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I Forge Iron

6 year olds blacksmithing project

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Finally got my new anvil fixed to it's base today.  (Huge ash stump)

I received a huge amount of attention from my 6year old son Brandon Cai. What better to do than to let him use his initiative and make something.

I let him loose on a railway spike and he decided he wanted to make a snake coat hook.

I didn't touch the piece, apart from holding it with tongs, holding a punch for eyes and a screw hole and also I was guided to put a bit of detail on the snakes head.

Start them young (safely), I wish I could go back in time, I'd be a pro lol.



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Looks like time for another anvil. In the mean time a duck board to bring him to forging hight will work. Their is also nothing wrong with re handling 2-3# 

hammers to make him mini sledges. Seriusly 16 oz hammers with shortened handles (have him cup the head in his hand and cut the handle elbo length for hand hammers and arm pit length for sledges. 

Imagine what he can do in just a few short weeks with his own tools. 

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Thanks Charles, all taken onboard. Brandon had the choice of about 18 different hanmers and two anvils (other one just out of view, and slightly lower. Although still too high, he had to make do) He thoroughly enjoyed it so it's just going to get better and better. He's feeling like a man tonight!!!

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We both bounced off each other it was so much fun. Much to his mothers dismay... Argghh what are you doing?!?

Big learning curve for both of us... Him in what he can achieve ...and me in how much I can trust him!

He gives me a reason for pretty much everything I do!

He has been donated my much shorter anvil/stand. And on your advice we will be making some smaller hammers!

16 minutes ago, Lionel h said:

Good job young man, you did much better than my first , through twenty attempts, to make something other than making it into scrap. Good work!

Thank Lionel. He did so well.

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Lovely young fellow. Great craft to start on. And he has a whole lifetime to enjoy it!

Glenn's son started a little bit older, but not much.

If he is slated to have more sessions, could you arrange to have him wear a pair of leather shoes?

Synthetics are not advised. Neither are rubber material.

Great start. I'm jealous.

All the best to all of you.


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I know what you mean Slag, I would have had him much more dressed for the occasion but it was completely off the cuff. They are leather shoes but he needs some little leather work boots and some overalls that come over the boots.

He wanted to start work in flip-flops and shorts so I did my best lol.

Thank you.

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4 hours ago, Charles R. Stevens said:

Please post him with his scaled down tools

I will do.

He did use a lot of different hammers as he went along. But I'll definitely take your advice and make him some of his own.

Hes going to be having the 'train track anvil' on the left. He preferred it yesterday.

Thanks Charles.



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In my opinion, ... having a bit of "downsized" gear is a good thing, ... but far from essential.

Hands-on lessons about perseverance and overcoming adversity have a lot of value as well.


The thing that immediately registered with me, was the psychological  benefit of successfully accomplishing a new and difficult task.

That self-confidence is an invaluable "tool", ... that will always "fit" his hand.

And one that is sorely lacking in the majority of his, video game obsessed, nanny-state coddled peers.


While past generations were often forced by necessity to "grow up" too fast, ... it seems some of the current ones never do .....



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Good on you Stan. You may have just stoked the flames of a future blacksmiths fire. He will remember and cherish the time he spends at the forge with you. 

And I agree with Smoothbore, it is vital that the younger generations learn to make things with their hands, see that the world is not all digital. It teaches them the value of hard work, and the sense of confidence when a seemingly insurmountable challenge is overcome. 

Keep at it with him! And keep us updated on what he makes! 

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Thanks Will, my wife and I do strongly believe in Brandon seeing the world around him 'hand's on'. We do a lot of walking and exploring. Brandon is constantly wanting to help in the workshop/garden and I try to accommodate him as much as possible.

He does obviously do all the digital things, but we try to limit and spread that out.

I was rather worried about him trying out blacksmithing....but he nailed it with the practical and the thinking/listening side! I'm very proud of him.

He's back to school this week, so once he is settled we are going to hit the anvils again.


Thank you all, again, for all your encouraging and kind comments. We are quite overwhelmed.

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