Primitive Technology: One-Way Blower Iron Smelt & Forging Experiment
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About This Video:
I tested the one-way spinning blower in an iron smelt and it is more effective than the previous both way spinning blower. Using the same amount of ore and charcoal, the original blower yielded 30 g of iron where as the new blower yielded 51 g. The previous all time record was 41 g from several years ago but the new blower it beat that by 10 g on its first run. The energy saved by having the fan spin constantly in one direction no doubt contributes to the better performance of the blower. As with the old blower, the new one produces high carbon iron prills (cast iron blobs) in slag. The brittle slag crushes easily while the iron prills remain intact to be picked out by hand or gravity separated with panning. The iron prills were also quite large and more numerous than smelts done with the old blower.

Also in this video is a forging experiment. Using iron from previous smelts, a crude bar of iron was melted together into in a mold. The iron prills were placed in a clay mold, put into a forge and heated with charcoal using a flat nozzle tuyere. The process produced a 8cm long, 2.5cm wide bar. This bar was then heated to a red heat with wood for a while to anneal it, making it malleable in theory. However, when I tried to forge it, it crumbled apart. The waste iron was set aside in a pot for re-smelting so as not to lose it.

About Primitive Technology:
Primitive technology is a hobby where you build things in the wild completely from scratch using no modern tools or materials. These are the strict rules: If you want a fire, use a fire stick – An axe, pick up a stone and shape it – A hut, build one from trees, mud, rocks etc. The challenge is seeing how far you can go without utilizing modern technology. I do not live in the wild, but enjoy building shelter, tools, and more, only utilizing natural materials. To find specific videos, visit my playlist tab for building videos focused on pyrotechnology, shelter, weapons, food & agriculture, tools & machines, and weaving & fiber.

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