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I Forge Iron

Block Anvil


Jymm Hoffman

This is the anvil I used for over 25 years when demonstrating with my 18th. Century travelling forge until this fall. I used Simmons & Turley's book as a basis and have since found other original "block anvils." This happens to be material used in large truck axles in the late 70's, not sure what it is. It has a spike welded on the bottom and stuck into a hole. The large straps on the stump are staples to keep the log from splitting out throughout the checks and keep the anvil from turning while working on it. Many were amazed to watch me make hooks and chain on this with out a horn. I learned early on, while making scrolls, I preferred to not use the horn, so I applied that to making hooks. I did round one corner to help dress certain curves and hooks. I also drilled a hole into the face and a hole in the side to be a clean out for punching. However, most of the time a "bolster bar", (a flat bar with holes,) works as well or better. That is a hardy in the stump. The main thing is to have a flat hard surface to pound on. To quote Glenn, "the tools don't make the blacksmith...." I also like to apply the keep it simply philosophy.


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