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Hardy Tool Safety


JHCC

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In another post, Glenn made the following comment:

On 11/12/2022 at 1:37 PM, Glenn said:

ALWAYS remember to remove the hardie tool from the top of the anvil when it is not in use.  Otherwise it is a pinch point for injury or removal of fingers.  

Yes and no. If your anvil is horn-to-tong/heel-to-hammer, then anything in the hardy hole can indeed create a pinch point. If it’s heel-to-tong/horn-to-hammer, on the other hand, then it’s less likely to be a problem. 

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This is how dedicated nailmaker’s anvils are set up, as with this Swedish example from the 1930s:

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4 hours ago, Glenn said:

ALWAYS remember to remove the hardie tool from the top of the anvil when it is not in use.  Otherwise it is a pinch point for injury or removal of fingers.  

It can remove fingers too if you hit by accident?

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Only if you strike blows with your hand over the anvil but if you punch your hardy you sure could take a finger off.

NEVER leave the hardy in the anvil is largely a rule for newcomers who don't have good hammer control and are much more likely to make dangerous mistakes. 

Er on the side of caution is always good advice.

Frosty The Lucky.

 

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Reminding folks of dangers and telling them how to stay safe is a responsibility. 

Just because they have always done it this way is no excuse, because "until that one day" is closer than you think.  

 

It has been said before:

Make a list of all the body parts you can do without, a pinkie toe, a pointing finger, an eye, hearing, etc.  Sign your name below the list.

Then write, it is my personal responsibility to protect anything not on the list. Sign your name again below that statement.

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I tought you will only get like some scaring if you miss spot and hit it with knuckle.
I never tought you could get your finger cut, but posibly it can break bone, it didnt crossed my mind maybe becasue i dont use often hardy tools.

 

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The warning about never leaving the hardy in the anvil while forging has become a clarion call in recent years and one I generally agree with. Don't do it.

If a person were to swing their hammer so their hand came down on either a hot, cold or other type of hardy it would certainly hurt, maybe cause a serious injury, maybe even an amputation if it struck in a joint. This is possible I suppose but in the more than 50 years I've practiced the craft as a hobby I've never heard of anybody injuring themselves by striking a bottom tool with their hand while swinging a hammer. Bang into one while turning around or reaching for something? Oh YEAH, we're always banging into things in the shop, how many times have you read about people jamming themselves in the leg on the anvil's horn? 

I have been online and participating in blacksmithing and metal arts fora since the internet went public for me in the mid 1980s and in that time I haven't heard of anybody injuring themselves by hitting any kind bottom tool while swinging a hammer. Not once in 36+ years of talking to people around the world. I've shared anvil time with hundreds of people in that time and again never seen even a close call. 

As a general safety policy I never leave a sharp object or tool pointing into people space in the shop, a person could trip and fall on it, people stumble and or fall all the time. There are entire TV programs about people injuring themselves by running into or falling on cut or impalement hazards. It's a hard policy of mine that sharp or impalement hazards are NOT pointed into people space in my shop and I move them in other people's shops or caution people if it is in use or can't be moved.

I'm big on safety, very big. This current caution about NEVER leaving a bottom tool in the anvil came about because I mentioned a particular bending fork I use to make eyes in round stock. It stays in the hardy hole because it's a nearly constant part of that process. I brought it up as an example of it's orientation on the edge of the anvil can be very beneficial. Specifically you work long stock over the edge without the anvil face interfering or having to clear the anvil. Using a more traditional type bending fork means pulling the stock or scrolling wrench horizontally, which means clearing the anvil or taking extra steps. Using your bottom tool in a vise falls under the extra steps and negative. Leaving your hammer on the anvil ready to pick up, when beneficial is typical as is leaving any tool in position for immediate use. 

I'd be lying if I said I don't exaggerate to make a point, I do regularly. Anybody saying I encourage people to leave a tool in a dangerous position would be wrong. For the benefit of the doubt I'll say they didn't pay attention to or understand what I said. Carrying an exaggeration to extremes isn't a good policy for warnings. After a while people discover horrible things aren't going to happen and start disregarding warnings. This is a recognized human conditioning.

For example, emergency vehicles don't have the lights and sirens on all the time or people will start ignoring lights and sirens making them ineffective when necessary. You don't leave, "wet floor, slippery!" signs out all the time because someone might spill something or nobody will believe it. It becomes more likely to CAUSE a slip and fall accident. 

I can go on at length about traffic work zone management, I held a certificate and received yearly training and re-certification as a "traffic management supervisor." Most of the "final" test questions were about over warning the motoring public. 

Sorry for the long ramble but being made an example of for something that can't happen the way I use a tool is aggravating even if the intentions are good. Dire warnings about unrealistic maybes make things worse not better and that is not opinion.

Frosty The Lucky.

 

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An anvil does not have to be a London pattern anvil.  It can be another style and shape anvil, or even an improvised anvil.  

Advice is provided based on the authors knowledge, experience and expertise, and may or may not be applicable to the viewers situation.  For instance horn left or horn right does not apply to a piece of rail road track, or other improvised anvils. 

Safety should be a common concern in all situations.

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I used to leave bottom tools in the hardy hole if they were being used. Then one day I was using tongs and went to swing the stock and "punched the tool", said that's going to leave a mark ouch. Since then I take the bottom tool out of the hardy hole and lay it on the anvil stand until needed, only takes a second to do that.

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I  still think that tablesaw is more dangerous then hardy hole tools.
I always hated and been scared of tablesaw when it come to woodworking, just i dont like it, i would rather be by hot forge then having my fingers close

to spining blade, and pushing piece of wood in that direction.

 

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