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Mike Correll

Anvil identification/value?

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I have had this anvil in my family for a long time. The story is that it came from a blacksmith’s shop from a local railroad company. I know little about anvils, so I was wondering if someone could tell me more about it. I took some pictures of it. The only markings on it that I know of are some kind of bird logo (maybe an eagle?) on the side, and it has what I believe to be “1930” on the front. I’m guessing that’s the year it may have been made. This thing is pretty big and ridiculously heavy. Unfortunately, I don’t know what it weighs. All I know is that I can only lift up and tip one end at a time. I only weigh 150 pounds myself, and I nearly broke my back getting it onto the dolly it’s on in the pictures. I did also take some measurements: 

Overall Length (from the tip of the horn to the heel): 32 and 3/16” 

Length of face: 22 and 1/8” 

Width of face: 6”

Height (from base): 15” 

 

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Obviously a Fisher. @njanvilman will be able to give you the specifics about its original purpose. As for value, that depends greatly on where you are (the anvil market is very location-specific), so please add your location to your profile settings.

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Obviously a Fisher. @njanvilman will be able to give you the specifics about its original purpose. As for value, that depends greatly on where you are (the anvil market is very location-specific), so please add your location to your profile settings.

Thanks for the quick response. I just put my location in. I live in Northeastern Pennsylvania.

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Also obviously it is the base for a Blacker powerhammer, they were often used in RR repair depots, I have one similar also from a RR repair depot; I bought it from the RR worker who got it when the depot closed down.  The inlet on the side allows the blacker hammer (which could traverse from side to side!) to have a section where the hammer edge was lined up with the edge of the anvil.  Are the hardy holes 1.5" sq?  Weight is above 400# IIRC (I was told mine weighted 515 pounds but haven't checked that out yet.)

Wonderful face on a superb anvil and they are QUIET anvils; no ringing when you hammer on them!!!

 

Fisher actually offered a warranty on their anvils and so they were dated so you could prove it was in the warranty period.

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And there you go. Wasn't familiar with the Blacker hammer myself, so I learned something new as well. Thanks, @ThomasPowers.

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Also obviously it is the base for a Blacker powerhammer, they were often used in RR repair depots, I have one similar also from a RR repair depot; I bought it from the RR worker who got it when the depot closed down.  The inlet on the side allows the blacker hammer (which could traverse from side to side!) to have a section where the hammer edge was lined up with the edge of the anvil.  Are the hardy holes 1.5" sq?  Weight is above 400# IIRC (I was told mine weighted 515 pounds but haven't checked that out yet.)

Wonderful face on a superb anvil and they are QUIET anvils; no ringing when you hammer on them!!!

 

Fisher actually offered a warranty on their anvils and so they were dated so you could prove it was in the warranty period.

I just measured the hardy holes, and they are 1.5”. I can’t believe it actually weighs that much! I watched the video @Dylan Sawicki attached also. Very cool. Kind of wish I had the Blacker powerhammer to go with it. Thanks for all your responses

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My trick to use those huge hardy holes is twofold: Get some nesting square tubing and cut down the corners 3/4" of so on one end then heat and bend out the tabs then put the closest fitting one in the hardy and keep nesting them till you get a 1" interior hole as 1" is a common size--for the tubing I used it was 2 pieces.

The second one was buying trashed top swages (CHEAP!) as it's generally the end that gets hammered on that gets trashed and then forge the handle eye section to fit in the hardy holes

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Fisher was one of several companies over the years that made these anvils for the Blacker Hammer.  The Fisher versions weigh just under 500 lbs.  I have two in the Fisher & Norris Factory Museum here in central NJ, and the weights on both is about 485 lb.  While intended for use with the power hammer, many people have repurposed them for general smithing.  The only factors that make this a small challenge is the very thick heel area, and getting use to the notch.  And at almost 500 lb, moving the anvil.

Some Fisher Blacker hammers also had a serial number stamped in, usually to the left of the notch.  If your has one, could you post a photo.  I am trying to make sense of these numbers.

You anvil was made in 1930 in Trenton, NJ.  The dating was for their one year warranty.   Fisher made these in the 1920's and early 1930's.IMG_20170727_091145418.thumb.jpg.c7c1dec9caa4b878e0f3eaea60295029.jpg

The picture attached shows the complete Eagle logo, along with the bronze stamp used to make it in the mold.  This stamp was probably used to make the logo on your anvil too.

Depending where you are in NE Pa, you might want to take a ride down to the Fisher & Norris Factory Museum.  I am about 100 miles south of Milford, Pa, near 07710 zip.  It is an easy Sunday morning drive.  Contact me here or at [email protected]  I am also on Facebook under Fisher & Norris Factory Museum.

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Question -- in the OP's pics, there is a hardy tool near the horn, does it have a specific name? and function?  I can guess a function. Thank you.

 

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I think its a chain makers hardy, for making chain.

Rowan Taylor uses a very similar hardy in his chainmaking video (starting at about the 3:20 mark):

 

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So cool to see a question answered so completely on a less than common anvil. What a beast of an anvil it is! 

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