References on Heat Treating

I'm thinking of putting together a forge for the purpose of heat treating
smallish parts (up to 3" diameter and 6" long, not necessarily at the same
time). These would be for machine parts, _not_ blades. I'm looking at 4140
or 1050, but all of the books that I've found so far are all about heat
treating tool steel.
Are there any books out there with recommendations for heat treating steel
machine steels as opposed to tool steels? Does the list have any guidance
for annealing to machine, then hardening back up, such medium-carbon steels?
Tim Wescott
begin 666 Tim Wescott.vcf
Reply to
Tim Wescott
Loading thread data ...
I'd suggest two books.
Machinery's Handbook.
Anyone who ever quotes a steel by number rather than just saying "steel" _needs_ a copy of this. Second hand copies are rife on eBay. You'll find basic recommendations, time and temperature profiles for any commonplace steel. And a huge amount more.
The Practical Apprentice's Guide to Heat Treatment (1950) (or similar titles)
Any second hand bookshop in a rustbelt town, and a 1950's technical college or industrial handbook. The theory is the same today as it was then, and although the industrial processes have changed, the domestic workshop is now running with much the same sophistication as a 1930's-1960's factory.
-- Smert' spamionam
Reply to
Andy Dingley
My Machinery's Handbook (26th edition) has the temperatures, but it doesn't have times. I'm specifically concerned with knowing what kind of soak times I need to take my pieces of hardened alloy steel (which I believe is 4140) and anneal it so I can work it reasonably -- but I'll also want to harden it when I'm done.
I've tried to anneal this steel by heating it with a cutting torch then covering it with cold ashes, but it used lots of acetalyne and didn't soften the piece much. I obviously need a more sophisticated setup.
I'll look for the other book -- I live in the Pacific Northwest, so the drive to Detroit is a bit much just for a book.
Reply to
Tim Wescott
A very rough rule of thumb is a soak time of 1 hour per inch of thickness. That lets the temperature equalize thoughout the piece. Do not overheat. You want to bring the piece up to no more than 100 F above its listed critical temperature. (Overheating causes the grain to coarsen.) You don't want to stay at temperature longer than required for the temperature to equalize, either. The rough rule of thumb should be sufficient time. You might be able to use a somewhat shorter time, depending on the particular part geometry.
As you can see, a torch is only suitable for relatively thin pieces. For substantial pieces, you need an oven.
Reply to
Gary Coffman
The Heat Treater's Guide. I found a copy in the engineering library at my local university. Data from the foundry for damn near every SAE on the market today. You'll need an oven with a good controller, Paragon Industries, they're somewhere near Dallas, Tx. Try the online Yellow Pages at AT&T.
Reply to
Charly the Bastard

PolyTech Forum website is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.