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  1. #1

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    Cool How to build a propane burner?

    Does anyone have some info on building a quality propane burner for a small to medium size Forge?

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    A great place to start would be the ABANA web site. Or just look for gas forge plans on line. There are many different plans depending on what you want to do & the style & size of forge you want to build. A big thing is if you want to forge weld you will need more heat. I built a gas forge from a refrigerant cylinder That worked great. I had two burners for it one had a fan & got hotter & one that didn't. That was a long time ago & I don't have any plans for it.I prefer round forges compared to square or rectangular ones but they are many different ones out there. Hope I helped & didn't confuse.

    Dave "Slawman" Huffman

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    Quote Originally Posted by kmc5twenty5 View Post
    Does anyone have some info on building a quality propane burner for a small to medium size Forge?
    There are many burner designs online. Personally I have been use a gas forge for almost 20 years and I cannot stress the importance of safety when dealing with propane. Be sure to familiarize yourself with propane gas and its dangers. I strongly suggest using a thermocouple valve/switch with a pilot light. Rexo-therm is a company in Toronto (416)253-9778 that makes 60,000 to 500,000 BTU burners with all the safety requirements attached (ULC listed). I have no financial interest in this company. How to build a propane burner?-image.jpgClick image for larger version. 

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    I would also suggest avoiding Kaowool or other ceramic board walls as they create airborne silica particles. My suggestion is to pour refractory cement (2000 plus degree rated) as your walls.

    Good luck and be safe.

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  6. #5
    olderdan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kmc5twenty5 View Post
    Does anyone have some info on building a quality propane burner for a small to medium size Forge?
    You could look at myfordboy blog and online resources he has plans and much more info.

    How to build a propane burner?-screen-shot-04-21-17-04.52-pm.png
    Good luck
    Olderdan

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  8. #7

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    Sir,

    I have been a custom knifemaker and blacksmith since the middle '80's. I have build close to 100 forges and burners. I wrote this thread https://www.bladesmithsforum.com/ind...e-and-feeding/
    about the burner that I use, which is a simple, easy to build, blown burner (which means that it uses a fan to drive air through the system). All of the other suggestions above have been for venturi burners, which work like a carburetor. Both work, venturi are just a bit fussier to build and get tuned.

    One other thing I saw go by, the suggestion that you not use Kaowool or one of the other spun ceramic fiber blankets for the forge. Two things to know. It's true that you don't want to breath the airborne fibers, however, a simple refractory topcoat will capture the fibers and increase the efficiency of the forge. A hard castable forge doesn't have the fiber problem, but it's much less efficient. The reason is simple, hard refractories are not insulators, you have to heat the whole mass of the forge liner before you can get any heat to work with. I had a welding forge with a Kaowool top and a hard brick floor. The convention wisdom is that you need this because flux (borax, often) will eat through Kaowool at temperature. Which is true. The problem was, the welding forge needed a good 15-20 minutes to come up to a solid welding heat, whereas my "everyday" forge (top coated Kaowool) is ready to work 90 seconds after being lit. Unless you plan to forge 8-16 hours a day, 7 days a week, a hard refractory forge is just burning gas for no reason, every time you light it.

    Just my .02

    Geoff

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  10. #8

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    Dave Hammer building a propane burner

    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff Keyes View Post
    Sir,

    I have been a custom knifemaker and blacksmith since the middle '80's. I have build close to 100 forges and burners. I wrote this thread https://www.bladesmithsforum.com/ind...e-and-feeding/
    about the burner that I use, which is a simple, easy to build, blown burner (which means that it uses a fan to drive air through the system). All of the other suggestions above have been for venturi burners, which work like a carburetor. Both work, venturi are just a bit fussier to build and get tuned.

    One other thing I saw go by, the suggestion that you not use Kaowool or one of the other spun ceramic fiber blankets for the forge. Two things to know. It's true that you don't want to breath the airborne fibers, however, a simple refractory topcoat will capture the fibers and increase the efficiency of the forge. A hard castable forge doesn't have the fiber problem, but it's much less efficient. The reason is simple, hard refractories are not insulators, you have to heat the whole mass of the forge liner before you can get any heat to work with. I had a welding forge with a Kaowool top and a hard brick floor. The convention wisdom is that you need this because flux (borax, often) will eat through Kaowool at temperature. Which is true. The problem was, the welding forge needed a good 15-20 minutes to come up to a solid welding heat, whereas my "everyday" forge (top coated Kaowool) is ready to work 90 seconds after being lit. Unless you plan to forge 8-16 hours a day, 7 days a week, a hard refractory forge is just burning gas for no reason, every time you light it.

    Just my .02

    Geoff
    I've never posted before hope I'm doing it right. Check out Dave Hammer on utube I met him at a blacksmithing meeting real nice guy. He makes great videos clear and concise. Look up forging a gun barrel you will find a link to his other videos.

  11. #9
    Frank S's Avatar
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    Geoff;Thanks for the very informative link. I haven't done any bladesmithing since I was a teenager working in a Blacksmith shop back in the 60s. Back then we had 2 30" diameter coal forges that had huge hand cranked blowers on them. Now I am finding that I want to build a forge but not so much for making knives. I need to be able to heat a 20 Inch diameter 2" cast steel Kubota final drive sprocket hot enough to straighten it Due to the size the only economical way I can see to do this will be a large coal fired forge but possibly a propane fire ring like those used under 40 gallon cooking pots might be possible providing I can get enough propane volume and fan forced air I have a 500 gallon propane tank that feeds my house via a 3/4 inch gas line
    Never try to tell me it can't be done
    When I have to paint I use http://kbs.justoldtrucks.com/

  12. #10

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    OK, that's pretty specific . Whatever you do is going to use a ton of fuel. Is this going to be a one off thing, or do you have a pile of these to do? I would put a bit more engineering into a forge intended for longer term use. Here is how I would go about it. There is a thing called a ribbon burner. Wayne Coe is the ribbon burner guy (WayneCoeArtistBlacksmith). You should contact him about the basics of the burner, but what I would is build a cross shaped ribbon burner about 12-15 inches across the arms. Pipe the propane in at high volume and pressure. I have a 120 gallon tank that feeds my forges (I have 3 hooked up) through a high pressure regulator. I never need more than about 8-10 psi though 1 inch black iron pipe. To feed this monster you might need 2 or 3 times that. This is one time when I would use a bounce house inflator or a shop vac. You are going to really need some volume to run this.

    Next I would build a shallow pit, lined with fire brick, or a mix of sand and clay (search for Tim Lively clay forge https://washtubforge.wordpress.com/2...rge-and-anvil/). The burner goes in the bottom of that. Next I would build a hood, basically an inverted shallow bowl, lined with Kaowool and designed to swing away. You'll want to have space between the top and bottom for the forge to breath. This is a very large sheet metal forge, much smaller ones get used for armor making.

    How are you planning to move this thing once it's hot? You might consider some kind of crane. How are you going to push/beat/forge it back into shape? Friends with long handled sledges? You might want to think about a drop hammer. 100 lbs falling 5 feet packs a huge wallop.

    Be sure to take video, I want to see it.

    Geoff

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