Ridgewayforge

What have you been given?

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My first anvil was a HB broken waist lawn ornament with unfortunate welding repairs given to me for free.  For Christmas a few years ago my family gave me a PW anvil, a cast coal forge with hand cranked blower, several tongs, and a random assortment of small dimension steel stock.  I've gotten many coil and leaf springs, a piece of RR track, various parts from trucks and semi trailers, a 20" X 24" X 3" steel plate with another inch thick plate welded on, a discarded 5 stage hydraulic ram for a dump trailer, several 4' lengths of heavy duty H beam, several small electric motors, an old table saw, an early model Shopsmith, and a number of odds and ends all for free.  Before my father in law passed he gave me a Ford 2000 tractor with brush hog, back blade, and a couple other 3 point hitch implements as well as a chest full of quality tools, an air compressor, and a chainsaw.  

To put it mildly I have been extraordinarily blessed with friends, family members, and co-workers who have been willing to support my addiction  hobby. Almost all of them have received a custom hand-forged knife as a thank you.

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I got lucky and someone gave me a fairly big cone mandrel for free. I was grateful! I Can take better photos of it if anyone is interested

workshop 2.jpg

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What a great gift Jonnytait! I have been given a lot in my life by many people and I'm thankful for everything. If we are speaking in blacksmithing terms, I've been given so much education and advice from the good folks here on IFI and on the internet that is priceless. I'd never be able to pay it back. I've gotten things for my birthday and Christmas. A gas forge a couple of christmases ago and I've gotten tongs and a twisting wrench. I've tried making two pairs of tongs for larger stock recently and neither of them have come out very well... my birthday is next month, so if asked, probably some tongs. My mother in law is one of my biggest supporters besides my husband and she's been the recipient of lots of my work. I've been given material to work with, but most has been horseshoes. I started out buying them and they get expensive real quick. Used ones are better for their unique character anyway. But I have forged a lot of them into things and I still have probably 80 or more in the bucket. Thanks to everyone here for contributing to my growth as a smith and as a person

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I'd offer to trade a farrier a hand forged hoofpick for a 5 gallon bucket of used horseshoes....

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It was a retired farrier that gave me my last big batch of shoes. I'm going to make him something nice for Christmas I think. There are a few draft horse shoes in the mix. I've never worked the big ones before so I was thinking maybe something nice out of those for him. I hope he'll like whatever I decide on. I offered to pay for them, but he didn't want the money. Just said to make something nice out of them

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Ýou showed me that picture once and that is something I'm considering, irondragon. Thanks for the idea

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Everytime I see that door knocker, I think of a drop hammer for a mouse hole forge. LOL. I like it. 

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On 3/26/2012 at 2:11 PM, ornametalsmith said:

I've been given a few things over the years........But the very FIRST... and one of the more memorable.......was a small French patterned hammer..........from Bill Gichner, when I was first starting out in my blacksmithing career.

Bill used to come to blacksmith guild of potomac annual meets, dad and I would help him unload and load his van, he was something, he gave dad some eastern shore phonebook covers that depicted blacksmithing, I think gichner iron works? Did the the White House fencing ,but I'm not 100 percent on that. He had some high dollar prices on them tools he had for sale, I bought my peter wright at one of those events, i went 13 years straight to them, won a post drill for a buck at iron in the hat, won a knife from bill moran and seen him demo there, gave it to dad years later he gave it back to me, he gave me a small post vice (dad) and a western chief blower, and I gave dad a cross pien

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My dad gave me my grand paws mousehole anvil , it is my most treasured possession. I have other far more valuable anvils , it’s the one I care for, and more protective of any.

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Friend of mine was on vacation with his wife out  of state and texted me a picture of a Vulcan anvil that had a bar welded across the top, and asked if that was what I was looking for (I was using a RR Track at the time). 

   I replied and said yes, but didn't have the  extra funds at the time.

   Three days later he came back from vacation and had it in his trunk for me.  His father in law heard I was beginning to blacksmith and said 'all it's doing is gathering rust out there, go give it to your friend'.  

   So... I now have my anvil.  Along with a lot of other stuff he's given me to help me along.  Obviously, his money is no good  with me, and I've made him a few things along the way and given them to him and his wife.  Will continue to do so.  I like my little anvil, but his friendship and support are worth far more.

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I've been given a number of things over the 42 years.   the largest thing that made my journey better was getting a Buffalo silent 200 blower 1984 I think it was.  No picture but used it for 20 years day in and out. My favorite blower.  STill have it in the back 40. 

This anvil was the most recent item.  Also a few pairs of tongs over the years.  and week before last a guy dropped off 3 pairs of chain making tongs. 1 pair was made from a ford brake lever.  Still had the letters on it. 

The larges thing I was given:  Was the desire to learn the craft. a way to carry it out, and parents that were absent and just let me do it. 

20191004_181252.jpg

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it's only 200lbs.  The stump probably weighs that. 

On 10/9/2019 at 1:42 PM, Irondragon Forge & Clay said:

I made a nice door knocker out of a draft horse shoe.

 

That is cool.  What a neat old shoe. Was designed to fit many horses and still take a drive in calk vs weld in calk. that is really a nice piece. Love it. 

On 10/8/2019 at 6:39 PM, Jonnytait said:

I got lucky and someone gave me a fairly big cone mandrel for free. I was grateful! I Can take better photos of it if anyone is interested

 

Yes please. More photo's. Tong groove? 

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