Folks don’t even think twice about blacksmiths and coal– coal is an incredibly more dense energy source than trees or the stuff you can make for them.
This series is enjoyable for bringing up things folks don’t think about.
This week we continue our four-part (I, II, III, IV) look at pre-modern iron and steel production. Last week we prospected our iron ore and extracted it from the ground and did some initial mechanical processing (washing, sorting, crushing). This week, we’re going to make our way from just rocks to an actual mass of metal rather than just some metal-bearing ore. As we’ll see, we are going to do this by applying heat and (more importantly) chemistry:
Warning: Many, many trees were harmed in the making of this iron.
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