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  1. Hello from Orange Park, Florida. I am setting up a backyard shop, as I am fairly well addicted to forging after having an opportunity to play with a brake drum forge and an anvil made from an 80# clevis. I have been reading here, from several books, and the abana tutorials while scrounging equipment and stock, but know better than to think that I know what I am doing yet. As for my day job, I perform metallurgical failure analysis and production shop support for overhaul and repair of Navy aircraft. Most of my materials knowledge is in aerospace alloys, so I will have to learn more about ferrous metallurgy. I received my first commission this past weekend, when my wife requested wire frame animals with Christmas lights on them. I don't even really need heat for these, but that won't stop me.
  2. This is the first knife that I am proud to call mine although it is going to be given to my sister as a Christmas present, she said she wanted a "pirate" knife for her renaissance fair costume so this is what I've come up with. It's made from a railroad spike and I did put the bumps in it on purpose no matter how much they irk me to give it that rough look. I also twisted the handle then hammered the sides flat for a handle that feels good in the hand while looking pretty. If you have any thoughts and tips I would love to hear them
  3. Several years ago I stumbled onto gas forges on Youtube. I have always thought it would be fun to take out my frustrations on a red hot piece of steel but decided I needed another hobby like I needed a hole in my head. Flash forward to a couple weeks ago. I stumbled onto 2 empty propane tanks with damaged valves. A friend asked if I wanted some one inch ceramic wool rated at 2300 degrees, and I said yes. So, Armed with this free stuff, I figured it was a sign that I was supposed to make a forge and that is what I started this weekend. Removed the valves, filled them with water several time then one time with dish soap. Got a propane torch and tested if the gas was gone. It was. Watched a few videos and read a lot of stuff Cut the wool to shape, wearing proper protective gear, so I would have two inches Now I am stuck, because a couple places on the net and one video said to use something called hardener. I can't find that. I am also not sure if I should create a floor out of a fire brick. It seems like it would be a good idea. So, here I am. completely and totally new to this blacksmith thing and really excited. In the real world I teach middle school reading to struggling readers, and I manage the family business. The forge will be at the business. Can't burn anything down there. Now I am off to read a lot.
  4. Hi all! Just wanted to introduce myself and say hi. I'm new to the forum, and new to blacksmithing; as a matter of fact I don't even have a forge yet. I'm working on that though, and am in the process of designing/building a propane forge. Anyone else in the Edmonton area that could help me source steels, tools, etc. locally? Thanks, and I look forward to learning a lot here... John
  5. Hello all, I’m trying to find a skilled Blacksmith, instructional school, or a blacksmithing guild in the San Diego area. I have poked around in the pin “finding a blacksmith group near you.” Looked at Bandy guild in Escondido, bit of a drive but do-able if that’s my only option. I’m looking to retire from the navy soon and have always wanted to get my hands dirty with blacksmithing. I’d love to meet up with some knowledgeable folks out there and get a bit of experience.
  6. Hello! I'm starting in on Blacksmithing as a new hobby after several attempts over the years (burned my hand in high school shop using the gas forge). I've signed up to take a beginner class with my local guild - Blacksmith Guild of Central Maryland, but the class isn't until October and I'm itching to get started. Have also signed up for a beginning welding class here in Baltimore so I can assembly my forge after than - will be posting some plans in the coal forge section. Big challenge after that is going to be getting something like a starter anvil (probably some railroad track or an excavator pin) and some coal (considering I won't be buying a ton at a time I might have to buy it off a real blacksmith or truck up to The Mill at Bel Air) but hopefully the guys at the guild can give me some pointers. I live in Baltimore but have a decent backyard where I can do some outdoor smithing, so my forge is going to be designed to fold up so I can carry in into the house (also so I can transport it from the public workshop where I'll be welding it together to my home in the trunk of a four-door sedan). I've found a good local supplier for the structural steel (Boulevard Sales Corp) I'll need for the forge and can use the plasma cutter and welder at my public workshop, the Baltimore Foundry (once I take the welding class). So if anyone is looking to sell an anvil or any other random blacksmith tools, or if you have a good local scrap yard to recommend please let me know!
  7. Hello everyone, I'm a new blacksmith and I was wondering if there were any clubs, organizations or individual blacksmiths around the SFV/LA area that help out beginning blacksmiths. I've looked around for quite a while now, and I have not had much luck. I tried the Orange county blacksmiths and they were absolutely great, but they were quite far away and the frequency of their lessons was somewhat slow. I know of Adam's forge which is right near me, but their prices are much too high. So if anyone knows of any other places or people, I'd be happy to hear it. Thanks.
  8. Hello all, I've browsed through the the stickies and its information and found some insightful work! Everyone on here is so nice and I'm eager to pursue this hobby. I wish to create armor and weapons for me and my friends for their SCA battles (likely not using said weapons). I have experience in welding, receiving a certificate in gas metal arc welding. I'm following up on some leads to get an anvil for free or cheap. And I have a barn of tools, I also have a large deep tractor rim that I can use as the forge. Any recommendations for a novice at black smithing? I am eager to hear advice
  9. Hi There, My name is Richard Medina. I am 19 years old, turning 20 in June, and I'm looking to start reaching for a certain dream of mines and take up Blacksmithing. After some unsuccessful searches through craigslist, google, newspapers, etc. trying to find somebody locally to Apprentice under I've decided to check out some blacksmithing forums to see who is around locally. Hopefully to help guide me through the processes, teach me what I need to know. Because, being fully honest, I don't even know where to start.
  10. Hey guys!I've been really interesting in learning how to do forging and smithing and all that good stuff for quite a while now and am finally going to make the leap and try and do it. Just wanted a few tips for ways to make a forge, and for tools and equipment that would be good to use, especially something as an anvil, because I don't wanna throw a lot of money at this yet because I haven't done it and wanna figure out a way to try it out relatively inexpensively. Any help or tips you guys have to offer for just starting out as far as what I need and can use for starting up and learning would be incredibly appreciated. Thanks!
  11. Choo Choo Forge has open forge every Thursday from 1:00pm to 7:00pm for members, visitors are always welcome. We have new classes all the time with 2 of the best instructors any one could hope for. It's a great atmosphere where everyone one is learning and helping others learn at the same time. We have special projects from time to time such as the gas forges we are just completing. Tomahawks are in the near future. Meetings are the first Thursday at 6:00pm every month. Times are EST. Come see what all the excitement is about.
  12. For those of you guys who have repaired old anvil by re-welding a new piece of steel to the top, what procedures did you use? I know that a full penetration weld is needed, so one must add a small piece of square bar under the plate. My questions are the following What welding rod did you use? How difficult was it to remove the slag from the weld area? Did you preheat? Did you harden the anvil when you where finished? How has your repair held? If you had to do it again what would you change? Thanks
  13. Hello everyone, I'm brand new here and kinda found you all by accident in my search to cast a small brass button. I have been a novice hobby knife builder for the last few years, and my goal is to hit it hard over the next couple to take the next step. I was amazed to see the wealth of knowledge here in comparison with some of the knife forums I visit. Thanks Chris
  14. I have the opportunity to purchase a new anvil with some small cracks in it, and, as a result, a pretty good discount. I'm curious to know what you think about the condition. Will these cracks need to be repaired? Could they worsen with use? The placement of the cracks seems a bit inconvenient, since they are on the corners of the side shelf. Any advice or insight is greatly appreciated. Here are some pictures of the anvil face:
  15. Hello everybody, I’m 18, come from Serbia, work as a tool and die maker apprentice and have wanted to learn about blacksmithing for quite some time. My friend and I have set up a small smithy at his place about a year ago and have forged there some primitive tools. We have an improvised coal forge with a vacuum cleaner as blower and old 40kg anvil. I look forward to learning more.
  16. Hello everyone, I have made a few posts already but I thought I'd introduce myself properly. So, my name is Brendan and I live in MA, USA. I am currently a student studying electrical engineering here in MA. I believe what got me really interested in blacksmithing was the Man at Arms YouTube channel when he made Jaime Lannister's sword from Game of Thrones. I thought it just seemed so cool, not necessarily the final product but all the hammering, heat, and historical feeling (like reading next to candlelight when the power is out). I also have a minor in history though so I have always been interested in the crafts of yesteryear and being a part of such an old tradition. So, about two months ago I took an intro to blacksmithing class where I made the S hook seen below. Since then I have tried to gather materials and jerryrig myself a forge and anvil. I haven't been able to make a lot of things because I lack the resources but I have been on the lookout. The first thing I made at home was simply a 90 degree rake thing for moving the coal around. It was made out of rebar. The second thing I made just recently is a simple wall hook you can see below. I have no proper anvil and as such no horn so I had to just make the bend on a 90 degree edge. I also have no holes to hit something through so I had to drill the hole for the nail/screw after trying for ten minutes with a punch. Anyways, I have already received a lot of good help from you guys and hope some point in the future I can return it.
  17. Hi I'm Mo, I am a foundry molder apprentice. The company I work for makes various castings ranging from large steel jobs to small CuNi jobs. I am just starting out but I love this work. I am happy to find this site and hope to learn a lot.
  18. Hello everyone. I'm knew to the world of bladesmithing, and just felt that I needed to introduce myself. As of right now I'm in the planning stages of everything. Researching books, techniques, sketching plans my starter forge. All that fun stuff. I decided to come here first because bladesmithing is really my ultimate goal with working the forge. The end result is weapons grade replicas of video game and movie swords/knives/armor. Along with my own custom knives. I honestly prefer knives to swords. More practical in modern times. Anyway I'll pop in from time to time with questions, and try to share what ever I learn on the way. As it sets right now, I have nothing but blueprints and a dream. So since I'm on a budget I won't be posting any of my work for at least a few months while I get myself set up. My first project however will be a Scottish Dirk. I'm thinking 1095CV steel with a plain ebony handle and scabbard. Like pictured (although I think that's a leather handle and scabbard) Anyway It was good meeting you all.
  19. Hello everyone. I'm new to the craft of blacksmithing and Just wanted to introduce myself. My over all goal is to make working replica's of both video game and movie knives/swords/armor, but right now I'm just in the planning stages of planning and getting set up, so it will be a few months before working on any actual projects. I'm mostly hear to search for useful information about the craft and will be popping in from time to time to ask questions and share what I've learned.
  20. Does anyone know of any company thanks makes anvils anymore? Are they any worth buying?
  21. I am wanting to take up blacksmithing and I don't have alot of money but I am looking for a cheap anvil are there any cheap anvils out there. I was looking at a Grizzly 55 lb iron anvil. I was wondering if there are any cheap kinds out there that I could buy or if there are any specs and materials they should be made of.
  22. I am a beginner to the iron-working arts and I am looking to put together my own smithy for a wide variety of projects, everything from period recreations to modern items, tools, small farm implement repair (lots of farms in the area for work), etc.. One of the most necessary items that I can't seem to find is a good anvil. Here's some more information: I live in Western MI (north of Muskegon/Grand Rapids) Son of a retired Ferrier (many tools and his anvil were sold before my interest was sparked [sorry for the bad pun]) I am looking to get something in the 100-200# range, preferably something towards the lighter side for a starter anvil since I will most likely be carrying it should I need to move it anywhere and at first I'll only be working smaller projects anyway I have checked many online resources and can't seem to pin down a good price range, I've read on these forums that $2-6/lb is standard for new anvils and that's why I'm looking for a good used one if it is available, as money is a bit of an issue for now Any other information and good sources for tools, raw materials, etc. would be appreciated, but my major focus right now is getting a budget for a beginner shop together and the cost of the anvil seems like a major factor Thank you, Jacob Hornbrook
  23. Well folks, I have been yacking Stephen Olivo's ear off with my little tiny bits of progress towards shop-building, so I figured I would let him share the load...with you! I am in the process of cobbling together my first shop, and here is what I have so far: Stump: ash, 80-100 lbs. Scrap: spring steel, plus the caps of the shocks which MIGHT be big enough for a small forge. That's really about it. Things I still need: Forge Anvil Tongs Hammers Fuel Enough for now. Let me know if I missed anything!
  24. So I'm in the process of making my first coal forge. I was lucky enough to find an old broken hopper, and took a couple pieces from it which would allow me to make the design below with very close to minimal effort. The different colors are the different pieces which would be bolted/riveted together, all but the yellow one currently existing exactly as shown. The circular hole will hold a brake drum. 2x4s will be bolted to the purple funny shaped flap things coming down, as the legs. I guess I'd just like to ask what the design looks like from a safety/efficiency/usefulness point of view. The steel is 1/8", is that thick enough? The flat rectangular section of the purple part, the main forge table with the hole in it, is 37cm*55cm, or about 15"x22". Given that thickness and size, will it or anything else need more support than what is shown? I'd also like to ask about the purple rectangular flap thing labelled "A" in the diagram; what would be the best use for it? I could cut it off and use it later, I could fold it completely up so it might act as a wind shield, i could fold it up to be parallel to the ground and so elongate the forging table, either for coal or for tools or for both, or I could cut it off and re-attach it with hinges to allow it to act as a table/wind shield as needed, or Im sure there are myriad other possibilities.. But what do you guys think would be the best use of these materials? Is there a way I could make it smaller but have it still be just as useful? And all the components are drawn to scale. Hopefully I made it clear enough how it should go together.. Also I don't yet have the knowledge nor tools to weld, if that is relevant. I'm quite new to forging, so I understand it probably wouldn't be of too much benefit to me to build what looks like a more professional-style forge instead of, say, bolting legs on a brake drum, but all the pieces just seem made to go together like this:P Sorry this is so long, and thanks:)
  25. So I'm building my first coal forge, it will be outside, essentially itl be just a table with a brake drum set into it. I am in a residential area so minimal/no smoke production would be great, so I'm just wondering is, will a chimney reduce the amount of smoke in an outdoor forge? Would it have a use at all? Thanks
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