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I Forge Iron



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Greetings to everyone! My name is Dennis. I recently found this forum and decided to join cause it looks like a great community with a huge knowledge base.

I am the 24 yr. old son of a farrier. The blacksmithing side of my father's trade has always been the most fascinating part to me. After years of watching him forge different items, I finally got the chance to give it a go myself. My father gave me a round length of steel from an old farm rake and basically said go to town. It was bent, so I heated it, straightened it and flattened it. I wanted to try to start making some steel typography, so I made an "S" for my first one. (Photography attached) It's not much, but i'm proud that I got to start smithing. Few things have been as enjoyable than this chance to work on the anvil.

I am seriously considering pursuing blacksmithing as a trade possibility. I also am pushing my father to get back into it to save his back from the horses and for us to have more father-son time.

My dad gave me some old books of his to read. (Modern Blacksmithing/ The Complete Library of Metal Working, Blacksmithing, and Soldering/ The Complete Guide to Blacksmithing/ The Art of Blacksmithing/ and Practical Blacksmithing) I've flipped through and begun to read some...but bottom line is there is a TON of information to absorb which will take years of practice and experience.

I'm curious as to what employment opportunities are out there with a background in blacksmithing? I have seen some related to architecture and some others.

Also, I have access to a lot of old farrier rasps. Anyone know what kind of steel these might be?


Edited by MonteCristo
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Welcome Dennis, your very lucky to have someone in the family with the experience to draw on. Practice is the key from what I've found but having someone to correct your bad habits and mistakes early on is real valuable.You will find a lot of very knowledgeable smiths here to draw from as well. I'm in MA. also.

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Welcome aboard Dennis, glad to have you.

All sorts Beth says, well one thing you can count on with blacksmithing and blacksmiths, you'll never be out of . . . Sorts. :rolleyes:

Start reading the books, glancing or skimming through them makes it look like an overwhelming amount of info. However once you start reading you'll discover the same basic things being repeated by each author in a different way meaning it isn't as complicated as it seems at first.

The best thing you can do is build a fire and beat the iron as often as you can. The books can give you the knowledge and practice will give you the muscle memory skills sets but best of a your Father can show you the little tricks and correct mistakes. There's nothing like live help from a knowledgeable person to speed you on your way, NOTHING. Having it be your Dad makes it great.


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