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What did you do in the shop today?

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Think i got this. Thanks Jenn. Anywho, welcom to the Punkin Patch Forge. Nice and clean now. Those "weeds" growing by the scrap railing are all spearmint. Love the smell coming through the window there.




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Back in the 80's, when I was a bachelor, my mother gave me a rabbit fur bedspread for a Christmas present.  Sure did come in "handy".  Felt really good on bare skin.  It was multi-colored but basically brown and white.  Pretty thing.

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In the Rocky Mountain area there tend to be more llama and alpaca growers than there are spinners willing to process raw fiber.  So, there is a large surplus of raw llama wool around.  To my knowledge, there is only one commercial outfit that will process raw fiber, the Brown Sheep Company in Scottsbluff, NE.  There may be another one in NM.  Thomas?

"By hammer and hand all arts do stand."

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At least llamas don't look as comic book laughable as alpacas do when sheared. It's amazing how small they are inside there. We had a couple intact alpaca bucks for a while. A gift from one of Deb's goat friends to cheer us up after having to have our herd put down. 

Ornery critters, spit at you as soon as look at you. No joke but if you're the one feeding they WILL change attitude . . . some. 

Frosty The Lucky.



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Made a fire poker and a shifty lizard today. Nothing special … except it was special because it was the first demo I have done for the last 10 weeks!  Our Historic Village was allowed to open with limited numbers and social distancing observed, so it was nice to see visitors around the forge again.

lizard and poker (2).JPG

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How does it come to pass that when I want to make some sort of nifty widget, I end up spending all my time at the forge making the tooling to make said widget.

I made a beak, as I have no horn on my anvil, and the need for something of that ilk presented it's self today.  While I was forming the square to fit the hardy hole, I went ahead and made it long enough to cut off a chunk for future use. Then forged the beak. after that, I made my first bottle opener. It's a mess, and I have nothing to try it out on.

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Made five tools last week to make one element of an item. Top tool, bottom tool, slot punch, drift, and bolster. I did enjoy every minute of it though... Thanks just the way it goes some times. Now I have to find time to get back on that project. (Fire place set for my sister, but only have the poker half done. Sample detail will go into the middle of the tools. Still lots of finishing work to go. I just wasn’t going to post anything about this yet, but I couldn’t resist with bluerooster’s comment above.) 








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Get ready one "big" project. My Treadle-hammer. By drawing and constructing this one I was inspired by some photographs in the book :" The Smithy´s Craft and Tools" - Otto Schmirler. He gave some photographs and a watercolour drawing with some basic dimensions. It took me one year (not fulltime :) ) of brainwork and AutoCad drawing. Now it´s ready and just works fine. sorry for the bad photo. Will take some more...




Some first workpieces using the new toy:

some repousséhammers (punched the hole)



Making two handhammers based on the Bailey Crosspeen design( Brent gave a tutorial in "Hammers Blow" from Summer 2007; Vol.15;#3 ):



Now it´s time to make tools vor the treadlehammer. Hotcut-chisle and some fullers and the punch for the small hammersTools.thumb.jpg.53ff46d45a9861e9f24a65bd0b310689.jpg




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Didn't have much umph Saturday due to the family situation.  I did clean up the large, "Papa Bear", drill press out of the floor; stood it up by the wall under the roof truss and have it suspended from the truss as it's excessively top heavy.  I have the "Momma Bear" drill press by it still on the comealong next to it and the "Baby Bear drill press is on the 2 wheeler by the shop door.

I fired up the coal forge because the longer I wait the harder it will be to get back to using it.  Just little stuff: straightened and annealed, hopefully, the lug wrenches so I can saw the sockets in half and worked on turning a sucker rod in into the shaft for some hardy tooling. Made me feel a bit better.

Then Sunday came; I opened the shop as there was a good wind up the valley, hot but strong.  I was getting ready to fire up the coal forge again and an old friend and student showed up!  Drove 75 miles, masked, and S-D'd.  Cheered me up immensely.  We sat in the shop about 10' apart and talked a lot and then he gave me 2 F's T burners to replace the old dead ones on my gas forge!   Happy Day!  We pulled the old ones that had pretty much rusted/scaled in place---got to show him what a butcher was NOT intended for use!  Even used a car jack to put pressure on the old burner while tapping it with the butcher and 3# single jack.  Both of them finally pulled out and the new ones fit the burner holders nicely.  (I mentioned to him how much easier it was to pull the old burners when you expect to scrap them rather than rebuild them...)

I loaded him up with "presents" for him and our friends up north.  Nothing like cleaning shop to show me that I can find stuff faster than I can use it and it's getting to be time to share the wealth.  He also put a down payment on the hawkeye helve hammer. Now all I have to do is to sell the 248# PW and I've paid off the hoard and can start working on the electricity...

Now to run the propane to them and start tuning them---and patch any issues from the old ones removal.  The old ones had a short propane hose between the burners that as they aged would push the orifice out of concentric alignment.  I'm going to have to make a manifold of some sort to not have that issue any more.

Tuesday I go to the dentist and start seeing about having the roots from multiple broken crowns pulled; great fun.

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