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I Forge Iron


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About RogerrogerD

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    Advanced Member

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    UK, Gloucestershire
  • Interests
    History, metallurgy, brewing beer, travel.

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  1. Little and Large. Got given this old jewellers anvil and vice today by a passing carpenter who found it in a waste bin. I’ll clean it up, screw it to a base and fit it in the hardy hole on my big JB.
  2. Not a shop, but a key part of a shop. Decided I was fed up with chasing down rivets, nuts, bolts and washers spread across various drawers, boxes, bags, jars and too many of those fiddly small plastic draw things. So I picked up a bunch of industrial “pigeon hole” shelving as salvage and giving them a spruce up.
  3. My first ever blade, a kiridashi, and a prototype. Not yet sharpened but happy with my first attempt fastening wooden handle scales. I need to take more care with getting the epoxy to the edges, but other than that it’ll do. I’m using some Persian Ironwood . Sounds exotic but I have three small trees in my garden and took a few limbs off to dry a few years ago. It’s hard as bone, and has an interesting mottled effect to it. First coat of linseed oil applied.
  4. Couple of lovely old workshop bibles. Machinery’s Handbook from 1934 and Kempe’s Engineering Handbook from 1920.
  5. As a barely competent smith and a barely competent welder, I find a good looking rivet easier to achieve in many circumstances than a good looking weld. There is something more innately appealing to me about a rivet than a weld too. But I need to improve both my skills. But I’ll usually drill a hole rather than punch a hole, accepting that’s not always the best solution, just habit and because it reflects my skills, or rather lack of them. I’d like to be good at forge welding, I’d like to be good at Mig and Tig, and I’d like to be a better smith, then make the choice on what looks best rather
  6. My view is that most bench vices are cast iron. Hitting one with a hammer is actually somewhat dangerous because cast iron is usually brittle. A bench vice holds an item firm, and that’s it. A post vice/ leg vice is actually designed to both hold something firm , and also to take heavy blows. They are totally different tools really. You wouldnt use a cast Iron chisel or a cast iron hammer. Same goes with a cast iron vice for anything other than light work.
  7. I’d “retire” it from regular forging, and use it, if you have the space, simply to hold hardy tools, or a guillotine tool held in the hardy, or just use it as an extra horn, or the “table” bit behind the horn which is meant to be soft for cutting etc. If you have the luxury of space next to another better faced anvil, then this grandfather still has some pragmatic uses. I have a second anvil, unsuitable for forging on, which has a smithin’ magician almost permanently mounted on it, which makes life a little simpler.
  8. I reckon you’ll quickly find the spots on this large anvil that will do the trick for whatever forging you are doing. It’s a nice big anvil and one of the things about big anvils is you have that wide choice of particular spots that work for you. Within a short while you’ll be doing that without consciously thinking about it. I’m lucky, I have a big anvil too, and it has even more chips on the edges, but I don't even notice them any more, just ignore them. Looks like this has been repaired, maybe not well, on one side, so just spin it and use the other side. I wouldn't worry at all about t
  9. I love it more every day. It sighs and whispers to me as I work it, sometimes with a happy grunt as it clears its throat. Wooshhhhh. Click click clack whoooshhhhh click click clack. The forge gently exhales in synch. Harrrrr. Harrrrr. Who needs music? Mind you, my very amateur hammering of steel on the anvil is like a kid playing a piano for the first time. That’s not musical yet...
  10. For a “used” anvil it looks pretty good. I have a JB, not as clean edged as that though. Ball bearing bounce is 90% + though...
  11. Here’s mine, made from an alder trunk. Bolted it to the floor, and attached two Leg vices, and and a small vice mounted vertically.
  12. If you are new to blacksmithing, as you say, maybe develop some other blacksmithing skills first. In my experience forge welding isn’t a “basic” skill, it’s a “tricky” one. I’ve been been blacksmithing for about 18 months and forge welding can be very hard. I was making some chain links a couple of months ago and one or two pretty much looked like yours... it’s fine, it’s learning but you will get less frustrated and more confident developing other skills first. As you do other things you’ll learn about gauging temperature, about what you can get away with and what you can’t. All useful s
  13. I think it worked for its keep for a few years but for the last 30 years it was at first a decorative feature in this guy’s hallway after he came across it in a junk store. He had done some restoration then including ouling the leather. His wife told him to move it out 20 years ago and since then he had it under a blanket in a garage. The leather soaks up any neatsfoot oil I put on it. I guess i’ll Keep reapplying .
  14. I picked up a lovely set of Alldays and Onions bellows on ebay and have restored them, and put them to use. Maybe 125 years old I reckon. Triple chamber, works smoothly. Leather is original, just treated with “neatsfoot” oil. A little woodworm, now treated. The top board is warped, but doesn’t affect the function and adds to its charm. At first I think one of the leather flap valves was sticking, I think, and the top chamber wasn't expanding, and I was dreading having to unpin the leather bellows but as I used it, it began working and now is working just fine. I have hooked it up to my mod
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