[Bell Historians] Re: Devon Bells

Carl S Zimmerman csz_stl at ypbZzWu_vwAmT3KuQFPaWkp5fRTWiJB7QNIRa1SGXAg0_cTraH9H_qLbv6kfbqZKsui2UaoiRADs.yahoo.invalid
Sat Jan 20 16:06:32 GMT 2007

At 14:45 +0000 07/01/20, Richard Offen wrote:
>  > Back in the days of itinerant bellfounders, bell casting was done on
>>  the spot - often in the churchyard or even the base of the tower. So
>>  all available metal from old bells was re-used in the process, as a
>>  simple matter of economy. That's where the term "recast" comes from.
>Even then, as has been said before here, most of the tin will have gone
>up the furnace chimney and had to be replaced with new metal!

Yes, I'm aware of that.  I wonder how those bellfounders figured how 
much new tin to add, and how good a job they did of getting the mix 
right - much more difficult in this situation than when casting a 
bell from all new metal.

Has anyone ever done metallurgical studies of old bells to see how 
much variation there was in the ratio of copper and tin? especially 
in terms of "new" versus "recast" bells from the same founder? 
What's the smallest size sample of metal that's adequate to perform 
such a quantitative analysis?  (QA was not covered in my college 
chemistry course, and I've never explored the subject.)



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