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Alternate fire brick material

Discussion in 'Forges, Ovens, Kilns, & Salt Pots' started by Jackson, Jan 22, 2015.

  1. Jackson

    Jackson New Member

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    Looks like I will be building a small forge. Where I live fire brick and any heat resistant blackets or batting is next to impossible to find. So I'm thinking about making my own insulation. I'm thinking about a 5 gal. Metal bucket with a port in the side that will hold my 220000 btu tiger torch. For the liner I was thinking about a mixture of perlite, sand, potters clay and plaster of paris. I'm not too concerned about longevity because I wouldn't have much invested in it. I plan to make 3-4 knives. What do you Guy's think ??? Any thoughts or suggestion would be appreciated.
     
  2. Alexander13

    Alexander13 Member

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    I would try just mixture of sand, potter's clay and a bit of finely shredded newspaper. Mix them together, make you form, let it slowly dry out, fire it and then try it out as a forge. Might work. I do know that when plaster gets trapped in wet clay it causes the clay to explode when it's fired, so that might not be good for your structure.
    Any way sounds very inventive, good luck and let us know how it works out. Just out of curiosity where are you that you can't get fire bricks and such?
    Joel
     
  3. Mythtaken

    Mythtaken Staff Member CKM Staff

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    If you don't mind ordering, you can try Tucker's Pottery Supplies in ON (http://www.tuckerspottery.com) They've got bricks, blanket, ITC 100. Good service and pretty fast delivery.
     
  4. Jackson

    Jackson New Member

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    Why newspaper ? Maybe because it would turn to carbon. Interesting thought. I live in the upper Fraser Valley and I could drive into Vancouver, but I really hate going there. Maybe what I need to do is mix up a few test batch's and see how it stands up to the torch.
     
  5. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker

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    Hi Jackson,

    Along the same line of thinking, I was intrigued by a video back in 2012 from SugarCreekForge on YouTube.
    Some kitty litter and vermiculite. Not an endorsement and your mileage may vary, but ya got to love the idea of making it out of stuff from the supermarket!



    Dan
     
  6. Jackson

    Jackson New Member

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    Thanks Dan, I didn't get any audio but it jogged my memory. I remembered that cheap dollar store kitty littler was just plain clay pellets. That video answered a question I was going to ask about weather or not a vent was needed in the back. Guess not. I bought 20 liters of perlite and a bag of mortor mix today. I'll get some kitty littler to supplement my small brick of potters clay and mix up a small test batch and torture test it after it cures.
     
  7. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker

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    There is a second video (part 2?) where he finishes and fires it.

    Dan
     
  8. Jackson

    Jackson New Member

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    Did some research tonight on the interenet and found out that vermiculite retains moisture which would not be a good choice for our purpose. Fireclay is know as "Bentonite Clay" aka "Kitty Litter" from the dollar store, cheaper the better, no additives like deoderizers etc. So my first and only attempt hahaha will be
    2.5 parts mortor mix
    2.0 parts Bentonite Clay "Kitty Litter"
    1.5 parts perlite
    1# brick potters clay
    Water as needed
    Sounds good to me, time will tell.
     
  9. Alexander13

    Alexander13 Member

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    The newspaper would cause air pockets when it burns out and should give a bit more insulating value. But it might not be noticeable. It was just a thought might help might not. interested in seeing how it works out.
    Good luck
     
  10. Jackson

    Jackson New Member

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    I made three bricks a few days ago. The first was the mix I posted above and two more that are modified. I baked them last night in a toaster oven. I have no idea what I'm doing but I baked them for 20 min. @200* and let them cool, I did that again going up in 50* increments to 450* They all look good. I wont have time untill thursday but I'm going to test them with my tiger torch to see how they stand up. I should have made a mold for them to keep them more standard because they are all different sizes. I should still be able to see which is the best. Thing is they look like fire bricks ;)
     
  11. Slannesh

    Slannesh Active Member

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    And how did they turn out?

    I am working on 2.0 of my forge but using a different method, coating Perlite with some high quality potter's clay slip and Aluminum Oxide with some Sodium Silicate to help as a high temp adhesive. The same mix without the AO has been holding up in my smaller forge, I just needed one that would handle bigger steel and had the AO laying around so I figured i'd use it and see what happens.
     
  12. BigUglyMan

    BigUglyMan Active Member

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    Try going to the local Home Harwdare. The usually have hard firebrick. Or any woodstove shop.
     
  13. poppa bear

    poppa bear Member

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    I use angle stone at present, it's what I had laying around and well I have to admit it holds the heat great.

    I built my wood, charcoal and coal burning forge just by layering the brick and made the "cap" (lack of a better word) with the same stone.

    Pb
     
  14. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker

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    I haven't made any yet, but I found the following simple recipe:

    21 cups plaster of Paris
    21 cups sandbox sand
    15 cups clean water

    Source:


    Another even simpler recipe I have seen is:
    1 part furnace cement (like Imperial high temp fireplace mortar) to 4 parts perlite.
    Depending on how thick the cement is, you can add a little bit of water to thin into a smear-able paste.
    The pail I got from CanTire was THICK!

    http://www.canadiantire.ca/en/pdp/imperial-hi-temp-stove-furnace-cement-710-ml-0642704p.html
    http://www.canadiantire.ca/en/pdp/miracle-gro-perlite-8-8-l-0594422p.html#.VnCPHL-gZKg

    Dan
     
  15. poppa bear

    poppa bear Member

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    I've made it and I find it really gets quite brittle after a few Burns 3-5 that is.
     
  16. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker

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    Which recipe did you use?
    I do know the Quick-Crete fireplace mortar gets flakey after a few firings.

    Dan
     

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