As a knife-making enthusiast myself, I remember when I first started looking for a gas forge and how challenging that task was. With the ever-increasing number of options on the market, it can be difficult to find the best gas forge for knife making.
However, after years of testing and trying different units, I’m here to provide you with everything you need to know about choosing the perfect gas forge for your needs. My top pick is, without a doubt, the Hell’s Portable Propane Forge. It’s easy to use, lightweight, and fuel-efficient.
Still, there are a lot more excellent gas forges that you can choose from, and it all falls back to your personal needs and expectations.
So, here are my top eight picks and why they made the final cut to this list. You can then make your final decision based on my review of each unit. I’ll also provide a buying guide and FAQs on choosing the right gas forge. So let’s jump right in.
Here Are the Best Gas Forge for Knife Making – Tried & Tested
If you’re looking for a detailed review of the best gas forges for knife making, you’re in luck because that’s exactly what’s covered in this section! So, keep on reading to meet each of my top eight picks with their pros, cons, and everything in between.
I’m kicking off this list with an excellent gas forge for knife making, which is Hell’s Portable Propane Forge. Whether you’re planning on forging hunting knives or regular kitchen knives, this forge is the perfect choice for you; here’s why.
First of all, this forge has an oval shape with dimensions of 19” x 6.75” x 3.5”, which is large enough for any knife-making task. Still, this forge is lightweight and portable enough that it won’t take much space or effort to store.
This Hell’s propane forge comes with HELLCOAT 3000 refractory coating, which I strongly recommend you apply before using the forge. Fortunately, it’s easy to apply and goes on well if you take your time with the process.
As a double burner, you can use two burners at the same time to quickly heat the forge, saving you a lot of time. On top of that, you can switch to a single burner set-up at any time if you don’t need the double burners during your knife-making. This forge is perfect for large projects, too, including sword-making if that’s something you’re interested in.
If you’re new to knife-making, there’s nothing to worry about when it comes to setting up this forge. It comes with thorough instructions that’ll make the set-up process a breeze.
It even comes with two perfect-sized fire bricks for durability and maintaining heat. However, I recommend adding extra fire bricks if you want the forge to retain heat for longer, especially around the opening.
- Incredibly easy to use
- Lightweight and portable
- Heats up quickly
- You can use the double burner or single burner set up
- The propane hose is a little too short
Why settle for a single or a double burner when you can go for this Simond Store Propane Forge Triple Burner. Yes, you read that correctly, a triple burner! Its heat capacity goes up to 2600 degrees Fahrenheit, making this forge perfect for knifemakers of all skill levels and different-sized projects.
Internally, the forge’s dimensions are 5.8” x 5.8” x 24,” and it has a 1” high-density ceramic fiber blanket. Construction-wise, this forge is built with 16 Gauge stainless steel grade SS-304.
Now that you’re more familiar with the forge’s construction, let’s talk about its triple burner set-up. One of the burners is directly connected, while the other two can be controlled with valves. That way, you have full control over the forge and its temperature.
While we’re on the subject of temperature, even though this Simond Store forger doesn’t have a door, it can still retain heat well, thanks to its two fire bricks that insulate the forge’s floor. Each brick is 1” x 4.5” x 9,” and combined with the ceramic fiber blanket, they insulate heat really well.
Moreover, the forge comes with a 6.5-feet hose, which is long enough for you to work comfortably. Also, it comes with a gas regulator with a manometer to maintain the forge’s pressure and Teflon tape.
Sadly, this unit isn’t the easiest to put together. I have to mention that you need to double-check that everything is in place, especially the piping for the gas, which might be challenging for a beginner.
- Offers a triple-burner set-up
- High-quality construction
- Good gas pressure regulator
- High degree capacity, perfect for any project
- A little challenging to set up
Now, here’s the third-best gas forge on this list, the USA Cast Master Elite Double Burner. This forge is perfect for all knife-making enthusiasts out there who are looking for a unit that’s affordable, easy to use, and maintains heat well.
As a double burner, this forge can get any material you’re working with to forging temperature pretty quickly. Plus, it’s efficient at maintaining that heat, thanks to the Kaowool ceramic fiber insulation. It also comes with fire bricks to help with maintaining heat.
Additionally, you might have to make your own endpiece from extra fire bricks if you want to increase its efficiency. However, make sure you’re careful and not causing a safety hazard; this isn’t something beginners should be doing.
This forge is made from heavy-duty steel, and it can withstand temperatures up to 2000 Fahrenheit, which is more than enough for bladesmithing. The forge is around 18” x 6” x 4” internally with an oval shape, which is large enough for knife-making.
Moreover, if you like having control over your forge’s heat, you’re in luck because this unit has two burners, and you can control the intensity of each one separately. That way, you can make sure your forge is always at the perfect temperature for the task at hand.
- Affordable price point
- Decent heavy-duty steel construction
- Perfect for most knife-making projects
- You can control the intensity of each burner
- The written instructions aren’t that easy to follow
Yes, we have yet another Hell’s forge, this time the MAX Propane Double Burner Forge. Much like the previous Hell’s forge, this one is perfect for knifemakers of all skill levels. So whether you’re a beginner or you’ve been forging knives for a while now, you’ll get some use out of this forge.
This forge has a 2300 Fahrenheit capacity, which is enough heat to get any material you’re working with to forging temperature before you know it. Besides, the 1” ceramic fiber blanket covering the interior of this forge helps prevent heat loss, so the forge will keep its heat for longer. You can always use a few fire bricks to further prevent heat loss if you want to.
Additionally, this unit comes with HELLCOAT 3000 refractory coating that you’ll have to apply yourself. The application process goes smoothly once you get the hang of it. Besides, the included brush helps you get an even coat.
Plus, to ensure that it’s using the perfect gas pressure, the Hell’s MAX forge comes with a 0 – 30 PSI regulator, which is a huge bonus.
Now, let’s talk about dimensions. Internally, this forge is 6” x 4.75” x 19”, so it’s large enough to handle any knife-making tasks without being too bulky that it’s difficult to store; it’s the perfect sized forge.
One of my favorite things about this forge is its solid stainless steel construction. This high-quality forge comes with two fire bricks, and it’s incredibly easy to set up.
- Easy to set up and use
- Comes with thorough instructions to set up the unit
- Heats up fast and maintains heat for long
- High-quality solid stainless steel construction
- You might have to check all the fittings for leaks
- 2.75” x 4” x 10” internal dimensions
- 2600 degrees Fahrenheit heat capacity
- 6.5-feet long hose
- 1/8” structural steel pipe
- Made with stainless steel grade 304
- 1” layer of ceramic fiber blanket, coated by Rigidizer
Simond Store makes another appearance on this list with the Single Burner Propane Blacksmith Knife Forge. As the name implies, this forge is the perfect size for knife-making, and it’s effortless to move around and store.
The forge’s burner nozzle is made from stainless steel grade 304, while the heating area comes with a 1” layer of ceramic fiber blanket coated by Rigidizer. With all these qualities in mind, this forge can withstand up to 2600 degrees Fahrenheit. Also, the included fire brick adds to the forge’s overall durability.
It also comes with Teflon tape, a metal holding stand, a user manual, and safety and assembly instructions. These accessories are perfect for a beginner because they can get you started with knife-making immediately.
You can also control the airflow and gas consumption, thanks to the air chock valve and the manometer on the forge.
This single-burner unit has 2.75” x 4” x 10” internal dimensions, which is perfect for knife-making. Additionally, the 6.5-feet long hose is an excellent addition, and it’s super convenient.
- Budget-friendly unit
- Doesn’t take much storage place
- Perfect for small projects
- Heats up fast
- Stays hot for a long while after you shut it down
Moving on to the next product on this list, which is the NC Whisper Momma Atmospheric Forge. Even though this forge is a little expensive, it’s worth every penny, and it’s definitely an investment you should make.
This forge has high-efficiency burners that can heat up your materials in minutes. So you don’t have to spend half your knife-making day just waiting for the forge to heat up to the right temperature.
Besides quickly heating up, this forge can also maintain heat efficiently, thanks to its solid insulated door. It keeps self-regulating to make sure that the heat is always at 2350 degrees Fahrenheit. Moreover, the push-button ignition is just so convenient.
This lightweight forge has a firebox of dimensions 12” x 3” x 6.5”, while its ports are of dimensions 3” x 1.5” each, which is a little limited, so keep that in mind before making your final purchase.
- Cools down quickly
- Maintains a uniform heat level
- Easy and quick push-button ignition
- Has a solid insulated door
- A little too expensive
- Relatively small opening size
This Blacksmiths Single Burner Propane Forge is one that heats up fast! With a heat capacity of 2600 degrees Fahrenheit, all your knife-making dreams could come true with this unit.
The most crucial thing about any forge is that it must maintain its heat. Luckily, this Blacksmiths one comes with a 1” high-density ceramic fiber blanket that’ll make sure the forge doesn’t lose its heat. Besides, it comes with refractory fire brick to further prevent heat loss and resist high-velocity firing.
Moreover, this forge is shaped like a rectangle with 2.75” x 4” x 10” internal dimensions. Thus, it’s large enough to take on any knife-making challenge you throw at it.
With this unit, you’ll receive a metal stand, Teflon tape, a user manual, and assembly and safety instructions to get you started on your knife-making journey. Also, it comes with a 0-21 PSI gas regulator and manometer, so you can monitor the gas pressure and your propane usage.
Its SS-304 burner nozzle allows you to control the amount of air mixed with propane during the combustion process, which is a huge advantage.
However, I have to mention that the torch shaft screws tend to come loose after a while because they get affected by the high temperature. It’s not a deal-breaker, but you do have to keep an eye out for these screws.
- Heats up quickly and maintains heat well
- Easy to set up and use
- High-quality construction
- The torch shaft screws get loose often
The last product on this list is the Atlas Bladesmith Forge, which is a unit that can get hot very fast, which is something that all knifemakers can appreciate. In fact, this unit gets hot enough to forge weld.
Besides, the Atlas Bladesmith is energy efficient. This means that it uses little propane per hour, so you’ll be saving a lot of money in the long run. In addition, it’s made from 304 stainless steel, which is a guarantee that this unit is durable and long-lasting. Also, it has an adjustable gliding tool rest for your convenience and comfort during long knife-making days.
Let’s talk about this forge’s dimensions. Its cylindrical firebox has a diameter of 2.5,” and it’s 11” long. As for its opening, it’s 2” in diameter. To be fair, this forge is a little small, but it should be good enough for knife-making. However, if you’re planning to expand your forging skills beyond knives, this forge might not be the one for you.
The Atlas Blacksmith forge comes with a 0- 20 PSI regulator; you can keep an eye on the gas pressure at all times. Besides, it comes with an Atlas stainless steel 30k BTU burner.
- Easy to assemble
- Gets hot quickly
- Maintains heat
- Incredibly energy-efficient
- The rear opening is a little small
Buying Guide: What to Look for in a Gas Forge for Knife Making
If you’re new to the world of forges and knife-making, it might be a little difficult to find a place to start. So, to make things easier for you, here’s everything you need to know before buying the first gas forge you see.
Shape and Size
Of course, the shape and size of the forge you go for can heavily affect your work. For example, if you’re planning on forging hunting knives, you need a large-sized forge that can keep up with your projects.
On the other hand, if you’ll only be working on small kitchen knives, it’s better to go for a small forge to save yourself some storage area.
Burner and Regulator
When looking for a gas forge for knife-making, you need a unit that can distribute heat evenly, heat up quickly, and maintain that heat for long periods.
Also, choosing between single, double, and triple burners depends on the kind of materials you’ll be working with. The more burners you have, the more heat your forge can withstand. If you’re unsure what to do, the safest bet is to go for a double-burner set-up that can be controlled and adjusted. That way, you can adjust the heat level to the perfect temperature for your task at hand.
Moreover, because you’re dealing with propane tanks, you need a regulator with your forge. The regulator will help you monitor the gas pressure at all times, so you’ll know immediately if something isn’t working properly.
Maintaining heat is critical when it comes to knife forging. Heat insulation can also save you money in the long run because you’ll be using less and less propane. After all, you won’t have to keep reheating the forge every few minutes.
Look for a forge with good insulation, either by having a solid door or a ceramic fiber lining. Also, fire bricks are a quick and easy solution for forges that don’t have a door.
If your forge comes with a safety precautions manual, take the time to read it and understand every point. You’ll be working with propane, fire, and extremely high temperatures, so you need to make sure all the safety precautions are taken at all times.
It’s not convenient when your forge stays hot for hours after you’ve shut it down, and it can be a safety hazard. For that, forges with built-in cooling methods are the way to go to cool down the forge when you’re not using it.
Top Gas Forge Brands for Knife Making
There’s no ultimate brand that makes the best gas forges out there, but there are a few brand names that you can trust. If you’ve noticed, some brands were mentioned more than once throughout the list simply because they manufacture high-quality units that do their job well.
Among these brands are Hell’s, Simnod Store, and USA Cast Master. I’m not saying that these are the only gas forge brands you should ever consider, but they’re a good and reliable place to start your search and see where you end up.
What Is a Gas Forge?
A gas forge is one that uses propane gas to heat up metals to forging temperature. A gas forge consists of a firebox, where all the heat is applied to the metal. Some forges have openings for airflow and to access the metal, while others have a solid door that can be closed.
How Does a Gas Forge Work?
The burner set-up uses propane and mixes it with air to cause combustion. It produces consistent heat and applies that heat to the metal to heat it up to forging temperature.
How Much Propane Does a Gas Forge Use for Knife Making?
The amount of propane your gas forge uses depends on a lot of factors, including how many burners there are, how efficient the heat insulation is, and the size of the forge. To give you a better estimation, a 100-lb propane tank should last 3-4 days of forging.
How Long Will a 20-lb Propane Tank Last in a Gas Forge?
That depends on the specifications of the forge itself and your forging skills and speed. For example, let’s say a 100-lb tank lasts 3-4 days; then, a 20-lb tank should last for a full day of work.
We hope this article helped you reach a final decision on the best gas forge for your knife-making needs. In case you need a quick memory refresh, here’s a quick recap of my top three picks.
First and foremost, Hell’s Portable Propane Forge is one you can’t go wrong with. This unit has a double burner set-up that you can control in any way you like to adjust the heat to the perfect temperature. Besides, it’s incredibly energy efficient, and it can withstand up to 2300 degrees Fahrenheit.
The second place on my list went to the Simond Store Propane Gas Triple Burner Forge. This unit’s triple burner set-up is one to die for if you’re looking for a gas forge that heats up fast. Moreover, it’s constructed with high-quality materials that ensure the high durability and longevity of this forge.
Lastly, the USA Cast Master Elite Double Burner Forge is the go-to pick if you’re on a budget. This affordable unit is made with heavy-duty steel, and it allows you to control the intensity of each burner individually.
So, what are you waiting for? Get your gas forge, your materials, and your belt grinders, and start making knives!