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Unique anvil on e-bay

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I have seen period photos of Army and Navy smiths and they never had anything that small. I'm not saying they couldn't have had a fifteen pounder it just doesn't seem very practical for any kind of work for a smith in the field except for a tinkerer. Maybe the Army had them too. It may have been manufactured during the period of the Civil War but that does not make it a Civil War item and that kind of money is NUTS!

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Dear matchlessantiques,

This is a very unique item. would it be possible for me to copy the photos and Place them on iforgeiron.com so other blacksmiths could see them in the future. We have had some discussion on this anvil already and hopefully sent a few people to your auction.

thank you,

Mike McGinty

His response:
From: Matchless Antiques (matchlessantiques@hotmail.com)
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Sent:Mon 8/27/07 9:32 PM
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Hello Mike, I do not mind at all. Help yourself, I was hoping someone could shed some light about it more than what info I have, which is sketchy. Thanks also for any interest you can strike up. Steve

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I'm a little confused. Is this thing made of aluminum?? The first couple dimensions stated would yield a heck of a lot more than 15 pounds if it were steel or cast iron which is what it looks like to me. Buyer beware!!!! It'd make a neat door stop, tho ;)

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As stated on ebay

The anvil features three anvils with each anvil having a unique feature. One anvil has a round horn, one a horn with square edges and the last has swages on the face. The two anvils not being used serves as the base. It appears that the anvil was made to sit on the horns and also on it's heels.

The measurements are: overall length 7 1/8", face 5" X 12 1/8", horn 1 1/8", height 4 3/4", actual weight 15 pounds.

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That's very cool.

While 15lbs would be awfully light for much smithing it'd sure work dandy for repairing harness and tack.

There are lots of swage sizes and in the heel up position might make a bowl or cup swage.

I can think of all kinds of things it'd be good for, especially if I had to pack it on my back.


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I had one of those 3am thoughts about this anvil: reproduce it out of three lengths of rail road track welded together at the bottom of the track. This would give the anvil good weight and might stiffen the web section with the addition of braces.

I was thinking something similar myself. Milling or otherwise forming the swages would be problematical, rail is typically 1085-1095 HC steel. It'd mostly be a matter of what method to use rather than figure something out though.

Having a third shape horn and a different set of swages on the third face would be better still. The heels could be different fullers as well or perhaps two fullers and a hot cut.

Using RR rail would get the weight up if it were made to a decent size and one weren't interested in packing it on their back. Weighing somewhere around 75-100 lbs would make it a dandy multi-use portable.

Anyway, you're not the only person thinking about this thing. :)

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