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recently acquired treadle hammer (which i am loving) that came with flattening dies and the ability to change them. so my question is what would be some good die sets or tools to make to use with the treadle? not only for knife and bladesmithing but also when i venture into blacksmithing? 



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Slightly off topic, but Clay Spencer's tooling for a tire hammer, found on the Alabama Forge Council website. Many tools work the same on a treadle hammer.


Aaaand, a dozen Treadle hammer ideas on the Florida how-to site.


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Greetings 247, 

      I have 3 treadle hammers and a ton of tools..  For starters I would make up a flat plate for the top and bottom for chisel and punch work.  I would also make a bottom plate ( bigger) with an offset hardie hole to hold spring swedges and fullers.. Most of my tooling is hand held and not fixed die style. Great tool and have fun. 

Forge on and make beautiful things 




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I'm still a bit of a noob and even newer at the treadle hammer, but here's my suggestions based on what I've used mine for most this past year. Since I didn't see most of these listed in the excellent sources already presented, I thought I'd add a few more.  

1) make a safety stop. it's easy to make from a pipe clamp and a piece of black pipe.  you might have to weld a piece of plate across yours, but beyond that, pretty simple. The first picture depicts the safety stop and the 

2) hand rest. I plan on using my heavily for repouse type stuff.  The extra wide plate provides a place to put your hand while holding the tooling (hence the safety stop) The second picture provides a different perspective on the hand rest. 

3) drawing out dies.  These are simple sections of round stock.  I'm sure that the shape/style of those presented by Mr. Spenser are superior, but these are good enough for me. The bottom tool is presented in the third pic - there is a corresponding top tool that is a mirror image (slightly larger diameter)

4) flatter.  The fourth pic provides a shot of a simple off-set top tool that is used with a flat bottom die to clean up my atrocious hammer control mistakes. 

5) texture. The fifth pic is a shot of one of the texture dies.  Don't use it much, but did once and it was cool enough that I'm sure I'll use it again.  

6) top, bottom fullers. Picture 6. Don't use this much any more, but for large stock, I'll probably revisit it.  

FWIW - When I purchased my hammer a couple of years ago, it came with dies that no one seems to be able to figure out what they might be used for ... :) at least no one on this list, NMABA, nor RMS.  


Good luck and have fun, 




Pic_2_ hand_rest.jpg




Pic_6_ swage_top.jpg

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  • 2 years later...

 I saw this on a Nazel 3-B (called Nermy,) and made one for my treadle hammer. It's versatile, and works great. Some tools can be swung to the side, (like your cutting plate,) fixtures can be mounted securely, and easily swapped out.

Two pics show my version of the 'safety stop' mounted in the collar. I don't recommend holding punches and chisels by hand, but for delicate, or accurate chisel, and punch work, hand held tools are way easier, and faster. However the risk of mashing yourself is too great. With this device in place the tup stops about four inches from the anvil. Enough room to hit a punch but not your hand. It has saved me once, which is enough to make it worth while. It's made from 5/8" round with a bit of 1/2" round welded to it to fit the holder.

Another pic shows a fixture for bending 3/16" flat bar into something that looks like angle bar with flanges on the sides. I was using them for motor mounts on bicycles.

The swages you see on the side were made with the treadle hammer. There are other tools, fullers and cutters visible with the swages.

Also a couple of top tools used with the TH. The twisted flat section in the handled top tools are to provide flexibility in the handle.

And lastly a swaging tool to make the Japanese style bail pull you see wired to the tool.








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