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I Forge Iron

While at the scrap yard.

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I went today nosing around the local scrap yard. Turns out this yard is in 2 sections... some in the fenced in area, and some out just in an unenclosed yard. So I went wandering around the unenclosed yard(I didn't see any "No Trespassing" signs). This area of the scrap yard is maybe 5 acres of Steels, Irons, gears, pipe, solids, ETC everything. I wandered over to an old semi trailer and lo and behold was an old Acorn table, In FANTASTIC condition, beside some surface rust.

Now from past experiances of trying to talk with the scrap yard owner(Least I think he's the owner) he's been rather cold, when I ask if I can wander around the yard to look for material he gets a little T'd and say absolutely not, but I just figured it's cause he has heavy equipment out there operating, and he kinda keeps eyeing me whenever I would come around. So my wonder is do I approach him and ask if he would like to sell it? or do I say heck with it let it rust, as that man will prolly want top dollar for it, or not want to sell it to me anyway.

What would you do?
I'll get some photos of it if I can.

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If he's in business to buy and sell scrap, he ought at least be open to conversation. Maybe try some skillful maneuvering and ask about a couple of other things you really don't want. In other words, inquire about the old forklift and the barrel full of gears. After you strike up a conversation, casually slide in the question about the table.

BTW, him being cold may be one of the following:

He really is worried about liability.
He only deals with larger customers and sees an individual as a nuisance.
He may have dismissed you as a tire kicker if you never buy anything.
He really is unfriendly and you'll just have to work around it to get anything done.

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When you go vist, make sure to take something you've made from something you've bought from him as a gift, maybe some thing for him to give to the wife at home. If you've got a bucket of non-smithable scrap take it and just give it to him, as it's no use to you. Now don't take him a bucket of tin cans, but something he can sell as scrap, like drops, cast iron, brass valves, copper tubing, is always a nice thing for a scrap man to have. You won't get any money out of it but you'll get access to him and maybe his yard. Easier to attract bees with honey than vinegar! Remember, the scrap business is always a "borderline business", with a close profit margin.

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Be sure and wear your steel toed tennis shoes when you go to talk to him. If you gain access, have safety glasses in your pocket and gloves in your back pocket at the ready. Also ask if you need to get your hard hat from the car.

Surprising what a little safety on your part does to lower the fear-factor on his part. :wink:

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i think Glenn has it in one, the safety line is the key to his yard,the key to his heart proberly is somthing made out of his own scrap yard that is a pocket size, alittle rams head keyring bottle opener, .Ben my son and myself were in the scrap yard this morning ,both got out truck on with hard hats and pulling dayglow vests on as we walked towards the office to sign the visitor book, Ben bought 2 ton of chain to lay a mooring ,and i came out with sledge hammers to re shaft and a bucket of chisels to sharpen for the scrap yard,and we looked at a shear that olso needed welding for the yard a job for Ben to pay for the chain ,.
when we signed in i saw a snake , a cobra i made out of a shoing rasp years ago on the desk that i made for the boss ,call it creeping if you want but a little plesantness towards each other is allways rememberd

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So I went to speak with the owner of the scrap yard.
I take back anything that I might have said deroatory about him, he's a pretty cool ol dude!

He said he had 7, Count em 7! of those acorn tables. A fellow from the NC coast came by one day and said he needed 6 to make a bridge for his crawler(I suppose his heavy machinery, bulldozers and such)
He said he has that last one left and he's had them for about 5 years.

His price is .26 cents on the pound, at about 2100lbs thats around $550.00. I will ask if I can give him a deposit and pay him a little at a time. But my next perdicament is, do I really want that table just yet as I'm not at what I will call a permenent location, and in maybe 6 months may find myself getting another shop. Do I wanna have to haul that thing around with me?


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*NEVER* assume that something will be there when you go back for it. If you pay a deposit try to get it in writing---tell them your wife does the books and you need the proof that you didn't spend it on whiskey and wild women.

It is a heavy thing to move but if you expect to move pretty soon and you want to pay on time, try to arrange pay-off for after the move and run out and paint SOLD on it with your name.

If you decide you don't want or need it turn it loose on the rest of the smithing crowd; if you were withing a 100 miles of me I'd buy it and pay you a finder's fee!


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