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Firebrick questions

Discussion in 'Shop Talk - BladeSmith Questions and Answers' started by Bad Ninja, Feb 4, 2019.

  1. Bad Ninja

    Bad Ninja

    Dec 19, 2018
    So this site has bitten me with the knife making bug.
    I have read some stickies and frankly am getting lost in the all the info here, and cant seem to find what I am looking for.

    I'm not trying to start a business and just want to make a few knives for myself, for fun.

    I need to build a small, simple forge for heat treating the knife like objects I hack out from NJ 1084 stock.
    A 2 brick forge seems like the best way to dip my toes into this pool.

    My question is what type of fire bricks to buy, and where is a good place to order them?
    Thanks in advance.
  2. rjedoaks

    rjedoaks Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 15, 2009
    What you want are soft insulating brick. Most brick yards don’t carry these where I live. Find them online.
  3. Randy3000


    Jun 3, 2017
    4 5x9x2.5 inch K23 bricks from High Temp Inc has done me well. For some reason I always get a partial refund on the shipping cost, but even without the partial refund the total cost is cheapest I have found.
    Bad Ninja likes this.
  4. milkbaby


    Aug 1, 2016

    Get the three firebricks flat rate priority mail shipping. You can use 2 for the 2 brick and have a third for backup if there's a problem. It's easy to carve out the chamber. I just used a hacksaw to cut out pieces and then a metal spoon to smooth out the chamber.

    Edited to add: Here's an old pic of my old 2 brick set up. I've since upgraded to the 30k BTU burner from Atlas Knife and Tool: http://www.atlasknife.com/product/atlas-30k-burner/ which was necessary to provide more heat as I expanded the size of the chamber to do larger knives.
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2019
  5. Bad Ninja

    Bad Ninja

    Dec 19, 2018
    Thank you very much.
    That's exactly what I needed.
    Ordered 2 bricks (no flat rate for 3 bricks.. would have cost another $10 +6 for that third brick..yikes!!)
    If they survive shipping I should be set.
  6. Atlas Knife Company

    Atlas Knife Company KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Feb 16, 2010
    I love it when I can simply copy/paste from a previous post:

    First, that's a bad design of 2BF(two brick forge). This design is much better:

    Second, your torch is definitely an issue. If you want to stick with a factory made plumbing torch, this is the best you can get. I've tested probably 15 different models, and this one is hands down the best:

    You're much better off with a 30k BTU burner. Here's a link to one specifically made for use in 2BF:

    No one else, that I have found, makes a burner this size. Most start around 75k BTU and are really too heavy/bulky to work well in a 2BF. Kind of like using a fire hose to wash your dishes.
    Bad Ninja likes this.
  7. Bad Ninja

    Bad Ninja

    Dec 19, 2018
    Thank you.
    Ive read that about a year ago here on BF, then looked for 2 days before posting this thread.

    This site has so much information, but it also has so many subforums and combined threads that it's like looking for a needle in a haystack.
    I know a little about moving metal, but I've never heat treated steel before to make knife.
    I'd like to use what I have in my shop as much as possible, so my wife doesn't flip out. I have several propane torches, so I'm going to try those first.
    If those don't work well, I'll follow your link and buy the one you suggested.
    Thank you again!!!

    Hobby knife making:
    Why buy something for $30, when you can make it yourself for $300, amirite?
    Atlas Knife Company likes this.
  8. MBB

    MBB Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 18, 2014
    milkbaby and Bad Ninja like this.
  9. Ken H>

    Ken H>

    Dec 31, 2011
    That seems to be the way I think! :)
    Bad Ninja likes this.

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