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I Forge Iron

My shop is coming together...

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12 ft x 12 ft "pole-barn" construction with metal roof and t-111 walls. Brick forge with Centaur fire-pot and Champion 400 blower. Anvil is a 100 pound Columbian (or so I am told)...post drill is a Buffalo Forge single speed model.

Everything came together this past year...paid off house and son graduated from college, so I had a little more spending money. My wife insisted I splurge a little.

Hope you enjoy sharing my forge as much as I enjoyed building it and, even more, working in it. bart

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re my wife: She is the finest woman I have ever known...Christian, hard worker, goes out of her way to help others and cute as a button. She is my inspiration, my psychiatrist and my best friend. I am indeed a lucky man!

re the 55 lb aso: bought it on sale at Harbor Freight when I was still outdoors with a break-drum forge. Actually, as I used it, at first it dented then seemed to work-harden. Not ideal but better than nothing...and worse than a piece of rr rail. I am thinking about grinding some shapes (depressions) in the top and using it as a poor man's swage block...whaddaya think??

re flu size: Everything I read said to use at least 10 inch pipe. The biggest I could find locally was 9 inch. Everything I read said it had to have a smoke shelf...so i put one made of sheet metal in. I used the 9 inch pipe, took the smoke shelf out because it just would not draw with it in. Now it will suck the buttons off your shirt after it is warmed up...just a wee amount of smoke when starting out. I will try to remember to get a picture or two of a fire being sucked up the chimney.

thanks for the comments...bart

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Hi Bart
Great setup, how high are your walls? I am laying the foundation of my hotshop soon, and I have asked about head height before, how high are the trusses from the floor, and what if anything would you change? I am from England originaly, so I have been used to working with rear draught forges, but other than that you basicaly built the same shop that I am building, but I am useing steel studs instead of wood.

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Looking darned good Bart.

I'll bet your wife is a craftsperson herself. Yes? Deb is into all sorts of making things with her hands and is generally very open to improvements in the shop. Of course she wants some bench space for herself but that's okay.

The ASO may be cast steel, Horrible Fright was selling cast steel Russian anvils for a while. Anyway, making a swage block out of it should work fine, "real" swage blocks are cast iron.


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re my wife...not a craftsperson, says she doesn't have the patience. Of course she does do "projects" with the children's bible class she teaches at church.

re shop height..."ceiling" is just about 8 ft. I am 6'2" and this has not presented a problem so far. Of course the "attic" is open, but there is a joist just over my anvil.

thanks for looking...bart

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