Beginning Blacksmithing by Bob Heath: One Mississippi Journeyman's View
This book has drawn great praise from the public and also from master smiths such as Uri Hofi.
It is a real whopping treatment of the Blacksmith's Craft in 430(!!) pages jam-packed with useful information.
This book, among many other things, gives a lucid account of how to forge weld, has the plans to make several sizes of leather bellows, has scientific specifics of what happens to iron when it is heated in a blacksmith's forge, presents some of the basic physics with force and acceleration formulas that come into effect when a blacksmith swings his hammer, what happens when steel is heated, quenched to harden, and reheated to draw the temper in steel. Young's modulus is presented as is Poisson's ratio when iron is heated and hammered. An explanation of the electrical polarity of iron atoms is given along with the effect forging iron has on the lattice structure of iron molecules and dendritic grain arrangements in a forged iron. Why forged steel is much stronger than cast steel is given. An example of an "S" curve is presented of the quenching process. Forging Damascus knives and swords is presented. How to sharpen a plow point is given - and much more.
Bob Heath has been practicing his craft for decades and you'll be glad you shelled out a few dollars for the advice and information Bob has collected over all these years.
The book is heavily illustrated with drawings.
The tables of contents include:
Chapter 1 My Affidavit
Chapter 2 Ferrous Metal
History of ferrous metals, furnaces, etc.
Chapter 3 Pattern Welding and Damascus Steel
Viking swords, history of steel.
Chapter 4 The Roots of Modern Iron
Furnace, mechanical hammers, Cupola, Walloon Furnace, etc.
Chapter 5 The Golden Age of Wrought Iron
Early Blowers, Puddling Furnace, Rolls, Bloom Machine, Welding Furnace, Blast Furnace, etc.
Chapter 6 Iron in America
Chapter 7 The Kentucky Rifle and It's Legacy
Barrel Anvil, Forging a Barrel, Flint Locks, Percussion caps, Squaw Axe, Deadman's Hook, Making a Striker, Bellows, etc.
Chapter 8 Steel
Ships chains, Bessemer Converter, Open Heath Regenerator, Electric Furnace, etc.
Chapter 9 What is Iron and What is Steel?
Chemistry, grain structure and metal composition.
Chapter 10 Hardening and Tempering
Crystal structure of hardened metals.
Chapter 11 Hardening and Tempering Revisited
Tempering colours, annealing, quenching liquids, etc.
Chapter 12 Strength of Materials
Chapter 13 The Shop, The Forge, and Coal
Shop layout, firepot, flues, Tuyere, shop lighting, blower, floor and foundations, etc.
Chapter 14 Blowers
Types of blowers, making a blacksmith's bellows.
Chapter 15 Tools and Forgings
Anvil, Hammers - ball peen, straight peen, cross peen, rounding hammer, double faces, round faced, sledge hammers, tongs, set hammers, flattner, hacksaws, hardie, floor shears, fullering, vices, swedge block and cone, wire brushes, Chisels , punches, drifts, drills, swedges, nail header, files, tire shrinker, tire bender, etc.
Chapter 16 Forge Welding
Welding fire, flux, avoiding shear failers, hatchet, collaring, etc.
Chapter 17 Projects
Straight peen hammer head, light tongs, forging a swedge, sharpening plough points, pointing a plough, making chain, finishes, strap hinge, forging a knife, casting a knife pommel, ornamental iron, rams head handle fire poker, forging a lily, forging a rose, decorative hinge, chain mail, etc.
Chapter 18 Safety
Chapter 19 Apprentice - Journeyman - Master
Chapter 20 The Boy Scouts