Forging in Questions and Answers
After wandering on bridges and parks of St. Petersburg, admiring the lattices of Vigeland Park in Oslo and marvelous patios in Seville, you are determined to get hold of such beauty in your own house? That's right. Wrought iron elements do not lose their relevance and still confirm the good taste and status of the owner. On the pages of our blog - a checklist on how to make the process of ordering wrought iron products simple and clear..
What elements can be forged?
- Window bars
- Stairs, railings, balustrades
- Visors and awnings
- Interior elements (stained-glass windows, mirrors, furniture, candlesticks)
- Landscape elements (arbors, benches, bridges, weathervanes)
Where to begin?
With definitions and techniques, which you can learn about in our detailed article In the same language as the blacksmith.
With visualization. From you - pictures of what you like (the Internet to help), from the workshop - sketches and drawings of the future product. Ideally a 3D model, it will allow you to imagine what you want in volume and on the spot.
Trap number one: make an order only from drawings or sketches, but by no means from simple photos. The customer has every right to demand drawings, since they are an integral part of the finished product. Lack of technical documentation is a sign of unprofessionalism of the executor.
Do not order directly through the Internet. Be sure to call the firm you are interested in and ask a few questions about forging and wrought iron products. Reputable firms always hire employees who have the necessary knowledge, and if the answers do not satisfy you, it is better to immediately look for other options.
What to ask? Find out what methods of forging (cold, hot, stamping) you can be offered for making the desired product. What material and why would be more suitable for your purposes? How will you have to take care of it? And remember that forged products can not be cheap. Confused by the price? Ask what it is based on. The cost may indirectly indicate the method of manufacture, and therefore the information from the manager must match it. If we are not talking about interior items, then the manager's (fitter's) visit is the next stage of cooperation. Only after agreement and approval of the measurement results and sketches is a contract.
Signed - it means agreed. At the conclusion of the contract, read the text carefully. The cost of work is always directly dependent on the type of product purchased. Painting the product and installing it on site is most often paid for separately.
Trap number two: If you are attracted by the relatively low cost of forged products, there is a high probability that the cost of additional work, including not only painting, but treatment of welds, preparation for painting and installation, you are not warned and the contract does not provide them.
Why use wrought iron products if it is expensive?
But it is beautiful, stylish and durable.
Wrought iron products can serve for 100 years and become your family pride, and it is expensive to lay the family tradition. Window bars and fence elements made in the same stylistics will add completeness to the ensemble of the estate. The weathervane will set the accent, and its outline will become an elegant repeating motif in the decor of the gazebo and fixtures in the garden. What's not an idea? Of course, it will require both time and financial expenses, but it is worth the work. A house design project will turn the dream into a goal, for the realization of which will only have to solve certain problems.
What kind of forging to give preference?
Lattices on the windows, made by cold forging, is still better than no lattice at all, but to the present elegance they will be far away.
Cold forging is a metal processing, the essence of which is deformation of blanks of cold metal by hammer or press. At the expense of originality, this method allows for shorter lead times and lower production costs. The advantages of cold forging - a high rate of production, low cost products, as well as the ability to get a perfectly uniform elements (a necessary quality, if you need to make elements for a long fence, for example). This also includes resistance to wear and tear and an increased degree of strength.
Disadvantages - the stamping and standardization of elements, the lack of artistic value of the received products. Cold forging is cold in every sense. However, it is a worthy and affordable option for making reliable gates and practical tops of fences.
Hot forging is the processing of red-hot metal. Exactly the one that we imagine with a hammer and anvil. Hot forging is much more expensive than cold forging, but allows you to create unique products according to sketches of varying complexity. The method of hot forging allows for truly lifelike products, individual, bearing the imprint of the hand and heart of the master. But it requires a sufficiently long time to produce, and the work will cost a lot.
Most often, forged products are offered today for mass use, made of blanks (decorative elements, rods, bands, squares, etc.) by means of welding. It would be more correct to call them welded products made of metal. However, you can get quite curious results from the template elements with the appropriate skills of a craftsman and the imagination of the designer. The advantage of this type of fences and grids is a relatively low price and reliability.
Depending on the mode of operation, there is a distinction between die forging and so-called open die forging. The first type is used in mass production, the second - in a single and small-scale production. In this case, free forging can be either manual or by machine. But these technical details occupy people who dream of decorating their country residence forged wicket or lantern.
How to calculate the cost?
The cost of wrought iron products, which are made to order, depends on the material, size and complexity of the product, and it is always higher than that of welded structures. It is calculated after approval of the sketch, although the manager can orient how much will cost you approximately a particular product. The manufacturing cost of any metal fence depends on the complexity of the metal structure and the manufacturing method, as well as the purpose and duration of the fence.
How much time is required for manufacturing?
Terms for making wrought iron products depend on complexity and volume of work, on the type of forging, the client's requirements and the features of the order (whether the product has been made before or the product is made for the first time according to the customer's sketch).
Can anything in the finished product be changed later?
Regarding the shape - no, because the forged product is a finished work. Regarding the coating - yes: it is possible to change the color, patination (artificial aging of the material to give it a refined decorative effect), the application of bronze or copper coating.
Do wrought iron products require special care?
They do. Forged products that are used outdoors (fences, lamps, balustrades, gates, wickets, etc.) require corrosion protection. The first two years, about once a year they have to paint, then the frequency of treatment will decrease (about once every 5 years), since the places where at first corroded, soon covered with a thick coat of paint, reliably protecting it from the influence of moisture and air. Forged products, operated indoors, do not usually need to paint.
With what and how to paint the wrought iron grids?
Do you want them to look noble? Use matte paints and enamels. Do not forget that under the paint must be a layer of rust-preventive primer. It is better to get paint and primer from the same manufacturer.