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About ThomasPowers

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    Senior Moment Member; Master Curmudgeon

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  • Gender
    Not Telling
  • Location
    Central NM, USA
  • Interests
    Iron Smelting, Historical Ferrous Metals Technologies


  • Location
    Central NM
  • Interests
    Iron smelting
  • Occupation
    bit herder

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  1. I don't know the prices out your way; but around here I would expect US$3 a pound up to $6 a pound.
  2. Note that their "hollow anvils" probably weighed hundreds of pounds more than yours. As sourcing heavy stuff is generally easy; why skimp on something you can do better on?
  3. Seems to me to be looking down its nose at me---must be intelligent!
  4. AND BEWARE OF PAINTED OR PLATED SCRAP! Only takes one Hospital visit to pay for a lifetime supply of new metal! Last night I noticed the Blacksmith Depot catalog had 2' long stock in round and square in a variety of sizes; but again it cost more than a tentstake I'd make from it would sell for...
  5. Well lets see: 17th century ==1600s so a lot of stuff like spoons would be pewter for the lower socioeconomic folks and silver for the upper. Knives would be either a plain carbon steel blade; or for the upper end silver again for non cutting ones. There were also "fruit knives that had a silver blade as fruit acids don't react well with plain carbon steels. Note that these steels would be real wrought iron based as not even Huntsman's cast steel would be around then and "mild steel" was still up to 200 years in the future. If you are working with a historical group they should know the good documentation for that area/period and you can pattern off of extant examples.
  6. I'll have to check into a Territorial directory; your city directory was a good laugh! in 1880 Socorro had about 1200 people and Polvadera was probably a hamlet. It's on the old Camino Real and he probably served folks travelling there. 1870 was only 7 years after Arizona was split off of the New Mexico Territory...New Mexico originally went from Texas to California as did Socorro County IIRC.
  7. I ran across this recently, 1870 census data! CENSUS YR: 1870 STATE or TERRITORY: NM COUNTY: Socorro DIVISION: Pct 3, Polvadera REEL NO: M593-896 PAGE NO: 480b REFERENCE: Enumerated on Aug 16, 1870 by J. M. Shaw. Hand-written Page #12 =================================================================================================================================================================================================== LN HN FN LAST NAME FIRST NAME AGE SEX RACE OCCUP. REAL VAL. PERS VAL. BIRTHPLACE FOREIGN BIRTH MONTH MONTH ATT. CAN'T CAN'T DEAF M-21yrs VOTE- REMARKS FATHER MOTHER BORN MARR. SCHOOL READ WRITE DENIED =================================================================================================================================================================================================== 5 91 83 Williamson David 32 M W Blacksmith . . Missouri . . . . . . . . X . . Now to track down his shop and see if anything's hiding in the dirt... There was another entry for a fellow listed as 105 years old with occupation "Object of Charity"
  8. Slag;just how large a crack did you have in yourself that they used that method to close it?
  9. Well the face is not 2"; that's just a casting thing they did. What you really need to know is the results of the ring and rebound tests. May have to unclamp it to get a good ring result though. If it passes those tests it's a good anvil no matter who made it or when. If it fails those tests then it's not a good anvil no matter who made it or when it was made. (Anvils can go through structure fires and lose their heat treat which can be expensive and tricky to have re-done.) That is; if you are buying it to use!
  10. I'd worry more about the horn falling off as the steel is the tough part. I didn't see anything on the face that needed cleaning, of course I only have close to 4 decades of smithing experience; but it's your anvil you can do what you want with it.
  11. Another way to "budget" for such a sale is to keep little projects around to work on when a major project is heating/cooling/etc. I like to have at least two projects in the forge; an important one and a less important one. However over a year the pile of "trinkets" builds up for the sale and you don't feel like you have just done production work for a week to get ready.
  12. Most groups I've been associated with will let you attend meetings a couple of times before paying to join. It can be a big help seeing other smith's set ups and finding out what you like/dislike about them before you build your own. Some groups even have forges available for folks to use after meetings. Helps to avoid the "I don't know anything about this; so I designed a new and improved way to do it and it doesn't work right, y'all need to fix it for me!" (And Yes, we do seem to get a number of such posts here over time...)
  13. Well the underside of the heel may identify an Arm & Hammer. They tended to leave the steam hammer impressions undressed so if its smoothly undulating it would most likely be A&H.
  14. Lee, were you at Frank Turley's when he was awarded the ABANA Heritage award last Saturday?
  15. The closest place to my smithy that sells steel to the public is a windmill installation and repair place. They get a deeper discount the large orders of steel they place and so they sell it on the side to get a better price for themselves. They will also "piggy back" special orders for you. Call around; prices often vary a lot between steel dealers for the same item---and the cheapest can change from time to time. I also ask about dirty/rusty/bent/odd sized steel as I can often get it cheaper and the forge doesn't care! (I once got 90' of 1/4" sq stock this way for the price of 50'---cleaned out the dealers bin of all the drops and "damaged" stock. Made them very happy and me too!)