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I Forge Iron

New (to me) english anvil, need ID

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I picked up this anvil yesterday and would like to identify the maker, any help appreciated and thanks in advance.

post-20376-0-45446600-1403404911_thumb.j post-20376-0-59265800-1403404950_thumb.j post-20376-0-64006900-1403404986_thumb.j

It was covered in a layer of red lead primer and black paint which obscured most of the markings so I got stuck into it with the cup brush and cleaned up the important areas.  The stamps are not very deep but reading from top to bottom I could make out


obscured (possibly solid)


obscured (possibly wrought)



Warrented (LOGO ?) O L F(inverted or bad E)


2  1  21

It also had 07 80 stamped on the front foot. 



The anvil is a bit distinctive in that there is no step to the cutting deck.  The face has a couple of minor flaws but nothing that can't be worked around so I just need to make a stand, scrape the last of the paint off and put it to work.

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No idea about the make, but the three numbers, 2 1 21 is probably the old English weight, cwt, qtrs, lbs, which would work out at 273lbs. (2 cwt = 224lbs, 1qtr = 28lbs + 21lbs) Looking at it, it's probably all steel or wrought iron with a steel face. Are there any holes in the sides near the base? It there are, they're probably for handling the lump during the forging process.

Sorry I can't give you any more, hope this helps!

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I'd say it's a forged wrought iron body for sure and if it's in Australia the chances are it was either made out there or in England I would think.  The face looks suspicious to me though without a step, like it could possibly have been milled down, what is the rebound like?  Some London pattern anvils were made without steps but they don't pop up that often in my limited experience.

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Still trying to find a maker and as Foundryman said "Some London pattern anvils were made without steps but they don't pop up that often in my limited experience."  This one has not been milled down and looks to have done very little work, and it has very good rebound.  With Sheffield and England visible in the stamps it's definitely from England.  Doing an image search the only anvil I have seen that comes close is the SOHO anvil on this page http://www.britishblades.com/forums/content.php?53-Anvil-recognition-for-dummies&s=20f64519f56fb8d96949cc369fbd99e0   but that has a hardy at the base of the horn.  I might have to try acid washing the markings to see if I can get them to show up better.



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Knowing the maker does not make one a better smith however; before Postman published his book people didn't pay a lot of attention to makers and more that an anvil was "good" vs "bad" on a using basis.


I have a rare brand anvil, Powell,---it's the one that we do heavy work on; I have an old anvil (William Foster 1828) it gets used mainly to show people that even a very abused anvil still can do good work

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One of the BABA guys identified it definitely as a Mousehole Forge, Soho pattern, from the late 1800's.
Thanks for your comments Thomas, I know the best tools in the world aren't going to make me a better smith, my interest is because I like to know as much as I can about the tools I am using, make, model, history if it is something that is old(er).
I have a Peter Wright that has a anchor stamp on the front foot which I rescued from a front garden and I am still researching about. I have a Wilkinson that has been abused, heel and half the deck broken off which was repaired by a previous owner (plate + gussets welded on for the heel and lots of hardfacing on the deck), and there is the Attwood with the O/A gouges in the face that you have to work around. All of them are in use by me and the people who attend workshops at my forge and all have their own "character". Now I have a Mousehole who's character needs to learnt and who's story is being added to.


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