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I Forge Iron

New and wanting some advice


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Hi, I'm considering picking up blacksmithing in the next month or two since. Id like to eventually transition it to my main job if it works out. My main question is with a budget of $200 to start, what do you guys recommend the absolute essentials are?

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Hello and welcome to ifi, 

You can build a forge out of almost anything, you can find an improvised anvil at the salvage yard, and you can use quite a few different things for a air supply, I’d bet you can build your setup for $20 bucks or so, 

I’d suggest reading the thread (read this first) and then putting your location in your profile to start, so other smiths in your area might be able to give you a hand, 

then start reading all the threads on improvised anvils and home made forges, after that you’ll have a good understanding of how to start smithing for $200 or much less,

 

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Essentials...basic, some steel, something to heat the steel, something to hit the hot steel with and something to hit the hot steel on.

Steel, forge, hammer, anvil. Tools don't make a blacksmith, a blacksmith makes his tools. Some books also help and there are many free as downloads.

A creative imagination also helps. As will these links.

https://www.iforgeiron.com/topic/52308-a-collection-of-improvised-anvils/

https://www.iforgeiron.com/forum/267-jabod-just-a-box-of-dirt/

https://www.iforgeiron.com/topic/29218-store-bought-hammer-mods/

 

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Turning this into a career is going to be a long road. What type of items do you want to make?

From what you said, I would suggest classes first. Have you done any smithing at all? You will learn much faster with a teacher, than alone.

Classes on running a business would also need to be taken. Smithing sounds fun as a career right up until all of the things that are needed to make it a viable business come into play.  You either have to know how to do them yourself, or be making enough to pay someone to do the druge work.

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DO NOT SKIMP ON TONGS! You can use an improvised anvil, a JABOD forge, and an inexpensive hammer (properly dressed), but if you cannot hold your work securely, you will not be able to forge it. A couple of pairs of V-bit and/or flat jaw tongs will start you off well, and you will not regret the investment.

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Was that $200 Canadian dollars or $200 Australian dollars? World Wide Web you know!  If you are in the USA look for classes being run by the Small Business Administration  on Business.  How are your drawing and drafting skills?  How are your sales skills?  If you are in the USA how will you provide for your health insurance?

Start your log book!  Record what you do and how long it took and what it cost for materials---helps you keep track of things and see how you are progressing.

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