tedzap

Just getting started in SWVA

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I have developed an interest in blacksmithing, and am in the Roanoke, VA area.   Don't have any tools that are specific to smithing yet, although I do have a piece of plate that is 12x19x3.5 inches.   I was told it was tool steel, and that I could have it if I "dug it up out of the ground".   When I hit it with a ball hammer it is very resistant to denting, so it is pretty hard.   I would estimate it is >200 pounds.

Should I mount this plate on a stand vertically or horizontally?   

Height of top surface at level where dominant hand fist just makes contact?

Are there any clubs or guilds in southwest Virginia? 

Anyone have any tools for sale in the area?  

Do good anvils really cost $4-$7 per pound these days?    

I'd like to start with a gas fired forge, but eventually moving to solid fuel.

 

I'd enjoy meeting local smiths, getting instruction, I'd even travel to take a structured class.     

 

Other than the occasional person on craigslist who thinks their anvils are made of gold, I have not found anyone in the area doing this kind of thing.   I do have a lot of other tools, such as welders, torches, lathe, mill, etc.

 

Thanks in advance, 

Ted

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Welcome to IFI...

To find anvils at a reasonable cost use the TPAAAT (it works). https://www.iforgeiron.com/topic/3602-thomas-powers-applied-anvil-acquisition-technique/

Mount the plate vertically for the best results.

You might check with these folks, the Guild is dissolved but the contacts within the thread may help.. https://www.iforgeiron.com/forum/38-blacksmith-guild-of-virginia/

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Start with solid fuel forges such as JABOD.  A 200 pound block of steel is a serviceable anvil. Also look up TPAAAT for finding tools.

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Stand the plate on edge with the soothest one on top. Mount it so the "face" is between wrist and knuckle height, wrist being more preferable as we rarely use strikers now days. Knuckle height was a better height when helpers were striking with sledge hammers often on top tools.

If for some reason you need a large flat surface it's easy to work vertically on the side, easier in many ways as you can sight down the face. If you build the stand so you can rotate the anvil you can grind different bottom die shapes in the four sides for an anvil of many uses.

A piece of steel plate mounted on edge is a fine anvil, excellent in fact.

Frosty The Lucky.

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Welcome to IFI! If you haven't yet, please READ THIS FIRST!!!

That is an excellent first anvil. Take a look at this for some ideas on mounting and modification:

01 01_1256-1.JPG

(See this video for some shots of the anvil in action, although it doesn't show the use of the angled or rounded faces.)

 

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Thank you folks for your input.   I am intrigued by some of the ideas, and really like the anvil made from a fork lift tine.    The last picture is very similar to my piece of plate, and I could set up something similar.      

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