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Virtual Hammer-In!

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January 2003 Archive

Anvil Repair: Have any of you ever tried to repair an anvil before?
- Kerry - Wednesday, 01/01/03 06:46:16 GMT

upsetting: how bout; as long as the direction of the grain structure layering is being shortened, the steel is being upset.

Look in the Guru's archives...much discussion of the subject.
- Pete F - Thursday, 01/02/03 06:52:48 GMT

Need a forge: I am looking to get back into blacksmithing, I need a forge, gas or coal, used or new, depends on price, let me know what you have, thanks
- plowboy - Thursday, 01/02/03 16:09:24 GMT

Oil forge burner Airco #10 planograph: Just a quick noat on fires.I havent read about anyone useing disel fuel.Heres what i did,Took old oil gun from old furnas ,stacked a bunch of fire brick so i had opening on each end and a opening 4 the fire.Once every thing is hot I mix in filterd drain oil and it makes 4 cheap,hot fire. I was wondering if anyone has tryed this. BUT,,my real question is does any one know I can get parts 4 this pattern burner?
- Dirty Dan - Thursday, 01/02/03 17:28:20 GMT

SPUR MAKING: : I am wanting to know about forging one peice spurs.
Marlin kerby - Friday, 01/03/03 03:08:24 GMT

Spurs: Marlin, Working with steel, you can take a piece, ½" square or larger, and either hot split or hacksaw down center from one end. When you open the split and reforge the 'legs', they become the heel band. Sometimes, the base of the cut will develop into a "grain flow split" that keeps growing. Some makers will drill or punch a small hole at the base of the cut...might help, but you'll lose a little stock thickness there. At all events, you will have a little Vee or notch at the base of the cut. I usually get rid of this at a bright heat in the vise. Once the heel band 'legs' are open about 80º, tighten in the vise, crotch upward and a little above the vise jaw level. Strike it with a ball face hammer. It might take more than one heat. You'll be losing some thickness either side of the cut when you do this. That's why you start out with a healthy square or rectangular sectioned piece of stock. See Robert M. Hall, "How to Make Bits and Spurs".
Frank Turley - Friday, 01/03/03 13:45:35 GMT

Plowboy; just a friendly hint WHERE THE SAME HILL YOU AT?
makes a difference in shipping and since we have folks here from OZ, SA, UK, CALA, and both coasts of the USA it saves the folks who are several thousand miles away from posting info you can't use.

Thomas in central Ohio, home of the MOB
  Thomas Powers - Friday, 01/03/03 14:01:54 GMT

"Need Forge": : Build one one from brake drum, I use a brake rotor.. Its cheaper in the long run.. I now have three of them different sizes.Use them at Demos and teaching this summer coming.. Where R U at anyway...
I am from Canada.. Long way to ship...
Barney - Friday, 01/03/03 16:19:09 GMT

need forge: plowboy: Most smiths build them. Gas or coal they are pretty simple devices. There are plans at this site and links to many more online plans. If you go with coal you will probably want to buy the firepot and *maybe* a blower but the rest is homemade. If you build a brakedrum like Barney suggested then you dont need the firepot.

You wont be able to use a forge (gas or coal) properly unless you invest some time to understand it and by then you will know enough to make your own.

Blacksmithing is traditionally a "Do For Yourself" craft. The blacksmith made tools for all the crafts including his own.
adam - Friday, 01/03/03 17:35:23 GMT

I could have sworn we had an I forge demo on spurs but I couldn't find it. . Here is a link to a discussion we had in January 2001.
Hammer-In Spurs Discussion
- guru - Friday, 01/03/03 18:29:49 GMT

Spit Jacks: Sorry to jump in on an ancient subject, but.. When it comes to spit jacks you need to talk to Peter Ross of Colonial Williamsburg. He has reproduced ones that really work. They have at least one orignal working spit jack and one reproduction in use at Colonial Williamsburg.
- Jymm Hoffman - Saturday, 01/04/03 01:09:38 GMT

Forge, Anvil, etc.: Plowboy- As Thomas pointed out, your location is important. I have an old small gas forge I'm going to de-commissin shortly as I get the new one finished, and I have extras of a number of tools. Of course, I'm at the far eastern edge of the Caribbean Sea, on a small island at the top of the Lesser Antilles archipelago. That makes for a real challenge when it comes to getting things to me or from me, as you can imagine. 'Taint cheap, bucko!

I found an anvil here on the island, built my own forges for gas and charcoal, and make 90% of my tooling myself. I'm neither Einstein nor St. Francis (Whittaker, that is), so if I can do it, you can. Read the "Getting Started" pages, all the iForge demos and most of the archives, and then get busy. Good luck, and happy hammering!
vicopper - Saturday, 01/04/03 12:10:16 GMT

Pete F:

Your definition has some merit. It'ed be more workable if you could actually see the grain like with wood. I'd say it's upsetting if the vertical dimension is greater than either of the other dimensions. What 'da you think of that Mr. Turley?
  grant - Saturday, 01/04/03 18:01:12 GMT

Upsetting: Pete F. & Grant,
Upsetting: Increasing section; reducing length.
Drawing: Reducing section; increasing length.
- Frank Turley - Sunday, 01/05/03 03:23:01 GMT

Upsetting & Drawing: Guys.

A little thought experiment might be in order.

For purposes of the experiment, we'll work with a piece of
3" Round HR stock that's 5 " long. We'll place it on the anvil (always working at a high yellow heat) and begin to pound down on it so that we are increasing the section and reducing the length. When the stock is reduced from 5" in length, to 3" in length, we will have up set it as far as it is possible to do so. From that point on, we will be reducing the section, but increasing the diameter. Are we not drawing the stock at that point? (grin)
Paw Paw - Sunday, 01/05/03 04:34:36 GMT

FORGE LINING: : Hello all. I'm a novice blacksmith looking for some information about what to line a large forge pan with. I'm building a large permanent forge and hood for my small shop. Thanks for any info, David
david - Sunday, 01/05/03 05:21:35 GMT

upsetting: upsetting: hmmm this really seems to be an upsetting topic

I think I will agree basically with grant. True upsetting is just reducing length and increasing thickness.
And what Frank said is true. But the grain structure is the telling point. Since I believe that most if not all stock is drawn/rolled with the grain going in the direction of length. So upsetting is causing the movement of material to be pushed back in the direction of the grain....
clear? no? well I am confused too......
Ralph - Sunday, 01/05/03 08:02:07 GMT

upsetting II: Jim, how about if we just watch you convert a piece of 3 inch round 5 inches long into a piece 3 inches long and 5 inches wide...... I also think that perhaps we will let you use, errrrr how about some 52100 or S-7? (VGB)
Ralph - Sunday, 01/05/03 08:03:56 GMT

Anvil Identification: Here is another Anvil question I acquired an anvil at auction New Years Day and it has the following stamped on the side

US (in letters about 1 1/2" tall)
157 (also about 1 1/2 tall)the 157 I believe is the wieght in US measure as it would make little sense for there to a 5 in the middle using quarter wieght measure.

if anybody has any information about who the manufacturer was on this anvil or who it may have been produced for
I would greatly appreciate it.


- Mack - Sunday, 01/05/03 13:48:41 GMT

Upsetting Full Circle.: Paw Paw & All, On 12/22/02 at 19:32 hours, I threw out the "dinner plate" question, and I suggested the same thing that Paw Paw is talking about with his 5" length. We've come full circle and had a good ride.
- Frank Turley - Sunday, 01/05/03 14:09:18 GMT

I deliberately went back to that example of yours, and should have said so. The point you were trying to make (I think) and I was trying to illustrate is that if you upset a piece of stock for a long enough period of time, you can wind up drawing it out in the dimension that is 90° to the starting position.
Paw Paw - Sunday, 01/05/03 14:49:12 GMT

Yes, Paw Paw, and I was a bit of a sneaky rat. I WANTED a discussion.
- Frank Turley - Sunday, 01/05/03 14:57:34 GMT

Nothing wrong with that!
Paw Paw - Sunday, 01/05/03 15:19:25 GMT

This is getting REAL upsetting!: Frank, Paw-Paw:

I don't think we're disagreeing on the principle, just the definition. I liked using L x W x T because it defines the section. I don't like using the grain because it "assumes" the grain runs the long way, which it does often but not always. Also the grain does not matter to me in defining upsetting. The grain idea is true if I cut a 1 x 1 bar 4 inches long, but what if i cut a 1 x 4 inch bar 1 inch long and hammer down on the long dimension? To the glacksmith hammering on it, it is upsetting in either case.

Frank: Why do you suck me into these things? Actually I do enjoy it. BOG
- grant - Sunday, 01/05/03 18:00:50 GMT

I guess all I mean is that it's upsetting when hammering on the longest dimension. It's the same thing Frank is saying if "section" is always the two smaller dimesions. So, in hammering down the round bar into a "plate" it's upsetting until the height is less than the diameter, then it's drawing.

On the 3" round this will occur when the bar has been shortened to about 3 1/2 inches tall, at which point it will be more than 3 1/2 inch diameter. Allowing for the barrel shape, it will probably be when both dimensions are close to 3 3/4 inch. If I was doing this in a power hammer I would "dog bone" it first by tipping it a little and hammering on the edges to get the ends to swell first and then hammer straight down which produces nearly a cylinder rather than a "barrel". Have we thrashed this subject enough yet?
- grant - Sunday, 01/05/03 18:32:28 GMT

Now don't get all upset, it's just a quiet discussion. (LOL)

I enjoy it too, and frequently learn something from this type of discussion. Like you, I think all three of us are just playing with the semantics involved.
Paw Paw - Sunday, 01/05/03 18:33:58 GMT

grant: Paw-Paw:

I'll show you upset! Why, even your name is redudant! KMA! ;)

Hows it going with you, Paw-" (thats ditto)

What do you do if you see Paw-Paw rolling around on the ground?

Shoot him again!
- grant - Sunday, 01/05/03 20:25:52 GMT

Wait! Don't shoot him, He's rolling around laughing his A$$ off! (LOL)
Paw Paw - Sunday, 01/05/03 21:24:45 GMT

Hey, Paw-Paw, you know why it takes 100,000,000 spearm to fertilize one egg?

'Cause none of them will stop and ask directions! Your wife will enjoy that one.
- grant - Sunday, 01/05/03 21:49:14 GMT

Only if they are from the left coast! (grin)
Paw Paw - Sunday, 01/05/03 22:20:46 GMT

FOR SALE: I have a anvil from John Deere plow works in Moline IL,260lbs $1,500.00. A Little Giant in great shape $2,500.00. A drill press from Rockford IL, 1888 for $500.00. You pick up, I am near Rockford IL.
- Gerald - Monday, 01/06/03 04:43:14 GMT

FOR SALE: I have a anvil from John Deere plow works in Moline IL,260lbs $1,500.00. A Little Giant in great shape $2,500.00. A drill press from Rockford IL, 1888 for $500.00. You pick up, I am near Rockford IL.
- Gerald - Monday, 01/06/03 04:45:59 GMT

Grant; I'm gonna have to figger out how to print that little
  3dogs - Monday, 01/06/03 08:17:49 GMT

Let's try this again: Grant; I'm gonna have to figger out how to print that little "2" that indicates "Paw squared". (But then, is Paw to be squared by upsetting or drawing-out?) Is it proper to say "Paw r squared", when calculating the area of the Paw? Stay tuned for the answers to these and many more of life's perplexities! Best regards, 3dogs
3dogs - Monday, 01/06/03 08:28:16 GMT

Print that little.: 3dogs, At first, I thought you were going to tell us why gang members don't write checks. They can't make the paint can write that small.

- Frank Turley - Monday, 01/06/03 12:07:20 GMT

3 Dogs:
Are you trying to write Paw²? Just like that.
Paw Paw - Monday, 01/06/03 12:43:17 GMT

For Sale: Gerald, $1500 for a 260# anvil is about $5/lb which is kind of pricey. Is there something special about the JD anvil?
adam - Monday, 01/06/03 15:36:31 GMT

The John Deere plant had 21 anvils if I remember correctly,this was the chisil makers the face is in good shape sides have chisil marks. Also it has a swage block stand made of cast iron that will go with it. It is a nice piece of history.I was told it might have been a peter wright but it has no markings.
  Gerald - Monday, 01/06/03 17:22:31 GMT

Hollow core anvil: Has anybody used or know anythang about the MFC hollow core anvil???
thanks for any help
zern - Monday, 01/06/03 18:35:58 GMT

Peter Wright ID: The top edge of the base of the Peter Wright anvil has a little "ledge" or "step" about ½" wide, fore and aft, not on the concave sides. The only other brand I know of, that has this ledge is Kohlswa, and then it occurs only occasionally.
- Frank Turley - Tuesday, 01/07/03 23:35:43 GMT

blacksmith related expressions: In everyday English expressions, we hear terms that derive from blacksmiths, such as "strike when the irons hot" "he has too many irons in the fire" for people who are just too busy in life and "he or she has forged a good relationship with whom ever" Does anyone know any more of these? I find them interesting.
- Rick hamilton - Wednesday, 01/08/03 16:58:41 GMT

blacksmithing cultural exchange: Being that most blacksmiths are not wealthy, I was
wondering if any foreign artist blacksmiths would agree to do a two week exchange. ie: you stay with me and my family for two weeks and work with me in my shop making artistic projects,
and I do the same in your country. No money involved just an exchange of talent, and creative ideas. It is a good way to have a modestly priced visit to a different country.
Rick hamilton - Wednesday, 01/08/03 17:06:24 GMT

Why did the blacksmith swear?

Because he lost his temper!

He's very hot tempered, you know. But when he was swearing he was very cold temeperd.

Why he was so mad that he went after the offender with hammer and tongs!

Paw Paw - Wednesday, 01/08/03 17:34:09 GMT

Expressions.: I made a list of smithing related sayings and expressions, but of course, I can't find it. From gunsmithing, we get "lock, stock, and barrel". When you pick up hot iron, "They get lighter when they're hot, don't they"? "When the hammer, strike. When the anvil, bear". "If your anvil isn't too hot to sit on by lunchtime, you haven't been working". "Show me a man who's busy making bathroom fixtures, and I'll show you a man who's forging a head". "I gotta' beat it" [thanks, Doug Hendrickson]. Had enough? I'm sure this will engender more responses.
Frank Turley - Wednesday, 01/08/03 17:43:08 GMT

It all started when he realized what they guy had done. He really saw red. If he had caught the guy, he'd have really hammered him.
Paw Paw - Wednesday, 01/08/03 18:25:06 GMT

expressions: going at it hammer and tongs. do not get hot you will lose your temper. too many irons in the fire. strike while the iron is hot. I had a list somewheres of about 20 or so. let me look again once I get home
Ralph - Wednesday, 01/08/03 19:17:27 GMT

Mo' 'spressions: You'll go to Hell for hammerin' cold iron on an anvil. (Man, Hell is gonna be full of farriers!) You'll go there for not charging enough, too.
- 3dogs - Thursday, 01/09/03 07:07:02 GMT

FRONTLINE, PBS: A friend informs me that a Tyler, Texas, pipe foundry gets an exposé tonight of their poor safety practices on FRONTLINE, 9PM, most places. The New York Times online has a series on same. There is a graphics segment in the Times that shows briefly some of the processes of pipe foundry work. The pipes are centrifugally cast and the fittings and hydrants are poured using cope and drag.
Frank Turley - Thursday, 01/09/03 15:36:19 GMT

Anvil Found: Found a big Anvil, 550# has two 1-1/4" Hardies, and a Pritchel hole. I have no idea on the origin, is there possibly a illustrated book, or website to identify it?
there are no marking on it.
Thanks for any input.
Dave - Friday, 01/10/03 05:51:07 GMT

Big Anvil ID.: Paw Paw likes to ID anvils using the book, "Anvils in America", but I'll betcha' we need a photo. Does the anvil have a pyramidal horn opposite the rounded horn, or a rectangular HEEL? Gurus All, note the spelling of HEEL. HEAL is what wounds do to get better.
- Frank Turley - Friday, 01/10/03 12:20:53 GMT

Frank is right, we need a photo. Send it to me email, please. I'll see what I can figure out for you.
Paw Paw - Friday, 01/10/03 13:30:02 GMT

Grant & Paw-Paw: Grant, afore you start shooting at Paw-Paw could you jot off a quick holographic will\\\\*note* leaving me all your smithing stuff and sign it with your full name...

Big anvil: does it have a rectangular depression in one of the sides that makes a indent in the face about 1/2x6" IIRC?

If so you probably have a Fisher Anvil designed to be used as the base for the Blacker triphamer. I have one of these anvils but my hardy holes were 1.5" IIRC.

Thomas waiting for the windfall
- Thomas Powers - Friday, 01/10/03 17:41:31 GMT

Brian Cornish,

Mail to you keeps bouncing, even when I'm replying to a message from you.
Paw Paw - Friday, 01/10/03 19:24:33 GMT

Thomas: Waiting for the windfall: What do you mean you are waiting for the windfall? If you get hit with any windfalls bigger than the ones you already have you are going to get squashed. I think you need to move to a place w/o wind or trees (anvils) and let the rest of us take the brunt of the storm for you.

Patrick who hopes to someday have the anvil luck of Thomas.
Patrick Nowak - Friday, 01/10/03 21:26:16 GMT

Apropos of Hardly Anything.: Charcoal, besides being a forge fuel, can aid in some cases of diarrhea or stomach discomfort. I first encountered these large black pills for sale in Mexico, supposedly to help with Montezuma's Revenge. I find that they are sold generically just about everywhere in order to adsorb gastric and intestinal irritants. I'm talking about real charcoal or activated charcoal, not commercial briquets.
Frank Turley - Saturday, 01/11/03 13:52:24 GMT

shipping anvil: I was wondering who I would use to ship an anvil, (and some other tools), from New York To Colorado. I have time so cheapest is good.
thanks in advance.
- John Pia - Saturday, 01/11/03 16:41:43 GMT

anvil for sale: I listed an anvil for sale on the auction site, that I am slowly learning more about, I had never used the zoom feature on my photo program< it really revealed some things of interest which I posted on the Guru's page. I am new to this site is it appropriate for me to bring this up on these sites, ie the auction sale item?
olddog - Saturday, 01/11/03 18:44:22 GMT

Of course it's appropriate. Don't worry about it.

John, I've always used UPS, and I've always been satisfied. But, if you palletize the items, almost any common carrier will give you a quote, based on weight.
Paw Paw - Saturday, 01/11/03 19:16:20 GMT

anvils: If any one is looking for a good anvil check out on ebay item #753099365 a 135 lb Peter Wright and item #753097004 a Mouse Hole . I have seen both anvils in person and they looked to be in good shape . you have only 2 hr lift to bid
- jojo - Sunday, 01/12/03 00:45:21 GMT

"Exchange" :: Where U at Rick ? I am in Northern Ontario. Very cold this time of year.-25ºC here today. Summer would be best for here. I have lots of Events for the summer. Email your details.

Barney - Sunday, 01/12/03 01:03:02 GMT

old dog anvil: Looks like a Trenton shoers' pattern. Nice.
Frank Turley - Sunday, 01/12/03 02:00:15 GMT

Hey, all you Mouse Holes!: Howdy Y'all, I just purchased a M&H Armitage Mouse Hole, 127 lb with a step and no other markings ($150...about right, right?) I have been researching and have gotten some mixed messages on the latest possible date of manufacture...some say 1850, yet Postman says 1875? They also seem to disagree on the earliest possible date as either 1795 due to the step and punched pritchel hole or 1820. Any thoughts? Any links and/or history would also be greatly appreciated. Thanks, Layne
Layne Hendrickson - Sunday, 01/12/03 17:21:34 GMT

Mouse Hole, Yerownself.: Morgan and Henry took over the anvil works, and their initials, M&H ARMITAGE, MOUSEHOLE, started appearing on the anvils in 1827, according to Postman's timeline. Henry died in 1850. Not sure what happened after that with the M&H.
- Frank Turley - Sunday, 01/12/03 17:52:14 GMT

Take a close look at exactly how the trade mark appears. Postman has a timeline, based on the trademarks that should be able to date it pretty close.
Paw Paw - Sunday, 01/12/03 17:55:51 GMT

Paw Paw: "M&H, Armitage, Mouse, Hole, 1.0.15" all centered directly over one another with no other markings anywhere.
Layne Hendrickson - Sunday, 01/12/03 18:22:47 GMT

Layne: If there is no outline of a mouse, it was manufactured sometime between 1820 and 1875.
Paw Paw - Sunday, 01/12/03 21:23:49 GMT

Many thanks Frank and Paw Paw!
Layne Hendrickson - Monday, 01/13/03 04:05:44 GMT

No problem.
Paw Paw - Monday, 01/13/03 13:33:22 GMT

Anvilmania: Now, now Patrick, I average only 1 decent anvil a year for under US$1/#, of course my new shear was closer to 50 cents a pound...I even found a place to get a hossfield bender cheap (when you going to be out of town???)

Patrick, you must admit I have *always* freely shared my scrounge locations, internet finds (Don got that free vise cause I called him up and told him about it---they loaded for him with a fork lift...), and random stumbing over good deals. It would be fun to hoard but *no* *space* and seeing that something gets to a good home yet not spending my allowance on it helps assuage the grief that I didn't just buy it all and sell it off at Quad-State to feed my thermally processed coal habit!

- Thomas Powers - Monday, 01/13/03 21:13:53 GMT

Charcoal /// toxin /// Adsorbant
Powdered charcoal is often given to emergency room patients who have ingested poison. Often after gastric lavage (= stomach pump).
It works for many poisons but not all.
Please consult a physician for serious cases.
Some types of clay do a similar job.
Many Amazon parrots regularly fly to clay cliffs to eat some clay, every day. The clay sequesters plant defensive anti-feeding poisons. The clay trick allows them to feed on those plants.
Some African monkeys and chimpanzies have learned to ingest charcoal, at old fire sites, to help them ingest certain toxic plants. (it is tought from one animal to another, and mother to infant).
As usual you are on to a good idea.
slag - Tuesday, 01/14/03 02:43:40 GMT

Charcoal: Thanks Slag, I'll keep taking my charcoal pills, then. However, I haven't tried the special clays yet. I just posted some info about charcoal fuels on the Guru page.
Frank Turley - Tuesday, 01/14/03 14:26:39 GMT

Thomas the Gernerous: Thomas,
You are quite right about sharing the wealth err...chunks of metal. Anvil envy is a terrible malady and sometimes I am overcome by it. (Plus I hate to see good tools sit unused for years on end)
Patrick Nowak - Tuesday, 01/14/03 16:49:24 GMT

Anvil Envy: Patrick; just close your eyes...As soon as the last one leaves the nest I'm making a beeline for the boonies and the shop that will use it *all*...counting the days (ok so it's 4 years away).

- Thomas Powers - Tuesday, 01/14/03 17:06:43 GMT

"Warm yet":: Hello down there in the Southern part of the world. Stopped working in the shop this week. -27º F out today. So you all keep warm now..
Barney - Tuesday, 01/14/03 18:13:30 GMT

Cold down here too, but not as cold as there.
Paw Paw - Tuesday, 01/14/03 20:28:25 GMT

"warm yet": Barney,
it is not too bad where I am at. was 36-42F yesterday. Even rode my motorcycle. Of course I have been called nuts too.......
Ralph - Wednesday, 01/15/03 13:55:56 GMT

"Temperture Quote":: This one for for you Paw-Paw

"-20ºF Southern folk(south from here) fly away to Mexico, Canadains throw on a light jacket."

Warming up this weekend to around -5ºF
Barney - Wednesday, 01/15/03 19:09:25 GMT

moving to the boonies: I have fantasies about moving to a rural area where I can keep a large junk pile and build all sorts of noisy machinery and generate coal smoke to my heart's content. But I have doubts. As one gets older one becomes more dependant on the availability of medical services. An hour's drive over snowy roads to get to medical care seemed a lot more reasonable when I was in my 30's.
adam - Thursday, 01/16/03 15:22:31 GMT

Yea, verily it does make a difference. I'm still hoping, though.
Paw Paw - Thursday, 01/16/03 15:33:01 GMT

boonies: Adam the problem with your senario is this: SNOW
Now if you moved to the boonies someplace where there is little to no snow your major problem is gone.... (grin)
Perhaps you could buy a place on the Big Island ( Hawaii ) No snow, and an hour will almost let you cross the island... (VBG)
Ralph - Thursday, 01/16/03 20:45:09 GMT

PPW's Story: Jim, BTW you had better finish that blasted story!!!!! you got me hooked you rascal!
Ralph - Thursday, 01/16/03 20:51:47 GMT

Boonies & PPW's story: Still plenty of rural space here in the southern part of The Peoples Republic of California -- If you can tolerate the ass... ah, er... jerks!

Paw Paw is just torturing us by dragging out(sorry, "serializing") the Revolutionary Blacksmith. After all, he was trained in such tactics ;)

My hide's starting to itch, so I assume Jim's knife is razor-sharp by now....
Zero - Thursday, 01/16/03 21:26:47 GMT

The Revolutionary Blacksmith:
To tell the truth, I'm a bit down about the story at the moment. The publisher is having some problems, and I may one of the projects that she has to drop.

I've got the first chapter or two of book II, semi-written in my head, but am having a bit of a problem getting up the "get up and go" to put it down on paper.
Paw Paw - Friday, 01/17/03 01:13:06 GMT

The Revolutionary Blacksmith:
Paw Paw: Chin-up, all GREAT writers experience writer's block. Your talent is too great, you'll overcome it.

I would also imagine plenty of publishers would JUMP at the chance to print the complete manuscript -- sorry to hear your publisher is having trouble (hard times, these are).

But, if we have to know the trials and tribulations of Will and Dorothea only through the frist two journals, then so be it -- we are all richer for the gift you've given us.

You are as great a Wordsmith as you are Blacksmith.

Thank you again, for everything....
Zero - Friday, 01/17/03 01:57:59 GMT

Boonies: Adam,

I like the boonies, too. And I live in them, to some extent. I live in the U.S. Virgin Islands which isn't too populated and you can get away with an awful lot in the way of junk and noise, etc. No snow, either!

BUT...the available medical care ain't much better than what you'd find in a poor rural area. Maybe worse. I suffered a ruptured, gangrenous gall bladder with septicemia that damn near killed me, mostly because the bozos at the emergency room mis-diagnosed it until it was so late that I wouldn't have survived the flight if I tried to get to Florida for the surgery. Let me tell you, having major surgery here scared the cr@p outta me! If my wife hadn't been a nurse, I might not have survived the hospital "care" here.

After 50, good medical care looks a whole bunch more important than it did when I was young and thought I was immortal! (grin) So does safety equipment, strangely enough...

The ultimate freon-can forge is nearly complete, needing only the burner ports installed and the guts put in. No one should spend fifty hours of shop time building a forge from scrap, but that hasn't stopped me. My wife is convinced that she should have studied psychiatric nursing. She can't understand why anyone needs a forge that looks like it should have a name and a pedigree. No soul at all, I say! It DOES keep me off the streets and out of the bars.

I wonder if I could have it chromed to match my Harley? Hmmmmmm...
vicopper - Friday, 01/17/03 02:19:00 GMT

Richard Waugh:
I sure would like to hear the story behind your giving up the sign business, and becoming a peace officer in the West Indies.

Sounds like too much fun!

Being a self employed forty-something, I'm always looking for retirement options... ;)

(With a Harley to boot! I'm SERIOUSLY jealous!!)
Zero - Friday, 01/17/03 03:10:08 GMT

Transitions: Zero,

I guess the the answer to the question of how I got here is about the same as the Bryn Mawr graduate gave when asked how she wound up being a hooker...just lucky, I guess!

Seriously, I was in Phoenix AZ at the time that Charlie Keating worked his Savings & Loan scam and seriously screwed the economy there. Most of my sign customers were developers and others who took a huge hit, many going belly up. Took a big toll on my own business, too. At that same time, Hurricane Hugo hit St. Croix, devastating the island.

I took a month from work to go to St. Croix as a volunteer, helping to rebuild things with the Lutheran church folks. (My sister-in-law is a Lutheran minister.) Interestingly enough, the main thing I did was making iron gates for the driveway of the church, since I was the only volunteer whoo knew how to weld.

To make a long story short, I left Phoenix, a place I had never really liked, and moved down here intending to do sign work and maybe a bit of construction. I did a few sign jobs and a year's construction work, and then my brother came to visit and saw an ad in the paper looking for cops. He convinced me to get back into police work, which I had done in Colorado in the 70's.

So, for the last dozen or so years, I've done cop stuff, built a house, built a bar/restaurant business, got divorced, lost the house and business in the divorce, (marriage is grand, divorce is a jcouple hundred grand), re-married my ex-wife from 25 years ago, gotten back into my metalsmithing from 25 years ago, and still haven't learned enough to quit riding motorcycles. (grin!) The Harley was my Christmas present to myself after the divorce. If you're gonna have a "mid-life crisis", at least have it chromed!

As far as retirement options go, I figure I have two. Little Friskies or Kal Kan. The choice will probably be decided by the state of my teeth when the cop shop eases me out the door with a gold-plated badge and a tin-whistle pension. Good thing I got the bike now. (grin)

Life in Paradise, the U.S. Virgin Islands.
vicopper - Friday, 01/17/03 03:39:22 GMT

Hmmmmm.: I suppose I should have done that off-line in an e-mail. It did have some blacksmithing content though, sort of.
vicopper - Friday, 01/17/03 03:44:40 GMT

Message Board: Vicopper, I scrolled upwards, and this forum is a "message board", and you posted a message. Everyone has a story, and yours is a good one, and well told.
- Frank Turley - Friday, 01/17/03 04:33:25 GMT

Deevorce: As Waylon Jennings replied when, after his umpteenth divorce, someone asked if he was ever gonna get married again; "I believe what I'll do is, 'bout every seven years or so, go out and find me a woman I could really hate, and buy her a house." 3dogs.
- 3dogs - Friday, 01/17/03 08:55:53 GMT

Stories: I appreciate the stories and life experiences. They are either entertaining or instructive. Sometimes both. grin

Paw Paw, remember, that's not just a book. It'll do the world some good when you can get it out there. If it were easy, anyone could do it. I still wanna see that as a mini-series and I think it would be well accepted and popular.
Tony - Friday, 01/17/03 13:19:22 GMT

Boonies: It can get rough if you're looking into the future. I have some "family land" in AR that I always planned to retire to. However since being diagonsed with diabetes and researching the probabilities, fast access to cardiac care seems to be indicated and living over the mountain and back in the woods just doesn't cut it.

Then my father ups and tells me that he has some land close into the "city" that they bought to let grandpa have something to to retrofit all those years of daydreaming for a totally different site.

Over at primal forges a fellow has a great sig line "If you want to see the completed project, be sure to wear your safety glasses!"

Thomas "too old to rock&roll too young to die"
- Thomas Powers - Friday, 01/17/03 13:52:32 GMT

Tales of life:
Vicopper: Thanks for filling in the gaps!

I lurked here for quite a while before I joined CSI and posted my first message, so I feel like I've known some of you folks for years! The friendly Lawman Blacksmith from the Virgin Islands really piqued my curiosity, so I just HAD to ask....

However, the thought of riding a Harley in paradise will haunt my dreams forevermore -- eating pet food, or not ;)
Zero - Friday, 01/17/03 16:05:54 GMT

Zero et al:
> You are as great a Wordsmith as you are Blacksmith.

How I wish either half of that statement was true. But truth be told, I'm a fair country smith, and that's about it. I'm not a great artist/blacksmith, and never will be. But I can usually work out a way or two to solve a problem, fix what is broken, repair what needs repaired.
Paw Paw - Friday, 01/17/03 19:19:25 GMT

Paradise: Richard,
AS far as I can see only problem with Paradise is that the Islands are not big enough to go for a nice long ride.....
Of course right now it is a bit too chilly for a long ride here in the PNWet. So as a result I only have 1150 miles on the new Harley I got in November for my Christmas present form my dear wife.
Ralph - Friday, 01/17/03 22:13:31 GMT

Jim's story: Jim,
blocks I can understand. But being as stubborn as you are I suspect it will pass. As for the potential of not having a publisher. Not to worry. The story is a good one and if the good Lord wants it, a publisher will show up.

And as others have said, or perhaps not said. I really enjoy the story so far. And I even see a bit of myself in some of the characters. Which to me is a good sign of talent. But mostly I wonder if this might perhaps be auto-biographical? You did say Revolutionary war didn't you? So you probably saaw that one first hand, didn't you?
Ralph - Friday, 01/17/03 22:17:31 GMT

[Disclaimer: I am NOT bashing artists, just providing an observation]

Paw Paw: Most of the artists I know can't screw-in a light bulb. They come to ME with an idea (generally a graphic sketched on a Mac) and I cut, weld, paint/color/anodize, and they proudly haul the piece THEY CREATED off to the gallery.

I don't consider myself an artist, nor a Blacksmith. But I do enjoy the art of creation -- bringing an idea to a fully tangible object is the ultimate satisfaction....

I stand by my statement about your Wordsmithing. The Revolitionary Blacksmith is a wonderful tale, and much enjoyed by myself and others.

I joined this site BECAUSE of the eclectic mix of individuals. I learn something new here almost every day. I'll likely, also, never attain the skill of some of the artists here -- the ones that CAN screw-in a light bulb ;)

Lastly: Vicopper... I'm waiting with baited-breath for the photos of your new forge to hit the Yahoo site. I need to buid a nice LPG forge myself, and look forward to absconding with some of your ideas....
  Zero - Friday, 01/17/03 22:23:07 GMT

Most of the artists I know can't screw in a light bulb: And you can? Then tell me how the heck do you both fit inside?

Sorry! Never could resist a wisecrack :)
- adam - Friday, 01/17/03 23:58:11 GMT

How could youe????????????/ LOL while wishing I'd thought of it!
Paw Paw - Saturday, 01/18/03 00:06:11 GMT

Over-the-Top Forge: Zero, et al.

Thanks for your interest in the forge project. It's been a real hoot building it, so far.

Yesterday's project was massaging the little "foot" bumps back into the end of the freon can and then fitting the "anatomically correct" rear port door. Sally said it appeared accurate, if demented. Delicate sensibilities, I guess. (grin)

Tonight after work I fitted up the burner ports for the new gasser and will rivet them to the body tomorrow when I can see what I'm doing. Setting rivets inside a freon can ain't the most fun I've ever had, what with trying to hammer in too small a space while simultaneously balancing the whole works on a bucking plate or anvil and trying to find someplace to rest the torch where it won't slip off and toast my foot while my attention is elsewhere. (grin)

This weekend I'm planning to get the innards put in the thing. I'm going to use kiln shelving for the floor and partway up the sidewalls to absorb the abuse that my errant pieces of steel inflict. The rest of it will be Inswool, and the whole works will be coated with ITC-100. The only thing causing me angst about the project is that I wish I had some material to coat the outside that would be heat- weather- and rust-proof and that could be applied with an airbrush so I could do some really trick paint job to show off the outlandish metalwork. Basic black is just so, well, basic, you know? If the only plating outfit in the Territory was on this island instead of St. Thomas, I would seriously consider having the thing satin-chromed. I LIKE doing things to excess! (grin)

Rest assured though, I will take several pics of the thing and post them on the photo site(s). Half the fun of building it is watching the reaction from people who see it.
vicopper - Saturday, 01/18/03 01:39:48 GMT

Contact the guru about some ITC 213. It will do what you want to the outside of the forge, and it's even close to the right color.
Paw Paw - Saturday, 01/18/03 02:11:21 GMT

ITC-213: Jim,

What color is that stuff? It might be just the thing, as far as durability is concerned. Thanks for the thought!
vicopper - Saturday, 01/18/03 02:29:04 GMT

Kind of a rusty red, almost like primer red. But it's a very high temperature coating. Not cheap, but well worth the money.
Paw Paw - Saturday, 01/18/03 02:44:02 GMT

iForge demo #148, figure 8. That's the color.
Paw Paw - Saturday, 01/18/03 02:45:17 GMT

Fancy artsy-fartsy forges: vicopper,
Why not see if you could get something like hi-temp header or engine paint. The forge surface should not get too hot. I have some rattle cans of 800 and 1200 F paint. Red one the other is white. At least a thought
Ralph - Saturday, 01/18/03 06:22:04 GMT

contacts in the east kootneys (Canada): Hi my name is Darrell Syme and I was wondering if anybody out there knows of anybody I can talk to for tips and metal. I live in the east kootenays Canada and Im just begining to learn the basics so if anyone knows anybody in Kimberley or Cranbrook please say so. Thanx. Darrell Syme.
Darrell Syme - Saturday, 01/18/03 07:38:19 GMT

I'm a Californian. No on the light bulb, yes in hot tub...

What is it Paw paw says? Oh, yeah...
  Zero - Saturday, 01/18/03 16:56:30 GMT

"read first, then post. Read first, then post. Read first, then post"
- Zero - Saturday, 01/18/03 17:00:49 GMT

Relating.: How many Californians does it take?...Ten; one to screw it in and nine to relate to the experience.
- Frank Turley - Saturday, 01/18/03 19:59:42 GMT

CA Light Bulb:
Frank: Almost correct...

>How many Californians does it take?...Ten; one to screw it in and nine to relate to the experience.

I'd say fourteen. One to screw it in, nine to relate to the experience, and four to protest the mistreatment of the bulb ;)

Or... California's just like a bowl of Granola -- full of Fruits, nuts and flakes.
Zero - Saturday, 01/18/03 22:43:27 GMT

Mo' CA lightbulb: How COULD you insensitive swine have forgotten Californian #15 who files the environmental impact report? Tres Chiens
- 3dogs - Sunday, 01/19/03 04:04:28 GMT

Pete F: Being as left coast CA as possible, I'll ask you not to forget the Neighbor who complains to the county about the unpermitted building activity #16 causing the building inspector 17# to come and insist the fixture be torn from the plaster so the wiring can be inspected, then the union plasterer#18 to fix the plaster...OH MY Gawd! We plumb forgot the environmental impact report #19-23 and so on..
Pete ( who literally did more than his weight in paperwork to get his building permits). This is a 2 hr drive from the county seat with no visible neighbors...and an hour and a half from a hospital, says my grey hairs.
Just gave another beginner his first hammer today.
- Pete F - Sunday, 01/19/03 08:19:01 GMT

Forge Paint: I came across some chrome-colored paints at the auto parts store a while ago. They had red, blue, gold, and silver, if I remember correctly, and all very shiny. The can said they were good to 500F.

And Home Depot had some High-Heat BBQ paint in green. That's what I got for my forge-in-process. But I'm still thinking of the red chrome for interesting accents.

- Marc - Sunday, 01/19/03 12:34:56 GMT

Not many Home Depot or Lowes stores in the Virgin Islands.
Paw Paw - Sunday, 01/19/03 14:23:33 GMT

"Blacksmiths Hats":: In some of my pictures I have. All the smiths are wearing the same hat. Looks like a pill type of hat. Where would one get one of these hats or the intsructions to make one. I make my own Raccoon hats etc etc. Like to try theses ones..
Barney - Sunday, 01/19/03 19:44:20 GMT

CA building: some one should sue for all the poor miss treated tree that went into makeing the paper for all the forms..
MP - Sunday, 01/19/03 20:40:49 GMT

Barney: I wear a welder's hat with the bill cut off most of the time. That looks a good bit like most of the ones that I've seen. Send me a picture of the type you mean, and I'll see what I can figure out.
Paw Paw - Sunday, 01/19/03 21:57:27 GMT

"Re Hats" :: They are the ones that are in the calenders. They look like they are made from leather ? Not sure of the shape. I hope that helps.
Barney - Sunday, 01/19/03 23:36:35 GMT

auction page : two new Items on the auction Page
- Bill E - Monday, 01/20/03 00:53:19 GMT

Pete, 3dogs, MP:
I can relate to the paperwork required to build here in southern California (Riverside county). I put a "guest house" on the north forty for my aging mother.

Almost TEN MONTHS for the permit and utilities -- 30 days worth of construction. We had to build on a generator, and
had the final before Edison hooked us up.

Then, come to find out a guest house can't have a stove. So it's simple, right... Just take out the stove? Nope, had to pull a permit from HUD to TAKE THE STOVE OUT!!

I designed my own stairs for the front, then come to find out any stairs over 30" tall have to be "engineered"....

My advise: Don't build in California!
Zero - Monday, 01/20/03 01:05:24 GMT

cannot find the auction "button" at the site nor how to get to the information on safety. Any suggestions?
slag - Monday, 01/20/03 02:11:40 GMT


I assume you're talking about the calendars that Gill Fahrenwald sells. Give me a year and a month to look at so we're talking about the same picture.
Paw Paw - Monday, 01/20/03 02:32:26 GMT


Just a small note. Thanks to the encouragment in here and in email, I started Chapter 1 of Book III this afternoon. Thanks guys, I needed that!
Paw Paw - Monday, 01/20/03 02:33:57 GMT

Finally!: Well, I mostly got the new freon-can forge built! I posted a few preliminary pics of it on the photo site, if anyone wants to take a look at one way to spend way too much time and three bucks to make a forge. (grin) The three bucks was spent on a can of spray paint, everything else was sitting around the shop.

The inner walls are cut from a kiln shelf, the same way I did when I built my big 4-burner forge. The stuff seems pretty impervious to flux, and "glues" together with high-temp stove/furnace cement very nicely. I bought two of them when I built the big forge last year, because I figured one might get broken in shipping. The stuff takes longer to get up to heat from a cold forge, but it is tough and radiates that heat back to the steel, resulting in faster heats once the forge is hot.

If anyone has any questions, I'll try to answer them. To the question of "Why?", all I can say is, "Because I could!"

The paint is Western Auto's finest high-temp black spray bomb. Says it's good to 1200º, but I don't believe that for even one minute. It doesn't matter anyway, because as soon as the guy with the sandblaster gets back on island, I'm gonna squirt that thing and use some spiffy silicone resin paint that really is good for high temps. That way I can do some airbrush work on it, too. (grin)

PawPaw, glad to hear you're back on track with the book! Now THAT is definitely a very worthwhile endeavor, and one that is appreciated by all of us. Thanks!

I know the type of hat Barney is talking about, but I haven't seen one except in pictures. The closest thing I've seen is a leather helmet liner skullcap sort of thing worn by bikers. And some weldors, too. Personally, I prefer a fedora, but it doesn't fit under my helmet worth a darn. (grin)
vicopper - Monday, 01/20/03 03:16:49 GMT

25 lb little giant: I'm getting ready to restore a sad neglected early model LG & going to put a 1.5hp motor on it & drive it thru a jack shaft to get the speed down. I'm going to use v-belts, but am not sure how few I can get away with (per pulley). Would 2 belts per span be enough?
- Mike S. - Monday, 01/20/03 04:57:51 GMT

Mike S.:

If you use flat belts instead, you'd only need one per machine.
Paw Paw - Monday, 01/20/03 12:01:09 GMT

PPW book: Jim, no problem man. You should know that I will never pass up the chance to kick a former ground pounder in the butt..... or should that be duck and run?

Glad to hear you got to writting again.....

Ralph - Monday, 01/20/03 15:25:46 GMT

Little Giant: Mike S. I have a 1.5 hp motor on my 25 lb little Giant, and it's been running on a single V-belt to the driven pulley for 20 years [same belt!]. I didn't slow it down. I get 4 to 5 blows per second. At first, I thought the hammer would go faster than I could think. But it's OK, just like using a sewing machine.

The V-belt, amazingly, rides to center on the big pulley, if the motor pulley is in STRAIGHT ALIGNMENT.

As for jack shafts etc., somebody else on the forum may know something.
Frank Turley - Monday, 01/20/03 15:58:15 GMT

Outrageous Forge:

Rich, when that thing breathes fire it'll look like something out of a Beatles movie ;)

I mean, like... WOW!

Paw Paw: Glad your back to using your talent as a Scribe.
Zero - Monday, 01/20/03 16:09:37 GMT

Vicopper's "Beast": Normally, I'm more of a forum "stalker", but I had to comment on vicopper's over the top forge....totally awesome! Although I must say that the "anatomically correct" rear port may disturb my sleep for days. (grin)

Paw Paw: It's great to hear you're back on the literary wagon. I and many others are anxiously awaiting the first chapter of Book III.
eander4 - Monday, 01/20/03 18:13:54 GMT

Slag: The shop Safety is in the Navigate anvilfire window at the top right of the screen. Though, seems I remember it not showing if your logged on as a member (the navigate window).

I've attached the URL
Shop Safety
Zero - Monday, 01/20/03 18:29:56 GMT

Driving Pulley: Mike S., I forgot to mention that my driving pulley on the motor has a 2" diameter.
- Frank Turley - Monday, 01/20/03 20:22:06 GMT

Rich's Folley: The work is beautiful and witty. All your stuff has graceful elegant lines.

You should have made a pair, one of each sex. You could sell the pups on anvilfire :)
adam - Monday, 01/20/03 21:28:48 GMT

Firing the Anvils: My wife took me to see "Sweet Home Alabama" at the 50 cent movies---just to see them shooting the anvil---and the scene of the back yard littered with impacted anvils, (got the gazebo with one shot). Boy would I like to clean up after that production shut down...

Go for it Paw-Paw, I've noticed how peevish I get when the month turns but the newest chapter hasn't appeared. (Note: Paw-Paw, do *not* send Ralph a wire brush and a selection of scaled up hooks! Some folks don't need any help on their looks or their longevity...

- Thomas Powers - Monday, 01/20/03 22:32:26 GMT

Heartbreak of envy: Today I went to see a guy that one of my officers said I should meet. The guy is retired now, from having been in the ornamental iron business in NYC. My oficer said there was some fantastic iron work at the guy's house, so off I went to see.

Well, he did have some very nicely designed gates, windows and a wine rack all made from welded bar and leaves and such from Architectural Metals Inc. Very nice designs. Strictly fabricated work, though. BUT...

Sitting outside his guest house was a pristine 405 pound Peter Wright anvil and a Parker machinist's vise of about 150 pounds! I am gonna be working on that dude like a starving life insurance salesman until I get those items. He said he paid $500 bucks for the two of them. Heck, I offered him a VERY tidy profit and he just ignored me. The nerve of some folks! (grin)

Thanks for all the nice comments on the forge! I'll let you all know how it works in a couple of days.
vicopper - Tuesday, 01/21/03 00:01:10 GMT

Thank you for the response.
You are right that the menu does not come up when I log on in C.S.I. mode. But when I log in in the
"regular" mode, all I see is a little white strip in the top right corner.
Am I the Only one that is missing out on those features of the site?
Thanks, again, for your response.
Over to you Guru.
slag - Tuesday, 01/21/03 00:08:52 GMT

shool paper: i was wondering if any of you would be so kind as to let me interview you on this site. as i am wrighting a paper for my graduation requierment. i was hopeing that you would tell me how you feel about high schools takeing the shop classes out of the class list. at least they are here in Washington, i have been unable to take any kind of shop class sents i was in juner high school(sorry about spelling was never my strong sute)and they would not let me do some of the stuff that i wanted to do.and all of the high schools out here have no shop classes. i would also like your premishtion to use what you say in my paper. i am wrighting a perswasive paper to persead the schools to let shop classes be a part of the school system.if you have any commits please post them and let me know if you want to be used in my paper or not.
- Kenneth J. Adam - Tuesday, 01/21/03 00:31:07 GMT

The Navigate window works fine for me (in non CSI/member mode) I'm using Internet Explorer 5.5.

Perhaps it's your browser?
Zero - Tuesday, 01/21/03 00:33:32 GMT

school paper: i am at this point talking with my mentor as well when i can remeber, i would rather be working the metal,)
- Kenneth J. Adam - Tuesday, 01/21/03 00:38:24 GMT

School Paper: Kenneth,

I am sure there are some folks here that would be glad to coment. I can probably find an unused forum area so that other chatter doesn't get mixed into your Q&A session.

Write directly to me about it and I will set it up in a few days. If there are others that want to take part we can arrange that they can use the private forum we provide.
- guru - Tuesday, 01/21/03 00:40:55 GMT

White Bar:

Yep, you are the only one. . . I have never figured out what kind of PC you are using. . .

Ocassionaly the drop down arrow gets cliped on the drop down menu but you should be able to click on the white area (it SHOULD say "Navigate anvilfire"). If it doesn't say then I'm not sure what to say. The buttons on this page use the same Javascript version as the drop down. So if one works so should the other.
- guru - Tuesday, 01/21/03 00:44:15 GMT

Slag's problem: Councillor,

Maybe it is nothing more than the difference in exchange rate between Canadian and U.S. For one of your dollars, you get seventy-five of our cents. For one of your bytes, you get six of our bits. (grin)

vicopper - Tuesday, 01/21/03 01:54:00 GMT

I'm with the Guru, I'll gladly help with the graduation project.

But... Most of what you see, insofar as lack of "shop" class, is due to a lack of money in your school district.

My oldest graduates this year. He has to drive himself to another (older) high school in the district to attend any extracurricular "shop" classes. His (new) high school was built without any facilities for such things.

Tough times, these are. Hang around Anvilefire long enough, Kenneth, and you'll learn (almost) everything you'd ever need -- and then some...
Zero - Tuesday, 01/21/03 02:04:36 GMT


I'll do what I can to help with the graduation project, too.

And I'll quickly echo what Zero said about schools and money. Both of my sons do metal work. One is a class A machinist, the other makes special order plane blades among other things. (after getting out of computers) But neither one of them had any shop classes available when they were in high school.
Paw Paw - Tuesday, 01/21/03 02:24:15 GMT

Shop Classes: I'll comment on the private line.
Frank Turley - Tuesday, 01/21/03 03:14:48 GMT

Shop classes: When my father was in High School he took a shop class called Forge and Foundry. When I got to high school, only wood and metal shop, no forge, foundry or other smoke and fire stuff. The shop classes no longer exist at my old high school. They teach auto mechanics at the voc/tech school still, I think. A shame, really. So few opportunities for immediate gratification left in the school system, it's no wonder kids get into trouble.
vicopper - Tuesday, 01/21/03 04:16:15 GMT

shop class : thank you for all the help you will give me my new high school cost over i think it was 1 or 2 million on the comps and other stuff that i think were not need like all of the camreas that are in every hall way.
- Kenneth J. Adam - Tuesday, 01/21/03 07:51:14 GMT

Kenneth, the path that mankind takes through history is anything but linear. Much more like a novice trying to drive an old MOdel T Ford down a bumpy road, most of the time is spent near the ditches on either side and only a small amount of time in the middle of the road.

The cameras in the hallways are a reaction to society's anxiety/guilt over incidents such as happened at Columbine in Colorado. The elaborate shop class facilities of the past were, at least in part, a symptom of society's fear of being unprepared for war. Role modeling had a lot todo with their existence, too. Boys took shop, girls took home economics. The current fashion of gender-blending has made such sexist distinctions passe'. Like tossing out the baby with the bath water, the solution is thought to be to get rid of the symbols, rather than to rid ourselves of the stereotyping.

There are a large number of female blacksmiths today, just as there are many more people crossing the old traditional gender lines in many professions. It is sad that we have felt that we must eliminate the symbols to be policically correct, rather than add training in broad thinking to the curriculum. The tyranny of small minds is the rule rather than the execption where the human race is concerned, I'm afraid.

Stand up for what is right, and learn everything you can about as many different things as you can. The modern world may call for specialists, but the ultimate success of the human species depends on generalists.

End of rant, sorry.
  vicopper - Tuesday, 01/21/03 13:21:19 GMT

Ken's paper: I too am willing to talk. NOt sure what I have to offer but as y'all know when did that ever stop me from talking?
Ralph - Tuesday, 01/21/03 13:42:27 GMT

RB III, Vicopper's Beastie: Paw Paw: Part Three- Huzzah!

Vicopper: That is truly wonderful! You should submit it to Donna Meilach (sp?) for her next book: "Creative Forgery". ;-)

Back to weekly lurking mode...
Go viking
Bruce Blackistone (Atli) - Tuesday, 01/21/03 14:46:20 GMT

VIC!: "The modern world may call for specialists, but the ultimate success of the human species depends on generalists."


I'll add that any good leader of specialists collaborating to create a diverse project MUST be a generalist. Good generalists with leadership abilities are hard to find. In the extreme, the lack of them is one of the reasons we have situations like Enron. Lack of common sense will be our downfall.

It is not enough to just be a good leader. You MUST understand what the specialists are doing and do a reality check regularly.
Tony - Tuesday, 01/21/03 14:54:50 GMT

Rich - Smithin' Magician: Was looking at the photos of your guillotine tool. Also a nice piece of work. How did you get that C bend in what looks like 1/2"x3" bar? Was that just something you found? Perhaps the local Chevrolet dealer is missing a letter from his sign? :)
- adam - Tuesday, 01/21/03 15:20:06 GMT

"Minus":: Well Southern folk.. Its was -40ºF out side today at around 430am. To cold to be in the shop.
You all be warm now....
Barney - Tuesday, 01/21/03 19:18:42 GMT


That is 1/2
  vicopper - Tuesday, 01/21/03 19:39:55 GMT

Magic C Bend: Adam, that is 1/2" by 2" flat bar, I think. The bend was accomplished with the application of plenty of heat and a long cheater pipe. Clamp one end in the vise and the pipe over the other and PULL! May take a couple of heats with straighteneing on the anvil to clear up any little twist things that try to happen. Looks tougher than it really is. IF you have the cheater pipe. Without it, you'll be at it forever.

Atli: Thanks for the compliment! I may send it to Donna, although I doubt she'll be all that interested in it. Doesn't cost anything to email her a picture, though. Anybody know her email address? Jock?
vicopper - Tuesday, 01/21/03 19:45:24 GMT

C'ing is believing: Rich, The reason I guessed it was a ready made find is that I cant see any distortion of the cross section where it bends. You must have done a fair amount of forging to move metal from the inside to the outside.

Also, Atli is right. Donna should include a picture of the forge in her book.
adam - Tuesday, 01/21/03 21:37:13 GMT

parts for champion post drill: would like to restore a Champion post drill - need only the arm (y - shaped) that turns the gear at the top of an acme threaded shaft and incrementally plunges the drill. there is no model number, but I have a picture if anyone can help.
F. Little - Tuesday, 01/21/03 22:53:11 GMT

F. Little:
You'll probably have to fabricate the part, but if you'll send me the picture, I can probably head you in the right direction.
Paw Paw - Tuesday, 01/21/03 23:12:43 GMT

Now you C it...: Adam, actually, the appearance of consistant cross section is an artifact of the close-up[ photography. In reality, the outside of the bend is only about 3/4 the thickness of the inside of the bend. It wasn't worth forging it to a consistent thickness, as the web dimension is what gives it the strength, not the thickness so much. Besides, I'm lazy. (grin)

And thank you too for the nice comments on the forge. I fired it up today for the first time and was pretty impressed with it. Got it very nearly to a welding heat with only the small inefficient burner that I used on the old forge. The kiln shelf liner takes about 20 minutes to get up to full heat, but then it allows the forge to heat a piece of 5/8" round bar from black heat back to full forging temp in about a minute. With two burners running, I have no doubt the thing will reach welding heat easily and get very quick heats as well.

One huge advantage of the design is that I can open the front up and put larger shapes in the firebox with no trouble. After an hour and a half of running, the handles for the door were still cool enough to open with my bare hands, and there was no problem with singed arm hairs from the dragon's breath. I was surprised at how well the forge kept its heat with the door open. I am going to try forging a couple things with the door open and see how well it works that way, just as a test.

All in all, I'm delighted with the thing. Now I just have to decide on a name that is easier on the tongue than "the ridiculously obsessive nouveau neo-gothic acid punk rock forge" that my wife calls it. (grin)
vicopper - Wednesday, 01/22/03 00:58:25 GMT

Vic: Fortuitus Ferral Forge!
Paw Paw - Wednesday, 01/22/03 01:06:08 GMT

forges: VI cool deal. I wish my home built worked as well. I need to rethink/redesign it, but I probably will not get around to it as I have a good coal forge and a commercially built NG forge that works well.

Ralph - Wednesday, 01/22/03 01:58:14 GMT

Forge name:
Vic, Paw Paw:

How 'bout... Ferrarius Insomnium (BEG)!
Zero - Wednesday, 01/22/03 22:59:53 GMT


Works for me.
Paw Paw - Wednesday, 01/22/03 23:21:05 GMT

Graduation project: I'll be happy to talk about shop classes when there's a forum set up for us, or if we just start doing it here...

Steve A - Wednesday, 01/22/03 23:56:03 GMT

Forge Name: Keep the ideas coming, guys! Those two are both goo, but I want to hear more before I decide. I know when I hear the "right" one, it will hit me like a flash. (grin)
vicopper - Thursday, 01/23/03 00:39:15 GMT

Evil reply:
>Those two are both goo

Hmmmm... Okay, I got it:

The Fire Breathing Vienna Sausage!

'Cause, when you open a cold can of Vienna Sausage, it's got PLENTY of "goo" packed between those little dogs ;)

Sorry, Rich, I couldn't resist....
Zero - Thursday, 01/23/03 01:20:58 GMT

Goo: Okay, I deserved that. (grin) Proof then post, huh?
vicopper - Thursday, 01/23/03 01:29:30 GMT

How about Hellmouth Forge,
(sorry Buffy ),
slag - Thursday, 01/23/03 02:57:55 GMT


Shorten mine up to just Feral Forge. As in "Wild Forge".
Paw Paw - Thursday, 01/23/03 03:41:51 GMT

THE can forge: Wow! Vicopper; Damfine piece of work. The tongue is an interesting touch. How about dubbing it "The Cannilingus". (sorry, I couldn't help myself) 3dogs
- 3dogs - Thursday, 01/23/03 07:11:22 GMT

PawPaw: i have been reading you books the Revolutionary Blacksmith. and i have to say it is one good read i am already in the second book and from what i have read so far it will be as good as the first.
- Kenneth J. Adam - Thursday, 01/23/03 08:13:02 GMT

Forgeosaurus Rex: Some more suggestions:

KatyWouldnt: (pun on Katydid and the anatomically correct features ... hrmph..)

Ferrovore: (Iron eater)


VI Bug:

adam - Thursday, 01/23/03 15:42:19 GMT

Name of Forge:

"My gastropoda is fired up and I am ready to work!" "What's that producing such flames you ask? Why, that is my gastropod of course!"

In the literal sense a Gastropod is a type of snail, one which looks very simular to your forge;> It also has the word "gas" in it. I hope you like it. Beutiful forge by the way!

I have posted some pictures of my recently created forge also, I have made a stack for it now but haven't had time to post pictures of it yet. Still need to install heat exchanger, make an actuater for the rear door, slather some furnace cement on the fire pot and many other things! A project is never complete if it can still be improved!

Paw Paw, you and you're crew are doing a very special thing in preserving the past as such. The perpetuation of such an activity is even more of a burden when the main resoning for it's existance is not greed or malice, for if the reasons were not goodness and respect for the past. Then the attention to detail and unambigous aproach to it's creation would have a greatly lessened meaning and not require the substantail effort and sacrafice that you and those involved have no doubt put forth. I applaud your valient effort and the efforts of those who through encouragement and assistance have continued the production of such a magnificient story. Bravo!

Caleb Ramsby
Caleb Ramsby - Thursday, 01/23/03 19:49:05 GMT

Pully setup on 50# Mayer : I'm getting ready to buy a 2HP motor to power a 50# Wisconsin Mayer trip hammer that I am rebuilding. I am thinking of connecting it via 2 v belts but was wondering if that is good enough or if there is a better way of doing it? Also, what size of V- belts would you suggest. TIA Matt
- Matt - Thursday, 01/23/03 23:06:16 GMT


Thank you. We try. But I have to admit that I wouldn't mind making some money off of it at the same time. (grin)
Paw Paw - Friday, 01/24/03 00:17:45 GMT

Matt: At 15:58 hours on the 20th [scroll above], I talked about this. I used one belt on a 25 lb. LG hammer.
- Frank Turley - Friday, 01/24/03 00:28:44 GMT

my School paper: i have been given the option of not haveing to do a school paper and i have taken the oprotunity to get a start on my work carrer. i am sorry that i have wasted your time Guru. i have enjoyed all that you have said to the topic everyone.
- Kenneth J. Adam - Saturday, 01/25/03 20:49:56 GMT

Kenneth: Thanks for taking the time to tells us "thank you". Most people, particularly younger ones, forget that little expressions of gratitude mean a lot to those of us who expend our energies giving advice, opinions and tall tales. I wish you the best of luck in your career. I have every confidence that if you continue to look for knowledge and express thanks when you get it, you will have a very rewarding life.
vicopper - Sunday, 01/26/03 01:21:06 GMT

Vic: it is due to my parents they just tought me to show gratitude to those that help me.
- Kenneth J. Adam - Sunday, 01/26/03 03:38:31 GMT

PawPaw: i really liked your books i thought that they were exelent and if i had a credit card i would buy them from this web site
- Kenneth J. Adam - Sunday, 01/26/03 03:41:06 GMT


They aren't available in print form yet. I hope that at least book one will be by the end of the year. It'll be announced here when it does happen. And Mr. Dempsey will have them for sale in the Anvilfire Store. I'm sure he can work out a way for you to pay for them if you still want them. Money order, or something like that.

And many thanks for the compliment. It always makes me feel good when younger readers like what I write.
Paw Paw - Sunday, 01/26/03 04:01:01 GMT

Italian Blacksmiths: I am looking for a list of Italian blacksmiths that I can contact for possible work experience. I am mainly interested in the Sicily area or Florence area. Any information would be appreciated. I am an U.S. citizen residing in Kenya. Thanks,
- Dan Subaitis - Sunday, 01/26/03 07:01:08 GMT

Burner follow up: I made a burner with a 3/4" tube. I necked down a 1.5" pipe for the bell and tapped it for the 3/4" nipple. For the air vents I drilled 4 rows of 1/2" holes. The idea being that I can easily remove the tube to experiment with different venturi plates. The construction went well but the venturi plates were a dud. I tried apertures ranging from 3/8" to 5/8" but they choked back the air flow so much I couldnt get much air mixed into the flame.

I have been using a new design of forge which I call an "upside down forge" - its like a mini trough forge. It has a small burn chamber at the bottom. the roof is made of stacked firebrick or refractory block and provides a very flexible arrangement. I will try to post some pix and sketches in a week or so.
adam - Sunday, 01/26/03 18:35:04 GMT

Burners: Adam, did you make true venturis with tapered bores or orifice plates (see earlier description). At higher altitude, I wonder if an orifice plate will work for you. Gas pressure and orifice size?

One thing I have noticed is that the restriction of the forge itself to the flow through the burner made it necessary to increase the hole size of either a venturi or orifice plate as compared to the same burner in open air. That was to be expected, but not as dramatic as it was. With thinner air, you may not see an improvement. Just guessing with the data you provided.

Paw Paw, your question about burner tuning from the guru page... The goal is to improve mixing and reduce excess air as VIC said. Nice job VIC! I'll toss out some comments. Some of which are redundant to VIC's and some of Howards. I don't know the specifics of your forge, but if you have a lot of scaling, you need to reduce the total amount of air or improve mixing. Or both. I expect you can't do much with the mixing, so I would try to reduce the amount of air going through the burner and reduce any room air getting into the forge not through the burner. From the North American practical pointers book... lean flames are short pale blue or violet. A longer, greenish or yellow tipped flame is rich. Lean is excess air/not enough fuel. Rich is excess gas/not enough air.

You can only see the flame when the forge is cold in most cases. Once it's glowing, can't see much.

And some people don't see blues and greens very well.

With a sliding flat plate over the air opening of a sidearm burner, I have no problem going from rich to lean. If you find a way to adjust the air, I suggest adjusting to a green flame when the forge is cold. As VIC said, when it warms up, the glowing refractory improves combustion. And while forging, if you have scale, reduce the air a little more. With a sliding plate, sometimes only a sixteeth or so is the difference between scale and not.

A rich flame will not be as stable as a lean one. It might sound a little ragged until it's warm.

Almost all manufactured burners run lean so there is less chance of the flame going out and people blowing themselves up and suing the manufacturer. Another example of treating the symptom, not the cause.
Tony - Monday, 01/27/03 14:33:04 GMT

burner tuning etc: at one point Ron Reil had a fairly decent step by step FAQ about tuning the burners. You might want to take a look at his page.
Ralph - Monday, 01/27/03 17:32:45 GMT

PawPaw and his book: PawPaw sed "And many thanks for the compliment. It always makes me feel good when younger readers like what I write. "

PawPaw it seems to me almost ALL readers will be younger than you!...... (BEG)
Ralph - Monday, 01/27/03 17:34:25 GMT

Burners: Yes my burners are starved for air and run slightly rich. I am thinking of enlarging the air intakes which are four rows of four 1/2" holes (think slots in which I was too lazy to cut out the waste between the holes). I will try a smaller orifice - although this was a #70 drill in a 3/4" burner tube. No, I didnt taper the orifice was going to try that next but the air was cut back so much it didnt seem worth it. However, I will probably try again when I have some time to play.

PawPaw, like Tony says, once the forge is hot you cant really see a flame to judge its color and setting the mix while cold doesnt do it coz the mix changes as it heats up. I have no idea why - perhaps it has to do with the amount of propane that can be dissolved in air? I judge the mix from the exhaust. Blue tongues of flame licking the ports means unburnt propane is burning in the atmosphere. Yellow exhaust is neutral or a bit lean. I usually run neutral and then choke it back to blue exhaust when the work goes in. If you have good mixing and are running slightly rich, you should be able to stick the piece right in the flame and still get minimal scaling - my forge welds with the work in the flame.

I have also set up a forge that mixed so poorly that even when running rich the work would just waste away from scaling

I stopped by a machine shop and scrounged a trash bag full of SS turnings t reinforce refractory blocks that I want to cast. Those turnings are NASTY. The guys in the shop looked me like I was nuts
- adam - Monday, 01/27/03 18:14:58 GMT

Ohhh, Paw-Paw---I'll fall in front on him and trip him and you can beat him with your cane! (remember to take off your reading safety glasses so you hit the *right* person this time!)

It's amazing how civilization has moved from a veneration of age to a discounting of it---we've made it simple for folks to survive to old age so you get survival of the idiots as well as those who have seen it all and done it all and survived it all!

Thomas---don't expect to make old bones so *stay* out of my way!
  Thomas Powers - Monday, 01/27/03 18:16:25 GMT

"Cool one" :: Its a cool one today. -40ºF out. Makes the day a little crisp all around.. You people don't get to burnt laying in the sun down there..(GRIN)
Barney - Monday, 01/27/03 19:18:30 GMT

aging: Thomas,
That is so true. Not about PawPaw needing to remove glasses ( hmmm or is it?)
But how we no longer as a society venerate age or aged people. Kinda sad to think that we for the most part dicount almost everything but wealth.....
I am glad that for the most part folks here in the smithing world still like and want to do the best they can..... and not good enough
Ralph - Monday, 01/27/03 20:45:22 GMT


Thank you. When you trip him, get his legs in a scissor grip so he can't get up and run away. I'll beat him severly about the head and shoulders with my walker! THEN we'll find some red hot wire to use as a Foley catheter!
Paw Paw - Monday, 01/27/03 21:26:19 GMT

Aging:: Okay, I have to admit that getting older isn't the most fun a person can have, but...It beats heck out of the only alternative! (grin)

PawPaw, remember that scatterguns were made for the vision impaired with shaky hands. (grin) Those cheap aluminum walkers bend too easily when used to do the job of a good stout pipe wrench.

Too soon I grow old, too late I grow smart.
vicopper - Monday, 01/27/03 21:45:42 GMT

aging: The physical deterioration sucks but I find I am a much happier person at 52 than I was at 22. I have a much better sense of who I am and what I want to do.
adam - Monday, 01/27/03 22:03:53 GMT

Vic and Adam:
I don't need a walker yet, when I do, I'll probably build my own. I do occasionally use a walking stick, and I made two of the three I have. One is a three strand "braid" with a crystal door knob top, the other is a four strand braid with a brass "T" knob top.

Oh! The braids are made from 1/4" round hot rolled. These make great walking sticks, and they aren't bad as attitude adjustment devices, either.

As for scatter guns, I have my fathers, but I can still put the eye, nose and mouth on a standard silhouette target at combat ranges, so I'll stick to the 9mm and .44 for now.

Much truth in that message.
Paw Paw - Monday, 01/27/03 22:39:51 GMT

Aging, still: Adam, you're right as usual. I just turned fifty-four last month, and I can say with conviction that it was worth it! Yes, the many broken bones over the years don't work just right all the time, and several other things have deteriorated noticeably, but my quality of life has improved markedly. More due to that better-defined sense of self you spoke about, than to anything else. What is important now bears little resemblance to what seemed important thirty years ago. (grin)
vicopper - Monday, 01/27/03 23:19:36 GMT

Nuevo Mexico: Adam, Where are you located? I'm in Santa Fe.
Frank Turley - Tuesday, 01/28/03 01:06:07 GMT

Whoa! I thought there was this "your as young as you feel" axiom still in use? I'm a decade younger than Adam, so perhaps I know not of where I speak... But, I think staying active (mental, more so than physical) is a boon to longevity.

I've lost too many friends to "retirement" (i.e. stop working, stop reading, no hobbies, watch TV all day... Die). Those that say involved with projects that require both mental and some phyiscal exercise, seem to live forever.

Whew! You guys are making me feel OLD! Quit already... ;-)
Zero - Tuesday, 01/28/03 01:07:49 GMT

Nuevo Mexico: Frank - I am in Los Alamos. I am signed up to take your class very soon (actually it was my wife who signed me up for a b'day gift) . Really looking forward to it. :)
adam - Tuesday, 01/28/03 01:27:53 GMT

We're making YOU feel old??? How do you think I feel!

But there is a great deal of sense in what you say about keeping active. I've watched the same thing happen that you have, in my own family. As a result, one of the kids asked me several years ago, "Dad, when are you going to retire?" I answered "When your mother finds me slumped over the anvil, dead!" At which point, Sheri chimed in and said, "Please try to fall AWAY from the fire!"

Makes sense to me.
Paw Paw - Tuesday, 01/28/03 01:56:12 GMT

Old Age: Old blacksmiths are like old farmers, they just keep working until the money runs out or they do.
- Larry - Tuesday, 01/28/03 03:00:11 GMT

Herreros Viejos: Always keep in mind, mis hermanos, growing old beats the he11 out of the alternative! Tres Perros
3dogs - Tuesday, 01/28/03 06:58:41 GMT

San Ildefonso Pueblo pottery: Vicopper, Your post (Guru forum) about Maria and Po brought to mind my wife's relative, Adelphia Martinez, who fires pottery as Maria formerly did. A few years back, I took sheet metal to Adelphia, which served as your license plates did. On January 23rd, we were at San Ildefonso for their annual feast day, and it reminded me that a number of years ago, I was able to see Po as the "hunt leader" for the deer/buffalo dance on feast day. A memorable sight.
Frank Turley - Tuesday, 01/28/03 14:13:41 GMT

Old Smiths: Didn't someone say, "Old blacksmiths never die, they just quit using their Peter Wright?"
vicopper - Tuesday, 01/28/03 14:15:01 GMT

Frank Turley: Frank,

I was very fortunate to have known Maria and Po and Tony, too. I have many very fond memories of times spent at the San Ildefonso Pueblo with them. Wonderful and talented people all of them, and leaders as well. One of my father's most cherished possessions is a large charcoal drawing on canvas I did of Maria at the pueblo in 1968. I don't think the drawing is all that terrific intrinsically, but Pop was very fond of Maria.
vicopper - Tuesday, 01/28/03 15:25:21 GMT

Vic's Motto: Good one, Vicopper! My quills are comin' out of storage, and that one's going up on the wall. It'd make a good T-shirt, too. Or has it already been done? Best regards, 3dogs
3dogs - Tuesday, 01/28/03 15:28:01 GMT

3 Dogs:

It's been done, but no reason not to do it again!
Paw Paw - Tuesday, 01/28/03 15:33:57 GMT

mottos: 3dogs,
Yes the T has been done. At least at teh Flagstaff conference I saw several folks with T's that had that motto on it... but that is OK as it is still a good one.
Ralph - Tuesday, 01/28/03 15:36:12 GMT

Great Bellows: Hello! I am looking for any sort of workable plans for a great bellows... come to think of it, also looking for plans for a brick forge like what I remember seeing at Old Sturbridge Village when I was a kid. Thanks in advance!
Daevd - Tuesday, 01/28/03 15:46:26 GMT

Frank & Vicopper: There's a really pretty picture of Maria Martinez on page 11 of the January, 2003 New Mexico Magazine. What a beautiful soul she must have been! It shows in those dancing eyes. Another of the innumerable reasons that I'm an incurable Nuevo Mexicano wannabe. But, I'm preachin' to the choir again, aren't I? 3dogs
3dogs - Tuesday, 01/28/03 16:07:15 GMT

Get a copy of THE BLACKSMITH, Ironworker & Farrier, by Aldren A. Watson, ISBN 0-393-32057-X.

It has complete plans for both a masonry forge and a double chamber great bellows. My copy cost about $16.000.
Paw Paw - Tuesday, 01/28/03 17:21:03 GMT

old Smiths: I wish I could remember what movie I seen it in, but it was a period peice and quite old I think cause it was in B&W (or was that just the television?) anyway,they are fussing over this elderly gentelman and he gets mad and tells them to "Leave me alone! I'm as healthy as a blacksmith"
- JimG - Tuesday, 01/28/03 17:44:24 GMT

3Dogs:: Thanks so much! I think Ill head down to Borders and have a search...
Hrmph... where did I put those carkeys...
Daevd - Tuesday, 01/28/03 18:27:21 GMT

Daevd - Sturbridge: There's a good picture of the Sturbridge Village forge, a double forge, at There is also a section on a theory of chimney building.

Thinking of MARIA, the potter again. In the 1970's, I visited the Kiowa-Apache tribe in Oklahoma where they were holding a warriors' dance, the Black Legging Society dance.
Maria showed up as a visitor! After they got into the dance a few songs worth, she got up a danced Pueblo style at the edge of the dance circle. Very nice to see.
Frank Turley - Tuesday, 01/28/03 20:10:30 GMT

One of my Navaho friends who also knew Maria well remarked that she was
  vicopper - Tuesday, 01/28/03 22:48:19 GMT

MARIA: Dunno what happened to that one. I'll ltry again.

One of my Navaho friends who also knew Maria quite well remarked to me one day that she was "comfortable in her own skin." I have always thought that summed the lady up very well. I treasure the memories I have of her and I thank you, Frank, for sharing yours with me. BTW, I have a nice little book about Maria entitled Maria Poveka, Potter of the San Ildefonso. The book is currently in storage so I can't give you the author, but I will try to pull it out if you're interested.
vicopper - Tuesday, 01/28/03 23:03:33 GMT

MARIA: Vic, I'd be interested in that book. I never had the pleasure of meeting Maria, but I've heard of her for years. Several potter friends of mine have mentioned her in most respectufl tones.
Paw Paw - Tuesday, 01/28/03 23:27:11 GMT

PawPaw: No problem, the book is in a box at my brother's house. I'll grab it out the next time I go over there. (Which had better be soon, since I have to finish some cabinetwork I'm doing over there.) I wish my own place had enough room to have all my books out, but there just isn't that much space in two small rooms. (grin)
vicopper - Wednesday, 01/29/03 00:30:13 GMT

Book Cases:
Got one wall that could hold a wall to wall floor to ceiling bookcase? Cheap way to make one is boards and concrete blocks.
Paw Paw - Wednesday, 01/29/03 01:02:15 GMT

Bookcases: There isn't a wall that doesn't already have one or more bookcases on it, including over the tops of doorways, piled on every horizontal surface and stuffed behind the monitor on the desk in the kitchen. We LOVE books! I have a couple of more crannies up high that could accept book shelves. I guess I'll get to that when I finish the bathroom cabinets.(grin) I must be demented to put all this work into a rented place, but we truly love the little place and don't mind doing it at all. I just think of it as a donation to the historical society. For a while there, I had THEM thinking of it that way, and not charging me rent. I just couldn't find it in my heart to make them pay for my urge to have mahogany cabinets in the bathroom, though. They've been VERY understanding about my blacksmithing area outside, bless their hearts! For that alone, I'm willing to do a whole lot of work around here. My sanity, (such as it is), is well worth it! (big grin)
vicopper - Wednesday, 01/29/03 01:55:34 GMT


Sounds like you build book cases the way I do. Where ever I can find room! Sheri has promised that when we build the new house, one room will be the library. Wall to Wall, floor to ceiling, bookcases on every wall. Door and window openings, only. Two desks, face to face, in the center of the room. Probably roll tops, (we both love them) with the computers built into the desks.

Paw Paw - Wednesday, 01/29/03 02:14:27 GMT

Rooms: Jim,

The nicest room in our house, (okay, one of the two nicest out of two), is the kitchen. In one 11 x 11 foot room is the chopping block with potrack above, the dictionary table, and the computer "house", as Sally calls it. I built it when I was thinking of a larger place, so it's a corner unit with desk, computer desk, and CPU/printer/storage console.

The three pieces run about 14 feet of wall space around the corner, but somehow the room doesn't seem cramped, just homey. I still have to finish the center part of the unit, where the monitor sits. I need to put in the motor that will tilt the monitor down and back so it's more like reading a book than a television. Kind of a Rube Goldberg contraption, based on a crapped-out battery drill running a leadscrew to move the table insert. I know, strange minds think of strange things! But what else was I gonna make out of all that mahogany and one crapped-out drill motor? (big grin)
vicopper - Wednesday, 01/29/03 02:40:49 GMT

Books: We must all be book collectors of the most rabid type. When I bought this house I built book shelves 4 ft. high and 11 ft. long. Unpacked and they were 90 per ct. full. Went up to the ceiling with them then. Few years later had to build more 4 ft. wide and 8 ft. high. Now they are full. No.1 son's empty room is looking more like a library all the time.
Too much snow falling to forge outdoors today.
Brian C - Wednesday, 01/29/03 13:47:32 GMT


We all believe the old adage, "If you don't know where you came from, how do you expect to predict where you are going?"
Paw Paw - Wednesday, 01/29/03 14:10:49 GMT

books: I love books - I have walls of them. I would have more but my wife is a photographer and her pix take up every foot of free wall space (not complaining - her work is terrific). My ideal house would be a library whose parking lot had been converted to a junkyard
adam - Wednesday, 01/29/03 15:43:14 GMT

Books: We have bookcases in every room of the house---including bathrooms. The "Library" has 10 72"x32" bookcases. When we moved into this house I told my wife I wanted decent bookcases so we found a "kit" shelf with *no* particle board! Veneered plywood with the shelves rated at 200#+ *per* shelf---we called and talked with the company (Whittier Wood Products). FOund out that at the end of the season the local store would sell the "leftovers" at 1/2 price and the "demo" one all tricked out and already finished at the same price.

Still not enough, we once added 2 8'x8' adjustable shelf bookshelves and *still* didn't get rid of all the piles

My current plan is to build floor to ceiling shelves in my study using waterbed side boards as the standards and 1x's as the shelves---my smithing and medieval books are crowding me out!

(my wife used to volunteer at the local main library---she ran the library store where they sold deaccessioned books plus donations cheap and then she got a 40% discount and first pick OUCH! very costly unpaid job as the bookcases started to run into money...

- Thomas Powers - Wednesday, 01/29/03 17:48:21 GMT

Angora Gardens Blacksmithing Fundraiser: Angora Gardens is a rehab for people with Mental Illness,Mental retardation and Brain Injury. I have introduced the clients at our facility to blacksmithing and they love it, I am having a fundraiser on Feb 22 and the gurur ask me if I could let everyone know about it. I am seeking donations of anything blacksmithing from rivets to T shirts. we will be having an auction and gift basket raffle. Any help or ideas will be greatly appriciated.
For more Info contact Robert Stone at
- Robert Stone - Wednesday, 01/29/03 17:56:50 GMT

Blacksmith Events info: I am Tidewater (VA) Blacksmiths Guild's new newsletter editor and need info on upcoming events. Can all of you that email event info/flyers (especially east of the Mississippi) please include me on your mailing list?
robcostello - Wednesday, 01/29/03 18:06:45 GMT

Blacksmith Events info: : Rob Costello:

Let all the ABANA affiliate editors know that you're the editor of your newsletter. Ask them to exchange newsletters with you -- paper or email. Make sure the ABANA office knows you're the editor. Check for contact info for the office and other editors.

You'll find our newsletter at

I presume you're aware of the Spring Fling? Furnace Town in March?
- Bruce Freeman - Wednesday, 01/29/03 21:18:29 GMT

Blacksmith events: Bruce, Thanks! I'm aware of Spring Fling but haven't seen anything on it yet. Easter is the 3rd WE in April and I've heard its moved to the last WE. Haven't heard of furnace town. I'm looking for a good place to cut and paste or get copies of registration forms. any help?
robcostello - Wednesday, 01/29/03 21:48:24 GMT

Bad day at Bedrock, folks. May their souls and the souls of all the faithful departed, rest in peace.
Paw Paw - Saturday, 02/01/03 15:13:48 GMT

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