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I Forge Iron

Another post on Anvil ID's and worth?

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Hello everyone, same old story here, I hope you guys are not too sick of these posts.


I have been lurking on the forum for a while but just registered recently. I am looking to get into smithing mostly for making knives, which I have wanted to do for about 20 years now. I have been picking up tools this fall and I bought a HF ASO before I knew any better. It sucks and I am looking for something to replace it with. The budget is limited, of course, but I am willing to tighten my belt and spend a little more money if it would help me move forward a lot quicker.


With all that said, I am looking at a couple anvil I found locally, but they are both several hours drive from me. I am in Florida north of the Orlando area, closer to Daytona. I have been watching cl for a while and we seem to have some stuff pop up, but not a really rich anvil area from what I have seen in the past 4 or 5 months. 


The first one is on cl for $3/lbs and looks pretty worn. No marks or maker id on it from what the seller says. I have talked him down to $2.50/lbs but he is holding firm there. I have not seen it in person yet.









The second one is in a small second hand sort of store. Guy says he was told it was a forged anvil and somewhere north of 70 lbs. There is a crack in the horn. He is asking about $2.50/lbs as well, but told me to please make him an offer.





My third option for now, is heading to my local surplus yard and picking up a piece of 4140 that I saw last time I was there. I was thinking of making a post anvil out of it. Thoughts appreciated ...



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The first one looks to me like a Hay Budden anvil from Brooklyn NY. I can make out anything of the second one. There is nothing wrong with using a chunk of 4140 for an anvil either, especially because if you will be mostly making knives, you won't have too much need for the horn anyways. Japanese sword and knife makers use blocks of steel as their anvil and in India they use big sledge hammer heads stuck into the ground or a stump. 

-Crazy Ivan

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second one looks like a vulcan; not a high dollar anvil of the two I personally would rate the first one as twice the anvil as the second one.  And I still feel the first one is overpriced for it's condition.  A shot of the bottom of it would most likely clear up the maker of it.  I lean towards HB too and the depression on the bottom is most distinctive for HBs.

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What we are looking for is a vaguely hourglass shaped depression created by having the outer edges of the base extend slightly down.  On older ones this can be worn almost flat.  HB's also have a handling hole in the base like your pic shows.


I still lean toward an older HB, which is a top tier anvil, unfortunately in rather worn condition.


How marked is the face?  Fine pitting will polish out with use, (scale is an abrasive), heavy marking is a problem as that faceplate doesn't look real thick and so ANY grinding or milling on it can destroy the anvils usefulness.

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