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My first real Anvil - opinions please

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I stumbled upon this Anvil at a Junk-tique shop in Amish Country this weekend.

I couldn't make out the stamping on it but the tag said "160lbs anvil" .

Pretty vague but I've been reading everything I can find in hopes of not making a mistake and buying a junk or damaged anvil.

They had a price of $595 on it but I was able to get it for $530 ($3.31 per pound)

After I bought it a couple customers at the shop said they thought it was a Hay-Budden .

Turns out to be an Arm & Hammer the serial number is 38557.

The edges looked really good , only a couple nicks, but I wanted to get all the surface rust off to look for any defects especially cracks.

Didnt find any and I'm actually feeling pretty good about this purchase.

The price aside , as in your area it might cost more or less, what do you folks think ?

I'm sure you've seen more of these than I have.

* I've included a close up of the 3-4 edge issues.

I haven't touched it with a grinder or Flap Pad just naval jelly & wire brush.

















This chunk of metal welded on the front & back appears to have been a mounting strap that they cut when removing it from its mount.

Does that sound right?

Or does that look like what its purpose was?

It was the best guess of the Amish & English who were eyeballing it after I bought it.






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That mounting strap is irrelevant, outside of aesthetics. The only practical concern that comes to mind is, how does it rebound and sound? I do wonder what the voids on the sides are trying to tell me though. There may be some history of restoration work on the face. Still, it should beat a chunk of rail to work on. 

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Greetings Grumpy Biker,

         It looks like a typical anvil from a machine repair facility, The edges have had some repairs and for sure it was welded to a bench or fixture.  I would suggest that you mount it on a stump and use it as is for a while before you make any changes. Back in the day anvils we’re readily available and many workers in the shop abuse them. Keep up the search for the perfect anvil for yourself and maybe pass this one on to a beginner in the future. The price was was just a tad high for me but I still buy anvils for my students who never can seem to find them. It’s funny through the years I have acquired several near perfect anvils but my go to anvil is a 160 pound Trenton that was in the family for years just about that size. Go figure.  Have fun.. 

Forge on and make beautiful things 


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I think a lot of abuse came when anvils were no longer an important part of the shop and so were available for uses that were not suited to them.  My large Trenton?, appx 410# had gouges across a nice flat face where it was used by the Mine maintenance crew as a fixture for air arc gouging prior to welding. Welding having taken over a lot of tasks from forging.   Now the bridge anvils from the cable tool drilling rigs were expected to be abused and were a consumable for the purpose. Why most of them are beaten horribly.

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