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    Moapa Valley, Nevada


  • Location
    Moapa Valley,Clark County NV
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    Blacksmithing, leather work, wood carving, photography, drawing, ceramics, cars, gunsmithing,etc
  • Occupation
    tool maker

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    Memorial garden work

    Beautiful work. Interesting that the zinc was flame sprayed. Over here most will be hot dipped, and I rarely hear of anything being flame sprayed. I have an old Metco K flame sprayer that needs some repairs to get going.

    Looking for an anvil

    The last time I went to one of scrapyards in Las Vegas was to get some plate for a .50 cal M2HB demo. We bought 900# of plate and big I-beams for $15. They told us to stay away from the cranes and if it was something we just couldn't grab to point it out and they would get it. We got our pile together and they used the magnet to haul it over to my truck. I haven't had to go back for anything as I keep coming across tons from work, and other places I visit. I dropped off the non ferrous crap (copper, brass, beryllium copper) at the yards in Los Angeles for the shop I worked at and some of the yards had literal piles of forklifts, and forklift forks.

    A Bit of something

    I always call them center drills as they are used to drill a pocket for the lathe's live or dead center to sit in. I have seen them listed as combined drill and countersink in some catalogs. The countersink part is 60 degrees though and flathead screws and bolts are 82 degree, and hole chamfers are usually a 45. Where I do use them for chamfering is when I am tapping a hole as the 60 degree matches the 60 degree thread angle. I use center drills in the milling machine as well when I need to start a twist drill in an exact location. Use the center drill to put a starting hole in the part that helps to center the twist drill better than a center punch will. They also work great for removing broken bolts when using an easy out. Being as rigid as they are they will stay on center (when in a mill or lathe) and won't walk like a twist drill will on an uneven surface like a broken bolt. Again, it is used just to get a good starting point for the twist drill that follows. They come in graduated sizes like shown above so you can match them up with the drill, or the center being used. The one I used the most was a #4.

    Help identifying my first anvil :)

    Any ball bearing say 3/8" -1/2" work work fine for checking rebound. Look for an electric motor shop, or pump shop as they are constantly replacing ball bearings. Not many ball bearings in cars today, as most are roller bearings for axles and wheel hubs. We go through them constantly at the bakery I work at; motors, pumps, mixers, conveyors, tension rollers, etc... I try to grab the larger ones as they get changed out.

    Lever Forge

    Post a picture of what you have, so we can give better advice.

    What did you do in the shop today?

    Michael, a couple of tips for the next one, forge at a yellow heat, and find a good straight peen hammer. The peen will work the thickness down faster and in one direction compared to the rounding hammer that spreads it in all directions.
  7. Hans, as with many things American our rebar is just made to a different standard than European rebar. Over here it is the hot dog of the metals because you never really know what is in it.

    Results of first week of making

    I think a lot of the Nicholson debate is that they make different grades of files; machinist files for metal, and files for woodworkers. They are not the same alloy. Their materials guy told me that they used the same alloys ( he would not give me the specific series) for the entire time he had been with them - 46 years. They also pack harden some to add more carbon in the teeth - Black Diamond possibly. He said the alloy used for wood and hooves is a lesser grade because they are not as hard as metal. As to heat treating the machinist files he said treating it as W-1 would be a good choice.

    Power hammer

    Hire a tow truck to sling it and move it for you. I used my local tow company to move my 20" container on their flatbed. Also contact Big Blu and ask them how to move them - where to sling it, weight, etc..

    Which anvil to get?

    I would try and work that price. If it is the anvil I am thinking of it has been listed with his other ones for quite awhile. He is a flipper getting in on the current trend. National average is around $3 a pound, and that one is listed at over $5, so more like $180 than $350. Personally _even though I love Fisher anvils_I think that is way too steep for one that size. You could drop $50 and get a much larger piece of good scrap steel and do everything you want to do. I have a neighbor who mentioned that he has a pile of forklift forks at work, One fork will make an anvil at least twice the weight of that Fisher. If you do not weld I could help you out with that. Forks are made of good tough steel and are already heat treated, they make great anvils. As to being quiet. Even with a Fisher there will still be a thump, thump, thump when using it that could be a waking point. My suggestion would be to ask him when he usually sleeps and explain what you are doing. Who knows he may end up being a smithing partner.

    Fair Price for Vise?

    I get mine for around $10 per inch of jaw width. My last one was a Columbian in excellent shape out of a wood shop for $40, and they probably would have gone even lower as I found out if I had not bought it , it was headed to the thrift store. Saw an 8" listed a couple of years ago for $80, and I should have called in sick and drove down there to get it as it was in excellent condition. Vises are not rare and many businesses besides smiths used them. They are also still being made new today. Personally I would try and bargain some, but if it is in good shape and you can afford it, get it. Also see if he has anything else he can toss in. Besides the anvil, a good post vise is a must in a smithy.

    Why does size matter?

    I have anvils from 100#-306# and my 260# Fisher gets used the most. It just sits on a stump, and with the projects I make it rarely moves around. If I had a striker I would probably secure it better than it is. Gerald, the Fisher I have was the first anvil my Dad and I started with. I love using it and it reminds me of when Dad was around. My ears also appreciate his choice in anvils. Some day I would like to try out a large anvil like the 600# one you have, just to say I did.

    What did you do in the shop today?

    JHCC, that could easily be a bottle opener or screwdriver too

    This is not for cookie making!

    It is a Rosette for making cups/small bowls.

    The Vise to end all Vices.

    I hope you scoured his other "junk piles" Great vise. There is a thread on anvil stands you may want to check out.