Restoring old bellows - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 21 Old 07-25-2020, 02:51 PM Thread Starter
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Restoring old bellows

Here is my attempt of restoring old bellows, they are realy oldsome parts are rotten .




This tool is used for blacksmithing so when operated it blow air in forge.
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post #2 of 21 Old 07-25-2020, 03:03 PM
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Azur, I know this is harsh, but, your photos don't help
in telling your story. they are too dark and we can not
tell what is what and what you are doing.
try to find a place with better lighting and something with
a lighter background, like a bedsheet or light piece of plywood.
good lighting and contrasting background is critical to
making good photographs.
you have a very interesting project. I would like to see
what you are doing to restore the bellows.

.

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post #3 of 21 Old 07-25-2020, 04:13 PM Thread Starter
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I will i don't know why pictures look so bigg. They are for now on to heavy to bring outside, but i need to buy some cowhide and i will rebuild them outside , it is true that there is too much darknes in this room.

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post #4 of 21 Old 07-25-2020, 04:27 PM
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what size are the bellows ??
the 2nd and 3rd photos I thought I was looking at the
inside of a boat. the scale of the project is hard to tell.
when you said bellows; I was thinking the size we use
in the home at the fireplace.
but I think you are talking much larger, like the bellows
used on a blacksmith's forge. it looks to be in really bad shape.
really looking forward to seeing your project now !!!

.

there is no educational alternative to having a front row seat in the School of Hard Knocks.
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post #5 of 21 Old 07-25-2020, 04:58 PM Thread Starter
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Yes they are blacksmith bellows. I can explain it better in metric sorry if miss some numbers. 140 cm long about 4 feet and half lond and 70 cm wide, it is about 2 feet wide.
There is not much work , i had some replaceman i replaced old top board with new board that i cut from pressboard material as whole, i painted it replaced walves, now i am waiting for leather (cowhide material) i need 10 feet ofl leather so it can be finished.


Bottom board with valves that i painted but this was pictured before.

Middle board with holes and valves.

There are 3 boards one on top on on bottom and one on middle.





I instaled new threads inside wooden suport because it is easier for me to attach leather on metal thread than to attach it on wood that sticks out, lesser holes and more airtight design.
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Last edited by Azur Jahić; 07-25-2020 at 05:04 PM.
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post #6 of 21 Old 07-25-2020, 05:05 PM Thread Starter
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And inside look of bottom board.


ANd after sanding and removing old valves hide is placed on pleace where plywood was located.


And litle bit of caulking so it can be airtight.
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post #7 of 21 Old 07-26-2020, 04:18 PM Thread Starter
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I ordered cowhide , need to sewn some material and i will open bellows and ask for some tips.
I painted them with laque.
Will see what need more to be done.


I need to bend some wood strips but i don't have steamer i think i will use leather as strips so it can cower cowhide and staples.
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post #8 of 21 Old 07-26-2020, 05:47 PM
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Neat project, Azur! Two things may help with your photography - 1) it appears your lens is in dire need of cleaning and 2) put your light source behind the camera rather than behind the bellows. That may help us better see what you're wanting to show us.

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post #9 of 21 Old 07-27-2020, 03:42 PM Thread Starter
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Any tips how can i bend wood strips in this teardrop shape, i tought to just nail wooden strips in straight manner than to nail leather strips.
But it would look nice if i can bend wood around boards.

Like in this manner
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post #10 of 21 Old 07-27-2020, 04:02 PM
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Azur - there are dozens and dozens of good videos on YouTube
about steam bending. if you can find freshly cut green wood to
make the strips out of, they can be bent to shape as you go
and nailed into place. (we don't know what kind of wood you have there).
finding the correct wood for your project will be the first job.
finding a way to heat and steam the strips is the second.
but, it has been done for centuries.
think about the strips in a wooden canoe or boat - patience is the key.

.

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Last edited by John Smith_inFL; 07-27-2020 at 04:07 PM.
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post #11 of 21 Old 07-27-2020, 05:39 PM Thread Starter
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I have pine wood good cut or straight part i will like to use hazzelnut or elm but it need to be fresh when i bend and nail it i gues it would be resistand need to lay flat on board so there won't be anny air leaks.
I can't steam bend it because i don't have equipment for that.
I can only use green wood i would need about 10 feet just for arches.
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post #12 of 21 Old 07-28-2020, 09:27 AM
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Ash is the preferred wood for barrel hoops. It should be straight grain green wood that is riven (split), not sawed. You then can use a 2" length of pipe (about 12" long) clamped in a vice as a form. Use a propane torch, with the flame on the inside of the pipe. When the pipe is hot, you can rub the hoop material over the hot pipe while all the while applying downward pressure to bend the hoop into shape. The other difficulty is tacking it after forming may split the hoop.

Another way is to use 1/2" steel banding for the hoops instead of wood. Use tacks to fasten.

Gary

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post #13 of 21 Old 07-28-2020, 11:32 AM
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I would use straight pieces along the sides to the beginning of the half circle then cut the half circles (or two quarter circles) out of a larger board with a band saw.
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post #14 of 21 Old 07-28-2020, 01:19 PM Thread Starter
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And some more work done today

3 picture is bottom chamber and holes where rods go to hold bellows.
1 picture is top chamber where air go trough the nozzle
2 picutre is side view how it looks together in one pic.

And last one is just how it looks from behind of bellows,
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Last edited by Azur Jahić; 07-28-2020 at 01:26 PM.
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post #15 of 21 Old 07-28-2020, 05:56 PM
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Looks to be coming along nicely.

Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk

Dave H
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post #16 of 21 Old 07-28-2020, 06:38 PM Thread Starter
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We will see i had them made as you can see in previous picture with all leather in.
But trick is that there are 2 chamber one is at bottom and one is app to nozzle.
When board fall down it suck air, than flaps on bottom board close and trap air.
That air goes from bottom chamber to top chamber and it fill it than it goes trough nozzle.

And you have non stop air coming .
Just for some small pumping.

If top chamber won't inhale bellows are useless.
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post #17 of 21 Old 07-29-2020, 02:36 PM Thread Starter
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And some cowhide stiching for today.
One seam finished two to go.



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post #18 of 21 Old 07-29-2020, 04:22 PM
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Azur - this is a very interesting project.
I don't think anyone here has ever had one like it.
please share the story with us - how you came to have it.
is it just something you want to do or did someone hire you to repair it,
are you involved in a forge or furnace where it will be used ?
will the bellows actually be used or just a display piece.
thank you for taking the time to share this rare project with us.

.

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post #19 of 21 Old 07-29-2020, 04:51 PM Thread Starter
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OH yes bellows will be used i repaired one before this one
Iam kinda interested in woodworking and blacksmithing, for example i need froe i can make one i guess.
OR chiesl i made one chies that don't look so nice but it can work a litle bit and i made knife.
To be honest i am better at woodworking than metalworking but in school i stuided metalworking welding etc.
I finished highschool for central heating plumber.
An then in highschool wisch appeared, ok i can make axe handle but what about axe?
And that's all story.


I repaired this one bellows a couple months' ago got it realy cheap for 10 bucks.
Bought cowhide and it now look like this.


And here you can see how those smal one works https://streamable.com/97txmm

But thing is this bellows is to small for my forge


So i decided to buy other one, i bought other but i was not satisfied with how they worked so i opened them and saw some rotten mice in i t and i diecied i should open and check everything . :D
And now
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post #20 of 21 Old 07-30-2020, 02:08 PM Thread Starter
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And almost finished , i need to make better frame to hold it, some decoration straps to be nailed and it is done.

And it is in action
Now need to attach it to forge and real test will be seen.

https://streamable.com/50mso0
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wood

Last edited by Azur Jahić; 07-30-2020 at 02:58 PM.
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