littleblacksmith

What did you do in the shop today?

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Well over the weekend, not today: Saturday I took the forge on the road and went up to Albuquerque, turned left and went to an SCA Arts & Sciences Day to teach 2 classes. First was getting people started in smithing by forging a simple S hook out of 1/4" stock with counter bend and twist.  Max number of students: 6, only 3 showed up; but the Father/son pair seems to have a forge in their future.  (His wife told me that He was saying he wasn't interested in forging before the class and after the class it was that he was going to build a forge!!!)

Second class was making a simple copper Penannular brooch with a brazing rod pin. Max number of students 6, only 13 showed up, so my apprentice joined in and we ran all 13 through the class.  Having the overload meant that we focused on the simplest version(s).  I'm still running through the grounding wire I bought at the restore for US$5 a complete coil!!! (One coil still had a monkey wards tag on it and they went out of business in 2001---I expect the coil I had was from the 1960's)

No BURNS! No melted copper in the propane forge!  Lots of Thanks and when can we do this again's? Then back down the road, (slightly over an hour), to my smithy.

Sunday I reserved for unloading the truck, slowly and gently.  As this was my last expected road trip before spring; I wanted to rearrange the shop a bit for winter use.  I now have the propane forge and coal forge in an L and using the same 165# HB anvil; or the 469# Fisher. The small travel anvils: 125# Powell, 134# HB, 112# PW and the 91# A&H are lined up alongside the main walkway; but not protruding. Stock back in the stock holder, propane tanks neatly stacked away from the forges, etc.

Lastly I did a task that had been hanging fire for too long: I sharpened 9 kitchen knives for a lady at church and 4 for my wife.  (I threw in several old old hickories so when I got disgusted with the "modern" knives I could chill out on some plain HC steel.)  I've mentioned that I like to have a large postvise and a small post vise on my work benches and so I had the intermediate stone in the small postvise and the fine stone in the large one and could go one to the other as I needed.  Didn't have to use a coarse stone and would probably have refused to sharpen any knife that required it.  The biggest plus is that NONE of the blades had been crudely butchered by any of the  nasty, crude, evil spawned sharpeners they advertised on TV that really chew up the blade bevels.

Doesn't look like I will get much if any time in the shop over the holiday as I'm driving my Mother up for Tday and then a visit to my youngest brother who is in extended care in Albq and back as well as buying a stove and a dishwasher for my house. (and doing the installation of same including re-jetting the stove for propane.)

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I'm glad your classes went well Thomas. Be safe in your travels this week. I have one of those Work Sharp things and it's ok. But I prefer to sharpen knives with stones and leather strop by hand. Some of the guys from Tommies last work place used to send me knives to sharpen. One of the coolest was a K Bar that had been the guys grandpa's. 

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My Step Son in Law is really interested in Knives and Guns, (Used to be a cop before a medical retirement---trashed his back saving  a life), anyway I was at the local fleamarket and saw what had to be an estate sale that had several worn used WWII knives for sale for just a couple of dollars.  I bought them all and passed them down to my SS-i-L. There was also an old "hobo knife" with the eating set that I got and gave to my Grandfather as I remember him having one when I was a kid and it had disappeared over time.

To me the use is part of the history and while I admire NOS stuff I'd rather own things I feel I can continue to use.  NOS often belong in a museum!

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Agreed. IIRC he said his Grandfather had carried that knife with him in Vietnam. So I treated it very kindly and felt priveledegd that he trusted me with it. 

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TP, Most of the newer stoves have adjustable jets instead of jets to change out. Behind the on/off knob is a nut, turn it out to tune it for propane and in for natural gas.

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I shoveled 2.55 tons of #57 stone off my truck into the entrance of the new shop building. I also raked level and tamped sand for my floor (24'x24') with a tamper I made out of 3/4 plate steel and some pipe. My arms are spent. Going to get another load of stone tomorrow and repeat again......

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I finished up this viking style helmet yesterday.  My second.  Made for a friend to what he was looking for.  Some things came out well, some not so well, but learned a ton, and he seems pretty happy with it.  Complete with a leather liner.  

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Don't recall the vikings using that style save for the spangen's.  Makes a great fantasy helm though.  Have you thought of using a brass brush on a heated tooth to give it a bit of bling?

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12 hours ago, marcusb said:

I shoveled 2.55 tons of #57 stone off my truck into the entrance of the new shop building. I also raked level and tamped sand for my floor (24'x24') with a tamper I made out of 3/4 plate steel and some pipe. My arms are spent. Going to get another load of stone tomorrow and repeat again......

You keep that up and you'll look like HeeMan.  

Personally there is something rewarding about working hard physically and the way it feels.  I"m not talking about the muscle soreness because of using muscles that haven't been used since the last time, but that overall feeling vs going to a gym and such. 

Building the building and being up on the beams is something that I used to do daily years ago and it is a good feeling of work at the end of the day.  Or recently with splitting all the fire wood by hand..  At the end of the day it was a good tired vs just being drained. 

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Nothing beats the sleep you get after a productive day of good hard work. Who needs a runners high? I prefer a workers high.

Pnut

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RG, that's the truth!  Just finishing up the crock pot of ham and beans with cornbread---as our stove's oven doesn't work we cooked the cornbread as "pan cakes". (New Stove expected Friday?) Les;  thanks for the info. What we had been told when we talked with the stove people was that there was a conversion kit.  My wife said; "if you can build a propane forge you can follow the directions to install the kit."  Old stove was from the early 1970's; made to look like an cast iron wood burner stove; but very hard to get parts for...My wife picked it out; but got seduced by the new stove at my rental casita, also propane.   I expect the new stove will pay for itself in a couple of years of propane savings.  The old pilot lights were large enough to cook on!  New versions---no pilots!

Storm coming this way, temp is supposed to drop around 20 degF today; winds up to 60 mph; so last night I told my wife I was going to help her clean out all the stuff around the stove so we could start burning wood again---it's our cloudy day/night time  backup heat source; but in the off season my wife likes to fill the space with clutter. She has a bad habit of sorting stuff to get rid of and never getting rid of it. It builds up and has to be re-sorted and the cycle repeats.  With my help; whenever a box is ready---out it goes to the car! And I'll help her move them to where they get donated today at lunch. Me moving back home was a great thing for all the local charities!  I tend to be brutal in the sorting too. Can't decide---out it goes!  We have literally tons of books and we're too old to read all of them; so save the good ones, pass on the ones we liked and donate the rest to the library book sale!

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Ham was what was left over from a Pork shoulder, bone in of course!  Someone was going to discard it after a potluck not realizing that the best was yet to come!

Of course the best H&B I ever made was using the remains of a cob smoked ham that was a Christmas gift from my sister.  We brought that to a potluck and the pot was clean and shiny when we went to take it home---just a few tongue trails left on it.

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That does sound good. I'm cooking a ham and a Turkey for Thanksgiving. All this talk about ham is making me look forward to it more

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I'm sure we will have plenty of leftovers. The family is a lot smaller than it used to be. And my mom is still in the nursing home. We brought her home last year, but this year I'm afraid will be too hard on her. But we'll treasure the time we have regardless. 

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Just got done bringing the whole shop in under cover. We went from the middle of fire season to the middle of winter in 2 hours. Supposed to snow all of tomorrow and into Thanksgiving morning. They say it'll be 1-2 feet by the time it's done

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Shabumi; time to sit by the fire with an ADULTerated hot cocoa. I'm supposed to be hauling folks around during the bad weather over the holiday out here.

With my shop's open gables I can get the fun of brushing snow off the face of the anvils---of course it takes a pretty good north wind and snow to manage that.  Open gables make the summer forging a lot nicer though.  Even more importantly open gables and 2 open 10'x10' roll up doors and 10' side walls helps with the CO a *lot*!

It's been 15? years since I had to shovel snow. We get so little that just waiting a day usually takes care of it.

 

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Hahaha. I posted before reading any of the new content in this thread. First off, great looking hammers Conrad, can wait till I'm at the point where I can make one myself. 

Good on you guys for using leftovers. They are my favorite part of tday dinner, or most meals. Besides the obligatory turkey Sammy the day after, we take the turkey, gravy and veggies and thow them all together in a pie crust for a quick pot pie. Mmm. 

TP. I'll probably have to shovel tday morning as we will have 15-30 people coming, depending on how late it keeps snowing. Luckily they park they plow right next to our barn when they know it's going to snow in the area, so everyone should be able to make it here without a problem. The snow won't last long, another storm is coming Sunday, and it looks more like a fall rain vs another snow, so I'll be left with red mud soup to slodge around in. Yay!

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