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Historical iron from the period between 1800 and 1900, made using the puddle process. Raw and unforged. Read more..
This item is raw and unprocessed pieces of puddle irons. The surfaces are heavily oxidized, please refer to the photos for the exact shape.
About the material:
Puddle iron was the first inexpensive wrought iron produced on an industrial scale. The puddle process was invented by Henry Cort in 1784 and is considered a key technology of the industrial revolution of the 19th century. At the end of the 19th century, the process was slowly being replaced by the Bessemer and Siemens-Martin processes.
In the puddling process, the pig iron obtained in the blast furnace (iron with a carbon content of more than 2.06%, not forgeable) is melted in a so-called puddling furnace together with blast furnace slag. The "puddler" must now continuously stir together the molten pig iron and the slag with long rods. The carbon from the pig iron reacts with the oxygen compounds from the slag and the carbon content of the pig iron is reduced. The process is terminated as soon as the desired carbon content is reached.
Puddle iron is heavily interspersed with oxide and slag residues and has an inhomogeneous and fibrous structure that can be emphasized by grinding and etching. No piece is like the other. This is what makes the material particularly interesting for decorative elements of all kinds. I use puddle irons, for example, for applications on knife handles or for the side layers of 3-layer blades.
At low forging temperatures, the material can tend to fray. I therefore recommend first forging the iron at higher temperatures (~1100) and slowly getting a feel for the material. With a little practice and less deformation, you can also forge puddle iron at lower temperatures.
Puddle iron is not hardenable and not stainless.
Every piece of puddle iron is different. Some pieces have a very strongly inhomogeneous structure and larger cavities and inclusions. Some pieces are more homogeneous and have finer inclusions.
Puddeleisen is a historical material that may have been exposed to mechanical stress and the weather for many centuries. The puddle iron offered here has not been sorted and may have larger inclusions, cavities and cracks. These are material-typical properties that do not constitute a reason for an exchange.