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I Forge Iron

It followed me home

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You are right Thomas, it is wrought.  I slowly brought it up to an orange heat and straightened it.  I finally finished mounting it yesterday.  Hopefully this afternoon I can put it to work.  This was the first time to work with wrought iron, what color should it be forged at?

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Working with the low grade: near or at welding heat  (I came into smithing from blademaking and it takes an act of will to heat real WI up to where it likes to be, all my "instincts" are yelling "it's gonna burn!")


The higher the grade the lower the temp it will work without fraying; but they all still like *hot* and often work above the highest working temp of modern steels.


I have a vise that someone tried to bend the leg cold and it has a greenstick fracture.  I plan to forge weld it back up and probably forge weld a band around that part too.

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I found a great supply of free osage orange stakes, the kind used to hold up construction silt fencing. I have a dozen 3x4 stakes 4 ft long. that's a lot of tool and knife handles. I've already replaced the cracked oak handle on my first tomahawk. It is a nice orange color coated with linseed oil.

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   Does it count if it follows a family member to work?  My dad was helping a business associate clear out his workshop and was asked if he knew anyone that wanted this thing...for FREE!!!

   Him and I have been talking about building one for about a year now, but we were waiting 'til we had somewhere to put it.  You just can't pass up something like this though.  So my dad's gonna keep this at his workshop, where it will probably get some use there as well, since he's a structural welder/foreman/crane and heavy equiment operator for a concrete/quarry company.


   Here are some other somewhat recent finds of mine that I haven't posted yet..

Some sort of stand, A post vice, An old C&O Royal blower (I think I need to remake the part of the handle that goes on the shaft)

And this will eventually be my forge.

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I decided to write down where I got each of my anvils, how much i got them for, and what they are doing at the moment:



50lb Post anvil, from tool collector for $60, in use


210lb PW in ok shape for $300, first anvil, in use


110lb PW in amazing shape was given to me by an elderly couple because they wanted to see it used, and get it out of the garage, gave to a beginner, he turned around and sold it.


175lb PW that has welded edges and hairline cracks in the face, $90 (i got the anvil, a real nice 5" PW post vice, 22  pairs of tongs for $90), in use


70lb farriers anvil in NEW shape $125 (with a 2 burner propane forge, 12 pairs of tongs, 10 hammers and a ton of farriers tools), FOR SALE (i don't use it)


200lb (I think) Vulcan that i just picked up yesterday, a family friend wanted it out of their barn, free, not sure what i'm doing with it


Pics when its light out again!



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Not sure if I posted my haul from the auction a few weeks back. It includes (but is not limited to):


4 wagon wheel rims

Crapload of horse shoes

Bucket of files

Hammers - 3 ball peins and an old and rusted cross pein head

Benchtop flex shaft grinder

A handful of channel locks

3 hand-crank grinders

A bunch of glass insulators (the old blue ones mostly)

Some other random odds and ends (including things I can't identify)


Price...eh, let's not talk about it.


On Saturday, I went garage saling. My haul there includes (but again, is not limited to):


Work benches - 8-foot, 3-foot, and a thigh-high 4-foot (built like a tank)

More hammers - mostly claw hammers

Portable power generator

BB gun (I said it was for the kid. I'm a terrible liar)

Another 5-gallon bucket (I can't seem to collect "enough")

Some other random tools and other household goods


Price for all - $60. The lumber for the benches would have cost twice that, if not more.


The best part is I had some extra hands follow me home the last few days and help me rearrange and clean out my garage. There was a 30+ year collection of junk and dirt from previous tenants. Now I have a floor and a place for everything. Found a bunch of auto coil springs and some brake drums. Also, a load of cans. Maybe the next trip to the scrapyard, I'll actually come back with money.


Yeah right.

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  • 2 weeks later...

A few week ago I picked up a 6" post vise and some large allen wrenches (over 1" hex). Also bought a neat stamp that stamps a 2" ruler scale and a brass ballpein hammer. I had some pictures but my camera card went belly up.

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went to the scrapyard Saturday, only picked up a couple of pieces of wrought iron---one a hub band from a wagon wheel, A couple of ornate warming plates from a cast iron stove---the filigree was in great condition!  I'll find something to do with them....  Got some old black iron pipe to forge chilies from too.  Missed out on a 2" ball welded to a shaft as I hadn't brought my 30" hacksaw.  Still selling to me for 20 cents a pound US. 

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Saturday, the family and I went garage saling looking for baby clothes for my son. Instead found a roll around counter for the kitchen that we liked but wouldn't fit in the car we had. So I take them home for a nap and head back with my old car. On the way home I stop at sale we were going to stop at together on the way back and talked to the guy for a little while. Ended up getting 2 Hand crank grinders, a grease gun and 2 tire irons for $20. I oiled up the grinders last night and 10 minutes of working with and they were both spinning freely.





His dad is selling his stuff this weekend. Think I will try to get back by and see what he has.

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I recently scored a couple of pairs of fork lift times for free, plus some odd bits & pieces of 'scrap' out of a client's scrap skip. :) A lot of their machinery is seriously heavy duty stuff. I've moved jobs since then, but that skip was quite a large item in the plus coloumn when deciding wether or not to move jobs! ;)

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128 lb Mouse Hole Anvil (1820-1835) - $175

Columbia 5" Leg vise - $50

3 Tractor Seats (100% chance of bar stools) - $65

3 beading wood planes, 1 weird brace and bit, 2 spokeshaves - $75


Not a bad day...


So yeah, some of those are wood tools but what the heck...


Anybody know why that brace has that particular design?






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I finally stumbled haphazardly into a awesome score after many many months of searching and talking to anyone that would listen. One such person i talked to sells used tools on sundays at the swap meet and he always has the not everyday items for sale. I asked him if he ever comes across anvils and items of a blacksmithing nature he replied quickly with a nah ...oh wait as a matter of fact there is a guy selling out a rock cutting facility right down the street he has one in one of the buildings down there...hes only there on saturdays, he drives from los angles. Let me tell you it was a long week waiting to go meet this fella from La, but my patience paid off in spades i think!! I showed up with a pocket fulla money but only needed to bring 200 bucks and my cutting torch!! ...heres what i gotpost-30971-0-57445500-1370142478_thumb.j the plates on bottom of the stack are 3" thick x 18" wide x about 26" long...the press is a manley 3-44 as it says on the tag. Someone has converted it from a H to this stand set up, will be posting some question about this press in the presses section later...the anvil turn out to be a arm and hammer 150 is stamped on the front foot the horn has two lil nicks from a smack with a claw hammer heres what they look like with some love sprinkled on em..





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