I’ve mentioned before that I did woodworking in one form or another for some 40 years before getting into blacksmithing.
I had not been into blacksmithing very long when I began noting the similarities and differences in the techniques of the two crafts. I learned that to do blacksmithing I must become familiar with a new skill set and break some old habits. One of the first things which struck me as different occurred in cutting stock.
In my wood working experience I cut a measured piece off of the parent stock completely and that was that. In my blacksmithing I often found it more efficient to cut a piece only part way off.
Using the hardy hot cut - I learned not to cut off a piece all the way and let it fly. Now I cut it most of the way and break it off by hand with tongs and put the hot drop in a safe place.
Cutting a piece of stock for incorporation into a weldment - cut it 90% of the way, put in a convenience bend to position the piece using the parent stock as a handle. Weld the piece in place and break off the parent stock handle.
Using the bandsaw or a cutoff disc I stop just a but shy of complete severance. That way I can break off the piece and store the remainder without dropping either on the floor.
When an exact length is not important I use a severing die in the hydraulic press to sever stock cold. The blade has a slight relief so complete severance is avoided and the bridge is so thin I can snap it with an easy bend.
It seems like I’ve switched from the notion of, by default, cutting for severance to cutting most of the way but leave a thread of attachment.
|Notch, bend, use parent stock for handle.|
|Weld in place and snap off handle.|