John McPherson

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About John McPherson

  • Rank
    Grumpy Old Guy
  • Birthday October 20

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  • Gender
  • Location
    Charlotte, NC
  • Interests
    Full Time Welding Instructor/CWI, occasional blacksmith.


  • Location
    Charlotte, NC

Recent Profile Visitors

14,061 profile views
  1. Welding and historicity

    Andy Phillips of Oak Hill Iron has been doing a youTube video blog (vlog) every week for over a year now about the business of moving metal. He recently made the point that the amount of traditional forge welding done in a 'modern' shop is inversely proportional to the output. You can do anything you want as research or a hobby, but clients pay the bills in a business setting. Even making your own pattern welded steel, a mainstay of bladesmiths, slows production waaaayyy down, and makes the item's cost go up proportionally. And they are using welders on the parts that the client never sees: sealing canisters, tacking layers together in billets, attaching billets to rod handles instead of using tongs, etc. And using power hammers and presses, but not by rushlights and oil lamps. A museum demo is just that, a demonstration of how it used to be, hopefully as historically correct as you can make it. Business is something that runs by efficiency, or it is a very short run. If you are aiming for that elite 1% clientele to whom money is no object, you are passing up 99% of your potential client base.
  2. Anyone else used tip tig?

    More than just a wire feeder, there is an agitator in-line in the wire feed. The wire is pulsing in and out like a tattoo gun needle, which helps to flatten out the puddle. Expensive, yes, but you get TIG quality with MIG speed. About a 500% speed increase on average, YMMV.
  3. Le Pig

    From wikipedia: "Bourg-de-Péage is a commune in the Drôme department and in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region in southeastern France. The inhabitants are called Péageois." So this is a piggy made by Peageois? I'd be Lyon if I said I was not amused!
  4. What did I buy?

    Would that be the logo on the foot on the same side as the triangle C? Inquiring minds want to know!
  5. It followed me home

    Punches and chisels can be turned into..........punches and chisels! But with different ends suited for specific tasks. You already know that is a suitable steel to use, and don't need to waste time and energy on worthless mystery metal, only to end up with scrap. A coffee can full of decorative punches is a wonderful thing to have available, or to sell and trade. The skills learned in making them will push you further down the path to metal mastery. If you have suitable tongs or vise grips, short punches weigh less for traveling, can be used at the anvil, as well as with power hammers or treadle hammers. One long hand star drill might make a half dozen stubby punches. Or one good hammer eye drift. If you want cheap medium carbon stock for making into decent quality blades without spending time changing round into flat first, look for carpenters pry bars at flea markets. Heck get a half dozen identical ones on sale at HF and spend a weekend on mastering one common steel.
  6. What Did You do in the Shop Today?

    Flint strikers and arrowheads. Mostly talking about the history of American Indians and forged trade items on the frontier, 1500-1860.
  7. What Did You do in the Shop Today?

    Yesterday, I did a demo for the Boy Scouts in the open and was rained out. First time I have ever had an anvil rust *while* I was demonstrating!
  8. Identifying an anvil

    Renato Murcovic (or maybe Muskovic?), the only other one I have seen was a London pattern (did not have the upsetting block, tapered heel, or side shelf), weighed about 120 pounds, and was cast in Vancouver, Canada out of 4140 steel. Apparently, about a decade ago he had a run of anvils made, some like yours up to 633 pounds. So, how much does yours weigh?
  9. a different Johny Pick

    Is that a brass tube in the hinge of the candle well? And how is it attached - solder or spring action? What is the material in the tube?
  10. Time for a new apron!

    Buy the new apron when this one wears out, and modify it to suit you, or get one custom made. I have come to regard any mass merchandise product more complicated than a cheap screwdriver to be a basic platform that needs to be tweaked before it will work properly. Welding leathers and aprons can be hand washed in a kitchen sink or 5 gallon bucket when they get too funky. Use hot water, Woolite or kitchen hand soap, expect a lot of dye to come out in the first couple of wash and rinse cycles. Roll and squeeze in an old towel to get out all of the water you can. Then do it again with another towel. Hang outdoors to dry. If it is stiff when it is dry, tumble dry on cold with a pair of tennis shoes. Then you can re-apply some sort of leather treatment, if you feel the need.
  11. Anvil info requested

  12. Punch and drift

    Here are some Brian Brazeal punch and drift pix from my archive of purloined materials er, ah research files. A can of short decorative punches and chisels. Punch tips with the slugs produced. Side view of longer punch/drift combo tools showing tapers. Student set produced during a multi day workshop class.
  13. Nc anvil

    No, that's not it. "To 'air' is human, to silently break wind and wait for the reaction is .......diabolical." Although you might 'air' if someone goosed you. Enough, I am out of here on a wing and a prayer. (Or are those mumbled curses I hear?)
  14. Anvil identification please help

    There seems to be some sort of writing on the other side, get a picture of that if you can. Cast yes, cast low grade iron junk: 90% probability. A hammer will not make it ring if it is cast iron, but will if it is cast steel. A light hammer with a rounded face should not mark cast steel, but will obviously dent cast iron. Try to get a ball bearing and do a drop test from 12" up on a clean spot. No powdery rust or paint, just wire brushed clean metal. anything less than 60% rebound is a no-go. If $50 is a lot of money to you, it is better spent on other things if it is a cast iron ASO.
  15. The overall shape, plus the -BUDD on the side, would lead one to believe that it is a HAY-BUDDEN. Any sign of a serial number on the front ledge of the feet?