter parents) for a simple metric quiz after the first week of class. Less than 25% of the problems are simple conversion problems (How many centimeters in a foot? How many centimeters in an inch? Water boils at ___c and __f). Every year… pre-meds seeking to perform some early patient care, fail and then start screaming.

        1. It’s use it or lose it. Memory works that way – when you never have to use imperial measures, or metric for that matter, quickly conjuring up the conversion ratios and doing it in your head on the spot is almost impossible.

      3. “something American elementary school students can do with ease?”

        Quick! Do long division of 1293864 / 23 on paper. An elementary school kid could do it (at least pre common-core).

        Not so easy? That’s because you’ve lived your whole life after elementary school probably never having to do long division again, and you’ve forgotten the details. Same thing in metric countries where people practically never encounter US standard measures.

        As much as Americans think they’re fluent in both metric and imperial, ask a person to pour you a deciliter of milk for a receipe and they’re utterly baffled. “How much? Is that like… a spoonful?”. That’s because they only actually know the meter, maybe the centimeter, and the two-liter soda bottle. They have no intuitive grasp of what a tenth of a liter looks like, just like Europeans sans the Brits wouldn’t know what a gallon looks like.

    4. Try working on a 1980s era Ford vehicle. It’s a confusing mix of metric and Imperial measurements for the various bolts and nuts. It’s also difficult to source any bolts or studs I’ve broken due to rust; trips to three different hardware stores for one oddball metric fastener in a high grade is frustrating.

      What really kills me is that it’s a German designed engine (Ford’s Cologne 2.9L V6). You would think they would know better.

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