First home furnace

I want to make a cheap furnace which is capable fo melting brass. First
time doing this so it must be as simple and as cheap as posible. It
should be gas fueled as I can't get away with loads of smoke and mess in
my small garden. Have no tools which would be helpful nor can i weld, so i
think i will eiether use a plant pot for the cylindrical body or just
visit a few scrap yards and i'm bound to find something i can use. I will
purchase comercial refractory. The crucible will also most likely be paid
I would need some info. on the basics of such a simple furnace, really
i am only asking because i see so many disclaimer notices on foundry
websites which funnerly enough must make people buy their books aswell as
obviously serving as a disclaimer notice.
If i had a big garden with loads of space i would just go ahead and use
my logic, except when it comes to working near other people's homes with a
gas canister my logic could become very explosive which isn't too bad
until i kill burn someones house down. So please give me tips about
safety, and what are the precautions to take when melting brass, i know
zinc is very poisonous and obviously water will make the molten metal
splash everywhere. What material should my crucible be made from, i'm
guessing there might be some which would be adverse to use when attempting
to melt brass because of it's alloy content??
And please give me some info. on how to arrange my furnace, do i need an
air blower and how exactly should i position my burner pipe(i also could
use some correct terminology) inside the funace? should it be opposite the
air inlet should the flame contact the crucible. Should there be a gap
around the burner pipe opening in the furnace or should the radius be
tight to the burner pipe?
Thnx, and as i said before for now i cannot rely on my own brain as it
could be too dangerous even though im sure i could make something which
could melt brass, but for now i wont use too much of my own logic till i
get some experience.
Thanks, James
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In my previous life I took two semesters of metalworking -- yeah, making copper ashtrays for mom'n'dad, perhaps a bong -- and I was struck by the "ferocity" of the gas furnace, ito air, noise, etc.
But the point really was, mebbe check out one in a school, see what you can copy, design-wise, and safety-wise. F'sure I think you'd want the electric-eye ditty for flame detection, with an electric shut-off valve,
A guy I know, a regarded casting place for statues, etc, switched from gas to induction, said he would never go back. Cost a substantial penny, f'sure, but mebbe there are smaller or even diy versions of this, esp. w/ inverter-type technology reaching the rabble-ous shop (m)asses.
Reply to
Proctologically Violated©®
Go to Lindsay Publications online and buy a Gingery book called "build your own melting furnace" or something close to that. Nice plans on how to build one with cheap parts.
Reply to
Karl Townsend
lightless, You're asking for an awful lot of info at oncce. I'd recomend you do some reading first. I have a book, 'The Metalcasters Bible' by C.W. Ammen, TAB books, that has a lot of good information for beginners. Good luck, be safe and have fun. Tom
Reply to
Tom Wait
Gingery's books would be a place to start, he was melting aluminum with homemade equipment and charcoal and the series showed how to build your own shop out of scrap. Brass is a whole other animal although the basic pattern-making skills and such will transfer. There are a number of foundry work reprints that are helpful, might be the local library would have some originals, too. Don't neglect, either, there's a whole bunch of old shop books on there.
If you want propane-fired, do a search on "Mongo burner", these are homemade from plumbing fittings, intended for forges. It should be able to adapt one to some sort of melting furnace without a whole lot of trouble. Castable ceramics and ceramic fiber blankets have revolutionized building forges and furnaces, too. Depending on how big a crucible you want to heat, you might be able to build the works in a 5 gallon bucket. If you can't weld, you're going to have to either find somebody who can or buy your shanks and tongs for crucible handling.
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Google "reil burner" , built from off-the-shelf fittings . Stick it in a Gingery type furnace built into a five gallon steel bucket . Buy a crucible on ebay . Check out ABANA (artist blacksmith ass'n of north america , I think it is) for ideas of alternative furnace designs .
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How much brass at a time?
Propane/Natural Gas, or do you want to use something else?
How many times do you plan to use it?
Can you do your own welding?
A good brass furnace capable of melting 50 or 100 pounds can be built with first class materials for about $500. Would you want to invest that much? If not, how much?
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