An ideal forge for a beginning blacksmith would be a propane forge. Besides being cheap, user-friendly, and easy to clean, they are also capable of maintaining constant temperatures. Some people prefer traditional forges such as coal or wood; however, people just beginning their blacksmithing careers (or hobbies) should use something that is easier to operate. The gas or propane forge is perhaps the easiest type of forge to master and learn how to use.
However, after years of testing and using different gas forges, I am here to provide you with all the information you need to make an informed decision about your propane forge burner. My top pick is, without a doubt, the VEVOR Propane Forge. It is easy to operate, lightweight, and environmentally friendly. However, there are many more excellent gas forges that can be chosen, and it all depends on your personal preferences and needs.
Listed below are my top five picks, along with my reasons for picking them. Based on my evaluation of each propane knife forge, you can make your final decision.
What Is a Propane Forge and How Does it Work
Propane forges are devices that use propane gas to create flames that are contained within barrels or other containment systems. Metals are heated in this propane forge until they are malleable to work and shape. The propane unit is much easier to use than a coal forge, which is more traditional, and you can easily regulate the heat.
An opening at one end of the propane forge cylinder allows the metal worker to insert a piece to be heated and closes to help heat the inside more rapidly. In order to remove the metal from the cylinder, tongs should be used once the metal becomes malleable and glows red-hot. An anvil or other shaping device can then be used by the metal worker to shape the piece. Metal is shaped into the final product using hammers and other tools. There may be a need to re-insert the piece into the cylinder many times to re-heat it before the final shaping can occur. A final shape is then formed by cooling and hardening the metal.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Propane Forge
You might find it difficult to begin if you are new to the world of forges and knife-making. Here is everything you need to know before purchasing your first propane knife forge.
It is important to note that the size and shape of the forge you choose can have a significant impact on your work. If you intend to buy the best propane forge burner, for instance, you will need a large forge that is capable of keeping up with your demands.
Conversely, if you are only going to work on small kitchen knives, it is better to go for a small forge to save storage space.
The Insulation Process
Forging knives requires maintaining a high level of heat. In addition to saving you money, heat insulation can reduce your propane consumption over time. Since the forge will not need to be reheated periodically, you will not have to do so frequently.
If you are looking for a forge that is well-insulated, you should look for a forge with a solid door or a ceramic fiber liner. Furthermore, fire bricks can be used in forges without doors as a quick and easy solution.
Regulator and Burner
Choosing a gas forge for knife-making requires a unit that distributes heat evenly, heats quickly, and maintains its heat for a prolonged period of time.
Furthermore, you should consider what kind of materials you will be working with when choosing between single, double, and triple burners. Forges can withstand greater heat if they have more burners. The safest course of action if you are uncertain about what to do, is to choose a double-burner setup that is adjustable and controllable. By doing so, you can adjust the level of heat to the ideal level for the task at hand.
Moreover, because you’re dealing with propane tanks, you need a regulator for your forge. The regulator will help you monitor gas pressure at all times, so you’ll know immediately if something isn’t working properly.
Precautions for Safety
Make sure to read the safety precautions manual provided with your forge and understand each point. It is important to ensure that all safety precautions are taken at all times while working with propane, fire, and extremely high temperatures.
Methods of Cooling
After you have shut down your propane forge, it can remain hot for hours, which can pose a safety hazard. The best way to cool down the forge when you are not using it is to use forges with built-in cooling mechanisms.
Best 5 Propane Forges Reviewed on the Market
The best gas propane forges do not come from a single brand, but there are a few well-known brands you can trust. You may have noticed that some brands appeared on the list more than once simply because they manufacture high-quality equipment that performs well. Some of the best propane forges for forge welding are as follows:
Best Overall– VEVOR Portable Propane Forge
Best Budget– GONGYI Propane Forge
Best Workshop– Hell’s Propane Forge
Best Double Burner– USA Elite Portable Propane Forge
Best Triple Burner– Simond Propane Forge
1-VEVOR Portable Propane Forge
Get ready to experience power like never before at the highest temperature of 2600°F. The maximum temperature that VEVOR portable propane forge can reach is 2600°F. It is sufficient for the forging of most metals. After three minutes of preheating, you may begin forging. The burner is capable of providing high levels of heating efficiency. To save propane and money, you can select the number of burners.
With all key accessories pre-installed, it is easy to get started forging immediately. Once the farrier forge has been unpacked, it is ready to be used. By connecting the propane tank to the blacksmithing equipment, you can begin working immediately.
It is compatible with the current mainstream propane tank due to its high compatibility. Gas can easily be replenished by purchasing an appropriate propane tank. An absolute jaw-dropping insulation & protection system: The gas forges for blacksmithing are equipped with 30 mm thermal insulation cotton and 30 mm thermal insulation brick. Furthermore, there is a layer of refractory cement. It is possible to reduce energy leakage and ensure long-term thermal insulation through the use of three layers of protection.
Cold rolled steel plate construction and heavy-duty steel burner ensure the long-lasting durability of the propane forge. There is no welding involved in the blacksmithing gas forge. You can give it as a gift with confidence!
● Dimension: 250 x 215 x 190 mm
● Weight: 7.1 kg
● Fiber Thickness: 30 mm
● No. of Regulating Wave: CGA 510
● Quick Set Up
● Novice Friendly
● High Strength Burner
Suitable for Most Metals
2- GONGYI Propane Forge
A powerful double-burner propane forge, the GONGYI GF400 is designed to offer safety to professionals. Durable and reliable stainless steel makes up the GF400. It will never be necessary for you to worry about the timing of the heating process with the GF400. With two 135000 BTU burners, the product is capable of heating metals to temperatures exceeding 26000F in just minutes.
As well as being very easy to use, it is also very flexible. Featuring a gas valve, it can be used to heat either one burner or both burners simultaneously. The GF400 is also great at insulation. Featuring ceramic fiber insulation of 1400-grade, the furnace traps the entire amount of heat. The thermal insulation properties of this insulation material are well known.
Furthermore, the product has a wide range of applications. If you are interested in making knives or working metals, the GF400 propane forge will suit your needs.
● Dimension: 15 x 10.5 x 8.25 in
● Weight: 19.16 Pounds
● Superior Insulation
● Easy to Use
● Rapid Heating Ability
● Get Rust
● Holes become clogged
● Need to be cleaned prior to use
3- Hell’s Propane Forge
Featuring a single burner furnace, this portable propane forge is another excellent product from an established supplier. Although it is smaller than the workshop forge, it can still reach temperatures up to 1260°C, which means it can handle most blacksmithing projects with ease.
Blacksmiths with smaller projects, or those who would like the flexibility of moving their propane forge wherever they please, will find this forge particularly useful. It has an oval-shaped body that allows the blacksmith to easily expose the workpiece to the “sweet spot” of the flame, which is another difference from the stationary forge.
For someone looking to move their work around or for a beginner blacksmith or hobbyist, this is an ideal piece of equipment.
● Dimension: 10 x 8.75 x 8.13 in
● Weight: 23 pounds
● Thickness: 0.13 in
● Constructed from solid stainless steel of the highest quality
● Simple to set up and use
● Fitting Leakage Problem
4- USA Elite Portable Propane Forge
If you are looking for an affordable, easy-to-use, and heat-maintaining forge, then this Double Burner propane is the perfect solution.
Featuring a double burner, this forge can quickly reach forging temperature no matter what material you are working with. Furthermore, the Kaowool ceramic fiber insulation ensures that heat is maintained efficiently. Additionally, fire bricks are included to aid in the maintenance of heat.
If you wish to increase the effectiveness of the fire, you may have to construct your own end piece from extra fire bricks. But be careful; this isn’t something beginners should do.
With its heavy-duty steel construction, this forge can endure temperatures as high as 2 thousand degrees Fahrenheit. Internally, the forge measures 18 inches by 6 inches by 4 inches, with an oval shape that is large enough for knives to be made.
Moreover, if you like the ability to control the intensity of your forge’s heat, this unit has two burners, each of which can be controlled separately. Then, you will be able to ensure that your forge is always operating at the ideal temperature.
● Dimension: 21 x 13.4 x 13 in
● Weight: 37 Pounds
● Heavy-Duty Construction
● Ideal for knife-making
● Instructions are not easy to follow
5- Simond Propane Forge
Simond Store makes another appearance on this list with the Single Burner Propane Blacksmith Knife Forge. As the name implies, this propane forge is the perfect size for knife-making, and it’s effortless to move around and store.
Stainless steel grade 304 is used for the forge’s burner nozzle, while a ceramic fiber blanket coated with Rigidizer is used for the forge’s heating area. This forge has all the qualities necessary to withstand temperatures up to 2600 degrees Fahrenheit. Moreover, the forge’s durability is enhanced by the inclusion of fire brick.
It also includes Teflon tape, a metal holding stand, safety and assembly instructions, and a user manual. Knife-making accessories like these are perfect for beginners. By using the air chock valve and manometer on the forge, you can also control airflow and gas consumption.
● Dimension: 16.81 x 15.55 x 13.54 in
● Material: Steel
● Thickness: 0.15 in
● An affordable unit
● Suitable for small projects
● Fast-moving heat
● Takes up little space
● Keeps hot after shutting down
Are Propane Forge Worth It?
With the increasing number of people who have taken up blacksmithing, there has been an increase in demand for items such as forges. Consequently, more manufacturers have stepped up to meet this demand.
Forges come in two types: propane and coal. Other types of forges include wood-fired forges, coal forges, coke forges, and induction forges. You can purchase propane forge for the lowest price. It’s cheap, easy to use, and fuel is easy to get.
FAQs About Propane Forge
Q1- What is the average amount of propane that is used by a gas forge for making knives?
A gas forge’s propane consumption is determined by many factors, including the number of burners, size, and heat insulation. A 100-pound propane tank should last three to four days of forging.
Q2- The Gas Forge: What Does It Do?
Propane is mixed with air and burned on the burner. By producing consistent heat, it heats the metal to the temperature required for the forging.
Q3- What Is a Propane Forge?
In a gas forge, metals are heated to the forging temperature using propane gas. In a gas forge, the metal is heated inside a firebox. Some forges have a solid door that can be closed, while others have openings for airflow and access to metal.
Hopefully, this article has assisted you in making your final decision regarding the best propane forge for knife-making. Here is a brief recap of my top three choices.
First and foremost, VEVOR Portable Propane Forge is one you can’t go wrong with. With this unit, you are able to control the heat in any way that is most comfortable for you using a single burner setup. Furthermore, it is extremely energy efficient and can withstand temperatures up to 2600 degrees Fahrenheit.
My second pick is the Simond Store Propane Gas Triple Burner, Forge. When it comes to a gas forge that heats up fast, this unit’s triple burner setup is hard to beat. It’s also made from tough materials that ensure its toughness and longevity.
Last but not least, if you are on a budget, you should consider the GONGYI Propane Froge. Heavy-duty steel is used in its construction. Isn’t it time to get started? Make knives with your propane forge, materials, and belt grinder!