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Testing the Zowada Forced-Air Manifold

I had time to forge down the 2in pipe for the nozzle today which completed everything needed for the burner. Here is a video of the first test run. Propane and air can be mixed separately via the gate valves which should allow precise control over the atmosphere in the forge.
Categories: Hacking
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The Village Blacksmith

The landlord visited today while I was working on some bolt jaw tongs. When he saw me blacksmithing, he told me that he used to turn the crank blower for a blacksmith when he was a boy and recited the following poem:
Under a spreading chestnut tree
The village smithy stands;
The smith, a mighty man is he,
With large and sinewy hands;
And the muscles of his brawny arms
Are strong as iron bands.

His hair is crisp, and black, and long,
His face is like the tan;
His brow is wet with honest sweat,
He earns whate'er he can,
And looks the whole world in the face,
For he owes not any man.
Continue reading "The Village Blacksmith"
Categories: Hacking

Cybercrime 2.0: When the Cloud Turns Dark

We recently published an article on web-based malware in ACM's Queue Magazine. It provides a short overview of some of the challenges with detecting malicious web sites such as social engineering and examples of techniques for compromising web sites, e.g. htaccess redirection on Apache, etc. This is the article on which my recent ISSNet talk was based.
Categories: Malware, Security, SpyBye
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Making A Monkey Tool

I learned how to make a monkey tool today. Monkey tools can be used for dressing tenons. The basic procedure is as follows.
Take 1in square stock and chamfer the edges. Take a slot punch and move it about an 1in from the corner - this is the hammer end. Line the slot punch up very carefully, so that its straight and divides the stock in the middle. Hit it a couple times to get a registration. Now, get the stock nice and hot, align the slot punch with the registration, hit it hard three times, cool the slot punch in water, rotate it by 180 degrees and repeat. At some point, the slot punch is almost through, flip the stock over and use the slot punch to punch out the remaining piece of metal. Now, use a drift to open up the hole to the desired size. Start the drift from the other side of the slot. Doing this over the hardy hole is a good idea. With the slot still inserted, dress up the faces. Then chamfer the corners. Cut off the other side for the length of the tenon and drill a hole of the right size.
That's it. Out of the four holes I drifted only two came out sort of in the middle :-)
Categories: Hacking
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Building a forge

To get better control over the atmosphere in the forge, I have decided to build a blown gas forge based on a design by Tim Zowada. The basic structure is provided by a 10 gallon compressed air tank I picked up from Lowes. Using Tim's forced-air manifold, the forge should easily get up to welding temperature (2300F).

Jon who runs the TemperChi Glass Art Studio is helping with building this thing and already has some cerawool for lining the inside. The Cerawool is going to get covered with a 1/4in layer of Satanite and then with an ITC-100 coating. The forge floor will be made from Bubble Alumina refractory which has a heat rating of up 3300F and is supposed to be very resistant to flux. The inside diameter of the forge will be 8 inches and the length about 12 inches.

If you are interested in making glass beads, you can learn that at the shop, too, as well as welding :-)
Categories: Hacking, News
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Top 10 Malware Sites

A list of the top-10 malware sites found by Google's infrastructure over the last two months is available at the Google Online Security Blog. Gumblar and Martuz are among them as well as googleanalytlcs.net. There certainly have been lots of compromised web servers recently.
Categories: Malware, News, Security, SpyBye
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