Pointed Iron Bar

This malleable iron bar was probably used at the Summerlee Iron Works to 'tap' a blast furnace.

Tapping a furnace was done at the end of the smelting process when the newly-made molten iron was ready to be removed from the furnace. The iron would be released by removing a clay bung that blocked a hole near the bottom of the furnace.

The pointed end of the tool was pushed into the bung and the flat end hit with a large hammer to release the molten iron which was at a temperature of about 1,300 degrees Celsius. This was a very risky job and the iron bar is long so that there would be a bit of distance between the workers and the gushing molten iron.

Museum reference:
1836 - 1933
On display:
Summerlee Museum: Exhibition Hall
Associated with:
Summerlee Iron Co · Summerlee Iron Works, Coatbridge, Scotland
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