Jump to content
I Forge Iron

170lb - Anvil or really nice shaped ASO?

Recommended Posts

Ok, I just looked at this anvil tonight in the dark - by tractor light.  It was painted black a long time ago, and now is mostly rust.  With the light I had I could find no markings on either side - looked with my eyes and by feel.  It has seen a lot of use over time, but is in pretty nice shape.  Rebound is not awesome, but there is some.  It's fairly quiet.  I don't see or feel any casting parting lines.  There is no obvious line from a top plate.

Please take a look at the pics and toss your opinion out.  It would be a nice size increase over my 84lb Wilkinsons, but the appearance is making me think it's a cast copy of a good anvil.  I was really rushed looking at it; with a little more time to study it I could have been more confident.

So, what's really confusing me - are there ASO's of this size and looking this much like a typical London Pattern anvil out there? 

Thank you!










Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yep - with the pointed feet it definitely looks like a Wilkinsons or Mousehole.  My concern starts with the seller saying he had a few anvils, and a collector had come out to evaluate them.  He decided this one was not good, that it was cast iron.  Of course they were very hung up on it not ringing.  And the seller is not that familiar on this stuff - he could be confused and saying cast iron instead of wrought iron...  But, with the seller saying it was not a good anvil...


Link to comment
Share on other sites

An ASO will have almost no rebound. I can full force smack my ASO and I get no kick back, it just leaves a dent instead.

If it's got very little rebound, it MIGHT have been through a house fire, but that's doubtful. Someone other than me would know better.

If you can dribble your hammer on the anvil, I think it's probably fine. (If you hold the hammer loosely and let it drop from maybe 2", does it bounce a couple of times?)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If it is a casting of an old English anvil, it is the best I have ever seen. It would have had to be done by a pretty good foundry man. They also would have had to do a lot of fettling to remove all traces of the mold, and that rarely happens. While some copy the square porter bar holes at the front and rear, under the horn and tail, nobody seems to copy the handling hole in the base.

More modern ASOs seem to go for bold false top plates and big square feet. And they never seem to bother to erase the parting lines.

While there is some chipping on the edges, it does not seem to be spalling off like cast iron, or even cast steel, like an abused Swedish anvil.

I seem to be able to make out some letters and numbers at the waist. I think that it is the real deal, just painted and neglected. Paint and rust will kill rebound, you need a clean suface to test with a hammer or file. A dull file will skate on my Mousehole.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

be aware that the rust can affect rebound. the thicker the rust the less rebound. remove the rust as much as you can with a wire-brush or with some sandpaper, so the ball fall on steel. to me that anvil it doesn't look like an ASO. that anvil has seen some use, if it was a ASO, it would be really damaged. the condition shows that it's a very good anvil (if it doesn't have hidden flaws - dellamination, annealed soft, cracks, etc.).


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Yeah - I was halfway there when I remembered I left my hammer next to the door at home.  Amazing how easy 3 boys (5, 8, 9) can distract you getting ready to go somewhere!  That hammer was one he produced when I asked.

There is definitely rebound, just didn't strike me as great.  But, I was wondering if the mostly plastic hammer was absorbing some...

Looking at the pics I do think I see a 0 where you'd expect to see the "remainder" pounds of the hundred weight.  Wirebrushing might reveal more...

I think we've agreed on a trade deal, so this weekend I'll be able to study it closer.

Thank you for all the input!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...