Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Custom tools

This is the first of a series of custom sheet metal forming stakes for a customer who makes beautiful raised copper and silver vessels. It started as a 1.5" square bar of 4140 molybdenum alloy steel. Some forging and much grinding later, it had a shaft of 1" square to clamp in a vise, and the rest had a different radius on each face of the square.

Here it is in the forge, heating up so it can be hardened. You can see that each side is ground to a different radius.

After heating, it was quenched in oil. Unfortunately, my camera was not able to catch the little marbles of blue flame that danced across the top of the oil. It was something to see.

Looks kind of ugly with all the baked-on oil.

Looks a lot prettier with it cleaned off and after drawing temper.

The texture left from the scale of heat treatment can't stay, though. It has to be absolutely smooth. I took it to this level, but the customer finished it out to where he needed it to be for his work.

And the satisfied customer. Now to go work on making the other stakes.

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