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Forge and foundry build

Bofobo

M,Mizera(BOFOBO)
So I've decided to do a foundry and forge build. I started by heading down to hoof and nail in Calgary. On forge road in The SE. Here's a photo of my bill, I ended up with a solid 2'x3' piece of the soft refractory blanket and 3 fire bricks, I plan on looking for another supplier for price comparison but the staff at hoof and nail were awesome, helpful and friendly.
 

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Bofobo

M,Mizera(BOFOBO)
It's a refractory material that is usually used in home fire place installations, pizza ovens and looks like a white building brick that's white and chalkie. I'll provide a photo when I get back to Calgary of the items I picked up.
 

Murdoch

Active Member
That's to much, I have a shop down the road that will sell me $2-3. A Brick. I am building a casting furnace for my project...
 

Janger

(John)
Vendor
Premium Member
From who and where is that @Murdoch ? is that the puffy softer chalk bricks insulating or the harder firebrick fireplace kind?
 

Murdoch

Active Member
From who and where is that @Murdoch ? is that the puffy softer chalk bricks insulating or the harder firebrick fireplace kind?
Kreitmaker is the place in East-York Toronto. Not sure if they have the blankets, but the motor and brick they most certainly do...
Also try Smelko in Milton, they have everything but more expensive...
 

Bofobo

M,Mizera(BOFOBO)
Sounds like quite the expensive trip from AB to TO to buy some bricks, I would imagine the shipping on a large package would not save much more.
I also only grabbed a few items mostly for a price and service comparison.
 

PeterT

Ultra Member
Premium Member
I mentioned this local supplier / link below in one of your other posts. I've seen similar bricks way cheaper online too, but ended up picking up a few locally just to try & happened to be in the area anyway. For my simpleton containment & torching work they are great. You pay off the bricks in waste heat propane within minutes! :) They are very soft & even a bit fragile, I guess that's a function of their low density. Maybe you guys know - they told me some people just cut them with a hacksaw if they need to dimension them for specific kiln building configurations & I see they offer refractory mortars & special high temp adhesives for them. Have you done anything like this? So what is the application for vermiculite? They offer that in 1" thick sections of broader area.

You might try a place called Ceramics Canada in Calgary. I picked up a few of those lightweight high temp kiln making bricks from them when torching up tool steel. I think I got onto them as a distributer from links like this. http://www.psh.ca/index.php?cat_id=160
 

Janger

(John)
Vendor
Premium Member
Vermiculite?! Just a safety caution here vermiculite mica and other minerals are similar to asbestos. Dust from Cutting could be quite hazardous. Vermiculite should not be used in plant pots anymore.

After reading the posts below I did a few google searches. Vermiculite seems to be safe these days. Still do your own research and decide for yourself.
 
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Bofobo

M,Mizera(BOFOBO)
You could cut these bricks with a dull stick but I find the more aggressive the blade the better. I cut some into 1" thick pieces like bread and build a temporary "shack". This works but like mentioned above they are very delicate. This has led me to this new foundry and forge build.
 

Johnwa

Ultra Member
Vermiculite (zonolite) attic insulation tended to be contaminated with asbestos. the vermiculite MSDS doesn't list any particular health concerns other than irritation from breathing the dust.
 

Bofobo

M,Mizera(BOFOBO)
image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg
You could cut these bricks with a dull stick but I find the more aggressive the blade the better. I cut some into 1" thick pieces like bread and build a temporary "shack". This works but like mentioned above they are very delicate. This has led me to this new foundry and forge build.
Here are photos of what I bought from hoof and nail, I looked at the ceramics supply web site mentioned above, the prices look ok and I will make the trip mid week when they are open to see what have they. In the mean time my photos show the saw I use, the bricks, the roll and the pail I cut over to collect dust and broken pieces. I plan to try the plaster/sand method again on a smaller scale with the dust from the cut bricks in place of sand.
 

Murdoch

Active Member
Tim Smelko the owner will give you a tour if you drop in. Hate the website he's got lol. There are a few places around even at your end. I just Google refractory suppliers in Calgary and I found 4 I think. Good luck to you
View attachment 1252 View attachment 1254 View attachment 1255 View attachment 1256
Here are photos of what I bought from hoof and nail, I looked at the ceramics supply web site mentioned above, the prices look ok and I will make the trip mid week when they are open to see what have they. In the mean time my photos show the saw I use, the bricks, the roll and the pail I cut over to collect dust and broken pieces. I plan to try the plaster/sand method again on a smaller scale with the dust from the cut bricks in place of sand.
I've read in another forum that the bricks can be cut clean if you scribe them, then tap with a mallet...
 

Bofobo

M,Mizera(BOFOBO)
Tim Smelko the owner will give you a tour if you drop in. Hate the website he's got lol. There are a few places around even at your end. I just Google refractory suppliers in Calgary and I found 4 I think. Good luck to you

I've read in another forum that the bricks can be cut clean if you scribe them, then tap with a mallet...
I will be happy to confirm or debunk that method if I find enough bricks at a good price
 

Bofobo

M,Mizera(BOFOBO)
image.jpg image.jpg image.jpg HUGE DIFFERENCE IN PRICE!
So I went to ceramics canada today and picked up some more refractory materials. I got a kiln plate/shelf for my propane bottle foundry and the same amout of sqf of blanket for way way less here, also the bricks are $1.50 cheaper. The lady's were super helpful and I did not feel rushed as a stroked my beard and contemplated prices.

And the selection was far greater with these shelf pieces in different sizes, however they did say A tile saw is needed to cut those (square ones) but I got the round to start because I already have a foundry frame I will be reusing.
 

Tom O

Ultra Member
I use the kiln plate in the bottom of my casting furnace using some sand underneath it and another one to set the crucible on while skimming.
They can also sell you a zircon coating to raise the blanket temp to melt steel.
 

Murdoch

Active Member
View attachment 1275 View attachment 1276 View attachment 1277 HUGE DIFFERENCE IN PRICE!
So I went to ceramics canada today and picked up some more refractory materials. I got a kiln plate/shelf for my propane bottle foundry and the same amout of sqf of blanket for way way less here, also the bricks are $1.50 cheaper. The lady's were super helpful and I did not feel rushed as a stroked my beard and contemplated prices.

And the selection was far greater with these shelf pieces in different sizes, however they did say A tile saw is needed to cut those (square ones) but I got the round to start because I already have a foundry frame I will be reusing.
Are you putting a drain at the bottom? Just in case the crucible ruptures...GMurdoch
 
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