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View Full Version : Pain in my fingers. And an Oil burner idea



Shed Machinist
07-25-2003, 04:06 PM
I used my burner today only had an improved idea, and guess what, it worked. Get a steel pan or capped pipe and fill it with oil about 1 inch up. then put socks in and light them. There is a little more to it but it burns.

I lifted my crucible out of the furnace type setup and burnt my fingers on it through welding gloves. It hurts but it was my mistake and i have learned from it. I had my had in the wrong place even though i went through the process before i even lit up the burner.

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"A person who works with his hands is a laborer.

A person who works with his hands and his brain is a craftsman.

A person who works with his hands, his brain and his heart is an artist"

—Louis Nizer

Evan
07-25-2003, 04:23 PM
Shed,

Don't try to pick up a hot crucible with your hands, no matter what you are wearing. You will get burnt. You must maintain some distance from it when you are pouring the metal to avoid splashes. The proper way is with some tongs. If you don't have tongs then you will have to figure out some other way to hold it at least 18" away that is secure and will not end up dropping it.

Al Messer
07-25-2003, 07:08 PM
Be careful, Shed! You're playing with fire--literally! Don't try to do any foundry work until you have the correct safety equiptment and material handling equiptment. A small amount of molten metal can do a whole lot of damage to your body!! Another thing, are your parents aware of what you are trying to do?

Alistair Hosie
07-25-2003, 08:10 PM
My dear young friend take good advice these are very serious tasks you are undertaking. I have personally never done any sand casting but have over many years done many many lost wax castings in Dentistry .Metal which is moulten can cause extrmelly serious and even fatal wounds .even a splashback could cause you to loose your sight.Try to join a club and watch it being done quite a bit by others and even then only proceed with supervision till you feel absolutely confident.I am not trying to play a paternalistic role with you and greatly admire your enthusiasm but I would hate to see you get into a pickle moulten metal if dropped with a crucible can be one thing but even a little spillage is not something to take lightly.I do not wish you to get hurt please be cautious regards Alistair

Shed Machinist
07-25-2003, 09:26 PM
I have thoroughly discussed what i did wrong and how i can improve my ideas. And i built some tongs. But my fire won't get hot enough. I need some fire bricks.


Thanks for advice and i understand that you are not trying to play a paternalistic role. And my mother always knows what i am doing. I am always in contact with my fathers with some type of "Modern" communication.

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"A person who works with his hands is a laborer.

A person who works with his hands and his brain is a craftsman.

A person who works with his hands, his brain and his heart is an artist"

—Louis Nizer

CCWKen
07-25-2003, 09:31 PM
This kid is 13? .... Yea, right.

merf23
07-25-2003, 10:01 PM
I think Shed is one of Thruds many personalities...

billr
07-25-2003, 10:23 PM
good evening.

yep. this kid is 13. just barely.

i know this because it is my kid.

the kid is precocious, to say the least. he lives with his mother in indiana. i am in Texas. kid came to visit me and liked my machines. he got off on this foundry stuff on his own and i don't have the knowledge to be of much assistance to him.

the point of all this is to let all you guys know that i really appreciate your sharing your knowledge with him. we have had a long talk [on computer] about safety and i think [hope] that he will use a little better judgment in the future.

he says that he has some tongs now and that he is better equipped than he was. i have also talked with his mother [who is pissed off because she now has 'junk in her yard' about this] and we thinkl that he is going to be doing better in the future starting now.

this kid that we are talking about built the power file that was on the cover of one of the magazines a few months ago while he was visiting with me earlier in the summer. it was his first experience with the machines and it was great to watch. sometimes it was hard to tell the difference between the kid and the machine. he has some magic in his hands. it makes an old man proud, but it also scares the hell out of me because i know what they can do to flesh. i have tried to tell him that those machines are hungry and they don't care what they eat. skin and bones are the same to them as aluminum and steel. hopefully he is going to learn this easier than i did.

thanks again to everyone for helping my kid. sometimes it is hard to be a long distance father. that's bull****. it is ALWAYS hard to be a long distance father.

happy weekend. happy chips.
bill

Shed Machinist
07-25-2003, 11:21 PM
Happy weekend Happy chips, rotflmao. That is a good one, But i am pretty sure i am not one of Thrud's many personalities. Soon i hope to add a drill press a welder and a bench grinder to my collection of tools. And an update on my foundry is, it is cool, although it does not have enough insulation yet to get up to heat i did shape some aluminum. That was pretty cool. i love the idea of a burner that consists of a pan and old socks. It will work very good when completed. And it only used about 2 coffe cans full of oil to hang out with my friend and watch the fire(Not aluminum melting) For at least 2 hours

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"A person who works with his hands is a laborer.

A person who works with his hands and his brain is a craftsman.

A person who works with his hands, his brain and his heart is an artist"

—Louis Nizer

Evan
07-26-2003, 12:33 AM
Shed,

Paternalistic nuttin, we don't want to see you or anyone else get hurt. Adults make stupid mistakes just like I did a few weeks ago. I decided to unscrew the tip of my soldering iron to change it for a lower wattage. I didn't let it cool down first. I used a thick rag to grab it and the heat came through faster than expected and I dropped it. Then the idiot reflex kicked in and I grabbed it out of the air with my other hand. Burned the crap out of my hand.

If you are going to melt metal BE CAREFUL! Those tongs you built, with the crucible cold put a bunch of gravel in it and with the tongs give it a shake. Try throwing the gravel with the crucible and tongs. Make sure you have a good grip that won't let go. Practice pouring the gravel into a small can without spilling any. Then try using it to boil water. Practice pouring the boiling water. If you get some on you it will burn you but not like metal will. BTW, don't get water near molten metal, as has been said before. You will need some fire brick. Make sure it IS fire brick, not regular bricks. Have you gone to the local library and read up on this?

jfsmith
07-26-2003, 02:03 AM
I got smart, I let other people do that kind of work. Too many tongs and gloves causing burns.

Jerry

Thrud
07-26-2003, 02:26 AM
Shed
Jesus H. Murphey! I think you had better get a book on casting first and read it cover to cover. What you are undertaking is extremely dangerous! Even professionals in the steel industry get hurt and killed from accidents and they are taking far greater extremes in safety than you are. The only gloves that should be used are fire suit gloves. In fact an entire firesuit, pants, boots, jacket, hood, and gloves should be used to reduce the chance of injury. Proper tongs to fit your crucible is critical.

In addition, your mother should be present and observing from a distance in case of a catastrophe - phone in hand.

This is dead serious stuff - do not take the required safety procedures lightly!

Hey, I was young and indestructable once too - I did things that could have gotten me killed in the blink of an eye - I am lucky enough to be here to tell you not to take the chances - it is not worth it and eventually you do pay the price for "stupid human tricks".

SJorgensen
07-26-2003, 04:38 AM
Hi Shed,
I know you learned from the burn and it wasn't a bad burn. A point I would like to make is that the difference from a slight burn and a tragic disfiguring burn probably isn't very great. That means that it is what you don't yet know that will bite you. On the other hand you have learned more from that slight burn than you will ever be able to teach the next guy who will follow in your footsteps. Your father probably learned the same way you are, but he may have had the benefits of the experience of your Grandfather or someone else to guide him. Ok nuff said.
I don't think I'd advise you to stop what you are doing, but to go slow and also to deal with small quantities at first. You can do some great first castings with less than a cup of molten aluminum.
Also I think you are off track if you are thinking that you aren't getting hot enough because of the insulating factor of your forge. An insulating factor might come into play as far as being efficient would go, but primarily you must have fuel and air in the right proportion. The amount of heat energy in a fuel is tremendous, and the rate it is released is related to the air available. I would recommend propane. Insulation is unimportant because you are releasing so much heat that the insulation is only there to contain the heat or redirect it. It doesn't assist in getting up to temperature. If you aren't getting hot enough then you don't have enough air or fuel or both. In my forge I light it and put some propane to it. If flames start to come out of the exhaust port then that tells me that the propane is not being consumed inside the forge. The only reason that would happen is if there wasn't enough oxygen. So up goes the air flow. Not hot enough? Then more gas. Flames coming out of exhaust port? Then more air. With propane and a controllable blower you can get very hot and you can get it very fast and it doesn't depend on insulation.
Good luck, and don't learn too fast. You might pass us by.

Spence

billr
07-26-2003, 09:09 AM
Spence;

i was trying to explain the same thing to hm yesterday, but didn't have the right words in the right order. thanks to you as well. he has built an oil burner that iwll shoot a 6' flame. i would think that if he could refine that a little he might be ok a far as the melting goes.

Dave; been a while since we talked. how are you? thanks also for your words of wisdom.

in our [long] conversation yesterday, i told the kid that i was not going to help him any more unless he got that idea of 'safety' ppermost in his mind. i hope maybe i got through, but i am a 150# weakling. perhaps i could threaten him with you.

this all good advice.

LISTEN, John.

happy saturday to all. shop is calling.
bill

billr
07-26-2003, 09:12 AM
i am not smart enough to figure out how to edit a post.

i forgot you, Evan. thanks also for your input.

i always try to do dort of the same thing with setups. walk around it a little and see what is gonna jump loose or be out of balance, etc.

thanks again, guys.
bill

Thrud
07-26-2003, 05:35 PM
Bill

Hanging in there brother, hanging in (and on)!

I was not ragging on your boy, but I am very concerned by what he said. He words scream "willy nilly" to me. Not a good sign. I just don't want him to severly hurt himself or burn others. A serious accident is just around the corner when you work with molten plastic, metal, or rock. I worked in the plastics industry (injection molding) and was sprayed with HDPE because of faulty equipment. I was carrying a bag of plastic at the time as I walked by the machine - the bag sheilded all but my exposed arm but also kept the woman behind me from being burned. The water chiller was ten feet away and I almost did not make it. Man, that hurt! Dunked my arm into the chiiler to freeze the plastic. The extreme cold sure was welcomed - left my arm in there for ten minutes until I started to shiver. I only got 2nd. degree burns and it left only a small white spot. I was lucky.

I had done lead castings in my early teens as I could not afford precious metals in my Jewelery/Lapidary phase. Lead is dangerous to handle and slight amounts of water in contact with the molten lead cause it to explode. Then I moved to Aluminum. Burned a hole in the bottom of my left foot about an inch deep. Wrong safety gear. No one to blame but myself. I was real lucky. I don't melt any metals anymore unless I am using a cutting torch to cut something off or a solder pot for tinning leads. Either way sasfety is the #1 goal. The solder pot goes into an area the is safe to work with the materials and the pot cannot be bumped or tipped.

Al Messer
07-26-2003, 07:30 PM
Shed, PLEASE buy a copy of Dave Gingery's book on "Building a Charcoal Foundry" from Lindsay Publications and start on Page One and go from there. Learn all the safety practices, learn how to make a pattern, make and/or obtain some safety clothing and tools, learn how to melt Aluminum with Charcoal and an old vacuum cleaner blower, and go on from there.

ibewgypsie
07-26-2003, 07:50 PM
Well....
I suggest buying Gingery's book on charcoal foundry.

I am scarred up from learning on my own. From riding a motorcycle up the white line and bouncing off a tanker truck, to setting my tennis shoe on fire recently. I am still learning, but I got some experiences to pass on. Leather will not stop you from getting burned, it will reduce the injuries. Welding gloves are not casting gloves, but they help. At the very least, leather Apron, shoe covers and a face shield.

I wish you were closer, I need a smart kid around to sweep up and help around the shop.

I have a 16 year old that has deaf ears to what "dad" tells him. I forcast some scars in his future. Easier to relax and listen for five minutes to someone who knows then to spend weeks curing injuries. None of the books go deep enough into saftey. I worked around Wheyland foundry for long enough to see what molten metal does when it hits concrete. I ran as fast as I could. I think that is called fight or flight syndrome. I'm not a coward, but I took off like a deer. Smart enough to be aware that I am not bulletproof.

billr
07-26-2003, 07:54 PM
Dave;

man, i didn't mean to sound like i was accusing anyone of anything. i came down on him myself.

the boy has been casting bullets for years. he *should* know by now.

i have to agree with you about the preparation part. however, i can also recall being young [a while back] and thinking that i was bulletproof and i could probably get by cutting this corner or that one.

it took me years to learn that wasn't how it is. like i said before, i am don't have the knowledge to guide him. i get in enough trouble with what i do have.

Al;

i bought the book for him and he should have it by now. hopefully he will listen to your advice. it is exactly the same as mine was.

it is hot in Texas. i hope it is cooler where you guys are.

later.
bill

spkrman15
07-26-2003, 08:02 PM
Shed ,

One thing i have learned growing up is that experience is worth as much if not more then information. This BB is full of experience. Trust the ppl who are trying to help you. I know it might seem like they are telling you what to do, we are, but that is just so we can keep you around and talk about all the thing you have done and are going to do. Don`t let impatience rob you of the pleasures the futur has to offer. Master that and you will be a far greater man then most!!

Spkrman15

P.S. Keep us informed as to what you are doing. We want to help.

steve schaeffer
07-26-2003, 09:51 PM
shed,
i too am a younger man, at 25 years old, but i have some experience for you that you should never forget! i worked at ltv steel in cleveland ohio for three years. molten metal is extremely dangerous whether it be 400 molten tons in a ladle where i worked, or one pound in a small backyard foundry. you need to treat molten metal unlike anything you have ever messed with before! acid, fireworks and fire dont even come close to the amount of devastation molten metal can cause if you are not careful and knowledgeable on the subject.

HERE IS MY NUMBER ONE RULE FOR YOU: ANY KIND OF WATER BASED OR OTHER LIQUID, AND MOLTEN METAL DO NOT MIX! WHEN WATER EXPANDS INTO STEAM IT EXPANDS AT A PHENOMENAL AND EXPONENTIAL RATE, SOMETHING LIKE 10,000 TO ONE. WHAT THIS MEANS IS THAT A TEASPOON OF WATER, THAT SUDDENLY HAD MOLTEN METAL POURED OVER IT WOULD EXPLODE MORE VIOLENTLY THEN A STICK OF DYNAMITE, AND IM NOT JOKING. IT WILL KILL YOU AND ANYONE AROUND. THIS ALSO INCLUDES THE GROUND AROUND YOUR FOUNDRY, IF THE DIRT IS MOIST, AND MOLTEN METAL HITS IT, IT WILL EXPLODE. MY FINAL EXAMPLE, IS FROM A TRAINING VIDEO I SAW. AN ALUMINUM FOUNDRY IN AUSTRALIA WAS LEVELED, ANDI MEAN LEVELED, DUE TO A STEAM EXPLOSION. THIS WAS A HUGE FACILITY, TOTALLY BLOWN AWAY. DO YOU KNOW WHAT FROM? A PLASTIC POP BOTTLE WITH SOME POP STILL LEFT IN IT, MADE IT INTO THE ALUMINUM SCRAP BINS. A TOWMOTOR LOADED UP THE HOPPER, AND CHARGED THE REVERB FURNACE. WHEN THE LOAD SUBMERSED INTO THE MOLTEN BATH IT BLEW AND KILLED SEVERAL PEOPLE, PLUS DESTROYED A WHOLE PLANT. I HOPE THIS INFO IS NOT TAKEN LIGHTLY, THIS IS VERY SERIOUS STUFF. I AM SELF TAUGHT IN MANY WAYS, BUT I HAVE ALWAYS READ TO GREAT LENGTHS ON WHAT I WAS GETTING INTO. PLEASE READ UP, AND WHEN YOU THINK YOU ARE TOTALLY CONFIDENT, RE READ AND ASK QUESTIONS. DONT EVER GET COCKY WITH MOLTEN METAL. DONT GET DISCOURAGED BY THIS MESSAGE EITHER. METAL WORK CAN BE DONE VERY SAFELY, THAT IS JUST THE DIFFERENCE. THE RIGHT WAY WILL GET YOU SOME NICE PARTS AND PIECES, THE WRONG WAY WILL MAKE PARTS AND PIECES OUT OF YOU! GOOD LUCK, AND BE CAREFUL!
P.S., NOT YOUR DADDY, HA HA

STEVE SCHAEFFER.

Thrud
07-27-2003, 01:28 AM
Steve
Exactly! Well said.

Evan
07-27-2003, 01:37 AM
John,

Please listen to all these smart and experienced people. Be safe.

Joel
07-27-2003, 02:20 AM
I think he get's the idea. Shed, why don't you post an update on your next plans. You've gotten everybody curious.

steve schaeffer
07-27-2003, 05:19 AM
thrud,
thanks, it feels good to be on the giving end for a change

when you know, you know, right?

steve

Shed Machinist
07-27-2003, 11:09 AM
My next project is the welding table from I believe Mike Burdick's ealier post about Lincoln projects. But before i jump to that I know someone who would really like me to build them a power file. I would like to take him up on the offer Because i get paid http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif. Well, I am still working on the foundry and i will never surrendur to it. But i am gonna wait a couple days to a couple weeks to get really in to it again. I want to play with my new toy, a drill press that i am getting in the next couple of days. After that i think i am gonna get a welder and a bench grinder. Gradually increasing the size of my shop. Eventually i would like to build a larger shop because mine is like 12 by 8. big enough for now but not for long. Thanks for all the tips.

Shed Machinist
07-27-2003, 11:19 AM
I think i am gonna build a Bar-B-Que, Maybe.
And a charcoal maker.

[This message has been edited by Shed Machinist (edited 07-27-2003).]

Thrud
07-27-2003, 07:22 PM
steve schaeffer:
10-4 brother!

Jeffery71
07-27-2003, 09:53 PM
Shed

This may be getting a little off topic. But have you thought about doing some forging with your funace?. There are alot of great things you can make both ornamental work and certain tools. I think forging is a bit safer than casting. I haven't been following this real close but if you choose to continue with casting. Be sure to use the proper OIL base sand for your molds.. There is a water base sand but stay away from that. I have used it before but I will never again I feel it is far to dangerous. (Exploding molds) I wish that they would not even sell it. I haven't looked lately maybe they dont' sell it anymore? Anyways I think it is great that you are doing somethign with your hands I know growing up this type of work kept me out of trouble and the experience you gain from it will be usefull for a life time. You will look at others and think how can they not know how to fix this or that.

Best of luck
Becareful! We want you to have a long liftime of fun working with your hands!

Jeff Tice

Space
07-27-2003, 10:32 PM
Does you local high school have a metals class? Thats where I got the chance to try foundry work. If nothing else maybe the instructor can help you with some information. Mark