|Building Needed||Ironmaster's Work|
|Stream||Metal Industry, Industry|
This furnace keeps the pig iron and fuel separated, preventing impurities from reaching the pool of molten metal.
As a result, the puddling furnace makes a very good quality end product. It does not, however, turn raw ore into refined metal: it needs refined iron of reasonable quality to produce the best results. The metal is placed in the heart of the furnace along with oxidizing agents and melted by blowing flames from the fire onto it: the puddle formed in the open hearth is manually stirred by the operators - a risky job for anyone! The iron produced can be worked further into wrought iron, a strong, malleable, material with many uses.
Historically, English ironmaster Henry Cort (1740-1800) developed the process, partly in response to the poor quality of iron he dealt with in his job working for the Royal Naval Dockyards. Unfortunately, he was not much of a businessman and he did not gain great wealth from his work: he died a ruined man.