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The Rich History of Metal Forging as an Art

The Rich History of METAL FORGING AS AN ART ORIGINS OF THE FORGING PROCESS - 4000 BC The earliest recorded metal forging for the use of man dates to at least 4000BC. The earliest metals, such as bronze and iron, were used to create hand tools and weapons. The forging of wrought iron and crucible steel continued until near the end of the 19th century for similar purposes. Contemporary metals are still forged to produce weapons today. Forging Through the 19th Century FORGESMITHS OF THE 19TH CENTURY WERE KNOWN FOR THEIR SKILL AT THE HAND AND OPEN DIE FORGING OF WROUGHT IRON. AT THE TIME, WROUGHT IRON WAS ONLY PRODUCED IN HEATS OF 50 KILOGRAMS, WHICH MEANT THAT THE SMITHS BECAME SKILLFUL IN THE NEW FORM OF HAMMER WELDING. THE INVENTION OF THE BESSEMER STEEL MAKING PROCESS IN 1856 WAS A MAJOR BREAKTHROUGH FOR THE FERROUS FORGING INDUSTRY. IT HAS BEEN ACCEPTED THAT THE FIRST CAVITY STEEL FORGINGS USINGA CLOSED DIE PROCES COMMENCED IN THE UNITED STATES IN 1862 FOR PRODUCTION OF COMPONENTS FOR THE COLT REVOLVER. Steel Making Developments, The invention of the basic steel making technique called the Bessemer process meant that cheaper supplies of iron ore containing high phosphorus and sulfur levels could be smelted to produce good quality steel. At the same time, another open hearth steel making process toward the end of the 19th century meant that the forging industry now had a low cost and high volume raw material. 20th Century - The Forging Press The introduction of motor vehicles (in particular Henry Ford's T Model) meant a greater demand for forgings developed in the early years of the 20th century. Up until 1930, when National Machinery Company of the USA introduced the first forging press (Maxipress), all forgings were produced on hammers. The advantage of the forging press was shown in higher production rates, as well as a lesser degree of skill required to producing forgings. The introduction of the forging press did not obsolete the forging hammer, but rather challenged the manufacturers to improve their product. Of course, there are still many works which are best made on hammers. Modern Technology & Computers in Metal Forging Because of modern technology, we now have computer controlled hammers and presses that are capable of making a wide range of components in a variety of materials for many applications. Metal forging has been applied to many industries in our modern age including aerospace, automobile, mining and agriculture, to name only a few. Infographic provided by WAA WEN DE LL A UGU ST

The Rich History of Metal Forging as an Art

shared by WendellAugust on Jul 14
Since the dawn of time, man has bended, sculpted and molded metals to meet a variety of needs. In fact, the art of metal forging can be traced back to as early as 4000 BC, where nomads and cavemen ali...




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