Author Topic: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!  (Read 9265 times)

Offline David R.

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #25 on: February 18, 2018, 02:37:45 PM »
Gordon,
We hung the bellows as far back in the corner as possible and as high as we could to maximize head clearance. This limited the amount of room we had above to work the lever pole. We experimented till we came up with this arrangement. At the back of the bellows a rope attaches to the pull hook on the bottom board, feeds through a pulley fixed to a rafter, back down around a pulluy at the window sill and is fixed to the end of the dogwood lever pole. This pole is hinged via the 1/2" rod you can see protruding out of the angle brace. The opposite end of the pole has a pull rope attached. I will try to post some better pictures later. Most of the wood you see is yellow poplar ftom a local saw mill. I could have gotten white oak for the same money but the poplar is a bit lighter and easier to work with.
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Offline David R.

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #26 on: February 18, 2018, 02:41:45 PM »
Here is how we lifted them in place.



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Offline g.pennell

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #27 on: February 18, 2018, 10:19:22 PM »
David, those look awesome!  That’s quite a worthwhile addition, I’d say!

Greg
“Let your gun therefore be the constant companion of your walks” Thomas Jefferson

Offline heelerau

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #28 on: February 20, 2018, 03:05:20 AM »
David, thanks for the additional information.  Will be interested to see the finished set up when it is finally plumbed into the forge.  I have a small set of fireside bellows to repair, you have inspired me to have a go. To hot down under to fire up the forge at the moment, but Autumn seems to be coming early this year so not far away to start again.

Cheers

Gordon
Keep yor  hoss well shod an' yor powdah dry !

Offline David R.

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #29 on: February 21, 2018, 05:32:48 AM »
Here is the plumbing and the apparatus. I tried it out breifly last evening and it works. Seems a little 'heavy'. I wish I had overcome my desire to keep it all original and made lighter valve boards. I think I can tune it a little and get better performance. I already have a couple ideas on how to balance things a bit.













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Offline heelerau

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #30 on: February 23, 2018, 01:52:17 AM »
Maybe add some lead sheet to the long handle, or an extra sheave on the cordage? Thanks for the view of the plumbing. Guess as time and use advances it will come to you how best to trick it up for easier operation. Looking forward to seeing some of your projects that  you will forge in your smithy .

cheers

Gordon
« Last Edit: February 24, 2018, 01:18:36 AM by heelerau »
Keep yor  hoss well shod an' yor powdah dry !

Offline rich pierce

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #31 on: February 23, 2018, 01:54:35 AM »
Very impressive,
St. Louis, Missouri

Offline David R.

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #32 on: February 23, 2018, 02:22:40 AM »
I've already changed the pulley arrangement and it pulls much lighter. I need to change the lever a bit to get a full sweep, and I have an idea for an anti-gravity device for the bottom valve that should speed up the drop.
Alot of guys soup up cars, I'm souping up a bellows!
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Offline marcusb

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #33 on: February 23, 2018, 08:20:54 PM »
Any plans for line shafting in the future ?

Offline David R.

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #34 on: February 24, 2018, 05:34:37 AM »
Wish I had room
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Offline Robby

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #35 on: February 24, 2018, 05:13:25 PM »
A very worthy project, very, very nicely done!!!!! Thank you for taking us along. Now, if you could just post a video of it in use.......... ;D
Robby
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Offline David R.

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #36 on: February 25, 2018, 02:50:28 AM »





.

Well I reconfigured the apparatus and got it working much better. I added anti gravity devices to the bottom valve and that perked it up real well. I made two welds this afternoon with it with no problem. I need to figure out how to add some weight on top when I want high gear for welding. I am pretty pleased with it. I don't know how ti get a video on here Robby.
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Offline Robby

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #37 on: February 25, 2018, 04:00:32 PM »
Hah, me either!!! Thats all right, enjoy the heck out of it!!!!
Robby
molon labe
We the people are the rightful masters of both Congress and the courts, not to overthrow the Constitution but to overthrow the men who pervert the Constitution. A. Lincoln

Offline g.pennell

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #38 on: February 25, 2018, 06:00:26 PM »
Dave, that’s an awesome setup!  I’m envious...maybe someday!

Greg
“Let your gun therefore be the constant companion of your walks” Thomas Jefferson

Offline RED333

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #39 on: March 15, 2018, 04:32:05 AM »
 I need to figure out how to add some weight on top when I want high gear for welding.
Put some lead or cast iron in a bag, tied to a rope and pulley, drop the weight on when needed. Then lift the weight off when done.

This is a cool thread, thanks so much for sharing.


Offline jdm

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #40 on: March 25, 2018, 06:58:13 PM »
Dave I have enjoyed fallowing you through your journey . Thank you!
JIM

Offline KentSmith

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #41 on: April 06, 2018, 04:47:13 PM »
This thread is so cool.  I have a forge set up going that does everything I need and more but after following this I am ready to build a new building, forge, chimney and bellows.  I'd put the video up on YouTube and put the link here.  Heck, you could charge admission to your forge.  Very good job.

Offline David R.

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #42 on: April 07, 2018, 12:50:10 AM »
Well thanks for the positive comments, but,...I have a problem now with the bellows. They worked great initially but during a long forging session after I had worked the bellows pretty hard I noticed it was harder and harder to get a strong blast. I started looking for a leak in my piping but no problems there.
I climbed on the ladder and leaning over to work the lever with one hand I felt air in my face. Here is what happened. The leather I used was repurposed upholstery leather, still in really good condition. Had to sew a few pieces together, no problem, lapped seams and double row of saddle stiches. The problem is the leather we used on the top half had some original factory seams. Here is where my problem lies. These seams aren’t lapped. They hold ok until the leather is worked real good and stretches some. Then all these seams leak! Aarhhgg!
Well the BRAND NEW leather has arrived and I am this moment rigging block and tackle to lower it onto sawhorses for a refit. Heck I’m gonna get good at this!
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Offline WKevinD

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #43 on: April 07, 2018, 04:33:08 AM »
David, wish I was closer. I know this is a labor of love but it is still all labor. I know a throw in of help could ease some of the frustrations, heck if you bought the beer I'm sure it could be done in record time.

Kevin
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Offline David R.

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #44 on: April 08, 2018, 01:01:42 AM »
Here is one of the offending seams, looks good, but won’t hold air.






Here is a seam that will hold air.



 As the old saying goes, mistakes are only mistakes if you don’t learn from them.


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Offline g.pennell

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #45 on: April 08, 2018, 01:45:40 AM »
Too bad about your leather...it has a wonderful color and patina, and I’ll bet it looked right at home on those bellows.  Hope you have better luck with the replacements.

Greg
“Let your gun therefore be the constant companion of your walks” Thomas Jefferson

Offline David R.

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #46 on: April 08, 2018, 04:52:12 AM »
Well I got the beast stripped down today and all the nails and staples pulled (again). I can at least use the old leather as patterns. I think I will take the opportunity to perhaps redesign the bottom valve. The original seemed much too heavy and until I added my anti gravity devices I had to weight the bottom board to get it to drop rapidly enough. I think lighter valves would improve performance.
The thing is too heavy and bulky for me to handle comfortably alone but the block and tackle make it easily manageable.

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Offline David R.

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #47 on: April 19, 2018, 02:12:46 PM »
While I had the bellows apart I decided to rework the valves. The old valves were almost 7/8” thick and seemed very heavy. I made a new bottom valve out of clear pine planed to just shy of 3/8” with 3 maple cleats glued on. I glued and tacked elkhide on the face for a cushion / seal. I planed the surface of the bellows bottom  true so the valve would seat better.
Instead of a leather hinge as the originals had I opted for captive pins to allow the valves to ‘float’.
I decided to keep the upper valve but planed it down a good bit and added the elkhide and new pin arrangement. Hopefully this improves performance.







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Offline g.pennell

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #48 on: April 19, 2018, 02:29:39 PM »
David, looks like it’s coming right along. Maybe that leaking leather seam was a blessing...giving you the opportunity to go ahead and rework those valves as well. You’ll be back in business soon!

Greg
“Let your gun therefore be the constant companion of your walks” Thomas Jefferson

Offline David R.

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Re: Rebuilding bellows, Up above my head!
« Reply #49 on: April 19, 2018, 03:01:49 PM »
New leather, hope to be running by the weekend!





I would have no quarrel with thee if thou be a friend of liberty.