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Homemade Anvil

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Okay, total beginner, but, I've been reading everything I can over the past several months. One intriguing design for a "striking surface" was suggested using a 3 x 3 or 4 x 4 by 10 or 12 inch long piece of bar stock.

I found a piece of 3 x 3 stock at a local scavage yard and had a piece torched off (measures just over 13 inches). Found some 3 inch angle iron (unfortunately, probably only 1/4 or 3/8 inches thick) to use as a support around the base. My plan is to cut this down to a height of (say) 12 inches long. Would 10 inches be better or is 12 adequate?

In addition, I have a four foot piece (eyeball guess) of light RR rail (light being a relative term) that measures about 3 1/2 inches deep and 3 inches wide at the base. My idea is to cut a short piece of rail (3 inches, 6 or whatever is suggested) and weld this piece cross wise to a length of the rail, ultimately welding this combination along the flat RR base to the 3 inch square bar stock forming a type of beak which I can grind to shape. My thought is that the top of the "coss" rail would be even with the 3 by 3 surface of the bar stock.

Questions for you all:

How long would you suggest I cut the light RR rail for the cross piece? Too long would seem to create too much stress at the attachment point since the base would be attached only to the 3 1/2 cross section (the RR length adding mass under teh "beak"). 6 inches would seem about right, but, is that too long in your estimation?

For a beginner, should the overall height of the 3 inch bar stock be 10 or 12 inches?

Does this design (which is purely in my head) make sense?

Am I in the correct area of this forum for this question?

Thanks so much for your help


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Thanks for the sources...looks like there are as many ideas as there are smiths. Since I have the 3x3 bar stock which should give me initial mass under the striking area, I'll play with the design somewhat to see if I would like a bit of a horn on the side. Maybe carve a horn and attach it directly to a RR end piece as is shown rather than using the RR center riser on the track.

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