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Looking for some advice. We are clearing out my Father's ranch and we have a 1940 Fisher Anvil on a stand. I would like to know what it's worth so I can list it for sale locally. I have a basic idea but want to make sure and thought this would be a good place to ask. It probably weighs about 200 lbs. Thanks for your help. 

Mindy

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Looking for some advice. We are clearing out my Father's ranch and we have a 1940 Fisher Anvil on a stand. I would like to know what it's worth so I can list it for sale locally. I have a basic idea but want to make sure and thought this would be a good place to ask. It probably weighs about 200 lbs. Thanks for your help. 

Mindy

Oops, I thought I was starting a new post. Sorry if this isn't in the right place. If someone can fix it, please do.

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Well just here in the United States it can be a factor of 2 in price; I don't know which of the 100+ countries participating on this site you are in...  If that is a 20 on the top of the leg is should be around 200 pounds. If it's a 30 then 300 pounds...  Looks to be in quite decent shape---unless that's a crack in the heel, then it's a major flaw; especially on a Fisher.  Fisher's are particularly good anvils for city or suburbia use as they are a quiet anvil and don't ring when you hit them.

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I am located in San Diego County, California. 

P.S. I love the "Master Curmudgeon"

I don't think there are any cracks but I'll go down and look again tomorrow.

 

I don't know what this means:  "Well just here in the United States it can be a factor of 2 in price"

I do appreciate the comment about the ring. One neighbor came over and pinged it and commented that it might not be a very good Anvil because he couldn't hear a ring. I was relieved to read your comment. Thank you.

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Generally we talk about anvils price per pound and where I used to live I averaged buying  a good name brand anvil in great shape for under US$1 every year. (for about 15 years...) Where I live now is an anvil poor region and I'd tell folks that US$2 a pound would be a good price to buy at.  Where you are at $3 a pound may be acceptable and someone from that region may have better information on the going rates.

Most low quality anvils and ASOs (anvil shaped objects)  are made from cast iron and are both soft, fragile and don't ring; so the folks who don't know the details use that as a method of judging quality.  Also a traditionally made "loud" anvil that isn't ringing when you tap it usually means a *BAD* hidden flaw (eg face delamination) that would drop the price to almost scrap rate.   However Fishers are a high quality anvil that due to their method of construction have a good steel face over a cast iron body so they are both quiet and good!  My main shop anvil is a large Fisher, (over 500 pounds), and I use it in preference to my 400 pound loud anvil---a Trenton.  Fishers are harder to repair; but except for those troughs at the front edge yours looks to be in very good condition so that is not a factor. (If that is not a crack in the heel) .

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If that is a 30, it is a 300 lb.  20 would indicate 200.  If it is too hard to make it out: 300 lb Fisher has a face width of 5 1/4" and a face length of 19 3/4".  A 200 lb Fisher has a face width of 4 3/4" and length of 17 1/4".   This will give you and easy way to determine its weight.

You can also go for a wider audience than a local one with a major on-line auction site, if you participate.

That anvil, if sound, and it a appears so, should bring $3 to $5 lb.  You are a seller, not a buyer, so what other people have managed to buy anvils for has absolutely no bearing on you price you ask or what you sell it for.  

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Fisher anvils are one of the best, and yours appears to be in great condition.  Because anvils don't generally wear out, yours should be valued commensurate with the quality and the cost of buying a similar anvil from a modern producer.  That your anvil is old doesn't mean it's lost value because there's no wear and tear on it (apparently) since there's nothing on an anvil to really to wear out.

If the anvil was chipped all around the edges and had torch cuts here and there, you would have to drop the price, obviously.  Yours doesn't, so you don't.  I wouldn't hesitate to ask $3/pound, or more.  If someone asks you about coming down on the price, tell them to pound sand and be happy knowing you've got a great anvil that will last you another hundred years.  There will always be another buyer around the corner who recognizes the value of the tool.

Of course, a lot depends on how fast you have to sell the anvil.  If you're absolutely not going to use it, ever, but aren't in a hurry to get rid of it, pricing it at $4/pound isn't unreasonable because a new anvil of similar weight will easily cost $4/pound.  Anyone complains about it, just remind them that it's a Fisher anvil in almost-new condition, and almost impossible to find anymore.

My main anvil is a Fisher and I wouldn't be without it.  As Thomas noted, they are wonderfully quiet because of their construction, and that makes working all day on one a real joy.

 

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Would you please tell me in which picture you possibly see a crack so I know where to look when I go down to the workshop today? I don't see anything that looks like a crack in the pictures. Maybe I will take some additional pictures today.

Thank all of you so much for responding. Now, anybody want to buy some tractors, trucks, drill presses and every other tool known to man? (Just kidding) We have our hands full here trying to clear our Dad's "good stuff." LOL

Mindy

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I think the above poster is referring to the first picture, about 1 1/2" in from the heel end.  It has what appears to be a vertical line on the side.  I think is is just a paint line or something else, but not a crack.

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First picture on the heel there is a light line vertical seeming to have a dark line at the top.  Probably nothing but I have seen a *lot* of anvils sold as perfect in blurry pictures that in fact had issues.  Whatever you do DON'T PAINT it---I drop the price I'm willing to pay by US$100 for a painted anvil.  If you want to make it look pretty wire brush it and give it a coat of boiled linseed oil or wax (treewax, johnsons's paste wax, etc). 

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I will wire brush a few areas to clarify marks and make sure no cracks. Not sure I'll do anything else. We are selling 90-acre ranch and I have a ton of stuff to sell. I'm using Craigslist for most things. Do you think Ebay is a better choice for the Anvil? Certainly, I'm not shipping it. I can't even move it! If someone on Ebay wants it shipped, they would have to arrange the whole thing and have the shipper pick it up. If we can't get a good price for it and because it's such a nice Anvil, I told my brothers they would have to move it to wherever we're moving. Still, I prefer to sell everything I can down in the shop and everything scattered all over the ranch. Dad had a good time collecting "stuff."

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Smiths are also interested in "stuff" , not just anvils. There is a tailgating section on these forums.

 

Edited by BIGGUNDOCTOR

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Mindy, since you're in California, make sure to contact the fellows at  http://calsmith.org

I'm sure they'd be more than happy to help with cleaning out the "good stuff".  Most blacksmiths are hopelessly addicted to stuff, especially if it's rusty and might possibly remove a finger if you're not careful.  :D

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LOL! I have to sell roadgrader, track loader, 1963 Ford Crane Truck, 1976 MGB (sat in field for YEARS), 76 Datsun truck, 87 Ford Diesel Van (high top), portable diesel generator, 82 Wilderness Lite camping trailer (needs lots of work), drill presses, vintage lube oil transfer pumps, several rusty metal farm element wagon/cart wheels, OLD 220 volt arc welding machine that got damaged in a fire (burned stuff fell on it and we don't have 220 to test it), TONS of welding rod (from closure of welding business), commercial steel workshop tables (4' x 10' with big casters, difficult to move), several huge steel fuel tanks, Oster Tom Thumb Pipe Threading Machine 562-C, you get the idea. This doesn't include all of the small stuff. I even have a BOMB CART to sell. Don't ask me where that came from. So, you can see, the Anvil is just the tip of the iceberg.

What's particularly frustrating is when someone comes up and asks "how much for that' and I have to ask "what is it"? I'm quickly on the phone to my brother in Washington.

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Currently, I've seen good anvils in good shape go for $3 - $4 per #. Good, new cast anvils (ductile iron and steel) go for about $5 per pound.

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Thanks for the link. I'll contact them. Yeah, I have a lot of rusty stuff around here. I was just looking up some of it on Craigslist and Ebay. 

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Most of the stuff you're describing would probably be bought up rather quickly by the local metal-workers and smiths.  The welding rods might be a lost cause (humidity does them no good).  The trucks/vans... really too hard to value without going over them in person and looking at the local market.  Again, they might be good for that odd person that needs parts, but you might be better off pulling out the engine/transmission and scrapping the rest.

Feel free to start a thread here on IFI to ask about any odd things you're not sure of.  Most of us have been around this block a few dozen times and are familiar with what you're not.  And we like looking at other peoples' stuff even if we can't afford to buy it.  :D

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Oh Darlin you have a gold mine there. I'd try to avoid Cragslist and Ebay till last resort time. S. Cal. is CAR land, advertise all the motor vehicles locally somebody in San D. wants one.

That's a sweet anvil I'd love one like it mine are LOUD anvils. Next time someone tinks on it and says "no ring, no good." Simply tell them that Fishers were carefully designed and made to NOT ring, "everybody knows that." If you think they're interested being polite is a good idea. Maybe say, "Judging by the ring is an urban myth, rebound is the true test and go on to tell them about Fisher's quiet design. The rebound test that's easiest to perform and evaluate is dropping a ball bearing from a distance and eyeball estimating how far it bounces back. Rebounds. The higher the % the better, a good Fisher should be in the 70-80% range I believe.

You can also download some of the Fisher advertising and print out a copy to show quiet is the Fisher claim to faim. It's a positive feature not a sign of badness.

Contact the local blacksmith orgs about the loot. I'll bet there are all kinds of farm implement groups and heck Travel Town at Griffith Park might be interested in a donation if you can't move some stuff.

I'd dearly LOVE to come shopping and heck will be not far in a week but I can't afford to ship anything I can't put in a pocket to Alaska. <sigh. . . Deep sigh>

Frosty The Lucky.

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Thanks for the referral to Travel Town. I also have some cart thing that someone just told me is a railroad luggage rack/cart. I'll have to unload the various ropes and chains from it and take some pictures. I'll see what it's worth (maybe) and/or donate it to the museum, if they want it.

I just noticed that I need to advertise a lot of this rusty stuff with the word "steampunk" in the ads ;-)

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Here are 2 pictures of the railroad luggage cart.

Also, here are two more pictures of that area of the Anvil that might have looked like a crack. It is not a crack.

IMG_4158.JPG

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IMG_4153.JPG

IMG_4154.JPG

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Just to keep you fully informed, those marks on the face and the side were caused by someone using an oxy-acetylene cutting torch over the anvil.  The super-heated slag and oxygen jet eroded/burned out some of the steel faceplate, and on the side.  As long as there are not more of these in the center work area of the face, it is not going to affect it function.  But it does take away some of its value.  With this damage, $3/lb is probably going to be the upper end.  (Note to all:  I am not interested in this anvil.  I am on the other coast, 3000 miles away.)  I am sure a smith in the west will be glad to get this Fisher.

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Thank you for that information. It makes perfect sense because it came from my Dad's friend when he closed up his welding shop.

 

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If it's not also on the working section of the face it's still a lovely using anvil---just not mint condition. I would suggest Craigslist over EBAY and make sure "local pick up only" is in all adds.  Wish I could come browse---blacksmiths *love* rust!   Rods still is sealed undamaged metal cans are probably still good.

Hey I use the penetrator nose cone off a ballistic missile  as a cone mandrel and the tip from an AP round as a center punch.  Hofi uses tungsten tank penetrators to make drifts from---so a bomb cart is not weird at all!

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