hi, I've been blacksmithing for the past year. I bought a gas forge that was lined and ready to go. I recently bought a two burner blacksmith forge from diamondback.  I've learned by reading online that insoawool needs to be covered with a rigidizer. I tried satanite but it seems to crack easily. I just ordered Instuff Ceramic-Fiber Rigidizer online and waiting for that to come in.  My main question is, should I coat the insboard for the same safety reasons?  I sure don't want glass fiber complications in my lungs.  I could use some help. I don't seem to see anything written on the topic.

thanks,  John

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Skarzs the Cave Troll
Well, I myself use kaolwool in my forge, not sure what the difference between that and insaowool is, but I can say that it's not necessary to use rigidizer on it. That said, there are times when I wish I did have it, because I don't like tearing little pieces off it.
A few years from now I might start to feel something in my lungs, but I'm thinking that if I don't tear the wool it should stay pretty safe. (Famous last words? I dunno.)

NorrinRaad used a rigidizer on his forge, but I don't remember what it was. Perhaps he'll be able to tell you.

Anyways, welcome to the forge family!
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Anthony San Miguel
I would contact Wayne Coe. Just google his name and his website should come up. He can advise you and his prices are good.
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I'll second contacting Wayne Coe he has a great site about forge supplies.

I will say that I used the "INS-Tuff" rigidizer on my ceramic wool and I'm glad I did. It is holding up well for my hobby uses. I also coated it with a "kiln wash" after the rigidizer set. That's what "Satanite" is I think or similar anyway. I'm not familiar with "insboard" is it a rigid material? If it is I don't think rigidizer will do much for it, the Satanite should be plenty to keep it from being damaged by flux etc.. My kiln wash cracked as well. I just reapplied it with thinner layers and it seemed to do better. I think that is one of those things that just has to be redone once in a while.

good luck with it.
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ITC is the standard, although it is expensive.  I had a Diamondback, it held up for a couple of years.  I still use the burners though, they still work great.
If you plan on forge welding the borax will eat up the insulation, and even the bottom.

Bubble Alumina will hold up better than the satanite, the trick with any of those castables is using the correct procedure.  Dampen the insulation then apply the castable.  After it hardens run the forge for a few minutes to warm it up then shut it down.  After 24 hours it should be ready to go.

Rule #10;  "I can make that" translates to; "I'm to cheap to buy it new."

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