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Re: [Orchid] What is the preferred hammer for....
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Alberic Wednesday, February 20, 2013
   
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Hi Richard,

    The short answer is. whatever hammer works. I think I'd probably
    reach for a reasonably sharpish cross-peen. Say 1/8" radius on the
    working end. 

    If you're trying to make half-round wire, bashing it out against a
    mandrel is just about the last way I'd think of to do it. (just
    about guaranteed to ding up your mandrel, for starters.) 

    A better answer is to make half-round (D section) wire *first* then
    make a ring out of it. 

    Couple of ways to do that, depending on what gear you've got. 

    If you've got one of the big Durstons, you've probably got the studs
    for outboard rollers. Yes, half-round rolls are expensive, but so is
    time. Just get the rolls, if you can. 

    Next step is a round wire drawplate. Take a bit of wire a bit larger
    than the thickness of the 'D' you want to end up with, and fold it
    in half. Solder the joined end together, for about an inch. (splay
    it out into a 'Y' to prevent it soldering beyond the point you
    want.) Forge/file a taper onto the soldered bit, so you can get it
    through your drawplate. Draw it down a couple of times, until it
    becomes the "D" section you want. The trick to it is that you stick
    a bench knife between the wires on the backside of the drawplate.
    Set the back edge of the knife against the back of the drawplate,
    and set it so that the blade is either vertical or horizontal. The
    reason for the blade is to keep the wires from twisting around each
    other as they go through the drawplate. (you'll end up with a
    barberpole without the knife.) You will have to do some test runs in
    copper to see what size starting wire you need in order to end up
    with the size you want. 

    I've never heard of running wire between the flat rolls and a sheet
    of copper, but there's no conceptual reason why it couldn't work.
    I'd use pretty thick copper. The point of the copper is to cushion
    the bottom ("D") part of the wire, so it needs to be at least as
    thick as the 'D' section. You'll probably get a sort of squashed "D"
    or fat-sided oval, rather than a true half-round profile. 

FWIW,
Brian

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