Hank Rearden
I just finished restoring an Otto Canedy Forge Blower.  and plan to get a Champion forge and blower cleaned up to working condition. This is an easy fix because the forge has been previously restored for display a number of years ago. There are a few minor adjustment that need to be done and I should have it fired up making tongs soon.

champion blower forge.jpg

This is the Champion forge as I bought it. The flywheel crank is a nice feature. I'm curious if it will improve the operation any.
The table is solid and the only thing I can see that needs attention is that most of the bolts need replaced. I'm also going to add a spring on the bottom of the clean out to help improve the seal. I'll take photos and post them as I do the work. The gear box felt a little gritty when I turned it. I'm hoping it's only dried oil. I'm checking that out as well.

The first task is to make a couple of tongs.


"All That Glitters Is Not Gold."

We'll that being said I got most of the blower apart. Overall, it's in pretty good shape. The photo below help tell the story. The gritty feeling was sand or glass bead in the gear box. It looks like they just sand blasted it to clean it up to put it on display. The gears look okay and I hope as I get the rest of the gear box apart the shafts will be fine as well. I didn't see any wear on the teeth and they are all intact. I am having trouble loosening the three machine screws that attach the gear box the fan housing.

Champion Forge Blower expolded view.jpg  

This images shows the fine sand inside the gear cover after I removed it. I had to drill out one of the cover screws because of dried paint and sand causing it to become frozen. After I drilled the head off I removed the threaded part of the screw with my fingers. No damage to anything.

champion forge blower gear cover sand.jpg 

Sand residue can be seen here on the gears. That as well as dried oil.

champion forge blower sand.jpg 

Inside the fan housing had built up residue from the previous fires.

It's time to start cleaning things up.

Chanpion forge blower fan housing dirt.jpg 

So, I started to disassemble the gear box. I took my time to better understand how it was assembled. Therefore I didn't try to have it all apart in one day. The first thing was getting the blower fan housing half separated from the gear box housing. Three tapered machine screws attached it and they didn't want to turn. They were frozen solid. This concerned me because I didn't want to break the housing and it feels like it could be pot metal. I soaked it with lubricants for a few days. that didn't help. I finally used a large screw driver and an adjustable wrench for leverage. See photo. That allowed me to add down pressure to the screw driver with out creating an angle that might strip the screw head.

champion forge blower restored 4.jpg

Sand was under the screw head probable creating most of the resistance. Everything came apart without any damage. next I drove the pressed pin down and through the housing with a 3/16 punch. The pin fell to the bottom of the gear box housing. I let it remain there until I drove out the gear shaft. To do that I loosened the set screw on the gear and gentle tapped the shaft through the housing. See photos for better clearity.

champion forge blower restored.jpg 

Set screw. There is a set screw on both gears.

champion forge blower restored 2.jpg 

Notice the direction I removed the shaft in relation to the housing. I'm not sure if it can be removed from either direction or not. This way worked for me.

champion forge blower restored 5.jpg

After I removed the shaft I pulled the gear out and turned the unit upside down to retrieve the pressed pin I tapped out earlier.

champion forge blower restored 3.jpg 

Everything Has sand on it. However, All the parts appear to be in excellent shape.

champion forge blower restored 6.jpg 

I'll add more later. Until then.
code[Maglio.gif]  Keep the fires burning hot!
2020 ABANA Conference in Sarasota New York. June 3rd. through June 6th. Plan now!
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Hank Rearden
2014 has been a difficult year for the family so far. My wife had emergency brain surgery to start. (Completely unexpected). My son got in deep do-do with some friends during her stay at the hospital and then 2 days after getting he gets his drivers permit, he backed into my step sons new car. YEAH!!!

Well things are starting to settle down And I got back into the shop to finish a few projects I have started. With fathers day here next week I hope to be able to forge a few tongs with my new forge.

So here's the latest with the Champion blower restoration.

I have cleaned and put on a base coat of primer to the fan housing halves. I used a wire wheel to clean off the old paint. Because it was previously sand blasted that went relatively easy. As a bonus the wire wheel removed sand deposits left from the sand blasting done by the previous owner. Look at the photos below.

champion blower housing.jpg 

This next photo shows the 16/20 gear after cleaning. I used the wire wheel to clean between the gear teeth. Then I clean the hub and spokes. The results enneded with a new looking gear to reinstall.

champion blower gear.jpg 
This next photo shows a point in restoration that will require some care and patients. I'm adding a link that shows a restoration where the housing got cracked when pressing out the shaft. Heres' what I'm thinking as a plan of attack.

1. Clean everthing as best I can while still assembled.
2. Heat housing on the thick side and gentle tap shaft hoping to drive out bushing.
3. If after a few taps nothing seem to be moving. I'll use a high pressure sprayer to clean oil and sand residue from inside the housing the determine the next step.

Currently penetrating oil is soaking on the inside. (note) I've used Purple power and simple clean to degrease my parts. Both are supposedly environmentally friendly.

champ gear box.jpg 

In this photo I cleaned the bushing area with a wire wheel brush so you could see the bushing line.
(Note) It looks to me that you press the shaft so that the small gear inside the gear box presses the bushing out. I believe the other gentleman pressed the wrong way and cracked his housing. I want to be-careful not to do the same.

"Important Step"

After careful thought I decided to not use heat and instead to tap out the bushing. To do this I examined the construction of the unit and determined if I braced the area around the bushing and tap the shaft I wouldn't stress the main housing. I used a 1" impact socket to act as an anvil on the side I was removing the bushing. This allowed the force of the blows to be concentrated around the bushing as well as a place the bushing could be unobstructed as it moved. I used a 3/16 pin punch and gave firm blows to the rotating shaft. I was careful not to hit to hard. The It took quite a few raps to finally get things moving. I want to add a word of caution here.  As the shaft starts to move through the housing the small gear will pass through the bushing hole. The large gear will however catch the housing unevenly. This can cause you to break the housing or the gear or both. Pay attention and support as needed. 

I'm not sure if over the past 100 years anyone else has disassembled this unit or not. The bushing had a broken edge and was otherwise in good shape. I didn't remove the fan gear or it's bushing for fear of damaging the adjustment ball on the shaft. I used simple green and let it soak to remove gunk and grease inside the housing. Then I wiped it clean with a rag. However the sand grit was still noticeable inside.

That's when I asked my wife if we needed new toothbrushes. I got the okay and grabbed one from the closet and used the brush with a another spay of simple green. It cleaned everything perfect.

champion gear housing wash.jpg 

Then I wire brushed the housing.

champion gear housing cleaned.jpg 

I reassembled the unit and used automatic transmission fluid for the gear oil. Pay close attention to the alignment of you gear s when putting the unit together.

After the blower unit was finished and tested I went to work on the Tyure and cleanout cap. The cleanout was warped and needed to be flattened out on the anvil.

champion rivet forge bottom.jpg 

The original bolt wasn't tight enough to keep a good seal when tightened. So I added a spring and a longer bolt to  keep it closed when the blower forced air into the fire pot. I also added a rod to act as a counter weight as well as a convenient way to dump ash with out risking getting burned. (see below) I used a gear shift knob from an old wheel horse tractor to give it a nice finished look.

champion forge tyure cap.jpg 

champion rivet coal forge restored.jpg 

The finished Champion Rivet Coal Forge ready for a fathers day fire.

If you have any question about my restoration or a restoration on a forge blower your restoring, I'll be happy to answer them. Just ask.
code[Maglio.gif]  Keep the fires burning hot!
2020 ABANA Conference in Sarasota New York. June 3rd. through June 6th. Plan now!
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I've always had an interest in blacksmithing, but only now have I begun to realize it. The other day I picked up an old Champion rivet forge. It was in very good condition, but had some surface rust, and when I turned the crank (The only noticeable variation from the forge you restored) it didn't feel quite right. I decided to disassemble the blower, clean it out, repaint it, etc... I've managed to find my own way up until now, at which point I need to remove the large helical gear from the gearbox before I can move along. However, I'm not entirely sure how to do this. I know that you did, and read your description of the process in your post about your own restoration, but I'm still not entirely confident that I understand how to remove the gear properly.
I remember you talked about using the smaller gear (adjacent to the helical one) to push out its adjacent bushing. However, I'm not sure as to where force should be applied to achieve this.
In short, I'm fairly confused as to how I can remove the large helical gear from the gearbox, and your help would be greatly appreciated.


- Conlan
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Hank Rearden
I understand your concern. I can tell you what you probably already know. You can't buy parts at the hardware store.

I believe that you'll be okay as long as you take your time and don't force it. As I wrote in the rebuild above I used an impact socket large enough to allow the bushing to be pushed into the socket. Use a piece of wood on the shaft end to prevent marring or damaging the end of the shaft. Also look carefully to ensure all set screws are loosened before making things move.

When I tapped the shaft it took 3 firm taps before it moved. If your housing is the same pay attention to the large gear getting cocked on the housing and causing a bind. The large and small gear were separate gears in my unit. If you can post some pics of what concerns you have, I may be able to provide better insight. Or someone else may have a better process.

I think it's important to add this advise as well, your housing shouldn't be bound in a vise of clamped fast in any way. This can cause unneeded stress on the housing. If a properly sized socket or equivalent tool is used to allow the bushing to pass will keep the stress to a minimum.

 I hope this helps. Welcome to the forum.
code[Maglio.gif]  Keep the fires burning hot!
2020 ABANA Conference in Sarasota New York. June 3rd. through June 6th. Plan now!
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Thanks for your help! I really do appreciate it. Here are a few pictures of the gearbox in its current state. Though I found a set screw on the gear attached to the crank handle, as of yet, I've failed to discover any on these. I think I understand the method of removal you recommend. However, I'm not entirely sure where to aim the force of my blows. The axle almost appears to be surrounded by two bushings, the axle itself being somewhat inset. When you removed this gear on your unit, did your blows land on the "inner" bushing, or did you use a thin punch to reach the axle hidden in the center?

I re-read your post on the restoration, and I think that it answers my question fully. I've gotta take better care in checking these things before I post.

20150501_172446.jpg  20150501_172446.jpg  .   20150501_172446.jpg  20150501_172446.jpg 
I hope I'm making sense in my question. Thanks again for your help.
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Ken Perkins
I just acquired a champion forge and blower. It has been in the weather for years. Very rusty and the blower is seized up. Not sure where to start on restoration. Any advice
would be helpful. I'll try to post pics also.
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Hank Rearden
Hello Ken, Thank you for serving in the Navy.

 Is it possible to post a picture? 

For a frozen unit I might start with a good penetrating oil and  letting it soak. You could also submerge it in a bucket of apple cider vinegar for a while. Then hang it up letting it drip back into a bucket. 

Then I would see if I could remove the gear cover and fan blower cover. This assumes you weren't able to do that first. I wouldn't force anything loose that could damage any major components. At least until you know what you have is restorable. That being worst case scenario. If you can get the parts separated then I believe you can bring it back to a good usable forge blower. 

 Below is a good video showing the use of electrolysis for rust removal.

I hope this helps you get started. Post any other questions. Thanks.

code[Maglio.gif]  Keep the fires burning hot!
2020 ABANA Conference in Sarasota New York. June 3rd. through June 6th. Plan now!
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Robert Michael Crowell
Hi Hank, nice job on your restoration. I have a no 40 I'm restoring. I did remove the fan gear and shaft. That seemed to be where I was getting resistance. Soaked, cleaned, lightly scrubbed shaft. I have partly reinstalled and it turns nicely. Can you tell me how the shaft is adgusted? You mention an adjustment ball. Can you tell me more about that? Mine appears to just be a nub sticking out of the end of the shaft. Is it supposed to rotate? Thanks
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Hank Rearden
My gear box has an adjustment screw on the fan shaft. It's used to take up the slack in the fan box so the fan doesn't spin into the housing. At least that's how I understand it. There was a set screw with a jam nut and a small ball in the side the housing. What I do not remember was if there was a spring as well. It has been a few years. since I did this restoration.

If you want to take the time to document and post it here I'm sure others would benefit what you find and do. Just start a new topic. Maybe someone can provide you with better advice than I'm able to.
code[Maglio.gif]  Keep the fires burning hot!
2020 ABANA Conference in Sarasota New York. June 3rd. through June 6th. Plan now!
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