john_zxz

swage block question

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Hi, I was offered a swage block 12x12x4.5" for 600$ CND. This is the 1st one, down in the picture and it looks like its a J.B Jardine. I wanted to know if its a high price or usual for that piece. I need to make my mind fast on this.

Thanks
John_zXz

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Do you need one? I hardly use mine; others use theirs all the time. If money is tight having a "neat" display piece is not neat at all.

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seems a bit on the high side of the going rate, but in its defence it does not look abused and has crisp edges. I would jump on it for 200-300 not for 600 unless you NEEDED it NOW

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Personally, I don't have an extra $600 to put out for a swage block. But then I don't have a need for one very often. If you do the type of work where a block could save you a lot of time, then it may be worth it. But if you don't use it often, that's a lot of money just setting there looking back at you. :)

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I intend to use a block for upsetting, making a lot of hardy tools, making bowls etc... I'm currently waiting for a price from John Newman for his trunnion 140lbs swage. I like its shape especially for the small half round on the sides and the bowl depressions. I just wanted to know what is a good price for a used swage. The swage block in the picture has less utility then Newman's one for me but it's 15 minutes from me...

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I just sent you a price on the shipping for the swage block. Sorry about the delay, I got a price from fedex right away but was waiting on a price from a trucking company as they are sometimes cheaper for the 14lb blocks.

I assume you have read Mark Asbury's recommendation to use a swage block for upsetting hardy tools rather than using the hardy hole in your anvil. Personally I have always been puzzled by this and disagree with this suggestion unless you have a particularly light tail on your anvil. Most older swage blocks and a lot of newer ones are gray iron which is much more brittle than wrought and tool steel in an old anvil or all steel of a newer one. I have upset quite a few tools in the hardy hole of my anvil which has a fairly thin tail with no ill effects. Yes there have been a few over the centuries that have broken at the hardy but I don't know anyone who has broken theirs. Most hardy holes are and square holes in swage blocks are not exactly the same size. Forging in the anvil the tool will be used in will ensure it fits exactly.

If the idea of damaging your anvil really has you worried, Brian Brazeal has a thread on here on making a striking anvil. Or a striking anvil could be laser or waterjet cut out of a chunk of heavy bar or plate.

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I do my dishing using forms made from the bottom's of welding bottles (*NOT* Acetylene ONES!!!!), lifting bolts, pintle and toroid hitches, etc why settle for a couple of forms when you can have a dozen far cheaper!

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Let me say why I like industrial blocks so much..First off we do an insane ammount of slitting and drfiting..The different size holes are great for that..Accurately bending many sizes of stock in those holes is handy too..
One thing that I really like is you can use many sizes of hardys in the same block..I like to buy hardys when I can, saves us time from making them..If you have one size hardy hole either you need that size shank or you have to resize somehow..Or use a sleeve..
Now someone is going to say "but this way is cheaper or you can do it this way"..Thats all true but I like handy and I like multi-tools and i just flat like industrial swage blocks :D
As far as upsetting hardys in the anvil I dont personally like to do it..I dont doubt my big fisher can take it but on the other hand I personally have a hay-budden setting in my shop that I rebuilt after the previous owner broke off the heel right across the hardy hole..
*When you staring at your anvil, a 15# hammer in your hand looking at a anvil that was broken doing the same thing your getting ready to do it makes you pause :unsure: probably one in a hundred thing, may not ever happen again but i cant help but to think about it..

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I have a really nice swage block that a fellow up in Vancouver B.C. had cut,probably by CNC machine. Lots of holes,slots and concave surfaces. Don't know about costs but it might be worth looking into.. I can post a picture if you'd like.

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For $600 you can can buy A, B and the mini one http://www.piehtoolc...n-us/d1093.html the block you are looking at dose not have areas to make bowls I have B and it is a great block Buying the blocks that are the same size you only have to make one stand. For hardie tools I made a Brian Brazeal striking anvil it is a better choice for making hardies and cost me about $35 dollars for up setting I have a adjustable table on my vice works great

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John, I paid $150 for a block identical to that one and I was at an auction where another one identical to it went for $250. YMMV.

Btw, that back one in the picture looks incredible! Are these blocks in Quebec?

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Btw, that back one in the picture looks incredible!

man! dont it though, Id drop some serious cash on a block like that..

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I just sent you a price on the shipping for the swage block. Sorry about the delay, I got a price from fedex right away but was waiting on a price from a trucking company as they are sometimes cheaper for the 14lb blocks.

I assume you have read Mark Asbury's recommendation to use a swage block for upsetting hardy tools rather than using the hardy hole in your anvil. Personally I have always been puzzled by this and disagree with this suggestion unless you have a particularly light tail on your anvil. Most older swage blocks and a lot of newer ones are gray iron which is much more brittle than wrought and tool steel in an old anvil or all steel of a newer one. I have upset quite a few tools in the hardy hole of my anvil which has a fairly thin tail with no ill effects. Yes there have been a few over the centuries that have broken at the hardy but I don't know anyone who has broken theirs. Most hardy holes are and square holes in swage blocks are not exactly the same size. Forging in the anvil the tool will be used in will ensure it fits exactly.

If the idea of damaging your anvil really has you worried, Brian Brazeal has a thread on here on making a striking anvil. Or a striking anvil could be laser or waterjet cut out of a chunk of heavy bar or plate.

correct me if I'm wrong here but Mark says that because he uses a Brooks anvil it's made of cast steel. I believe he's said he has seen them split at the hardy hole. the brooks has a 1 1/4 hardy hole

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Sask Mark, yes the blocks are in Quebec, 45 minutes from Montreal. Here's the link of the ad: http://montreal.kiji...QAdIdZ379455052
There are other tools too. The block in the back is on anvilfire too here: Link removed at the request of that sites owner. It looks like a monster block!

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$2000 for the 3 blocks? $600 for the one you are considering sounded high to me but that $2K for all 3 doesn't sound too bad considering you are getting one of the coolest blocks I have ever seen.

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correct me if I'm wrong here but Mark says that because he uses a Brooks anvil it's made of cast steel. I believe he's said he has seen them split at the hardy hole. the brooks has a 1 1/4 hardy hole


Grey iron is still much more brittle than properly heat treated cast steel. Millions of tools have been made in anvil hardy holes. If you are really concerned make a support for the tail of your anvil or make a upsetting anvil like Brian Brazeal

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Grey iron is still much more brittle than properly heat treated cast steel. Millions of tools have been made in anvil hardy holes. If you are really concerned make a support for the tail of your anvil or make a upsetting anvil like Brian Brazeal

I agree with JNewman here. I have never broken an anvil that was not already broke. There are a lot of Hay Buddens out there that are already broke at the waist, and they are quite slight in the waist to begin with, so you should be careful with anvils like that. I hit as heavy of iron as should be hit with hammer or sledge, and I don't have any reservations about making hardy tools in a proper anvil. Just hit the iron while it is hot and not your anvil. The striking anvil that has been mentioned is a great tool for learning and safety.

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Grey iron is still much more brittle than properly heat treated cast steel. Millions of tools have been made in anvil hardy holes. If you are really concerned make a support for the tail of your anvil or make a upsetting anvil like Brian Brazeal

I did make one its 4 inches sq with 1" plate on the top and bottom with a 1 1/4 hole on one side and a 1" hole on the other the holes ae blocked in on each side with 3/4 stock welded in place before the bottom was welded it weights around 25-30 pounds

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The seen the horn broke off of several anvils and Ive seen the tail broke off at the hardy hole on at least two but Ive never seen one broke at the waist.. May have been bad welds at the waist section?..

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Here's a couple of pictures of a nice little swage block I got from Jake James up on Vancouver Island.I believe it was cut on a CNC machine.
It is 13"x13"x 3 1/2" thick. All slots go through and it has LOTS of fuller sizes. Use it often.post-5278-0-58738700-1342417591_thumb.jppost-5278-0-75251800-1342417607_thumb.jp

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I have the base of a Peter Wright (according to Postman) that was broken at the waist.

When I tech my intro class I take the piece of soapstone and *mark* the sweet spot on the anvil for people who have trouble doing their heavy hammering over the part of the anvil designed to take it. (And we have an old beat up bridge anvil I found in the desert for them to do any sledging on!)

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