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a62rambler

If you could apprentice under one smith who and why?

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Mark Aspery, brilliant and approachable, great lecturer, excellent demonstrator and supremely accurate in forging. He served a true apprenticeship in the English guild. I could sit and listen to him all day while taking notes. He is a historian, and one hard working dude.

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I would got with a minimum of six months each with Brian Brazeal and Mark Aspery. Both have some excellent techniques. Having survived 7 days with Brian, I'd love the chance to try six months. I've never met Mark, but I've emailed him once, and he seems like a nice guy.
After that, (having a foundation in good technique) I'd like a year or more with an established full time blacksmith working on large scale pieces to give me experience in using those techniques to make a large number of pieces work together.

I don't know a whole lot of large scale blacksmiths, but I think I'd like a spell with Rory May or Andrew Molinaro. I've never met either in person but I've read a lot of Rory May's posts and he seems like good guy. Andrew Molinaro offered me a position in his shop (Artisans of the Anvil) about a year and a half ago. (Wish I could have accepted but I had too much going on at the time with construction here.) He also seems like a great guy!
I really like both of those guy's work. Just something about the style or something that I like more about other smiths I've seen!

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Peter Ross. He's talented, knowledgeable and experienced. I'd like to learn more traditional techniques and practices. I remember vividly seeing the smithy and folk at colonial Williamsburg as a fairly young kid when visiting Virginia. I think there is something to learn from most smiths though; even if it's just getting a chance to learn what not to do. :P It's also a plus that he's the most respected blacksmith that I know of in NC. Although Tim Ryan or Paul Garrett would be great to learn from.

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I did not see you wanted Smiths from the site , I don,t think I could Choose just one as there are Many Older Shiths I respect too much to leave out and several Younger Smiths that are very good .

I'll reserve my Choice as there are to many that I would like to have the chance to work with .

Respectfully

Sam

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Good luck "apprenticing" under any of the guys mentioned. Some of them you can pay to teach you, some you can watch demo but to land a spot in any of the workshops would be a tough go. To learn and get paid yer going to have to work in big shops that pump out work. Most likely you will have to journey as a lot of the traditional hand work is feast or famine, meaning you can work big jobs if you can contribute. Better that way anyway, being tied down to one "teacher" for too long is limiting. I think you want as many good teachers as you can get.

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in no particular order.

Nol Putnam
Daryl Meier
Tom Joyce
Doug Wilson
Toby Hickman

-I would like to work with Tom Ryan (Koenig Iron)..I worked with him for six months in Florida a decade ago...deep well, wide experience and young enough to do the grunt work as well.



On a side note
If I had the chance to do any apprenticeship program I would push to be the shop assistant at one of the Craft/Art schools that have a metal forging program.....such at the New England School of Metalworking. The good smiths rotate through..you get to watch and have access to the shop after hours.

Ric

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For general blacksmithing I would choose Brent Bailey, and Brian Brazeal. For knife making I would choose Rich Hale, but not sure I am worthy.

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I'd like to change my above list.
The person I would like best to apprentice with would be myself 18 years ago ...back when I knew everything.

And additions:
Peter Ross
Howard Clark
Brent Kington


Ric

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Cant really narrow it to one..Peter Ross or Mark Apsery would be nice..Then Id like to spend some time in Howard Clarks shop..Ive bought materials from him several times and hes always been a great guy to deal with..Very,very knowledgable..

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If I must take a half step back in my fantasy pick then I find it hard to choose between Albert Paley and Tom Joyce. Chris Ray passed but at least he was able to leave
some excellent tutorials behind. http://www.chrisray.com

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post-12173-0-51181800-1336704021_thumb.jMy great-grandfather. He was just a simple small-town country smith, but rightfully proud of his skill. He died when I was about 4 or 5 years old. All I remember of him is that he was very tall. He was in his late eighties, had cataracts and a hard time talking due to a stroke. He scared the h#ll out of me. I wish I could have known him when he was younger and I was older.

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