Sunday, September 6, 2009

Patterned Metals

This semester I am taking a patterned metals class with Tedd McDonah (a piece of his mokume work pictured above). We are learning how to make mokume gane and Damascus steel. On Wednesday half the class fired their billets. My turn is next Wednesday. After I fire my billet I will do a more detailed post on the process and take you through the whole thing. For now, here are some teaser photos. Oh, and just in case you didn't know...100 degrees outside and a 2000 degree forge makes for one very hot night!!

The picture above is of the metal stacked in alternating layers in the torque plates ready for firing. We did billets in combos of copper, nickel silver, and brass.Putting the billet in the forge.Heating up the billet until bonding of the metals takes place. The metal sweat beads above are evidence that the layers have bonded. Removing the billet from the forge.Clamping in a vice to remove torque plates.The billet after being removed from the forge.Hot forging the billet down to a thinner gauge.

The billet after it has been hot forged. The next step will be to roll it down in the rolling mill to a workable size and then pattern it and roll it out even more. Stay tuned for a more thorough post on the process!


Ginga Squid said...

OMG!!! That looks like a lot of fun! Can't wait to hear more.

Katie Do said...

Very interesting! I too can't wait for the next post. I've always wondered about the process!