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 Post subject: Steel
PostPosted: Thu Jun 11, 2009 5:14 pm 
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I was in North Cackah lackie a few weeks ago and went to this "Lost Colony" settlement. They had a blacksmith there who was making iron nails and tools. He was telling me that if you take time and do it properly, you can make steel stronger then your average "off the shelf" steel blades. He was claiming that he could make a steel blade would cut through a not-so-well made piece of steel. In other words, he was pulling the "Japanese Steel" line from Kill Bill. Does anyone buy this? I wouldn't normally, except the info came from a blacksmith.

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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Thu Jun 11, 2009 5:48 pm 
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Not being a metallurgist I do know that not all Steel is created equal. There are factors like carbon content and the forging techniques used like drop or stamped etc.

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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Thu Jun 11, 2009 6:07 pm 
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I know that:

≡Steel Long Sword≡ is a lot better than -Steel Long Sword-.


I learned that playing Dwarf Fortress.


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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Thu Jun 11, 2009 6:16 pm 
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The guy was talking about carbon. He said you start with iron, fold it, pound in more carbon, fold it and pound in more carbon etc.

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"Hamilton is really a Colossus to the anti republican party. Without numbers he is an host within himself. They have got themselves into a defile where they might be finished but too much security on the republican part will give time to his talents and indefatigableness to extricate them. We have had only middling performances to oppose to him. In truth when he comes forward there is nobody but yourself who can meet him. His adversaries having begun the attack he has the advantage of answering them and remains unanswered himself. For God's sake take up your pen and give a fundamental reply to Curtius and Camillas" - Thomas Jefferson to James Madison


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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Thu Jun 11, 2009 6:17 pm 
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Dustie wrote:
The guy was talking about carbon. He said you start with iron, fold it, pound in more carbon, fold it and pound in more carbon etc.



Simply speaking that is how you make Steel. Start with Iron and add Carbon. The ratio affects the strength of the steel.

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Every citizen should be a soldier. This was the case with the Greeks and Romans, and must be that of every free state.
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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Thu Jun 11, 2009 7:16 pm 
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havent you seen mythbusters? The combat ready samuari katanas broke the factory steel for show blades in half easily

they are likely many times more dense than the average steel. he is very much telling the truth

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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 12:51 am 
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Diggles wrote:
havent you seen mythbusters? The combat ready samuari katanas broke the factory steel for show blades in half easily

they are likely many times more dense than the average steel. he is very much telling the truth


I had a feeling that Mythbusters would hold the key to this.

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"Hamilton is really a Colossus to the anti republican party. Without numbers he is an host within himself. They have got themselves into a defile where they might be finished but too much security on the republican part will give time to his talents and indefatigableness to extricate them. We have had only middling performances to oppose to him. In truth when he comes forward there is nobody but yourself who can meet him. His adversaries having begun the attack he has the advantage of answering them and remains unanswered himself. For God's sake take up your pen and give a fundamental reply to Curtius and Camillas" - Thomas Jefferson to James Madison


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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 10:12 am 
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It's the carbon metal ratio, the temperature, and the folding process that are the main contributors to strength/flexibility.

The carbon, of course, comes from the burning hot coals; so it stands to reason the type of coal you use will impact the strength mostly as a function of the molecular nature of the carbon in the wood you use and the heat that it generates, because carbon at the elemental level is the same as any other carbon atom. If it's not hot enough you risk getting carbon and other impurities from the iron in a non-elemental form which contaminates the steel and weakens the final product.

You bind the carbon into the steel by folding the steel and hammering it; the hammering actually strengthens the steel by aligning the molecules. Temperature is key as well. You have to get the metal extremely hot to work with it but then you douse it in water. I think it's the dousing that actually binds the carbon to the metal and on a molecular level you are locking the lattice that gives the steel its strength. If you don't cool metal several times during the process it doesn't matter if you get the carbon:metal ration dead on, the steel will be more brittle. I'd have to research more to get more specific but that's what I recall from memory.

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Last edited by Hoofhurr on Fri Jun 12, 2009 10:26 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 10:26 am 
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Coal makes sense, but how do you pound coal into iron? It just seems like the coal would smash apart.

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"Hamilton is really a Colossus to the anti republican party. Without numbers he is an host within himself. They have got themselves into a defile where they might be finished but too much security on the republican part will give time to his talents and indefatigableness to extricate them. We have had only middling performances to oppose to him. In truth when he comes forward there is nobody but yourself who can meet him. His adversaries having begun the attack he has the advantage of answering them and remains unanswered himself. For God's sake take up your pen and give a fundamental reply to Curtius and Camillas" - Thomas Jefferson to James Madison


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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 10:27 am 
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I'm pretty sure it's just the CO2 that's released from burning the coal. Although that's a guess as there is plenty of ambient C02 in the air. Have you ever sterilized a needle via lighter before sticking it in a blister? Remember the black layer on the outside of it? That's carbon.

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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 10:33 am 
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Hoofhurr wrote:
I'm pretty sure it's just the CO2 that's released from burning the coal. Although that's a guess as there is plenty of ambient C02 in the air. Have you ever burned a needle before sticking it in a blister? Remember the black layer on the outside of it? That's carbon.


Ok ok, I'm starting to see it. So basically that black soot is sprinkled over the red hot iron blade and you pound on it.

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"Hamilton is really a Colossus to the anti republican party. Without numbers he is an host within himself. They have got themselves into a defile where they might be finished but too much security on the republican part will give time to his talents and indefatigableness to extricate them. We have had only middling performances to oppose to him. In truth when he comes forward there is nobody but yourself who can meet him. His adversaries having begun the attack he has the advantage of answering them and remains unanswered himself. For God's sake take up your pen and give a fundamental reply to Curtius and Camillas" - Thomas Jefferson to James Madison


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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 10:34 am 
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Dustie wrote:
Coal makes sense, but how do you pound coal into iron? It just seems like the coal would smash apart.



Burning the coal at a high enough temp releases the Carbon in the coal in it's elemental form into the air. Carbon will adhere to the outside of the red hot iron. You then fold and hammer the iron and rapidly cool it to make the bond. Rinse and repeat.

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Every citizen should be a soldier. This was the case with the Greeks and Romans, and must be that of every free state.
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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 10:37 am 
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Steel has less than 2% carbon. Probably 1%. I doubt they sprinkle additional carbon on the iron but a quick search shows that coke and limestone are often used in the making of steel. I'm not sure what coke is (can't remember) but limestone is primarily CaC03 (calcium carbonate) which is a pervasive source of carbon on earth. It's the main molecule in chitin, shells of shellfish, coral, etc. a very strong substance in it's own right. The aforementioned is not really blacksmithing but modern steel manufacturing.

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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 10:56 am 
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Well, you guys probably know where I'm going with this (along the lines of my survival stuff). If we needed to start from scratch, and build tools etc, I could easily visualize having the ability to make a brick furnace, get fuel (coal), heat iron and pound it into different tools. I've seen the guys doing this (at the settlement re-creation I was talking about), and it's not that complex. They have a big oven, a bellow to pump air in, a hammer, and an anvil. I'm sure it takes years to become proficient, but at least its do-able. The guy I was talking to was making nails at the time, but he said that from a few tools, he could make all his other tools. I thought that was pretty neat. The biggest question in my mind was, the jump from iron to steel. And it sounds like it's not that big of a jump.

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"Hamilton is really a Colossus to the anti republican party. Without numbers he is an host within himself. They have got themselves into a defile where they might be finished but too much security on the republican part will give time to his talents and indefatigableness to extricate them. We have had only middling performances to oppose to him. In truth when he comes forward there is nobody but yourself who can meet him. His adversaries having begun the attack he has the advantage of answering them and remains unanswered himself. For God's sake take up your pen and give a fundamental reply to Curtius and Camillas" - Thomas Jefferson to James Madison


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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 11:13 am 
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Dustie wrote:
Well, you guys probably know where I'm going with this (along the lines of my survival stuff). If we needed to start from scratch, and build tools etc, I could easily visualize having the ability to make a brick furnace, get fuel (coal), heat iron and pound it into different tools. I've seen the guys doing this (at the settlement re-creation I was talking about), and it's not that complex. They have a big oven, a bellow to pump air in, a hammer, and an anvil. I'm sure it takes years to become proficient, but at least its do-able. The guy I was talking to was making nails at the time, but he said that from a few tools, he could make all his other tools. I thought that was pretty neat. The biggest question in my mind was, the jump from iron to steel. And it sounds like it's not that big of a jump.



You will be our blacksmith and I'll be our gunsmith. I've actually been researching getting a Dillion press and reloading my own ammo. Of course we need a supply of powder, primers, brass and lead.

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"You cannot invade the mainland United States. There would be a rifle behind every blade of grass." - Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto

Every citizen should be a soldier. This was the case with the Greeks and Romans, and must be that of every free state.
-Thomas Jefferson

Spread my work ethic not my wealth.


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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 11:20 am 
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We'll also need someone who can mine iron and coal. I assume we'll be fine for a while with all the scrap metal sitting around this world, but eventually we'll need to mine for more.

Who wants to learn about mining iron and coal?!

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"Hamilton is really a Colossus to the anti republican party. Without numbers he is an host within himself. They have got themselves into a defile where they might be finished but too much security on the republican part will give time to his talents and indefatigableness to extricate them. We have had only middling performances to oppose to him. In truth when he comes forward there is nobody but yourself who can meet him. His adversaries having begun the attack he has the advantage of answering them and remains unanswered himself. For God's sake take up your pen and give a fundamental reply to Curtius and Camillas" - Thomas Jefferson to James Madison


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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 1:29 pm 
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We'll also need someone who can mine iron and coal. I assume we'll be fine for a while with all the scrap metal sitting around this world, but eventually we'll need to mine for more.

Who wants to learn about mining iron and coal?!


If you're seriously worried about mining your own coal and iron ore, you're talking about rebuilding civilization from scratch. There is enough raw material in scrap metal and junk to fashion anything you might be able to need or make for the population numbers that you are going to be supporting for generations to come.

I'd concentrate more on recycling and mould-making than worrying about smelting your own raw materials.

You'll also need to worry about reliable and sustainable source of fuel for your "industry" before you worry about building one from the ground up.

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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 1:46 pm 
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Well I'm not "seriously worried" about any of this. =)

I think you need to remember that in the survival section of this forum, you need to give me a little leeway. Do I ever plan on creating my own forge and becoming a blacksmith? Heck no. Do I think it's neat to know what would be involved, yes.

As far as scrap metal, I agree. Good point. There would be plenty of that around. We may never need to mine iron again.

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"Hamilton is really a Colossus to the anti republican party. Without numbers he is an host within himself. They have got themselves into a defile where they might be finished but too much security on the republican part will give time to his talents and indefatigableness to extricate them. We have had only middling performances to oppose to him. In truth when he comes forward there is nobody but yourself who can meet him. His adversaries having begun the attack he has the advantage of answering them and remains unanswered himself. For God's sake take up your pen and give a fundamental reply to Curtius and Camillas" - Thomas Jefferson to James Madison


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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 2:01 pm 
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Well, point taken. I mean "seriously worried" within the context of this thread.

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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 2:03 pm 
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Moristans wrote:
Quote:
We'll also need someone who can mine iron and coal. I assume we'll be fine for a while with all the scrap metal sitting around this world, but eventually we'll need to mine for more.

Who wants to learn about mining iron and coal?!


If you're seriously worried about mining your own coal and iron ore, you're talking about rebuilding civilization from scratch. There is enough raw material in scrap metal and junk to fashion anything you might be able to need or make for the population numbers that you are going to be supporting for generations to come.

I'd concentrate more on recycling and mould-making than worrying about smelting your own raw materials.

You'll also need to worry about reliable and sustainable source of fuel for your "industry" before you worry about building one from the ground up.



Along the lines of what Dustie said. This is not the conspiracy theory forum or the political discussion forum. It's a forum about survival and self-reliance. Much of what we discuss in here is hypothectical.

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Every citizen should be a soldier. This was the case with the Greeks and Romans, and must be that of every free state.
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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 2:15 pm 
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I think what we're really learning here is the importance of owning a yard where you can store three or four old beat up cars on cinder blocks as a ready supply of spare parts and scrap metal.

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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 2:26 pm 
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Sure Thudz.

Hypothetically speaking, if you have to choose between learning how to mine coal and ore, or salvaging scrap metal for your survival, go with the latter. :D

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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 2:47 pm 
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Moristans wrote:
Sure Thudz.

Hypothetically speaking, if you have to choose between learning how to mine coal and ore, or salvaging scrap metal for your survival, go with the latter. :D



I don't plan on mining anything, in fact Dustie is the only one to mention mining. I said we'd need a SOURCE for basis materials like brass, powder and lead. Of course scavenging would be easier given the amount of raw and manufactured materials laying around this civilization.

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"You cannot invade the mainland United States. There would be a rifle behind every blade of grass." - Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto

Every citizen should be a soldier. This was the case with the Greeks and Romans, and must be that of every free state.
-Thomas Jefferson

Spread my work ethic not my wealth.


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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Fri Jun 12, 2009 5:25 pm 
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Informationally,
Quote:
Volatile constituents of the coal—including water, coal-gas, and coal-tar—are driven off by baking in an airless furnace or oven at temperatures as high as 2,000 degrees Celsius. This fuses together the fixed carbon and residual ash. Most modern facilities have "by-product" coking ovens. Today, the hydrocarbons are considered by-products of coke-making, but many American steel companies capture and use them to create other products.[citation needed] Non by-product coking furnaces or coke furnaces (ovens) burn the hydrocarbon gases produced by the coke-making process to drive the carbonization process.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coke_(fuel)

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 Post subject: Re: Steel
PostPosted: Sat Jun 13, 2009 4:04 pm 
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Slamz wrote:
I think what we're really learning here is the importance of owning a yard where you can store three or four old beat up cars on cinder blocks as a ready supply of spare parts and scrap metal.


And it also makes for some wonderful lawn art!

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