Please reccomend some books

I need some reccommended blacksmithing books.
What my current primary interests now are;
identifying steels (sparks, ect)
. . .sure would appreciate some imput on this. . .chas
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The_edge_of_the_anvil (I have an old, old version, there's a newer one out there.)
This is a good read on heat treating:
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and steel selection for woodworking tools
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and this is a heck of a good read, if you can stand it (much longer)
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This is a really deep subject, IMHO. You can learn a lot about this subject right on the internet. Just google "hardening steel" to get started.
But a lot depends on how deeply you want to go into it and what the ramifications are for being wrong with your heat treatment or in guessing what steel you actually have.
I know all too many guys who use the same hardening and tempering process on whatever steel they are working with.
I know I'll get a lot of comments for saying this, but the least scientific approach to identifying steels is spark testing, again IMHO. If you want to get anywhere with that process, you need to get close to someone who can show you, hands-on how they do it.
I see a couple of reasons why someone would want to Identify steels, other than knowing for sure because you labeled it when you bought it , like I do: 1. You want to use junkyard steel just because---- 2. You have already have some steel that you need identify because the tag fell off or because you thought you'd never forget what it was and now you did forget or you found unmarked stock at a sale or auction.
For reason number one, google "junkyard steel" and read on. One of the first hits takes you to anvilfire. Looks like a pretty good article to me. It also points you to a list of "junkyard steels". This list may be a good starting point, but the article posses some valid concerns about using it blindly.
For reason number two, I have heard that shops that do use spark testing usually use it to determine which one out of 2 or 3 possibilities a certain bar is. They have marked and stored samples of each steel in a safe place. They spark test the unknown bar and then compare the sparks to the control samples. And they probably do this a LOT to get good at it. I think spark testing is useful to separate steels of widely varying analyses, but do you think you can tell the difference between 1060 and 1084? ----And bet you life on it in a critical application?
Even with a metalurgical lab to do the analysis, things can go wrong. We once destroyed a 300 pound coil of 1/4" diameter molybdenum wire and part of a vacuum furnace by using the wrong annealing process because "the lab" told us it was tungsten.
Pete Stanaitis ---------------
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Pete S

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