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Collection: Gas forge

Gas Forge for blacksmithng

A gas forge makes use of natural gas or propane as its fuel. The most commonly used is the cylindrical forge chamber and a burner tube build on the right side of the body. Its chamber is either lined with a hard castable refractory or a ceramic soft thermal blanket. The burner mixes air and fuel when ignited at the top, which points into the chamber lining.

Gas forges are made in various sizes and shapes, from the large forges that use a big burner to the so many atmospheric burners to the forges made out of a coffee can. You can even carve out a small forge from one soft firebrick.

A gas forge is easy to use by anyone, even a novice. A gas forge is easy to operate when compared to coal forges and the fire it produces is clean. They are not versatile so they cannot be reshaped to take in unusually shaped pieces. A well-constructed gas forge can do almost any task. (read more about belt grinder)

 

The Different Gas Forges

There are two main types of gas forges, the forced air and the venturi.

The forced air

These kinds of gas forge burners do not depend on the function of the gas to pull primary air into the burner. Whether you are using propane or natural gas, forced burners do not get affected by the weather conditions. These burners do not need to be placed in a chimney height before they can form a draft. Power burners can work efficiently because all the primary part is mixed and supplied by the blower. The only disadvantage of this is that they need electricity and with time they can interfere with the flow of electricity thereby causing power failure. But if it gets installed properly, the problems could be prevented. Power burners are created to operate on low pressure while using with natural gas and also for propane too.

Venturi

They are very good when used with propane, venturi works well too on natural gas in small kilns. You can use venturi without electricity. Venturi burners run quietly on low pressure because they have no blowers but power burners do not work like this. They can be tuned down lower to preheat an object. Venturi burners produce various BTU outputs with changes in their pressure. Higher pressure lowers its efficiency, but it gives it the ability to be set at different rates.

 

How to Use a Gas Forge

  • Adjust the pressure of propane to correspond to the work and speed you want to get your work done on the anvil
  • Do not overheat your metal because overheated shoes will get overworked and the nail holes will become distorted.
  • If you are making use of a two-burner propane forge with its valves, turn it off on one side after you have heated the liner and ensure you have rotated the shoes that are not yet worked on to the hot side.
  • Do not apply too much pressure as it will not increase the top heat of the propane forge.
  • When taking out the shoes from the forge, grip the tongs a bit to the back.

 

 

Choosing The Right Forge

There are three main common types of forges, although any mixture of a heat source with fuel can lead to the metal getting forged. Some can be primitive for instance the one dug into the hole in the ground that the Bellow blows air. The major types are coal, charcoal, and propane.

Coal:

Coal is used for a number of reasons. Smiths use it is because it is easy to set up, it doesn’t spark and it burns evenly for a long one. It is also cost-effective. Although some things could discourage one from using it, like it is very dirty, the elements (Mercury and sulfur) present are very toxic to the health. Inhaling too much of it can lead to black lungs. Coal also leave some pieces of element that has melted but do not burn all the way, this can build up in the forge, clog in the airway at the edge of the forge and again you may not find coal that will burn better.

Charcoal:

it is a wonderful way to generate heat. Charcoal is different from coal. Charcoal was used to forge hiking swords back in the 17th century. It is easy to get, however, they spark a lot, you will have to wait for a very long time to get a heat source from charcoals. You will need a lot of charcoal while forging as it burns pretty fast. The good news is that charcoal does not have the impurities of coal, it doesn’t have any health dangers and most times if you get the right ones they heat up faster than coal.

Propane:

Profane is the cleanest forge. It is not difficult to operate and it easily attains forging temperature for any kind of job. You can find the fuel in almost any local store. But it’s expensive to run. You can use up to 40 lb. for just one smiting work. You can easily control the temperature of the heat accurately, you do not need to mount a chimney for the exhaust from the gas propane to escape, all you need is a well-ventilated workshop.

 

Things to consider when choosing a forge

Consider the cost: out of the three main types of forging, charcoal seems to be one of the cheapest and it is also safe.

Heated temperature: you might want to consider this too, some of them can heat up than the others, so if the kind of job you want to use it for is urgent you might need a forging that heats up at a temperature you can use to forge your tool, for instance, propane.

Availability: You should also consider this, can you get coal or charcoal in your area often? If yes, you can go ahead with either coal or charcoal depending on your choice.

Safety: You should think of the one that is safest to use. Although even the safest ones can lead to an accident.

 

Precautions To Take When Operating a Gas Forge

Before you use your gas forge, do the following

  • Check out the hose for any damage

  • Ensure the connections are not loose

  • Check if the burner tube is not obstructed

  • Ensure the forge lining is not damaged

  • Using a gas-powered forge can be dangerous if you don’t know how to use it properly, it can lead to serious explosions and burns If you misuse it.

  • Take out all the flammable materials around the forge. Do not light it and go on to do other things.

  • Keep a fire extinguisher in your workshop

  • Use the authorized gas bottles

  • Look around the gas burner for leakage with foamy water. Use a tape thread to lower the leaks at the joints. Replace any hose leaks immediately.

  • Wear the right personal protective equipment like sturdy boots, gloves, aprons, eye protection and so on. Please do not wear highly flammable clothing like synthetics.

  • Staring into the lit forge for an extended period can lead to permanent damage to the eye because there is so much IR radiation that is generated. If you must look into the forge get safety glasses to protect you from the radiation.

  • When turning your forge off, turn the burner tap, the gas tank, remove your burner from the forge so it doesn’t heat up, and leave the forge to cool off.

  • When you want to burn the forge, fill up the edge third of the forge using clay cat litter to protect the ss

  • Be careful when repairing the lining of your forge so you don’t break the crust. It is the outer crust that keeps the inner fiber from damage.

  • Always check on the lining after welding when it has cooled off.

  • Repair the broken pieces of the hard outer crust using satanite or RTZ washcoat, ITC forge lining or satanite. Mix it in water and paint the crust. Leave to dry too.

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