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Fisher anvil repair, hardy edition.


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I just wrestled this beast to the shop.  Its a 1914 fisher 450 lb.  there is a good amount of damage to the hardy edges at the top.  My first instinct is to repair the edges.  But ive also considered just making wider hardy tooling im my swage so it will rest on the top ie “span” over the missing edges.  

My repair procedure is to clean the area.  Preheat with a big propane burner to 400F. Then nickle weld a base layer on the cast.  Then clean and hard facing rod to build up the edge.  Finally clean/dress the edges

Ive repaired several wroght iron anvil edges and feel very confident in that area and Ive successfully repaired lots of simple cast iron gears and blocks etc.  but the combination of that coupled with the size cause “It wont fit in my preheat oven” then hardfacing the top layer.  Then once its done burry it in vermiculite.  Then finally three days later when its cool i have to clean up the welded edges inside of the hardy.  Lots of steps

theres also two or three 1/4” x 1/4” wounds in the middle of the face id hardface weld while its hot.

the anvil is very usable as is, with 90% rebound all over the base and about 50-70% rebound when moving on the heel.

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I'll look forward to seeing how this works.  The process sounds inline with what I've read from other sources, but I'm not an experienced welder.

My Fisher has a wonky hardy hole and seriously chipped edges on the face.  I'd dearly love to find someone that could weld it up!

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Fisher tops are 3/4 of an inch thick so you shouldnt be welding on any cast iron with that small repair. If i was to repair it which i would do some serious thinking before i did but i would only preheat the hardie area with a torch and be quick to do really short welds and dont focus the welds in one area, kinda jump back and forth from one edge to the other. Try not to get the surrounding area over say...500°f to not effect the heat treat of the face.

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That anvil had some welding done to her already. It's a weird sort of damage, it almost seems like they put a sleeve in the hardy and welded the edge. 

Besides the looks, the hardy is perfectly usable as it is and the rest of the anvil is in very good nick. 

Not sure what to tell you, Surely there is no need for any repair.

It would be only cosmetic and risk softening the area around the hardy if it is not soft already from previous attempts. 

If you can overcome the urge, just let it be. 

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The recess around the hardy hole may be a blessing, if you make your own hardy tools.  If you make your own tools by welding a square shaft onto what ever tooling plate, the recess would allow clearance for the weld bead to sit beneath the level of the face.  This would let the hardy tool sit nice and flat on the face of the anvil.

If it were my anvil, I'd leave it be.

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1 hour ago, Marc1 said:

That anvil had some welding done to her already. It's a weird sort of damage, it almost seems like they put a sleeve in the hardy and welded the edge. 

Besides the looks, the hardy is perfectly usable as it is and the rest of the anvil is in very good nick. 

Not sure what to tell you, Surely there is no need for any repair.

It would be only cosmetic and risk softening the area around the hardy if it is not soft already from previous attempts. 

If you can overcome the urge, just let it be. 

That urge is powerful!

I agree that the damage looks like a failed weld more than edge chipping, in how its uniform in appearance.  But i know nothing of its past use, which it saw a lot of, other thant it came from the amarican bridge co.  The shaft of the hardy is perfectly fine

45 minutes ago, RobS said:

The recess around the hardy hole may be a blessing, if you make your own hardy tools.  If you make your own tools by welding a square shaft onto what ever tooling plate, the recess would allow clearance for the weld bead to sit beneath the level of the face.  This would let the hardy tool sit nice and flat on the face of the anvil.

If it were my anvil, I'd leave it be.

I tend to make my hardy tooling by tapering and upsetting for the tool base.  That wont work here as is,   I can make them on the swage block for use on this anvil.  

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9 hours ago, JlBlohm said:

Fisher tops are 3/4 of an inch thick so you shouldnt be welding on any cast iron with that small repair. If i was to repair it which i would do some serious thinking before i did but i would only preheat the hardie area with a torch and be quick to do really short welds and dont focus the welds in one area, kinda jump back and forth from one edge to the other. Try not to get the surrounding area over say...500°f to not effect the heat treat of the face.

Im not too sure about that 3/4”. I can see how it looks that way from the side. But the failed fishers ive seen were closer to 1/4”.   their 1887 patent drawings show this thickened edge and thinner face.   And yes i would plan on jumping the welds a bit.

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I havent gotten that far in AIA (my library got it on loan from another library for me) but i skimmed through the book and i found the fisher pattent and i see the thin middle and thicker edges. Im sure the thicker edges helped with the major chipping the vulcans had.

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Thanks for your thoughts guys..  

ive cleaned it up and lightly flattened the high parts on the top.  Im still pondering on the hardy. And still need to slightly dress the edges 

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I'd leave it alone.  If you have another anvil with a perfect hardy, use that for your hardy needs and keep this one for when you need a monster to do that kind of metal moving.  It's be a shame if you messed up the hard face especially a face that nice.  Like others have said, that hardy is perfectly usable as is.  My hardy works fine and it's not got perfectly square top at the face level.  To me it's the square shape below the face that really has the holding power.  If it's just fixing it for looks, I wouldn't risk it.  It does look like someone welded a fix there before

 

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54 minutes ago, ThomasPowers said:

I'd just sleeve it and fit the bent out top pieces to the gap; At 450 it's probably a large hardy hole and so a sleeve might help with the tooling!

I pondered this earlier, and even mocked up a piece of 1-1/2 “ tubing flaring out the end.  Too big for the hole but a good exercise in upsetting square tube.

It measures to be like a 1 3/8”+ hardy and according to aia should be 1-3/8”.  So best sized tubing i can get from my supplier is 1-1/4” with 11ga which leaves me a with 1” hardy.  My next thought was how to fasten/secure the 1-1/4” tube in a 1-3/8” hole. I guess i could shim the sides and flare the bottom to lock it in.  Or just leave it loose.  Anyway just throwing out ideas. Thanks for the thought

thanks

 

25 minutes ago, MC Hammer said:

I'd leave it alone.  If you have another anvil with a perfect hardy, use that for your hardy needs and keep this one for when you need a monster to do that kind of metal moving.  It's be a shame if you messed up the hard face especially a face that nice.  Like others have said, that hardy is perfectly usable as is.  My hardy works fine and it's not got perfectly square top at the face level.  To me it's the square shape below the face that really has the holding power.  If it's just fixing it for looks, I wouldn't risk it.  It does look like someone welded a fix there before

 

i may just square up those hardy edges and round them slightly for looks and make a removable sleeve, because ive came to realize, i think i am just trying to fix it for looks.

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My Fisher has two 1.5" hardy holes in it. I just drop in my sleeves and the tabs are large enough that the tooling rests on them instead of the anvil face.  I keep one double sleeved to 1" all the time and leave the other full sized.  The sleeve(s) just drop in and in 15+ years I have never needed the bottom fastened in any way. (If I did I would just cut the bottom end of the tubing on the diagonals and drop them in and then hammer them out tight against the bottom of the hardy hole.)

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I don't see any reason to do anything to that anvil other than getting it mounted on a stand and using it. I have a 260# Fisher and love it.

As to the hardy hole, all of my tooling would bridge those areas without any issues. And yes it would make a great clearance for welded shank tooling.

Put some various radii on the face edges and get to work.

 

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I have to agree with Thomas.  I've said it a lot and I'll say it again:  That anvil fed a lot of families just like it is.  The smiths before you didn't see the need to square the edges and such and they probably logged more time at the anvil in a week than most of us do in a couple of months.  Don't get me wrong, I like seeing a beautiful anvil just like everyone else but I kinda gravitate toward tools that were well used by their former caretaker.  It is yours to do as you want though, you shelled out the cash for it so do what gives you the most joy out of it.

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