wrought iron

another noob question... how can i recognize wrought iron, i mean i see old metal frequently like in old buildings and i just wonder how i would know, i
gather this is increasingly hard to find so if i have the chance i don't want to loose it
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wrote:

Sit it out in the rain for a hundred years, then look at the rust. If it's fibrous (looks a bit like weathered timber), then you've found your wrought iron. If you're near a port city, there'll be an old anchor or something up on a plinth somewhere. A look at that will usually show you what it looks like.
Another way is to find any ferrous construction (maybe a bridge) from before the age of cheap Bessemer steel. This will be made of cast iron and wrought iron. Cast iron is strong in compression and easily shaped into complex solids, wrought iron is strong in tension and formed by forging. Looking at the shape of bridge components on an old bridge, or where they'd have their forces applied, then you'll be able to see which is which quite easily.
--
Smert' spamionam

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thx, i'm familiar with cast but was uncertain about the wrought, i think i've seen it though, thx for the help

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On Tue, 30 Nov 2004 15:24:58 +0000, Andy Dingley

For some reason I can just see someone out with a hacksaw cutting some of the tension members off of an old bridge that is still in use. I think I've seen too many episodes of The Red Green Show ;o) Bear
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bear wrote:

lol...I feel your pain more than you'd think! This past summer, just finished up the restoration work on a Whipple bow string arch Erie Canal change bridge - in fact one of the only ones left with cast tubular compression members. The lower (tension) chords are the original wrought iron and yeah, the stuff is kind of priceless. I did a bunch of the welding/forging repairs and helped out with assembly and final lift. If you want to take a peek, check out:
http://www.eriecanal.org/MacedonPalmyra.html
scroll to the bottom of the page to see the bridge. It's an old cutie. Toughest part of the project was finding the danged stones for the abutments!
Bert
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Saw partway through the bar then bend and break off the remaining piece, if it is fibrous if is wrought if it is smooth and has grain it is steel
Roger Degner

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rgr, allot easier than waiting the 1000 years

know,
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Wrought iron is markedly softer than any modern steel. Including the now rare 1020. You can probably tell by cutting it with your favorite jack knife. After trying your knife on some modern steel like a common angle or channel. (A36).
If it marks easier ... its probably wrought.
May be a bit hard on your knife edge :)
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Harry Putnam wrote: Including the

1018 is readily available. Buy it at any steel supplier or machine shop.
Wrought iron has a lot of magic connected to it. Many "blacksmiths" love the "bugity bugity". The more the better. Truth is working with wrought iron is a major pain in the ass. Get some and try the stringy crap. Give me A36 or 1018 any day.
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GP, Wrought iron is a funny thing. The earlier the manufacturing date of the raw material the more likely you are to find material that is troublesome to work with. That's because of the lack of control in it's manufacture. With sulphur, phosphorous and slag percentages varying enough to make some hot short and some cold short. But by the early 20th century these bugs were worked out here in Pittsburgh by the A.M.Beyers co. Their product was sublime. I would trade every ounce of mild steel for a chance to have a couple of tons to work with. Alas, the only known supply of this stuff became rebar for a furnace floor 20 years ago. Some 10 tons or so of 3/4" square.
Glen G.
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glen wrote:

date
it's
of
20
Glen,
I used to have a book "Wrought Iron" about the Beyers Co. and their process. If my memory is working today I think they actually "mixed in" the silaceous fibers that are found in "traditional" wrought iron. This would end up being a product very much like the Pure Iron that has been around (now gone) the last few years. I have not tried pure iron but have heard both good and bad about it. I guess it would be easy to work without the bothersome splitting when forging at lower than welding heat.
gp
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