Squared up stock, removed most of the scale (the black crap) from the steel, brazed the mouth block to the sole and roughed out the ramp (cobalt roughing end mills really rock, which is good because there was a lot of metal to remove). I played with it for a while and realized that bigger ramp (1/2” thick, up from 3/8”) is going to be good thing as the wedge will be completely clamped between the cross piece and the ramp, no wood needed. This means I don’t have to worry about wood movement, yea!
Removing scale: It is pretty easy for small pieces like this sole, if a bit tedious. Fist, I use a [knotted] wire wheel on the grinder to move most of the black stuff. Then, I take a chunk of MDF (or whatever) about as long, and double stick tape it to the metal and “plane” sand paper glued to a flat surface (2 3/4” wide strip of PSA on my band saw table). That removes the pits and flattens the plate (after a while). I’m using 180 grit (because I have it), 100 would make this a lot quicker. The MDF acts both to keep the metal flat and as a handle.
I only do the inside, I want to flatten the surface (it was warped) before I put a big lump of metal in the middle. The sole is going to warp quite a bit during brazing (mostly attaching the ramp) and assembly so I’ll lap the bottom later.