Modern Blacksmithing Rational Horse Shoeing and Wagon Making
with rules, tables, recipes, etc., useful to manufactures, blacksmiths, machinists, well-drillers, engineers, liverymen, horse-shoers, farmers, wagon-makers, mechanics, amateurs and all others who have occasion to perform the work for which this book is primarily intended. by J.G. Homstrom 1901
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How to Weld Wagon Wheels Part 2
Before you put the tire into the fire, let me remind you of what I have said before about the fire. Many blacksmiths are never able to weld a tire tight on the outside because of a poor, low, and unclean fire. If the fire is too old or too fresh it will not give a good heat for welding wagon wheel. If you have a good big fire high up from the tuyer, then you are all right. Place your tire in the fire and proceed as follows: No matter whether it is an iron or soft steel tire, sand is the best welding compound and nothing else should be used; but if you lose the first heat then borax might be used as it will prevent the tire from scaling and burning. When you have the right heat, place the tire on the anvil this way; let the tire rest against the inside edge of the anvil. If the lower end of the tire is allowed to come down on the anvil it will cool off and can never be welded that way. Now hold the tire this way until you have the hammer ready to give the first blow. Then let the tire down and strike the first blows directly on top and over the end of the under end. This is important and if the first blows are not directed to this very place the lower end will be too cool to weld when you get to it. Next weld down the upper end, this done turn the wheel on edge and while it is in a welding heat come down on it heavy with hammer, if a buggy wheel, and with a sledge and hammer if a heavy wagon wheel. Hammer it down until it is considerably narrower over the weld as it will swell out when dressed down. This way the weld has all the material in the iron and the lapped lips will help hold the weld together. A very poor smith can weld wheels to stay in this manner. The edges should be rounded off with the hammer and filed to make the tire look the same over the weld as in the iron. If there should be any trouble to weld a steel wheel place a little steel borings over the weld and use borax.
A blacksmith in Silver Lake, Minn., working for a wagon maker of that place, when welding a wheel failed entirely after half a dozen attempts, and he got so angry that he threw the tire down on the floor with all his might. It happened to crush the wagon makers big toe. This was more than the otherwise good natured man could stand, and instantly the smith was seen hurled through an open window-the wagon maker attached. Result: separation and law suit. All this because the smith had not read my book.