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Welcome from the Ozark mountains.

If you edit your profile and add a general location we can give more answers relative to your location. We have members the world over so an answer to someone in Timbuktu will be different than say California. Also there may be members near enough to visit and give a hand.

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Welcome aboard from 7500' in SE Wyoming. Glad to have you.

If you put your general location in your profile we can give you better answers.  A surprisingly large number of answers are dependent on geolgraphy.  This is a world wide forum and we don't know if you are in Alaska or South Africa.

You can start blacksmithing pretty cheaply.  Look at the threads on JABOD (Just A Box Of Dirt) forges and improvised anvils.  As Charles says, you then need something to hit with and if you cannot scrounge or find at a garage sale or flea market a Harbor Freight 2 pound cross peen ("engineer") hammer is a decent, inexpensive option.  You also need a "grabber" to keep from trying to hold hot metal in your hands.  Tongs are probably best but vice grips or even channel lock pliers can also work.

"By hammer and hand all arts do stand."

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I find Chanel locks work better than vise grips. 
So a large lump of steel. A 8-20# sledge hammer works well and are generally easy to find. But a 2” or larger drop of steel works. Do not buy a cheap cast iron “anvil” such as sold buy HB, NT or the like. I beam drops don’t work well either (unless they are an inch and a half thick).

24- 32 oz. Ball pein hammers either yard sale, 2# cross pein or single jack hammers (not the shore handled lump hammers, they are soft for driving stone carving tools) for $50 you can get a mustad rounding hammer from tractor supply or the like are a good choice for the money. 
 

as suggested The JABOD (just a box of dirt) threads are a good start for a forge. As John found the fraze and I started the original thread I would suggest not giving much credit to YouTube or other sites. Our understanding of simple side blast charcoal forges has grown so check with us to see if your reading is on the current best practice. 
 

A chisel, a punch a file and a hacksaw are good to add. A vise is nice but not strictly nessisary.

now strictly speaking I can forge most of those tools but it’s hard to do with out having them. 

 

 

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If you are any where Ozark or Newtonia, there are several blacksmiths in that area. Also BAM Blacksmiths Association of Missouri would be a good place to start looking for folks near you. If you Google like this Newtonia MO blacksmiths or Ozark MO blacksmiths you will get a lot of hits.

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One of the most valuable things you can do (information vs. time) is to black out a few hours, sit down in a comfortable place, have the beverage of your choice at your side, and start browsing through the threads on I Forge Iron.  Even though some will go off on tangents there is a LOT of good information for the budding smith.  In particular, look at the threads regarding improvised anvils and JABOD forges.

IFI is a very interesting group.  There are folk who range from their early teens to 80s.  Education from drop outs to advanced degrees.  Knowledge of blacksmithing adding up to centuries collectively.  Life experience and general knowledge that is VERY broad. All genders.  We just stay away from controversial topics like politics, religion, and sex.  And we keep our language suitable for a G rated audience.  Nothing that you wouldn't want to have to explain to you 10 year old daughter or grand daughter.

Finally, be cautious about what you take and believe from videos on You Tube.  There are some bad and downright dangerous things there.  And there are some excellent ones too.  I like the ones posted by Black Bear Forge, JPL Services (our own Jennifer), and Torbjorn Ahman from Sweden.  Some folk like Alec Steele but I find him a bit irritating in his presentation.

"By hammer and hand all arts do stand."

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The Blacksmith Association of Missouri has a mobile training unit that will be providing beginner classes in spring. 

The next beginner classes are April 15th 2022 and April 22nd 2023. Both classes are 8a-4:30p.

When I asked what type of things they'd be teaching, I received this reply:

The first class we usually make two small projects.  Maybe a decorative wall hook and a two prong toasting fork.

The second class we usually make a fireplace or forge poker. Usually with a pineapple twist handle and a reverse twist on the shank. 

The classes are $30 a piece. You must be a member. A membership is $30 annually. 

That's a heck of a deal for all the stuff you'd learn and a year of bimonthly meetings with demos and various hammer-in, coal suppliers, and possibly meeting people in your area who you can get together with outside of just meetings. 

http://www.bamsite.org/teachstation/teachingstation.html

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