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I Forge Iron


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About Michael

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    Senior Member

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  • Location
    San Francisco Bay Area
  • Interests
    Old Tools, woodworking, blacksmithing (of course!), poker, cycling, Top Gear, The Woodwright's Shop, books, my lovely wife, my above average kid etc, not necessarily in that (or any other) order.


  • Location
    San Francisco
  • Interests
    Antique hand tools, smithing
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  1. from the local building material salvage place. I'm guessed the ring was a part of an anchor chain or maybe some dockside hardware (wearing a buddy's anchor forging project T shirt might have been an influence), but thinking on it a bit, I think its from some lifting or rigging gear. Might be a useful shape in the smithy, might just end up as a tarp holdown weight.
  2. Nice space there Red Pedro! I'm looking to build something similar in a corner of the yard, and free up the patio for the family. Did you build yours (assuming you built it) as a pole barn, with the posts sunk in the ground or concrete? I don't suppose drainage is much of an issue where you are. Slowly moving out all the dirt to get ready for drainage gravel.
  3. I also have a stainless half keg with the end cut off for a slack tub. Best one yet! Killed the prior mop bucket by accidently dropping a BIG clinker in it, on the way to the clinker bucket, and burned a hole in the bottom.
  4. I live in a place that rarely gets to freezing and not for very long when it does, but I've read that a wooden stick, any piece of scrap really, stood up in your quench tub will keep it from freezing solid. Never had to try it, YMMV. At the very least a length of 2x4 at hand will make breaking the surface ice easier.
  5. In terms of a good rain cover for a JABOB, or JABOM, I have found that the 3x4 foot Steel or Aluminum drip pans from the auto parts store, to protect your driveway from oil leaks (or cars "marking their territory") make great forge covers, often with a lot of overhang and pretty easy on and off.
  6. Nice arrowhead Nathan! For work holding, I'm a big fan of a weighted chain across the face of the anvil. might be a little slippy-slidey across the small, rounded face of a sledge hammer head anvil though. Bicycle chain works (and might be better sized to your anvil) until you can find motorcycle chain. Mine is fastened to the near side of the stump with the weight on the far side. Maybe an open ended hook on the far side to keep the chain lined up with the anvil face? Chain will hold your work still, not necessarily securely, but enough to get that first punch dimple where you want it
  7. As long as you don't lose too many arguments, I think you're good. Chimaera-he does look a lot like Kerbal Space creatures, Bug eyes would be great, hard to do by punching, maybe rivets? Been trying to figure out a forged Dalek (nerd alert) and those have a lot of 'frighteningly convex' shapes.
  8. Great work! Nice save on an old tool. Impressive addition of the WF Barnes lathe comment by the way (Velocipede in the shop here) Bookbinding buddy of mine recently tried to piece together odd ball parts of dividers like this and ran into odd little differences in different years of manufacture.
  9. Made a little Forge Buddy on Monday. 3/4 square and 1/2 round. Pretty straightforward after the Anton Yakashev figure the NWBA demonstrated in November, and I spent most of December completing. This makes for 6 or 7 figurative projects since lockdown started (and forge access has been 15 feet out the back door all day!)
  10. Another 'junk on hand' hold down. Motorcycle chain nailed to the stump on the front, the cast iron weight hangs just above the ground on the other side. Chain usually at the step or back of the horn when not in use. Square tube is my "bridge" fixture for fork tines and the like. The foot of chain across the face WAS painted red in the last incarnation of this hold down, haven't had to on this one, the recollection of grabbing too close to the hot part is still fresh in memory.
  11. My local burger joint was happy to give me 5 gallons of fryer oil to use for quenching. Does make you hungry for fries though.
  12. That'll be a great space for hammer and tool making. What are your (current) plans for the floor? DIrt? concrete? I'm setting up a similar sized space (8x16) to replace the leaky covered patio I work on, figuring out drainage in the new space. Looking forward to seeing your new shop!
  13. My cast iron forge table is under a leaky patio roof. During the rain, I have one of those save-your-driveway drip pans, 3 foot by 4 foot that covers the whole of the forge and overhangs quite a bit. Keeps everything dry. Tarps over the tool tables, lots of long, heavy bars to hold everything down. working on a watertight structure, having to figure out drainage in that part of the yard before erecting anything though.
  14. Nice little shed you have there! I would also considering cutting a hole in the floor, once you decide on an anvil location that works for you. In the meantime, you might consider stacking up some cribbing under the floor where you're anvil is for the moment. It looks like access underneath is not a real problem. if one of the pier blocks is convenient to back up the anvil stand, start with that and see if its absorbs enough shock, not a big fan of cement for anvil support, but if its what you have.....
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