Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Making a Nail Header


Yesterday I had to start making some large square nails for a display.  The plan was to cut stock blanks of 3/8” square bar cut in 4” lengths.  I would first upset the head a bit then draw a square point on the anvil.  Then draw the shaft to 5/16” square on the power hammer.  The head would be finished using a hand held header over the hardy hole.

A quick check revealed that my nail headers were all dedicated to smaller stock so the first step would actually be to make a header.  I selected a working length bar of 1” square hot rolled.  I drilled a 1/4” pilot hole, centered about 3/4” from the end.  The bar end was brought it to a high heat in the coal fire and the hole opened with a blunt bullet punch on the HFP using a grease with coal dust lubrication.

With another hight heat I used a handled square punch and hand sledge over the hardy hole and punched the square hole.  After checking to make sure the opening was the proper size I drew out the handle in two more heats.  

Final dressing was done with the pedestal grinder, angle grinder and file. The tool was heated again and water quenched. Being mild steel it won’t get much harder but it will probably be fine for the planned short run. If it shows signs otherwise, I’ll case harden it.

This morning I made a sketch and posted it to the 3D Warehouse.




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