I’ve always wanted to get into backyard blacksmithing. I finally found the time to make a small forge.
Paint can (clean one) – I got mine from Rona. $7 seemed expensive and you can probably find it cheaper somewhere else.
Furnace Cement – High temperature cement. Also found mine at Rona. Was $16
Ceramic fiber matting – I ordered this one off ebay. You want enough to line the bottom and the whole outside.
Propane Torch – Typical propane torch… Not sure how else to explain it.
I started with drilling a hole into the can about 2″ above the bottom. I used a small drill bit and increased the size to make the larger hole. Eventually it was large enough to fit the fitting into it. It doesn’t matter right now if there is gaps around it. We will deal with that later. It will just need to be someone secure.
I got pretty dirty doing this.
Once I had it inside there I took the blow torch and heated up around the fitting. This made the metal malleable and able to bend easily. Once it was warm I stuck a screwdriver into it to bend it. Worked like a charm and it was now aimed more to the side instead of straight into the middle.
Next up I took the ceramic fabric matting and lined the inside. I cut the bottom one to fit. Unfortunately I didn’t order enough to completely circle the sides, so I took the edges I cut off the bottom and stuck them in the gaps. It worked well but it isn’t the best solution and next time I’ll do better.
After lining the can it’s time to use that fancy cement you bought. Add some water to make it a little easier to work with. The fabric matting will soak up a lot so you may need several coats of this stuff. to make it work. Do the bottom first, then put in the matting on the sides and do those. I also put some around the fitting on the outside. This is why I said gaps didn’t matter that much because they would be sealed by the cement. It’s a big gooey mess.
Drying time is dependent on your brand. Some brands say 24 hours, mine unfortunately seemed to take 72 hours. it also needs to be heated to cured properly. Luckily its a forge and heating just kind of goes with it. The cement changes colour when curing and turns a lighter grey. It also bubbled a little bit as you can see in the pictures..
I had some issues with the blow torch not staying on initially as I was lighting the torch outside and sticking the end into the fitting. Once I stuck the torch in first and lit it from the inside it worked perfectly. Now to figure out what to make with it!