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new anvil suggestions

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I've got two options right now for a new anvil. I'm new to it a bit, been doing metal work for 5/6 years (casting/welding/etc), but just got into forging in the last year.

Any advice on the two anvils

(A few people have suggested that the PW is the best value between the two, and I could always turn the chipped edge into a nice working radius).





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I wouldn't buy either of them.

The HB unfortunately was likely a good anvil before it was "restored". 

The PW looks like it too was ground down though, only it has been a year or so. No telling what was done to them before the grinding. 

There are still anvils available, my advice is to keep looking. 

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Welcome aboard Ashton, glad to have you. If you'll put your general location in the header you might be surprised how many of the IFI gang live within visiting distance.

Yeah the HB has been ground flat probably seriously reducing it's lifespan if not damaging it.

The PW looks to have a pretty thin face too and with the chipping on the edge I'd expect to see more wear or sway in the face. I don't have a strong opinion about this one like I do about the HB. What makes me jumpy is the fellow has all those anvils and is selling the one he's shined up. He's also pretty careful to take pics from angles where the weld line between face and body is, like he doesn't want one to see how thin the face is.

Were I in the market I might take a look and rebound test them but It'd have to be a short drive.

Frosty The Lucky.

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The tool steel top plate is thin. When an anvil is old and worn the plate is thinner. When some fool grinds the top of the anvil the plate gets thinner, taking off a great deal of it's lifespan but even worse, there is a very thin work-hardened layer created by millions of hammer blows compacting the surface. As the plate is pounded thinner over the decades it becomes harder. When the work hardened layer has been ground off (it most certainly has, just look at the wear around the hardy hole) one is left with a thin, softer top plate which noticeably doesn't rebound as well. This translates into less work being done per hammer blow (in essence the surface of the anvil moves away from the struck workpiece rather than resisting movement which would cause the workpiece to deform). Whereas the rebound was likely close to 90% before the grinding, it is likely under 50% after, a tremendous loss of action. Working with such a tool is unproductive, frustrating and boring. 



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The serial number on the H-B is very important. Again, the tall waist suggests the later post 1908 style without faceplate; the whole top half is tool steel on these. Determining the date is a start. This from AIA of course (and i'm fortunate to own one).

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