@stevomiller Thank you for the well thought out reply!
As to your questions; as far as thicker steel is concerned we build tanks (liquid tanks not the military vehicle type) so 3/4 is about the biggest we get barring specialty jobs. The material we receive for said specialty jobs is usually provided by the customer or third party and any drop or scraps are returned to the customer and/or third party. As far as the welding equipment we have, I personally can GMAW, SMAW, and GTAW and my machine can push 600 amps. We do have access to a SAW but after talking to the guy that runs that side of the shop the 3/4 is going to be to thin to weld on edge with the sub-arc without melting down the corners and possibly blowing out the middle. For the fab equipment we have plate rollers, punches, band saws and breaks from 20 ton to 400 ton. The other half of the company is refractory, they have lots of scrap fire-brick so as far as tempering I was thinking I could fab a frame to build a temporary box above a coal forge to heat treat, stress relieve and temper the material (open to suggestions on this). For hardfacing, that is actually how I learned to weld many many years ago although it was hashing a diamond pattern to loader buckets (and hopefully my welding skills have improved since those days). For what I am planing to forge, I was going to start out with making all of my own tools, the only purchase I want to make is a ball peen hammer to start, everything else I plan to make (hammers, tongs, hardy tools etc) just to reclaim what little knowledge I have about smithing and hopefully expand my existing knowledge. Eventually I would like to make knives, axes, swords (If I am up to the task, I understand forging a sword is a very time consuming endeavor) as well as small projects to the tune of drawer pulls, towel hooks/racks etc. I do have "some" knowledge of smithing but that knowledge is restricted to farrier work and ninety eight percent of the shoes were cold forge with the two percent remaining being simple tasks such as putting borium on mule shoes and an occasional cross bar. Which brings me to your last inquisition about the london pattern anvil. I don't know if the smiths here (and honestly around the world) are asked about that particular style so much that it is an automatic assumption that any new smith wanting to build their own anvil is going to go with that style, but that is not the style I was planning to go with. That is not an accusation, only an observation, I do not mean any disrespect by that as I am more than grateful for your time, help, and advice. The anvil I have "built" in my head looks more like an Australian style but it wasn't intentionally modeled that way, I have only about 3" off the back of the anvil which is just enough for the hardy and pritchel holes with empty space below to knock out the plugs of anything I need to punch or drift. The horn (if included, I might end up just making a hardy tool to replace the need for a horn) will be a very stubby thing only about 4" or so. The waist is the same size as the face, and will basically just be a solid block of metal running from face to foot. I did have a suggestion today by a co-worker to have each piece of plate running vertically instead of horizontally, I would have to agree with that suggestion as it would add more structural integrity especially in the horn and heel areas.
In closing, I really appreciate you taking the time to help me and potentially others who are in the same situation as myself.