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This is an archive of posts from July 16 - 21, 2009 on the Guru's Den
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Hay-Budden Anvil Photos: Merl, Yes it is a tribute to their quality that most Hay-Buddens in use are about 100 years old and still one of the most popular anvils in the U.S.
52 pound Hay-Budden on a 525 pound Hay-Budden
Hay-Buddens by Ryan Wasson & Jock Dempsey

Standard Hay-Buddens are the one anvil of which we probably have enough photos. The image above is a digital painting created from a typical photo of two typically rusted Hay-Buddens, a 52 sitting on a 525 (10 to 1). I've digitally de-rusted them a lot. We also have several other good photos from dealers that are all polished up and in very good condition.

The Hay-Budden photos we are short on is the less common types, the Double Horned Export anvils and the late Farrier anvils or other specialty anvils. A clear image of a good Hay-Budden logo would be nice but the logo's themselves are rarely clear or complete. A classic in-situ photo on an aged wood stump in a working shop might be a good one. . .

Email me at: guru2 at anvilfire dot net. You should be able to click the color link below if your mail is setup properly.
   - guru - Thursday, 07/16/09 07:31:21 EDT

Well, that won't be my picture.
My H-B is bolted to the big inertia block that you don't like and that is straped down to a short composit of oak and pine blocks that form the base.
My logo is not the classic one that I have seen elseware either. Mine reads: warrented
solid wrought
1 3 4

with the serial number on the foot under the horn.
Again nothing special but, I did start an H-B "roll call" of serial numbers and geographical locations on another blacksmithing website that was popular.
It was very interesting to see some of us with close numbers but in far flung locations.
That must be part of the mystique of modern blacksmithing for some. To have tools or equipment that has been around for a while and every time you look at it and use it you can just feel the stories pouring out.
   - merl - Thursday, 07/16/09 10:25:31 EDT

Those without the name on them were made for other companies to "private brand". These often used a long lost paper label or stenciled their name on the anvils. A few paid to have their name stamped in. A friend of mine has a 350 HB with no markings at all.
   - guru - Thursday, 07/16/09 10:39:05 EDT

Hi folks,
Just a few questions. I have an original matched, signed pair of Wally Yater Swage blocks in great condition
also a Hays & Budden Anvil, I'd really like to know their value. I also have a collection of "Anvils Ring" magazines/Newsletters. Not sure yet if any of these are for sale, they are like an encyclopedia for Blacksmiths, very cool! Thanks very much, Terry
   Terry - Thursday, 07/16/09 12:59:27 EDT

Terry, I got your mail, responding off-line.
   - guru - Thursday, 07/16/09 13:13:49 EDT

Richard Postman has been able to document more the start of successful composite-bodied anvils in the U.S. The following includes some speculation: a Thomas Williams worked for a number of anvil manufacturers in Great Britian. He came to Brooklyn, NY and started an anvil (perhaps other items) firm on Richardson St. Later Dunn and Murcott, and likely still later The American Wrought Anvil Company became associated with the same address. He worked for Hay-Budden for a while, then for Columbus Forge and Iron, where he died in an automobile accident. Richard now hails him, rather than Boker, as the father of American anvil manufacturing.
   Ken Scharabok - Thursday, 07/16/09 16:06:15 EDT

Ken- Do you have any inside information on when the 2nd edition will be coming out? Not only am I looking forward to it, but I'd love to know when to sell my soon to be outdated 1st ed. on ebay for big bucks ;).
   Judson Yaggy - Thursday, 07/16/09 20:39:51 EDT

The second book (2 of 2) is being written as we speak. Publication date is unknown. It depends somewhat on the economy and how AIA continues to sell and other factors. Every couple years Richard has had to make the decision to have another 1000 books printed. It is a big investment not to be taken lightly. Same with the second book.
   - guru - Thursday, 07/16/09 21:24:33 EDT

Judson Yaggy: More on Anvils will not be a replacement for Anvils in America. It is a supplement to it to include information gathered since it was published.
   Ken Scharabok - Friday, 07/17/09 01:49:10 EDT

Good morning. A simple question that I hope you will answer for me. I'm doing a lot of bending lately. Hot forged round stock of 3/8" and smaller. I have been using MAPP gas to heat it but I'm going through the little cylinders like I go through coffee cups. I have a cylinder of acetylene a friend gave me. It was one he used for doing plumbing work but he scavenged parts from the torch head. I need to buy new hoses and all that goes with them. I remember form my college years that there are several torch heads you can get but I was never told what those different heads were called. I need to concentrate the heat pretty tightly on the bar so I need a head that will focus the flame (As you already figured I'm sure.). What should I ask for when I go to buy it?

Many thanks for any help,
   Bill - Saturday, 07/18/09 08:36:02 EDT


If you really want to get a concentrated HIGH heat, you'll need to use oxygen with the acetylene or propane. An oxy/fuel torch will achieve temps in excess of 6,000 degrees Fahrenheit, with a tightly concentrated flame. With just acetylene and air, such as the plumbers' torches sold under the Prest-O-Lite name, you won't get a whole lot more heat than you get with a MAPP gas torch and a pinpoint burner flame. You may actually find that you're spending more on acetylene than MAPP gas, unless the acetylene cylinder is a larger one. Welding stores usually charge a premium to fill those little B cylinders that plumbers use.

I'd recommend you look into getting a decent brand name oxy/acetylene torch setup from your local welding supplier. You'll have service for it that way and get to know the people who can provide good advice down the road. Victor, Smith and Harris are all good names for torch equipment.
   vicopper - Saturday, 07/18/09 09:07:50 EDT

Cylinders: Bill, After that cylinder empties it may be of no use to you. Welding suppliers work on the exchange cylinder system and only accept cylinders bought or leased through them. In SOME cases small cylinders that are owned by an individual MAY be refilled but it depends on where you are. Every state has different laws and allow different business practices concerning cylinder exchange and refill. In other cases it is corporate policy you are dealing with.

I've got a shop full of inherited cylinders that once empty are worthless. The companies they were leased from on "lifetime" leases consider the lease void on the death of the lessee. Meanwhile I have a cylinders in another state with a paid up lease that I could bring here and use, but then would have to return them 150 miles to refill them. . .

I've also got a full oxygen bottle that was found abandoned in a local building. The folks hired to clean out the building did not know what to do with it so they brought it to me. The only value it has is the gas in it. When that is gone the cylinder legally belongs to the welding supply company.

I think an air-acetylene torch is pretty good for bending small bar but they are rather limiting. Normally they are used for soldering where you need a large soft flame.

The advantages to a full oxy-acetylene set are many unless your metal working is VERY limited. And. . If limited, the the equipment may open up new areas.

So, check on the refillability of the cylinder you have. It may be a problem or not.
   - guru - Saturday, 07/18/09 12:18:02 EDT

I have already made a sword..( not with a forge unfortuniately) but i fully intend to. I am considering taking a bladesmithing course to help educate myself in the art of bladesmithing... (transfering the knowledge hopefully to swordsmithing. Can you advise on any books that refer to the art of swordmaking? thankyou
   - TINA - Saturday, 07/18/09 15:08:23 EDT

Use pull-down Navigate menue at upper right, and go to FAQS: Sword Making and Sword Making Resources.
   Frank Turley - Saturday, 07/18/09 16:02:36 EDT

Note: Our Sword Making Resources list has links to reviews of almost every book, CD or DVD listed.
   - guru - Saturday, 07/18/09 19:38:01 EDT

Where might I find the serial # on my Hay-Budden ?
   Willy - Saturday, 07/18/09 22:28:50 EDT

I laced up a handle of mild and stainless, how can I clean it so the stainless gets bake its shine, its a green color now.
   Willy - Saturday, 07/18/09 22:32:12 EDT

thats back not bake LOL

   Willy - Saturday, 07/18/09 22:33:31 EDT

HB Serial Numbers: Front of foot under the horn.
   - guru - Saturday, 07/18/09 23:03:51 EDT

Stainless: The green is oxidized chrome. It can be removed by electropolishing, pasivating with acid (such as citric acid) or mechanically by grinding, filing, sanding, polishing by buffing (hard work). Chemical method results vary depending the prior operations.

Smooth polished (shiny) surfaces only come from polishing.
   - guru - Saturday, 07/18/09 23:17:09 EDT

Bill: If You do choose to use air/acetylene, the swirl tips such as Turbo Torch will give You a lot more BTU's than a soft flame tip, but at about 4,000f rather than close to 6,000f of oxy/acetylene. You probably don't need the extra temperature, but You will have a larger [3/8" to 1/2" diameter] less focused flame that You can't weld with.

Keep in mind that an "MC" size acetylene tank only holds 10 CuFt, and that a "B" tank only holds 40 CuFt. The 14oz?disposable MAPP tank [18,935 BTU] will last longer than the physically larger "MC" size acetylene cylinder [14,700 BTU].

You MAY be able to get larger, refillable MAPP tanks, I heard it was going to be discontinued, largely replaced by propalene.

Any fuel gas is safer than acetylene, but acetylene is the only one You can effectively weld with [when used with oxygen] The others, when used with oxygen are effective for flame cutting.

Are you using a micro forge or heating in an open flame? a larger propane/air burner easily gives forging temperatures in an insulating enclosure [forge] while using cheap fuel.

   - Dave Boyer - Sunday, 07/19/09 00:10:37 EDT

I have foumd my grandfathers peter wright anvil weight 1 1 11( 142 lbs?? and I right withthe todd weight) and am just trying to see the value of it~ I have inherited his entire forge and foundry and it is time to purge I must ~ we have too much here and I have donated to histoprical society's and to other smith's who knew him in the berks countyy area

thank you
   sarah - Sunday, 07/19/09 09:44:24 EDT

Sarah, That is 151 pounds, 112 + 28 + 11. See English Hundredweight Calculator

Value is mostly based on size and condition, then location and how quickly you want/need to sell. Condition varies from "like new / unused" to "worn and abused" to "significantly repaired / ruined". Others value anvils differently but I put repaired at the being worth less than beat up and abused.

Your location is not condusive to high prices. Pennsylvania and Ohio are the source of anvils for much of the country. To get top money you would have to be willing to ship.

So anywhere from $800 to $100.
   - guru - Sunday, 07/19/09 11:12:41 EDT

Sarah, I live in Bucks Co., would love to see a list of items. You're less than an hours drive from me.
   - Nippulini - Sunday, 07/19/09 11:23:06 EDT

My e-mail is Nippulini (at) aol.com
   - Nippulini - Sunday, 07/19/09 11:23:31 EDT

Anvil Oddities: Dave B. brought an odd anvil by yesterday to have it identified. It was a Peter Wright with much of the logo obliterated from grinding and repairing. The anvil had been modified into a version of a farriers' anvil.

The odd Peter Wright had two side clips at the front of the face, one oval shaped and one rectangular. The horn had been welded up to nearly square and flat on top. The heel was notched into square turning cams and the pritichel hole drilled out then bushed down to about 5/16". On top of all this the anvil had been hard faced about 3/8" thick. Overall it was a rather odd looking anvil even for a farriers' anvil.

Welding from the repairs and hard facing extended down the sides enough that grinding removed the most of the top half of the Peter Wright logo. The corners of the waist were welded up where they had been used for testing chisels and there was more grinding. . .

All this sounds well and good but there was also cracks running along the joint between the hard face and the body. There was also hollows and significant porosity inside the hardy hole and the side clips were sagging from what looked like little use. All the typical problems of significant weld repair to an anvil.

On the other hand, you never know how bad the anvil was prior to modification and repair. It may have been nearly worthless and a good candidate for customization. Definitely a curiosity.
   - guru - Sunday, 07/19/09 12:26:13 EDT

Sounds like they were trying to convert that PW into one of the "modern" cold shoeing anvils.

Unless it was really bad to start with I'd say they were throwing their money away!

   Thomas Powers - Sunday, 07/19/09 19:39:22 EDT

For an odd farrier anvil take a look at eBay # 280370494627.
   Ken Scharabok - Monday, 07/20/09 06:55:12 EDT

HI and thank you for the feedback ~ After I posted the weight I saw the gurus new post and then redid the math so I apologize ! I live in Berks and have had inquiry for $250.00( withthe forge the forge is rough it has been out in the elements for 12 year due to the fact the place where my granfather had it was a lean to type of shed) my cousin is David Fisher of Fisher Forge who used to work at time with my grandfather Hap Fisher. I am an antigues roadshow seriously and am not out to rape anyoen just wish to see all that I have finally put to use I have to purge it is insane what we have and just need to "trust" somone.
My email is sarah@yubpr.com
I thank you for all of your feedback but shipping 151 lbs? ok ups come nd get it ! hahaha
   sarah - Monday, 07/20/09 07:00:51 EDT

Another place to look for oxy-fuel equipment is Craigslist. You won't get to know your local welding shop people from that purchase, but as soon as you get new tips, gas, etc., you will. You also take your chances somewhat, as it's used. But I got my gas setup for $40 that way. It had a good complement of welding, cutting, and rosebud torches and tips. A bottle of gas (turned out to be MIG mix), and a cart for it all. I don't see those deals very often, but I do see torches for under $100.

As for the gases, here in NH, people seem to own tanks. The guy that sold me the torch set swore it was O2 in the tank. Someone must have swapped on him. Anyway, I brought the tank into my Maine Oxy and they swapped it for an O2 tank. I paid for the oxygen plus a re-certification fee, since the tank was out of date. It was still a whole lot less than a new one. And now I just swap for new when empty, and only pay for the gas.

I'm running oxy-propane for cutting, brazing, and general heating. Recently I wanted to re-temper a wood chisel and thought my good old propane Turbo-torch would work. I ran the torch on that for a good 10 minutes with no glowing red. So I then fired up the rosebud on the oxy-propane and it was glowing in a couple seconds. If you're doing any bending greater than 1/4", I recommend finding some oxy-fuel.

   - Marc - Monday, 07/20/09 07:36:15 EDT

Sarah, Why don't you call Dave and ask him about the anvil and other stuff. Since Dave is Vice President of the Pennsylvania Artist Blacksmith Association I'm sure he could refer you to someone who is looking for equipment to use and preserve. He might even suggest you think about tailgating (selling) some of the stuff at the Blacksmith Day event at Kutztown on August 8th. Steve G
   - SGensh - Monday, 07/20/09 08:23:03 EDT

I talked about farrier anvil patterns on the Hammer-In.
   Frank Turley - Monday, 07/20/09 09:34:28 EDT

Ken, That is an MFC Hollow farriers' anvil. They used to advertise them here. They produced and sold them for a couple years then quit. This is common in the farriers' anvil business. Someone has a new idea, produces them for a while, then moves on.
   - guru - Monday, 07/20/09 10:07:23 EDT

Hollow Anvil---there was an old patent for a hollow anvil in Anvils in America, they claimed it was to help hardening the center of the face as I recall.

Dealing with mortality: an old friend just asked me if I would help his wife deal with his shop equipment should he predecease me. I consider it an honour that he would trust me in this matter. I just hope I never have to follow through!

   Thomas P - Monday, 07/20/09 10:30:00 EDT

End Plan: Your best plan is to have your tools in good condition and to have gotten rid of the junk. Right now about half my tools are categorized and in boxes. But many are a mess. Newly acquired tools do not have storage chests or racks. Makes a mess now and will be a mess for many years. . . but I hope to have it organized by the end. . . Except for some current projects.

A will with specific bequeaths is also very useful. But if you have a disinterested family do them a favor and sell it all before the end!
   - guru - Monday, 07/20/09 17:58:50 EDT

Propane Turbo Torch: For anything of any size, You need the #6 [3/4"] tip. I don't know the BTUs of this tip, but it is more like a forge burner in output. These run on a refillable tank, not a disposable.
   - Dave Boyer - Monday, 07/20/09 23:51:02 EDT

Sgensch~ that woudl be grear but Dave who? David Fisher?Plerase contact me directly at this email sarah@yubpr.com The guru yesterday gave ne great advise as all of you have and I thank you / I just have no clue to be honest so I am putting my trust in those whom I don't kow ~ The anvil I got a price for 250. I sent the guru a picture I am not sure how to post it on here
   sarah - Tuesday, 07/21/09 07:33:15 EDT

Sarah, I'll post one here today.
   - guru - Tuesday, 07/21/09 08:22:38 EDT

Sarah, Email sent your way.
   - SGensh - Tuesday, 07/21/09 10:00:36 EDT

The above image has been cleaned up a little, the foot on the right side was buried in loose dirt and has been digitally replaced for other use.

This is a 151 pound Peter Wright in very good condition offered by Sarah (above). It has some minor chipping and wear on the far side but is other perfect except for a little rust. A few minutes with a sander would have this fine anvil in perfect condition.

This is a great size anvil as it is just barely in the "portable" range and yet heavy enough for most work done in a small shop.
   - guru - Tuesday, 07/21/09 11:52:58 EDT

Sarah, the elusive "Dave" we speak of is Dave Boyer, he posted one above yours. Usually we have our screen names linked to e-mail, but a select few (including myself) like to keep things private.
   - Nippulini - Tuesday, 07/21/09 12:05:24 EDT

Hello to all. I am looking for suggestions for making tooling for my fly press. To make pipe look like tree branches. Thank you for your imput. Harold
   Harold - Tuesday, 07/21/09 13:48:37 EDT

Harold, We have a whole series on flypress and press tooling on our iForge page.

If you are looking to texture pipe or tubing that is a bit tricky. Tubing can be tapered, it can have knobs forged on it like bamboo and it can have slight hammer texture added .

Heavy texture would best be put onto pipe or tubing by weld build up. Beads ground flat on top can make a sharp cornered or rough "oak" like bark. Torch cut sheet metal strips can be welded on to make shag bark hickory. Lighter textures can be applied using oxidation. Oxidataion combined with protectants could be used to create various patterned textures like etching.
   - guru - Tuesday, 07/21/09 15:49:15 EDT

Harold, if I may sugest, I just saw on another blacksmithing web sit were a guy made some tooling for a spring swage to do the very same thing. He simply drilled the desired hole size through a block of steel and cut it in half. Then rounded the corners and TIG welded the grooving ridges inside.
He does some remarkable work with them.
   - merl - Tuesday, 07/21/09 15:55:26 EDT

Hi Guru, did the email with scans of the laffite brochure come through?
   H&T - Tuesday, 07/21/09 15:57:04 EDT

H&T, No it did not.
   - guru - Tuesday, 07/21/09 16:13:23 EDT

Hi Guru
I just recived my 25# Little Giant..My quetion is even after I completly let up on the pedal it keeps cycling a bit..This is my first power hammmer and I don't know if this is normal...I can live with it but would perfer it not happening.....Thanks
   - Arthur - Tuesday, 07/21/09 16:35:28 EDT

Get this video www.anvilfire.com/bookrev/manzer/manzer.htm I think it is about as close to a manual for these things as we'll ever get.

First guess to your cycling is either the clutch isn't releasing compleatly, or it's inertia.

Get the vid.
   JimG - Tuesday, 07/21/09 18:14:18 EDT

Little Giant Power Hammer: Arthur, This is normal for a Little Giant if you do not retrofit a brake. If it runs a LOT afterward or continously slow without pressing the peddle the clutch is sticking. Contrary to what you would think a Little Giant clutch needs to be heavily oiled. It is used to control the speed of the hammer by slipping and does so quite well with lots of oil. If dry they grab, are hard to control and do not disengage well.

Little Giants need to be oiled with every use. There are places with oil holes (such as on the main bearings and ram), notches (such as on the outer toggle pins - some models) but others that you just oil from the running fit like the crank pin, guides and clutch. Anything that rotates, slides or pivots (including the treadle linkage) should be oiled.
   - guru - Tuesday, 07/21/09 18:17:36 EDT

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