Cavpilot2k

A Fascinating Anvil

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I ran across this one in a museum in Germany last year. It's vaguely London patterned, but with that big, sloping side. Never seen anything like it before. 

Anybody care to guess what profession it was associated with (it was in an historic __________ shop)?

Anyway, I had never seen its like and I thought y'all might enjoy it. 

-John

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Thanks for sharing this. That deffinatly is cool looking. Makes me wonder if it was purpose driven or it it was a decrotive embellishment. I also notice that the multiple holes in the top seem very purposely spaced. So curious.

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My take on it is that there is a lot of sway in the area that the holes were drilled in.  That tells me the holes were put in after a long history of generations of use.  The holes are essentially right in the sweet spot.  Indians used to drill holes in their pottery to stop cracks and it's an old metal worker's trick too.  If I had to guess, I would say they were drilled to stop it from cracking or as a specialized use for inserting posts for bending jigs.  There's plenty of left over face plate for smithing toward the back.  

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I associate the sloping face with plow share work and so appropriate to pretty much any village anvil back 100+ years ago

You don't drill that big of a hole to stop a crack especially if they were drilled with hand powered equipment. I would guess that they were a modern addition for some sort of fixture---may not have even been smithing!

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Well, it was in the cooper's shop in a museum of an old village in Germany. I don't know it that side slab or the holes had any specific purpose in a cooperage, but allegedly that's what it was used for. There were some other really interesting coopers' tools there as well.  

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I'm thinking a couple built in swages and perhaps the holes were rivet sets or bolsters for precise hole placement. The adjustable bending forks idea makes sense too.

Cool anvil. 

Frosty The Lucky.

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I could swear I saw a picture of an anvil with a sloped side like that with an explanation that it was designed to have a striker facing the sloped side.  It kinda makes sense to me that the sloped side would help to reinforce the corner and deflect errant blows from the striker.

The "fifth" leg on the sloped side seems like it would give extra support for heavy blows.

I think MC Hammer is right about the age of the holes.  I noticed that the edges around the hardie hole are very rounded compared to the round holes.  That leads me to suspect that the round holes are much newer than the hammering that put in the sway back. Frosty's comment about rivet sets / punching bolsters makes sense in the context of barrel hoops.  

Either way, it's pretty clear that this anvil has had some love and some mistreatment.  The incised border on that sloped face was nicely done. 

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