cloud

New to blacksmithing

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Hello, I just found this forum and I am curious. I have wanted to take up blacksmithing for a long time but I havent had the time till now. I live in northeastern arkansas and I can't for the life of me find any classes available in my area! I want to learn very badly, is there any way i can learn on my own without help? There aren't many options for me. thank you for your time.

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You can heat some metal and start hammering like I did but it is a tough way to go about it. There must be some one near you.

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Welcome aboard cloud!! To answer your question quick and to the point YES! Yes you can learn by yourself, this forum is a great tool for that. As long as you have a forge of any type, a hammer, metal, and something to beat on you can learn all kinds of things! I'm 17 and I've built two forges, and been teaching myself to smith for some time now! It is a wonderful hobby and I love it to death! After you get into the hobby some and really decide it is what you want to do you can start spending some money for more tools and to travel to classes if it is what you want. If you do some searching you may find someone around you who has been blacksmithing for awhile and is willing to teach you some tricks of the trade. : ) I wish you the best of luck with your endeavors and if you have any questions feel free to PM me or ask any questions!

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thank you! I'm kind of overwhelmed as to where to begin really.. is there a book you could recommend for the basics and where to start? I guess i should build a forge as the first thing?

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The Complete Modern Blacksmith by Alexander Weygers is a popular beginner's primer.

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Howdy from East TEXAS!! and welcome to IFI! Let me suggest that you update your profile by clicking on "User CP" in the green bar at the top of the page and give your location. This will help us help you find tools, meetings, and other blacksmith relating items in your area. Now for what you were asking... Saltfork Craftsmen and Artist Blacksmith Assoc. is having their NorthEast regional meeting this Sat, Sept 12, at the Pawhuska blacksmith Shop in Pawhuska, OK. Don't know how close that is to you but we would love to have you join us for the day. (I personnally won't be there but we have members here on IFI that will be) Fantastic buch of folks that love sharing their knowledge with you. You will most likely get to actually forge something. Also, SAVE THE DATES: Oct. 17-18, in Perry, OK. We are having our annual conference that weekend with Robb, Chad, and Brad Gunter as the demonstrators. Check here for more info; Saltfork Craftsmen You can get a little more info on this weekends meeting also on the site. Click on the current newsletter to get the info.

Go here for the BAM site, the group in MO. Blacksmiths Association of Missouri : ABANA affiliate. Not sure when their meetings are but you can get that info on their site. Also a fantastic bunch of folks and love to have newbies. Once again, welcome!

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location updated! thanks for all the information, i wont be able to attend anything until about mid november though, as i'm very busy at work til then, but i will look into it more then! thank you!

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Hi cloud - you'll love this forum - a mine of experience and info - you'll find out stuff you didnt even know you wanted to know!:) Just start with something - anything and see how you go. You got to start somewhere with or without someone close by to help - check out the gallery pics for more inspiration - there is a huge range of work people here are doing. good luck with getting going cloud!:)

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Cloud there is a mountain folk art center in mountian view ark which is just west of you . They do have a smith there, it might be next spring before they reopen, not sure if they run in the winter. I'm sure you could pick up a little guidence there. Good luck

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Before you give yourself any bad habits it is important to learn the basics. It's easy to learn how to make one or two things... It's like learning a tune on an instrument, if you don't study the reasons why you are playing the notes in that order then you will only ever know one tune.
If you start from the simplest of tasks then you will be able to work out how to do anything. There are many basic 'how to' book available, most of them have some sort of axe to grind (they are often promoting 'alternative lifestyles' or re-enactment).The series of books produced by the British government in the '50s was not intended to sell new styles of tools or change the way people think or work, merely to provide a good grounding in the subject.The exercises in here may be anachronistic but they all teach valuable aspects of technique:

The Blacksmiths Craft

Good Luck!

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Welcome aboard Cloud, glad to have ya.

Well, most of the good advice has been posted already. That'll teach me for going to work instead of hanging out here all day! ;)

There's good reading on IFI too beginning with "Getting Started and Lessons in Blacksmithing." These will line you out on how to get started without having to spend a mint doing it. The lessons will lay out specific exercises that will help you develop the skill sets you'll need. The "Blue Prints" section at the top right of every page is loaded with plans and descriptions for tools, equipment, projects, etc. used by smiths from all over the world.

Of course there's no reason not to pull up a stump, sit and yak a spell. We're generally a pretty friendly bunch.

Frosty

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Also note that if you have a hankering to do some knifemaking the American Bladesmith Society runs a mighty fine school down near Texarkana!

Thomas, a razorback in central NM

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Jayson,
Welcome to I Forge Iron.
You hit the jackpot for finding a steadfast and grounded group of blacksmiths from all around the world here at

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