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Hi Everyone,

I'm new to this site and to blacksmithing so I don't have any experience in this sort of thing but I recently purchased an anvil from a guy in London and I would just like to know a little more about it. 

Before I bought it I read up about the basics of what to look for in the anvil and this one seemed to fit the bill. I don't know an exact weight yet but it's pretty darn heavy! It has a very nice bounce, at least it feels nice to me but I have nothing to compare to but I was very surprised at how much it did bounce. It also rings a lot too. The ring goes on for quite a while which I think is due to the extended horn because if I grasp the horn where a "typical" anvil would end then the ring is a lot crisper and nicer.

I have uploaded some pictures of the shape and some of the markings on the anvil. All I can make out is "BEST" which I guess is a good sign? and the "J" but can't quite make out the rest. That's why I thought I'd ask some people who actually know what they're talking about and make be able to connect the dots for me.

I've tried to clean the anvil up a little bit as it was quite rusty and had flaky paint on it and I'm fairly happy with how it turned out but if anyone has any tips on how to get it nicer or how to get rid of those holes (I have no idea what they are) then I'd be very grateful. 

I know all of this is pretty much useless information but I'm just so excited about it and wanted to share! 

Thank You all in advance :)

Matt Young

anvil (1).jpg

photo_2016-02-08_20-17-24.jpg

photo_2016-02-08_20-17-51.jpg

photo_2016-02-08_20-17-54.jpg

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those holes on the side are where a smith has been testing chisels he made on it, dont worry about them.

the bick / horn on this does not look original, I think someone has extended it by welding more on, if you look at the curve under it you will see that just under half the length has been added on.

it looks clean enough and the best way to get it looking better is to use it

check for markings on the feet and on the other side too

bathroom scales can weigh most anvils

if you can get to my place I can help with a little beginners instruction, I make forges and you are welcome to come and try one out

dont use a grinder to try to improve your anvil, the hard surface can be very thin

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Thanks very much for all the information :)

I did feel abit bad grinding the feet but there were huge gouges! I feel like I shouldve left them :(. I won't ever touch the face though. 

That's interesting about the horn. No wonder I couldn't find a similar looking one.

Sorry Thomas, I meant London UK. My brain didn't even consider other places called London, my bad. 

If it were wrought iron, is that an okay material for an anvil? I know people hate cast anvils but I don't really know the different types after that. I'm learning!

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grinding on the feet is not to bad but dont grind the working areas

look under it for handling holes, square holes that taper, often 2 in the waist and one in the base, for cast anvils look for the seam under it.

cast iron = bad

cast steel can be good

wrought iron is ok

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I'd say if the punch marks are truly offensive lightly peen them in with a  ball pein hammer.   I have an smaller anvil that that is all a previous owner must have made.  Punch marks top to bottom both sides completely peppered.  Nice score, hope it serves you well

 

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Thanks for all the responses! I love hearing everyone's opinion on it.

18 hours ago, the iron dwarf said:

grinding on the feet is not to bad but dont grind the working areas

look under it for handling holes, square holes that taper, often 2 in the waist and one in the base, for cast anvils look for the seam under it.

cast iron = bad

cast steel can be good

wrought iron is ok

It does have the handling holes on the waist and bottom. What does that signify? I guess it means its not cast.

13 hours ago, Dogsoldat said:

I'd say if the punch marks are truly offensive lightly peen them in with a  ball pein hammer.   I have an smaller anvil that that is all a previous owner must have made.  Punch marks top to bottom both sides completely peppered.  Nice score, hope it serves you well

 

Thank you for the advice, now I know what they are I may just bear with them as they are smithing related :)

12 hours ago, Ethan the blacksmith said:

Looks really good

if I had that anvil, I would probably cut some of that horn off. For the work I do and the way I use the horn, I think it might interfere with your forging. But that's my OPINION!

Fair enough! I will keep in mind while I progress and see what sort of things I start to make and make a decision further down the line. Thank you!

3 hours ago, fergy said:

If you brought it from a guy in London it must be a London pattern anvil 

oh well at least you have one 

look forward to seeing what you make on it 

fergy

Yeah true, was just interested to find out a bit more about it :)

Thanks! I'm looking forward to it myself. Can't wait to get crackin'!

 

Matt Young

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