Being a scratch builder, I like bare bones. My current forge, which is more convenient than any other I have made is propane fired, thus will not get hot enough, long enough, to melt cast iron or steel. No problem with bronze, brass, or aluminum. Many of the steam engines I mess with declare cast iron cylinders. I could use bronze, but that is spendy with the waste and all. Is steel going to be too hard to work and for the design? One can get some pretty soft, unhardened steel, that can be heat treated and tempered. Cast iron stock is fairly expensive. Generally under 2" square or round bar would be adequate for my projects. Thoughts?