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I Forge Iron

A weekend with Frosty

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This last weekend I had a chance to spend some time with one of our own. Jerry Frost, aka Frosty. I drove down to Meadow Lakes Alaska from North Pole, about a 5 1/2 hr. drive. It was a great day and a pleasant drive. Except for the one time a guy thought my lane was his lane, but we did miss each other. I pulled into Frosty's drive and he came out to greet me and we both had great big smiles on our mugs. After a few hellos and meeting Deb for the first time, we went to the shop. Ohhhhhh boy. He has cool tools. Pictures below. We did a warm up and started a couple of J hooks and that was all we had time for Friday. The next morning after a hearty blacksmith breakfast, hamburger, eggs, toast, and coffee, lots of coffee, we went back out to the shop and finished the J hooks. After that we decided it was time to get one of the pieces of wrought iron Jake had sent me and got it hot, real hot. Thank goodness Jerry has a Little Giant 50# hammer. It would have taken us forever to hand hammer that stuff. Its about 1 1/4 inch thick. We had thought we would make a trade axe. We heated it and hammered it straight by hand, well Frosty did. He sure got into it, and I was glad he did. We took turns using the power hammer to reduce and fuller it longer. I've never used a power hammer before so that was great fun. Once we got it to the size we thought was good, Frosty tried to do a forge weld with some powdered steel he had and a piece of spring steel we cut off a bigger piece. It seemed to go well but when Frosty tried to power hammer it longer it opened up and it was evident that it hadn't welded. But thats ok. We had fun. And that, for me anyway, was what the weekend was all about. I learned alot. I have a better idea of how to hammer by hand. I learned some basic techniques for the power hammer. I learned how to make a better finial scroll on a hook or anything else that may need one. And I also learned how to properly punch a hole. So, for me, it was a great weekend. I wasn't going to post this until tomorrow, and as I look at the clock I see that it actually is. I look forward to doing this again.
















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sounds like you had an awesome time Brian, if your like me you dont get to work with to many other smiths and seeing as you had to drive 5 hours it would apear so lol . love the shop pics ( nice shop frosty!! )looks like there is alot of space in there to work unlike my babybarn lol. power hammer....ooo aaaa :)

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Thanks for posting Bryan. Looks like you and Frosty had a good weekend. Nice roomy shop Frosty and great tooling.
Here in central BC it's just getting warm enough to work outside where my forge and anvil are and where they have to stay for the time being.
I'm a relative beginner and by day's end my thoughts turn to power hammers and presses. All in it's own time I guess. Oww my arm!

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Sounds like you two had a great visit. It's always good to get with someone else and share ideas. If you're anything like me, though, it usually consists of me learning while the more experienced smith shares ideas.

I think that the friendship is one of the best things about what we do. The help I've gotten from others along the way both online and in person has been a real restorer to my faith in the goodness of mankind. There's a lot of good people hammering steel! All I can hope to do is pay it all back to someone who is interested in getting strted someday. Matter of fact, there's this kid in my neighborhood...... Thanks guys.

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It was a wicked COOL weekend, weather was warm, especially near the forge and best of all was having Bryan over. We both figured we were friends from reading posts but getting to meet showed just how much we have in common.

Truth to tell, I was feeling a little guilty about Bryan having to make such a long drive especially knowing what kinds of idiots populate Alaskan highways as soon as the pavement starts to dry. happily he showed as predicted and we got to playing with fire and hitting things.

I'm still behind the curve compared to before my accident but it's coming back and the more of this I do the faster it comes. Bryan already has more than good hammer control and only needs to change aim from carpentry. I didn't realize what was going on till the second day but once I pointed out what was happening he corrected beautifully.

The wrought Jake sent him was a lot more challenge than I thought it'd be for the LG. Knowing what I do now I'll reconfigure my forge for more heat next time. The pics with the BIG dragon's breath from my forge show it running two burners and still it wasn't really hot enough, no problem, next time I'll just move the sidewall and center partition walls closer together to reduce the volume and boost the heat.

I'm thinking I poisoned the weld on the leaf spring with the Stellite powder I applied for color, normally welding leaf spring is pretty straight forward and trouble free.

Forging the large 1 1/4" dia wrought sure showed me how important it is to have well fitted tongs. I had a pair that fit well when it was still round but once flattened the flats I used tended to slip resulting in my beating on ONE spot too many times causing a break in the billet.

I'm also thinking I may make a different set of drawing dies for the LG so there's more clearance for tongs. The list of things I learned is pretty long.

All I can say is it was one of the best weekends I've had in a long time and I heartilly look forward to repeats.

Frosty the Lucky.

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Hi Bryan and Frosty

I am sure glad that Frosty is still functional, even if it is currently at a lower rate than we expect for the future. I hope to meet you at the meeting Bryan. It looks like you both had an enjoyable time, Frosty does have a nice shop you can even find the floor in it. More tongs and dies are always a good idea.

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I know envy is one of the seven deadlies, but I confess to it, I would have loved to be there, Glad to see Frosty the Lucky is back up and forging on that Sweeeeeet LG, keep forgin Frosty, we need you back to 100%, your posts are something I really look forward to.

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Metalmangler is the Mark I'm hoping to con into showing me how to make tongs at the next meeting. If you make it we can two time him and maybe he'll give up and show us. ;)

Mike: It's not like Bryan and I are all that far away, make the trip and Deb and I'll put you up.

Frosty the Lucky.

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