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I Forge Iron

Items for a Shack....

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My buddies have all gotten together and decided to pool absolutely no resources except their ingenuity to build a shack on my buddies property down by the river. Currently there is an existing structure there that will be refit with a couple old barns that have been torn down and their lumber salvaged. We've netted an old wood stove that should cover that base. I'm currently working with another guy to scrounge some electrical materials. So it's all comming together without us having to spend a single cent.

What I was wondering is what would be some good blacksmithing additions to this redneck shack? I'll be making it so it will have to be somewhat simple. I've already planned on making some hooks, but was wondering if anyone could suggest anything else.


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A boot scraper by the front door would be good. Unless you don't have mud in WV. :rolleyes:

A foot rail in front of the stove would be a good place to prop your feet on a cold day so you guys can swap lies in comfort. You could even make it portable.

Fire tools for the stove of course. A wood rack too naturally.

A boot drying rack for next to the stove might be good for the wet season.

A free standing coat rack could come in handy though a wall mounted one is just as good.

Gun racks perhaps?


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Sounds like fun. Here are a few more ideas to go along with all the others.

  • Definitely something for the wood stove, at least a poker/rake for sure.
  • Anything to do with candles and/or oil lamps.
  • Bottle opener.
  • Railroad spike knives, tomahawk...whatever from spikes.
  • A slingshot would be cool.
  • You're going to have to build an out house, I suspect. Make sure there's a lantern hanger to go with that wild TP holder you'll have to smith!

Well you better keep us posted and let us know what you put together. We'll be watching this thread to see your progress!!!
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You know what they say about assumptions. Actually I was just trying to be picturesque following Apprenticeman's glorious image of water power. I'm struggling to find metal too. We really do look forward to seeing and hearing of your progress. Keep us posted.

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Oh I know Phil. It's just that I am a transplant from Maryland to WV and I haven't quite gotten accustomed to hearing those stereotypes directed to me. For 20 or so years I was on the other side. "What goes around, comes around..."

Overall I've adapted pretty well to the area and really like it. And this shack is just one of those things that make the area neat. My buddies across the river would think I was nuts if I got an idea like this. Over here it's a different story.

Thanks guys for the info. All those things are great ideas, unfortunately I am still a sucky smith. Good thing about a shack though is that most of the people who would notice your work, would be more "intrigued" by the nature of the shack's construction to notice a flub up here and there.


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You can start with a fire poker for sure. Flatten the end a little bit and put a 90 degree bend a couple of inches up, throw a few twists in the shank and put a loop on the other end (to hang it from a hook you made that is mounted on the wall). That's a good start, both as beginning items to smith and as items to put in your shack. Heck, you might even like making hooks and put a few more around the joint.

Have fun, Phil

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You can't have enough good hooks on the wall of the shack!

Don't forget to put an eyescrew in the ceiling to hang a lantern from using an S hook too.

Put the coat hooks far enough apart that wet or snowing coats don't touch and have room to dry.

Have a fire poker for each person---poking the fire is a major form of recreation in a shack! (Watching it is what we call "medieval tv")

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I can't believe a dinner triangle hasn't been suggested yet. Heck, the first triangle I saw made was made on a campfire without a hammer or anvil. I was just a kid at the time but I was hooked on smithing when I saw that red hot bar drawn out of the fire and bent around a pipe driven into the ground.

You can call me anything... just don't call me late for dinner!

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So far there have been some good ideas for ya, Newbiesmith.

(Yun's cantn' get too fur fancy with the still tho' Haboo, as them revenuers' would just smashin it up when they find it in the bushes hidden betwixt all them thar ole fixer upper otto-mobiles Fil da Farmer was talkin' of).:rolleyes:

But I would think some kind of forged rack for hanging cast iron skillets and pots and pans on a wall would save some storage space in a rustic cabin setting.

-aaron c.
WV born and raised.

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and of course something to hold a cold brew

hold or cool? :P

My shed is in fact really a garage as I live in suburbia but for the purposes of this story a shed it will be. Luckily I don't own a car. If I ever do get a car it will be something to tinker with and be small, old and British. Just like my mum.

Here you see my shed just before I started working on something important and it became messy.

As has been mentioned many long and productive hours are spent in the shed by kiwi blokes. Many fine inventions such as the hydraulic sheep potter and the double headed golf club have been produced as the result of much blood, sweat and beers. And herein lies the dilemma.


A session in the shed is typically an all day affair. Starting very early in the morning and going through until late at night when the light fades to the point that you can't see and hit your thumb with a hammer a bloke will not leave his shed for anything (Hint: Empty paint cans can be very useful here). All supplies must be taken in at the start of the shed session. And the most essential of these supplies is beer.

But how to keep the beer cold?
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Ice Czar, " But how to keep the beer cold? " you realy need ta ask that question ?

But seein' youse ave , tinnies , longnecks ? local , imported ? commercial , home brew ?
6 pak ( speaks for it's self ), slab ( 24 tinnies ) , block ( 30 tinnies ) ?

Personaly i'm an Esky man , youse can't beat a COLD tinnie/ longneck on ICE

And to keep said drinks close ta hand
free standin' wine glass / tinnie / smokes holder - Blacksmith Photo Gallery

close up of wine glass / tinnie / smoke holder - Blacksmith Photo Gallery

Twin outdoor candle / tinnie spike - Blacksmith Photo Gallery

Dale Russell

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it was of course rhetorical, the beer never lasts long enough to get warm :P
(partial to Brown Ale BTW) ;)

Ice Czar - have your ever tried the Black Powder Stout at TommyKnockers in Idaho Springs CO? The BEST beer I have ever had.
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of course :P
(Ice Czar was my title as an operations manager for the Great American Beer Festival, something I did for 13 years, I was a professional beer cooler :P )

but I still favor their Maple Nut Brown Ale, which is one of my favorites ;)
its a nice brew-pub as well, if your out this way or where you there?

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I've been out that way a few times on vacation. Last June was the last time. We usually try to spend a day or two in Idaho Springs when we are out that way. Had a great buffalo burger there as well.

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