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  1. Aloha folks, I'm new to blacksmithing and just getting started collecting all my tools. I live in central Florida and I'm looking for an anvil to get started with. I called all the local scrap and recycling places looking for some thick steel drops or forklift forks, or just some scrap iron I can practice with. Unfortunately, no one was interested in letting me come and poke around or had any drops or forks. One of the shops referenced me to a blacksmith in my area who was extremely helpfull and gave me a section of railroad tie for free if I came and picked it up. He also had a couple hammers for sale which I happily bought. While driving out and back to his place, I ran across several auto repair shops and even a few houses with barns & scrap. I had better luck here than I did on the phone and got 3 auto springs, a break drum, and a couple pieces of stock for free. One of the salvage yards I stopped by to poke around had a old battery operated forklift. They said they'd cut the fork off for $25 but didnt know if it was solid steel or not. It was half buried in scrap and I couldn't get a good look. I agreed and they hauled it out and went to work with a torch. I was bummed to find it was not solid steel. It looks like quarter inch steel formed into sort of a frame, see the pictures below. I ended up giving them $35 for it since the guys helped me load it into the truck and needed beer money. It's pretty clear to me that this won't work as an anvil, but maybe I could use it as a stand for the railroad tie? The fork measures 47"L x 9"W x 3"H At the very least, there is a Blacksmithing conference I'm headed to in a couple weeks where maybe I can trade it for something more useful. Did I get hosed paying $35? What do you guys think? Mahalo, John.