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Crossbows - Everything about Building, Modding, and Using your Crossbow Gear

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2 posters

    10xx steel for prod?

    Nick D
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    10xx steel for prod? Empty 10xx steel for prod?

    Post by Nick D Mon Aug 18, 2014 1:14 pm

    I'm having a tough time finding 5160 of the thickness I want for a prod.  That's the steel that seems to be most recommended, but what about 10xx steels, like 1060, 1070, or 1075?  Different than 5160, but still a carbon steel.  Has anyone made prods from any of these steels?
    OrienM
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    10xx steel for prod? Empty Re: 10xx steel for prod?

    Post by OrienM Tue Aug 19, 2014 8:21 am

    Well, not that I've done it, but personally I'd lean toward the lower-carbon end, 1060 perhaps? I'd worry that higher-C material might be brittle or crack-prone.  The 1060 should have just enough C to harden in a fast oil quench.

    The thickest 5160 spring I could find was 3/8"...a heavy truck spring of some sort. It should be thick enough for my prod's target weight if I keep it short, I think, but it's definitely not enough thickness for a full-length, full weight prod.

    I'd love to know what kind of carbon content medieval/renaissance smiths preferred, what they quenched in and so on. They certainly would have been using something 10xx-like, and probably piled and welded multiple times, as well.
    Nick D
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    10xx steel for prod? Empty Re: 10xx steel for prod?

    Post by Nick D Tue Aug 19, 2014 10:54 am

    1080 or 1095 wouldn't be my first choice for that reason, but well-tempered 1070 should work.  I wouldn't go lower than 1060, though.

    In another thread, Geezer said that the Padre Island prod is about 3/8"x1" at the center and probably draws 300-400#.  What weight are you going for?

    I wonder if Tylecote, Williams, et al ever did a metallographic examination on a crossbow prod, the way they have with swords, knives, and armour?  I used to have access to two big research libraries but have since moved, so have to rely on ILL, but it's worth researching.  For what it's worth, De Diversis Artibus (12th c.) and Von Stahel und Eysen (1539) have recipes for quenchants for various purposes.  Prods were more likely to have been made from steel made in a finery or similar process rather than piling and welding.

    Edit: I've been reading the specs on 1050, as I've never used it.  It requires higher temps for hardening, oil hardens to Rc 58, compared to 64 for 1074.  I'd have to make test springs to compare performance.
    OrienM
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    10xx steel for prod? Empty Re: 10xx steel for prod?

    Post by OrienM Sun Aug 24, 2014 2:00 pm

    I've used 1050 some, but never as a spring (using it as an axe head, I can say that edge quenching it in water/brine makes for a harder cutting edge, and it's still not very hard...not much tempering is necessary). I'd definitely want high enough carbon content to reliably oil harden, but anywhere from 60 to 80 points C should work OK, temper depending.

    My prod is aimed at about 300-400#; it's similar in dimensions to what Payne-Galloway described as a "sporting" bow but is a couple inches shorter, so possibly toward the upper end of the draw weight. I've begun forging it already , and will start a thread about it shortly to avoid cluttering this one up...  Very Happy

    I guess I imagined a finery producing a bloom of sorts, which still needed folding and refinement, and maybe even re-carburization to become steel...? I should read up more on the topic, though. Thanks for the book recommendations; I have access to ILL here so I can probably order them up.

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