Glenn

Blacksmithing gems and pearls

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IForgeIron contains some real gems and some pearls of wisdom you can find no where else.

As you read the posts on IForgeIron and find one of these items, it may be interesting to list them here for reference.

Flux is not glue

Do not build a box, that way you do not have to think outside the box.

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Cool is when you have to add clothes over top your 2nd t-shirt.
Cold is when water in the slack tub forms ice.
Really cold is when the entire 30 gallon (or larger) slack tub turns solid.
Working in the cold is when you quench enough metal to melt the ice in the slack tub.

Below that just put another log on the fire and stay inside.

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If you want to be a millionaire blacksmithing.........Start smithing with ten million in the bank and keep forging until there's only one million left. 

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Blacksmithing is the truest form of recycling. You take a piece of scrap from your pile, heat it and beat it around for a few hours or days until you figure you've done all you can to it and then throw it back into the scrap pile again.

If it wasn't for making mistakes my days would been unfulfilled.

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The success of a professional blacksmith is directly proportionate to the size of his scrap pile..   Always making something new = innovation

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Better to have [insert tool here] and not need, than need [insert tool here] and not have. Otherwise, make one! :)

I won't claim the quote about only getting one chance to over-design something because it's not mine, but that one should definitely be on this list!

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if its not red, don't hit it!  

also

(the first blacksmithing advice I ever received)  Don't just tickle it. Smack it you tart!

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If it's worth making, it's worth making out of metal.  

 

Life jackets? <snicker>

And couple Gems: chainsaw bar oil and Duralube for lubrication jobs that need to stick and be slick, chainsaw bars of course and I REALLY like it on my Little Giant, less than a 1/4 tsp squirt in the journal pads and it's slicked up for weeks. It's slicked up and doesn't slobber oil. 

 

My other Gem is Treewax for finishing, it's carnuba wax and is very hard and durable, it's the stuff used to armor bowling alley lanes.

 

Frosty The Lucky.

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all ya got to do is heat it and beat it.

if you are going to make a tool, and live with it, might as well make it pretty.

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One measure to see how busy a blacksmith may be; is by observing how much water there is in his slack tub by noon. If he started out in the morning with a full tub of water and it is down to a half tub by noon, he has most likely been working steady.

 

This was when they used a full whiskey barrel as a slack tub.

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or has a leaky barrel, that is why I added a liner to my ren fair barrel  ;)

 

 remember if its Glowing it is hot, it if is not glowing, it still may be hot.

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Not specific to this site but;  "Hit it where it's hot not where it's not"

 

And the instruction I got when taking my first billet welding course:  "Don't look at it *hit* *it*!"

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That reminds me of another safety related one that I mention many times when demonstrating... "If it's dry, it's hot. If it's wet, it's not."

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Everything in a blacksmith shop is either heavy or sharp or hot. Most things in a blacksmith shop are at least two of those.

 

If the Earth and your work are trying to get a closer look at each other, it is best to LET THEM.

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I remember it as *Everything is either hot, heavy, sharp, or dangerous*

Could not find the original post.

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“Don’t waist a good bend over”.

 

 

When I was in my mid 60’s, I trained to do Repousse with Mr. Naham Hersom.

He made me call him Grandpa.

While I was training with Grandpa; I dropped something and bent over to pick it up.

With a loud voice of authority Grandpa said “don’t move”!!!!
All was quiet for a few seconds, and then he said

“pick up everything you can while you are down there.

Don’t waist a good bend over”.

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"this is not an original idea"

 

Told to me by Backwoods Blacksmithing when he was teaching me how to forge weld. Referring to how there are few original tricks and ideas that most of us have not learned from smiths before us, or that other smiths have already thought of as well.

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If it works, its not crazy, but it may be incredibly dangerous.

If it drops, let it drop.

The best way to get 10 opinions and 8 ways of doing something is to get 5 blacksmiths together.

Duct tape does not work well around hot metal.

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"There is only *1* right way to do something in blacksmithing and that is----ANY WAY THAT WORKS!"

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