I made some wire today, and thought I would share my process with you. Knowing how to make wire can save your butt in a wire emergency, and it is also a great way to reuse your old metal.
Cut your metal into small pieces, and make sure it is clean and free from solder and other contaminants. Dig a tunnel in your charcoal block, and heat the metal until it is molten. Now you have a blob.
Next: it’s hammertime! You should forge this blob with a heavy hammer, to compress the metal and avoid porousity. Hold the blob in place with pliers, not your hand!!! Unless you enjoy hammering your fingers, in which case don’t listen to me. Hammer on all sides, until the blob is slightly rectangular in shape. And don’t forget that safety comes first, so wear your goggles and ear protectors!
Also, keep in mind that this is the face I make when I hammer metal:
Be kind to your metal, and make sure to anneal every few hammer rounds. You should also be removing any cracks in the metal with a ball bur. This will prevent them from getting any bigger.
Once you’ve gone a few rounds with the hammer, you can start rolling the metal through the mill. I like to use the square wire roller.
Once the diameter of the wire is small enough, you can start using a draw plate. Don’t forget to anneal!!!
And voila! Wire.