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May 2005 Archive - Morte de Paw-Paw

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J. Dempsey  <webmaster> Rev. 7/98, 3/99, 5/2k, 6/2k, Friday, 04/06/01 16:43:25 GMT

A good day: Got up early this a.m. and did a couple three hours mowing around the museum grounds, my customary Saturday morning chore. We had some good rain a few days ago, so the grass went nuts soI've got a LOT of mowing to do this week. After the mowing, I took a run to the machine shop to drop off some parts for my incipient air hammer.

The machinist said he would get the work done today, but I told him not to rush it since I won't have time to do anything with it for a week or more. He liked that, and he really liked hearing that the tolerances for this job are on the order of +/- .030". I remember when I worked in a machine shop and people would bring in a job with tolerances spec'd as +.0005/-.0001" and the like, when thejob consisted of drilling some holes to mount a speaker or something equally arbitrary. They wanted to seem as though they knew what they were doing, so they'd specify these ridiculous tolerances that only quadrupled the cost of the job but didn't make it any better.

Because of that, whenever I have a job to do, I prefer to just tell the craftsman what it is I am trying to achieve and le thim decide how critical the work is, unless I have some overriding reason to specify a certain tolerance, of course. I've found that I always get better work done cheaper this way, and make friends to boot. Same with letting them know it is "no rush" and they can fit it in wherever works best for them.

After the machinist, I dropped by the welding supply to pick up a chop saw blade and some flux, and to check the prices of their MIG supplies. I've finally committed to buying a MIG welder, so I thought I'd see what I could get here, instead of ordering from off-island. Well, I'll definitely be ordering from off-island!

The Millermatic 175 machine I'm going to buy online for $680. I had also looked at the Llincoln SP135 Plus, since it runs on 115v, but decided it just wasn't robust enough for my work. Online price on the little machine is $444. The local welding supply had the same welder on the floor, for the paltry sum of $1,046! Who do they think they're fooling? They had a Miller Syncrowave !*0 TIG machine ( a $1600 welder online) for *only* $2900. And then they complain that they can't sell welders. Go figure. I don't have any choice about buying my gas from them, but you can rest assured that will be ALL I buy there.

I'm almost tempted to buy TWO welders and then sell one. I could almost pay for mine that way and still undercut the local thieves.

I spent the afternoon in the shop, doing some actual blacksmithing. I made myself a *bridge* hardy tool for forging fork tine and the like. I didn't have any medium or high carbon stock on hand that was thick enough to suit me, so I made it out of some 1/2"x2" A36 flat bar and then forge welded a piece of leaf spring to the top of it. Worked just great, which was pretty satisfying. I also knocked out a set of scrolling tongs and couple chasing tools I've been wanting. All in all, a pretty darn good day!

Tomorrow I'm planning to build a little tool that I've got in my head. If it works out, I'll post a picture or two.

Another beautiful, sweaty day in Paradise, the Virgin Islands.
vicopper - Sunday, 05/01/05 00:10:38 EDT

Good grief: I had no idea I was running on that much!
vicopper - Sunday, 05/01/05 00:11:26 EDT

Rock & Hard Place: Sounds like the makings of a primitive Smithy. Start a fire, put some hot iron on the hard place and smack it with yer rock. Kind of analogous to the old saying "If life hands you lemons, make lemonade.
3dogs - Sunday, 05/01/05 01:28:30 EDT

Speaking of stuff: A family member asked if I could make them a pattern welded knife. Well, I've never made any knife but the answers given here to some of the new or not-yet smiths asking about making knifes or swords sure stuck in my head. LOL

Anyway, I told him I couldn't make him a pattern welded knife but I suddenly had the urge to make a knife. I'm not new but I'm certainly not at the level some of you guys are either. Anyhow, I decided to cut off a piece of a big coil spring I have and see if I could forge a blade. I ruined one, cut it off and tossed it and forged another that looked pretty good. I anealed it sort of, cleaned it up and it still looked good so I thought I'd give hardening and tempering a try. I qunched the whole blade, cuz it was easy and it warped a little at the handle but streightened easily. Everything still looked good so I did some final cleanup on the blade and polished it up...the old fashioned way with files and sandpaper. I cut a piece of deer antler and slapped it on for a handle...the hardest part of the whole job.

And son-of-a-gun if I'm not sitting here admiring a very pretty knife. I laid it next to some of the other purchased and not at all inexpensive knives I have and I think it compares favorably. I'm not bragging but rather just tickled at the way my first knife turned out. I think I'll make some more!
Mike Ferrara - Sunday, 05/01/05 09:35:31 EDT

bob h : bob sorry to hear about your dog brother----- hate ta say it but i love my dog more than most folks i know....... my thoughts go out to you ..........i met an older in his 60's smith last week that had done one of the most incredible wrought iron doors ive ever seen for his dog daisy that had passed........... gotta be honest my eyes welled up as he told the story of the door and his dog.......... great day in cville yesterday 8 spring swages made as well as bout 12 blacksmith lolipop's...... all in all a great day................... happy hammering ya'll
blacklionforge - Sunday, 05/01/05 09:49:26 EDT

Camel Dung Best Fuel: Master Uri's description of forging with animal dung in India came to mind as I read this:


Fuel for Forge.--Dry fuel gives out far more heat than that which is damp. As a comparison of the heating powers of different sorts of fuel, it may be reckoned that 1 lb. of dry charcoal will raise 73 lbs. of water from freezing to boiling; 1 lb. of pit coal, about 60 lbs.; and 1 lb. of
peat, about 30 lbs. Some kinds of manure-fuel give intense heat, and are excellent for blacksmith's purposes: that of goats and sheep is the best; camels' dung is next best, but is not nearly so good; then that of oxen: the dung of horses is of little use, except as tinder in lighting a fire."

The Art of Travel (1872)
first published in Great Britain by John Murray, London in 1872.

THE ART OF TRAVEL or Shifts and Contrivances Available in Wild Countries

Francis Galton

The rest of this chapter is about making a bellows from a goat and using blood to case harden steel, and we think we have it tough trying to find good smithing coal and steel. Big Ol' Grin

This book is a delightfull read and availabe for free down load thru the project gutenberg online press
habu - Sunday, 05/01/05 10:17:07 EDT

Took my new to me Lincohn gas engine welder out to a customer's site to do some onsite construction. Considering this is a early 60's unit, and it sat for years outside, It ran like a charm. Running a bit rich, so I guess a carb rebuild may be in order. Also need to make a muffler as it was not built with one. Reason to build is that I have a picture of a dragon that belchs the exhaust out its mouth! That would tend to somewhat match the dragon with wings spread, leaping out of the hood of my 72 chevy pick up.
ptree - Sunday, 05/01/05 12:45:39 EDT

habu: I've seen 'poop' use as a cooking fuel( asia ) and was assured that it was not only a cleaner burning fuel, but it had no ill effect on the food.
Yes,I had to eat the food. Yes, I was grossed out after finding out it was cooked by the ' cow cookie ' method. Yes , the food was good.
Timex - Sunday, 05/01/05 13:39:36 EDT

KNIVES: MIKE F.: A friend of mine started making knives just like that. He is a very good maker now. The first knive he made did not have guards or any of the goodies that came later. One day he says he wants to learn about guards and spacers and buttcaps. He went from that to making as nice of knives as any one. I look for his next step to be art knives.

sandpile - Sunday, 05/01/05 14:09:12 EDT

Thank's habu; just ordered a copy, thinking of reading it on my next trip to Germany for some reason most of my colleagues in Germany are Italian and will get a big kick out of me reading that title in Germany...

Sorry Sandpile, I was off as soon as I had posted. But I think the ponies will pitch in heaven---just nobody will get hurt and they will be self shoeing...

Thomas P - Sunday, 05/01/05 14:14:56 EDT

Dung fired: The deep black Pueblo Pottery Santa Clara San Ildefonso Pottery of New Mexico is also dung fired, and can be pricey.
Pueblo Pottery
habu - Sunday, 05/01/05 15:24:22 EDT

fuel et primitive: LOL 'poop' powered pots!
naw... just kidding.
I guess that dung has been used as a fuel since man first figured out that it burns. Just explane to me how and why the first guy to burn 'poop ' got the Idea.
BTW guano( bird poop ) was used to make gun powder before another better scorce of chemical was found. Bird droppings are also used to " age and treat " some types of raw leather.( discovery channel did a show on this )
Timex - Sunday, 05/01/05 16:23:44 EDT

Champion Forge and Blower Company:
Mike, There are dozens of models of Champion forge. The company has been out of business for many years so there are no parts. That should always be a consideration when buying old equipment.

Forges and blowers range in value seperately from $75 eanc in fair to good condition up to several hundred each in excellent condition DEPENDING on the model. A new large coal forge can easily cost you $800 and that is another consideration.

Old equipment is usualy worth what you are willing to pay for it and the price depends entirely on who is selling and who is buying.
- guru - Sunday, 05/01/05 18:28:39 EDT

AFBA National Championships: The Australian Farriers and Blacksmiths National Championships have just been held here in Rockhampton, Queensland, Aust. I did not get to see all of it because I had to put a few shifts in on a trade display.

Did get to see the tail end of the Open Final though, where the sweat was really flying! The best 5 in the open shoeing went into the final.

Open Shoeing:
Fit shoes to 1 front and hind foot
Time allowed- 65 minutes
Material supplied- 2 of 400mm x 20mm x 10 mm flat steel
Specifications- ¾ Fullered, toe clip front, quarter clipped hind, nails to suit (min 6)
Options- hot rasping.

Open Final:
Fit shoe to foot and make specimen shoe.
Time allowed- 60 minutes
Material supplied- (shoe on foot) 400mm x 20mm x 10mm flat steel
Material for specimen advised on day
Specifications- (Shoe on foot) ¾ fullered, toe clip, nails to suit.
(Specimen) as per judges choice
Adding shoeing and specimen score will determine placing points.

The Judge was Jim Ferrie, FWCF, of Scotland.

38 competitors from all over Oz and at least one from across the ditch - NZ.

The prize? $AU1000 for the open, $AU400 for the final.

There were 8 forges - coke with eletric blowers, fire tools, 95 kg O'Dwyer Workshop anvils set on a bench with a vice (etc).

For fun, there was also some blacksmithing - pair of tongs in the open section and a Home Exhibit:
Submit a decorative photo frame made at home using any method with steel of choice
Specifications- Free standing, to hold 8” x 10” photo. Frame can be oval or square.

That a long enough post, I think.

Big A - Sunday, 05/01/05 19:06:15 EDT

Poop fuel: Your posts triggered a memory of something I read long ago. Seems as if when the pioneers crossed the Great Plains in their wagon trains, there was a shortage of wood for campfires and cooking. No one actually rode in the wagons except the teamster and anyone to ill to walk. A small tarp would be stretched underneath the wagon box and everyone walking would be on the lookout for buffalo chips. They would collect the dry ones and toss them into the tarp as they traveled collecting fuel as they went. After a long day's walk even beans cooked over a chip fire probably tasted pretty good.
- Larry - Sunday, 05/01/05 21:41:34 EDT


That piece of tarp stretched under the wagon was called a sow belly. Not only did they pick up any dried chips they found, but every small scrap of wood as well. An abandoned wagon was a treasure trove of wood and iron.
Paw Paw - Sunday, 05/01/05 22:03:41 EDT

vicopper -- Those prices are similar to what they would be in the Bahamas, but the reason Bahamian prices are so high is that DUTY from 15% to 60% is charged on all imported goods instead of income tax. What is there excuse in the VI ?
Dave Boyer - Sunday, 05/01/05 23:06:25 EDT

Combustible ca-ca;: came to light shortly after the discovery of the habanero chili pepper.
3dogs - Monday, 05/02/05 04:26:00 EDT

that smell: ......... i rather smell good ole cow dung anyday...... over what comes out the tale pipes of our cars.....
- pete - Monday, 05/02/05 07:54:31 EDT

Diversity: Never let it be said that we have a boring forum here at the ol' Hammer-In. We have yer basic BS as in Blacksmithing, B.S. as a fuel source, with the "B" for bovine, bull, buffalo or bison. Ya got yer B.S. as in sittin' around the shop swapping lies, and then ya got it in it's purest, most concentrated form, politics. Ya ask a halfway intelligent question, and someone will try to give ya the straight poop. Here it is folks, a virtual never ending source of good, high quality BS, and it just don't get no gooder'n that! I love it!!!
3dogs - Monday, 05/02/05 10:42:59 EDT

daggers and swords: i am trying to find the best way to make a handle for either a dagger or small sword/saber. i am hoping to use either wood or metal, anyonew have suggestions on how to go about doing this?
- TJ - Monday, 05/02/05 12:36:34 EDT

MY first suggestion is to hit your library and determine what kind of handle you want to make. There have been almost as many kinds of handles for swords and daggers in history as there have been opinions about them. Find these books to start learning about european designs, others here may have suggestions for American designs.

AV Norman "The Rapier and Small Sword"
anything by Ewart Oakeshott

After that, we need to know what the Tang of the weapon looks like.
MikeM OH - Monday, 05/02/05 12:56:50 EDT

TJ---there is no "best" way without specifying all the parameters---will the handle need to resist saltwater? Be left in the sun in a car? Need *not* to get slippery when sweaty hands hold it? Take impact? Need to be done in a traditional way...

I would commend "The Complete Bladesmith" by Hrisoulas to you for info on making sword handles.

TJ what is the "best" vehicle for me to buy? Makes a big difference if I'm commuting 4 hours a day or hauling a ton of scrap metal...
Thomas P - Monday, 05/02/05 13:05:30 EDT

Vicopper's Welder: Rich, Say it aint so! A MIG! What are you going to do with it that you can't do now? Save those pennies my friend and get yourself a little inverter Tig machine. Even with an air cooled torch you know you'll be better off. (Unless of course you have a particular project in mind for the mig.)

It sure sounds like you had a fun productive weekend. I spent most of mine doing what I'm taking a lunch break from right now- buffing lots of mirror polished architectural bronze to remove the fabricating marks before lacquering. What joy!
SGensh - Monday, 05/02/05 13:41:19 EDT

SteveG: Too late, I just ordered it last night. Not that I would have changed my mind. I keep turning down little jobs that I could make a few quick bucks on if I had the glue gun. The TIG will be next, don't worry.

This little MIG unit will also work as a portable, using my generator. With the number of buildings with security bars around here, it'll pay for itself in about two afternoons. After that, it will make me the money to get the TIG. And we all know how handy a glue gun is for slapping together jigs and such in the shop. Of course, if I don't like it after a year or so, I'll just sell it for 50% more than I have in it, and the gas will work with the TIG. On the other hand, I might get really good with it, and then I can be a fabricator. (grin)

Yep, the weekend was a good one, for me. Riley got stuck having to work the Iron Man Triathlon, an all-day-bake-your-brain-in-the-sun event, but somehow they overlooked me when they were handing out assignments. Oh, darn.
vicopper - Monday, 05/02/05 14:59:26 EDT

Well, after reading the posts around here, I just tapped something this weekend. Yeah, yeah, get ur minds outa da gutter! Anyhow, I drilled my hole using my drill press, and then replaced the drill with the tap and turned it in by hand. Worked sweet. Guess where I learned that? Right here of course! Guess that is why I just RENEWED my CSI membership. This is such a great resource, and I am proud to help bring it to others.
- Bob H - Monday, 05/02/05 16:38:16 EDT

Vicopper -- That machine will be really handy. I have had a 200 amp machine with a spoolgun since '97 and only used it on aluminum untill last year when I set it up with a 15' gun and C25 gas mix for steel. I have used the stick machine 1 time since. Saturday I picked up a slightly used 90 amp unit for light gage. MIG is for fast, TIG is for pretty.
Dave Boyer - Monday, 05/02/05 17:51:12 EDT

Rich, If you're going to use it outside for portable work and don't plan on flux core wire start looking for a couple of pieces of sheet metal you can hinge together for a wind break so your shielding gas doesn't blow away in the sea breeze. You will definately want to get some anti spatter spray- it makes removing those little balls a lot easier. It comes in a bulk concentrate that you can dilute for a spritzer bottle or in aerosal cans and it's a real help especially if you use a straight CO2 shield for deeper penetration (and more spatter). Order a tub of nozzle gel at the same time to help keep the tip clean.

Good luck with it! Tell Riley I said hello.
SGensh - Monday, 05/02/05 19:20:13 EDT

SGensh has good suggestions on the splatter guard spray. Be careful of the aerosol spray anti-splatters and nozzel sprays. Most contain Methyl chloride. This is a bad actor and should be avoided. Most of the concentrates that need water don't contain the stuff.
I would also suggest a few contact tips as spares.
I have a problem in my shop with water condensing on the wire in the cool months.(unheated shop)The resultant rust will cause the wire to arc out in the torch or feeder and not feed. I have learned to remove the wire at the end of the day and place it back in the bag, and bring it inside. In your moist environment this may be an issue. Once the wire is spotted with rust, you can sometimes unwind the outer 1/4" or so and get back to clean wire.
ptree - Monday, 05/02/05 21:30:21 EDT

Glue gun: For outside work, I'll be using flux core wire; why fight a losing battle? I ordered a tub of nozzle grease and a couple cans of no-stickum spray as well. I learned that the nozzle grease makes it a lot easier to pick its nose when needed. I thought I'd try the official no-stickum spray, as I've always used Pam in the past, and that's a pain to clean up after.

SInce stuff costs so much here, and so little there, I naturally ordered a few dozen new tips, a couple three nozzles, an extra wire guide or two and several spools of wire. The tips get used up, nozzles get dinged or cracked and I alwlays like to keep a separate lliner for use with aluminum, so the lubricant/flux/plating on the steel wire doesn't contaminate aluminum welds. If I wasn't so chep, I would just get whole 'nother gun for the alu. I probably won't use it for aluminum all that much anyway, though.

I don't know yet how the condensation and rust will work out, whether or not it will be an issue. We do have salt air, but not much temperature variation. I'll watch it and see what happens.

Thanks for all the good advice!
vicopper - Monday, 05/02/05 22:59:49 EDT

vicopper -- For solid wire You should probably use ER-70S-6 as it has enough de-oxidizers in it to cope with mill scale & light rust.It wont weld through a world of sins like a 6011 however. 75% argon & 25% C02 is a good shielding gas, it doesnt give the penatration of C02, but it doesn't spatter as much.
Dave Boyer - Tuesday, 05/03/05 00:04:40 EDT

scale: Can somebody tell me how to remove scale from mild steel, besides grinding, what chemicals are available to get a nice iron finish and what to seal it with. Thanks
- Peter - Tuesday, 05/03/05 07:58:59 EDT

Hi from Brisbane......: Sorry to ask maybe a silly question BUT...when someone says, 50 lb air it the weight of the hammer bit attached to the ram or ram force?
Mick's Backyard Bodgie Forge
- mike - Tuesday, 05/03/05 09:39:54 EDT

scale...?: chances are you are fishing in sydney..cos thats all i ever catch... bits of scaley mild steel....i normaly use a wire brush on an angle grinder while still hot, or the baby sand blaster to remove the scale....then ally foil, garlic, lots of butter, oven......
mike - Tuesday, 05/03/05 09:49:20 EDT

Welding, Scale, etc.: Dave, I'll be using the 75/25 gas, already bought it, if fact. And the wire I ordered for shielded work is the ER-70S-6. But I normally clean things up pretty well before I start gluing them up anyway.

Peter, for scale removal it is hard to bead sandblasting, if you want the surface prepped for welding or painting. If you want a smoother finish, try using a mild acid such as diluted muriatic acid, citric acid or vinegar (5% acetic acid). Soaking in any of these will remove the scale. You'll need to scrub them up afterward, as there is some residue left on the surface, but no big problem to clean off.

As far as "sealing" the surface, nothing "seals" steel, at least not in the sense that oil seals wood by penetrating into it. Steel is impermeable, so any coating is just on the surface. I prefer Cosmoline for rustproofing, but it is sticky, gooey and dirty. Assuming you want something smooth, clear and durable, I would suggest a good acrylic finish like Birchwood-Casey's "SatinShield". It isn't really an exterior finish, but it works pretty well nonetheless. I get a year or so out of it here in the tropics when used outside but under cover. Indoors, it lasts a long time.

Automotive acrylic enamel or acrylic lacquer is a good finish, but no finish will be truly durable unless applied over metal that has been sandblasted, zinc primed, then base primed before applying the top coat. If you want bare sttel appearance, then you have to recognize that the finish will be less durable and plan on some maintenance.


The 50# designates the reciprocating weight, generally. The ram and the die combined, as that is what the cylinder must lift and what force is applied to the metal. The amount of "push" supplied by the cylinder is not figured into the calculation.
vicopper - Tuesday, 05/03/05 10:57:54 EDT

One other method of steel finishing---don't; forge stainless and passivate if necesary.

I'm going to be doing a SS gate for my parents just so they don't have to deal with painting it over the years.

Thomas P - Tuesday, 05/03/05 12:06:20 EDT

Methyl Chloride: Ptree, Thanks for the heads up on the aerosal anti spatters. I wasn't aware of the Methyl Chloride content. I've been using a bulk product called Aqua spat for years. I'm almost at the point where I'll have to order another drum of it. I guess I'll soon find out if they are still in business!
SGensh - Tuesday, 05/03/05 13:03:48 EDT

Methyl Chloride: Ptree, Thanks for the heads up on the aerosal anti spatters. I wasn't aware of the Methyl Chloride content. I've been using a bulk product called Aqua spat for years. I'm almost at the point where I'll have to order another drum of it. I guess I'll soon find out if they are still in business!
SGensh - Tuesday, 05/03/05 13:04:00 EDT

Methyl Chloride: Ptree, Thanks for the heads up on the aerosal anti spatters. I wasn't aware of the Methyl Chloride content. I've been using a bulk product called Aqua spat for years. I'm almost at the point where I'll have to order another drum of it. I guess I'll soon find out if they are still in business!
SGensh - Tuesday, 05/03/05 13:04:21 EDT

SGensh, don't worry you've already been exposed enough to give you the shakes...

Thomas P - Tuesday, 05/03/05 15:31:29 EDT

Methyle Chloride: Acording to my handy NIOSH pocket guide to chemical hazards,
OSHA exposure limit 100 parts per million
"colorless gas with a faint sweet odor which is not noticable at dangerous concentrations."
lower explosion limit 8.1%, upper explosion limit 17.4%
Target organs; CNS,liver, kidneys, reproductive system

And I believe it is listed on the cancer causing chemicals list.

Spatterguards are available without this chemical.
ptree - Tuesday, 05/03/05 16:30:47 EDT

Hammer weight....: thankyoop :)

gonna aim for 20-30 kilo hammer bit then..
- mike - Tuesday, 05/03/05 17:52:11 EDT

cancer..?: wire brush not cause cancer
- mike - Tuesday, 05/03/05 17:54:46 EDT

geez.....just got up for brecky here and its dinner time where you blokes are.......anyone doin roast dead beast of some sort?
- mike - Tuesday, 05/03/05 17:56:49 EDT

Mike: Pork roast is in the oven as I speak!

eander4 - Tuesday, 05/03/05 19:15:02 EDT


Sometimes I'm not the brightest bulb on the christmas tree!

I've got a case of metal fume fever from burning the galvanizing off of some pipe I had cut up to make stock holders out of.
Paw Paw - Tuesday, 05/03/05 23:08:42 EDT

PawPaw -- I never got the fever, but when I was a teenager I used to weld galvanized pipe in spite of knowing it wasn't a good thing. I just didn't know HOW bad it was, and as a kid didn't think anything would happen to Me.
Dave Boyer - Wednesday, 05/04/05 00:18:19 EDT

Paw Paw--I brazed up a LOT of galvanized conduit back in the '70's. Always wondered then why it made me feel weird, little did I know. Then compounded it by smoking a cigarette as soon as the torch was off each time. Take it easy & get some clean air.

Let me think here- toxic metal fumes inhaled in conjunction with toxic smoke- lots of people aroun here might say that that explains a lot about me. (grin)
Brian C - Wednesday, 05/04/05 07:54:59 EDT

Paw Paw; did Jock sign you up to do safety lecture demo's on a re-occuring basis?

Take it easy and get well. I generally won't even accept galvanized stuff for free cause I know I would be tempted to use it sometime...

Thomas P - Wednesday, 05/04/05 10:16:39 EDT

Thomas, no but maybe he should have.

It was almost funny last night. Sheri was talking to our daughter (LPN) and her comment was, "I'm on my way!" Like many medical personnell, she doesn't trust anyones diagnosis but her own.

After determing that all my vitals (except temperature {102} and blood pressure {109/59}) were within normal limits and that there was no pneumonia she and her mother made me go to bed. While I was laying there, I suddenly remembered burning off the pipe, and called out to Avis, "Avis, go on line and check out the symptomology for metal fume fever!"

Shortly she came storming into the bedroom, saying, "You nailed it daddy, what the HELL have you been doing?!?"

The conversation deteriorated a good bit after that.

She's not afraid to chew daddy's butt. (wry grin) She said what made it worse was that I KNEW better!
Paw Paw - Wednesday, 05/04/05 12:49:16 EDT

Pawpaw, If the CSM would drink a large glass of milk after discovering that the CSM had burnt or welded galvanize, the CSM will find that this old welders trick really helps.
Get better, and try to pay more attention to the shiny stuff on the iron that should not be shiny.

Was that polite or what?
ptree - Wednesday, 05/04/05 18:37:20 EDT

Anybody interested in a couple of Warner & Swasey turret lathes? These are large production machines, still under power. They have air chucks and are usable. There is a broken one also for spares. These would be a semi trailer load for two machines, and would be CHEAP. Tooling also available. Located in Louisville Ky.

And no Pawpaw, they will not fit on your trailer!
ptree - Wednesday, 05/04/05 18:40:32 EDT
Question comes to mind - how do you verify authenticity? How can't a good smith get away with making an object with old scrap iron & aging it in the backyard for a couple of years?
- Paul Ujj - Wednesday, 05/04/05 19:15:16 EDT

Anudder Sword-maker: I ran into a young fellow at work yesterday. He's 17 years old, and his pop is one of the tractor sales reps I deal with (and cuss at) on a regular basis. The kid heard that I own a forge and a couple of anvils, and said he wanted to make swords. I told him I could teach him how to make a chisel or a poker set. Nope, he wants swords.

Heheheh, I told him to consult the wise sword-makers at Have fun, guys and gals.

- AK_ID - Wednesday, 05/04/05 20:15:57 EDT

Authenticity: Just like with anything else Paul, provenance, experience, etc.

There is nothing stopping any smith, (or anyother crafter) from producing fakes.

Like the saying goes, if you don't know your meat, know your butcher.
JimG - Wednesday, 05/04/05 20:21:25 EDT

Paul; *that* would be un-ethical!

Can I sell you these set of hinges from the door of George Washington's Privy??? A bit of history! This is my last pair!


Thomas P - Wednesday, 05/04/05 21:50:08 EDT

Thanks guys - you've helped confirm the suspicions of one who is very blacksmith-challenged!
- Paul Ujj - Wednesday, 05/04/05 23:36:50 EDT

Wanted: looking to buy a little giant trip hammer,prefer running.25# OR 50# EVEN BETTER.Sierra Foothills(California)local, but out of state?not out of the question, anyone? Cool site....
Arthur Boondock Forge - Thursday, 05/05/05 01:13:00 EDT

Post Vice: I just got an old post vice. I want to mount it so it can be portible but sturdy. how can I do it?
- Bjorn - Thursday, 05/05/05 09:57:41 EDT


Weld a pipe with a plate on top onto a heavy piece of steel. An old truck rim works well. Then mount the vice. You can roll it around, but it's heavy enough to be stable when you use it.
Paw Paw - Thursday, 05/05/05 10:06:11 EDT

vice mount: How portable do you want?
Seriously. I have yet to mount mine, but the base is a piece of 1/2" plate that is about 4 feet across. I will find the biggest pipe flange I can ( so far it is for a 3" pipe) attach it to the plate as PPW said. This will allow me to remove vice if needed. Will also allow me to move the vice, even tho it will be a tad more difficult than PPW's method. But then again I had the plate given to me and so if I did not have it I would scrounge something else.
Ralph - Thursday, 05/05/05 10:46:26 EDT

Bjorn; a post vise trick I learned from a smith who used to travel doing demo's at shopping center parking lots:

Take a 55 gal steel drum---you want one with a removable lid and a bung down on the side away from the lid end.

Take a piece of 2x12---water bed frame works very well---and lay it across the top just covering the curved edge of the drum and scribe the *inside* line where the drum and wood meet.

Cut alongthe line and then mount the wooden piece inside the drum right at the top by drilling oles from the outside and using lag bolts.

Mount the vise to the wood as usual.

To use: put the bung in and fill with water---about 400 pounds of weight keeps it stable and provides a slack tub and fire protection. When done take out the bung and let the water out the barrel is then pretty light and you can store smithing stuff in it---I usually use it for my portable scrap pile and skip using the transit I pop the wedges on the vise and stick the vise in the barrel.

When I work on grass I have the head off an old tamper that I use to trap the leg of the post vise and keep it from being driven into the ground or kicking out sideways under heavy pressure, (I put a couple of drawn out RR spikes around the tamper to prevent it from sliding.)

I've been using the same barrel for over 15 years now and am very happy with it cause it's much lighter to move and much heavier in use than anyother method I've seen.

Thomas P - Thursday, 05/05/05 10:59:53 EDT

Forging under canvas: Do you guys have any ideas on forging under canvas?

I'm setting up a portable SCA smithy for camping event's and trying to figure out a sun/wind shade. I have a couple 19 foot long by 42 inch wide swather canvas I was thinking of using as walls to shelter the forge from wind. And I have a 5'7" x 11'6" canvas tarp I was thinking of making a roof from. Space as in the foot print, and in packing is at a bit of a premium, but reasonable. It usualy is way too bright and hot during the day to safely forge outside during camping season. My forge is a rivet forge with short legs so it's just up off the ground and I work in a sitting position. I will probaly be burning coal, not charcol. I'd love to set up a forge with just a bit of rock and a hole in the ground, but most of the sites I camp at frown on fires directly on the ground.

I never light the forge until I have at least a five gallon pail of water handy, and I usualy keep a rag in the tub to batt out any grass fires.
JimG - Thursday, 05/05/05 12:36:40 EDT

JimG I have been forging under a cotton canvas tarp for about 14 years now at SCA events---same tarp. It's supported on 7.5" tall poles and I have never had any trouble with it getting too hot---not even when welding up billets and I am using a bigger forge than you are.

Note: if it's windy enough to use a wind breat the overhead tarp will probably be billowing too much to use it safely--so I usually just use the overhead one for the wind break.

My tarp was about 10x20' with poles at each corner and one in the middle of the long sides; but I have found that in use I only use 10x10 of the space. I have "crowd ropes that I string on the guy ropes---helps a lot to keep folks from wandering through between you and the anvil when you are making a fast turn to do a can always invite folks inside...

Taking the forge to the SCA's "Grand Outlandish" event the end of May; but due to fire regulations I can only use a propane forge; may drag out the medieval anvils anyway to at least teach them what *should* be used. (I'm signed up to teach several classes)

Thomas P - Thursday, 05/05/05 13:20:25 EDT

Thanks Thomas.
I did see one guy forging at an SCA event once with a propane forge. He said his forge's "persona" was double bellows charcol forge.........

If I waited in this country for the wind to let down to do anything I'd never do anything.

I was kind of thinking of using the binder canvas in the same way you do the crowd ropes.
The current plan is to use 7" poles at the 3/4 length of the tarp with back of the tarp at the 42" height as a shed roof. And then making an hex or octagon shape from the swather canvas. Plans will change 1/2 a dozen times or more I'm sure. Which is why I asked for ideas.
JimG - Thursday, 05/05/05 13:39:42 EDT

Gasoline Forge: Hi Folks,
I'm thinking about making a gasoline fired, and also a diesel fired forge. Has anyone worked with these, or have any ideas on the subject?
- Chuck Holmes - Thursday, 05/05/05 14:55:33 EDT

Perhaps I should have said I have been forging at SCA events since 1981 and under the same cotton canvas tarp for the last 14 years...

Thomas P - Thursday, 05/05/05 15:16:57 EDT

SCA and forges....: JimG, One of the sometimes posters here told me that he was pestered by the SCA correctness police once about his 4 burner
forge. Torin just stated that if he, a 20th century man can be
a 14th Century blacksmith, his forge could be a 14th century charcoal forge. Was never bothered again.
BTW you COULD build a wooden forge and sit it on the ground.
With care you can make it look as a hole in ground etc.

Thomas, what weight canvas? I need to replace the stupid plastic I have with something more durable.
Ralph - Thursday, 05/05/05 16:04:23 EDT

Hello: I use to be a member of anvilfire and have tried to resign up but have not heard any thing. What do I need to do? Thanks William (triw)
- William Weathersby - Thursday, 05/05/05 16:26:19 EDT

Ralph: I used a plastic tarp for a year or so, replacing it twice in that time. I finally ordered a vinyl canvas tarp and it's been up there for over a year with no sign of degradation at all. This is in a place where the ozone and UV levels are high enough to be rated as dangerous. I'm pretty well sold on the vinyl canvas stuff now.
vicopper - Thursday, 05/05/05 16:33:14 EDT

William: Go to the STORE page on the drop-down menu at the upper right of the screen. There, you will find a place to sign up for CSI membership.

You can also click on the CSI link at the bottom of the window on the Guru's Den page.
vicopper - Thursday, 05/05/05 16:36:56 EDT

Ralph "massively heavy" I bought it at an auction where it was covering piles of hardwood lumber. I've never seen stuff this thick anywhere in my whole life.

It is getting tired though; probably good for only another 6 years or so for a total of 20 years use---or about $1/year.

Don't know if I would work under a vinyl roof as the thought of what would happen if it did melt/burn makes me a tad skittish...

I have several SCA forge set-ups ranging from Y1K to Renaissance. (including appropriate bellows and anvil forms as well as tools)

I try my best not to ruin the medieval ambience for others; I can only hope that others will be kind enough to do the same for me.

OTOH when the site owners specify no source of heat but propane fires I can yield to necessity, I did ask before I made plans; if it would have been a problem I could have stayed home and forged that weekend.

Thomas P - Thursday, 05/05/05 16:51:36 EDT

Bjorn, I second the advice you got from Thomas P on a vise stand. I found a 20" diameter steel tank (old water softener) and cut it off to the correct hieght and then welded a plate across part of the top to hold the vise and double as a shelf for wire brushes. I then welded a small plate to the bottom with some gussets as a foot for the vise and bolted it on. I welded a steel coupling on the side near the bottom and threaded in a hose bib. Empty it is easy to move around, full of water it is just barely moveable, plenty stable enough for working. It doubles as my slack tub which is nice in a small space. Jeff
Jeff G - Thursday, 05/05/05 17:23:58 EDT

tarps.....: vicopper, what pray tell are vinyl canvas?
In the 5 years we have had this house I have gone thru 3 of the blue tarps and 3 of the heavyier grey tarps.
Mebbe I will drive into Portland soon and look at what HF has in the way of canvas. Might need to go and see what is availible on the water front too.
Ralph - Thursday, 05/05/05 19:45:51 EDT

Bjorn-- I agree with Paw Paw. A truck rim. Or even bigger, maybe, like a tractor rim. Put a plate across the very bottom so the leg can go down through the top plate and rest on it when smiting and you won't stress the top bracket. A rim big enough that you can stand on the edge of it with one foot whilst (love them Brit words, love 'em!) filing and grinding. But face it: nothing portable is going to be REALLY sturdy in the sense that you can bash it sideways when upsetting without knocking it over.
Miles Undercut - Thursday, 05/05/05 21:55:01 EDT

Forging under Canvas: Personally, I haven't set up a period forge at either an SCA or F & I site. On the other hand, I've seen Jymm Hoffman with his traveling 18th centory forge set up under a canvas fly at F & I and Rev War events since about 1988.
- Gavainh - Thursday, 05/05/05 22:22:50 EDT

Forging under Canvas: Soaking canvas in 2 cups of borax(you do have borax don't you) to a gallon of water and drying on a line will work as a fire retardant and will make the cloth somewhat water repellant.
- Habu - Thursday, 05/05/05 23:14:09 EDT

Ralph,: The stuff is some sort of reinforced vinyl fabric about 1/32" thick, used for store awnings, tarps, signs, etc. The one I got was 12' by 19' and I rodered it made up with grommets every 16" or so all around. It cost me about $200 as I recall. Worth every penny of it, too. It is on a framework I wleded up out of that galvanized tubing used for chain link fencing. I just screwed it to the frame using washers and Tek screws. It has been through one tropical storm with winds up to about 60 mph with no damage, it is exposed to full sunlight for twelve hours a day and we have the highest UV/ozone levels of anywhere in the US.

Check online for vinyl tarps, awning fabric, etc. I can't remember the name of the company, but I have a vague recolleciton it was something with the word "American" in it. My memory is an iffy thing, so it could actually have been almost anything. I'll see if it has a tag or anything on it this weekend. It is still in use, even though the forge has been moved indoors.
vicopper - Friday, 05/06/05 08:29:31 EDT

Many chemicals have been used as fire retardants. Some of these can be toxic, difficult to apply, or alter the quality of fabrics significantly. The 1977 edition of NFPA 701, included some sample uncomplicated formulas:
Formula 1: Borax - 6 parts, 6 lbs, Boric acid - 5 parts, 5 lbs, Water - 100 parts, 12 gallons. Steep fabric in cool solution until impregnated. Heavy applications by spray or brush are usually reasonably effective. Repeat if necessary. This is good for theater scenery fabric, and recommended for rayon and natural fabrics. Yields a 8 - 12 % weighting. Formula 2: Borax - 7 parts, 7 lbs, Boric acid - 3 parts, 3 lbs, Water - 100 parts, 12 gallons. Water can be varied according to absorptive capacity of fabric. For rayon and sheer fabrics, these same amounts of borax and boric acid can be used with 17 gallons of water. Hand-wring for an 8 - 10% weighting on fabric. Flexibility and softness will be retained without dustiness, and also microorganism growth is prevented.

Reprinted from Art Hazards News, Vol. 17 No. 2

Fire Retardant for theatre
- Habu - Friday, 05/06/05 08:46:37 EDT

Vise Portability: the other way is to abjure it and just put a vise at every work station. I've got a light and a heavy postvise in the forging area, one in the armouring area, one on my welding table, one on the barrel for travelling and a couple more tucked away till I get the forging porch built.

Well I gave up and started working on a PW knife before I got the shop wired, spent 2 hours doing what would have taken 10 minutes with the bader, sigh, but it was a good workout for the arms and shoulders! (given what they feel like today) I did cheat and remove the scale with an angle grinder as good files are hard to come by and easy to mess up.

Working on another snake; I want to have enough to be worth getting a booth at the farmer's market on the plaza, and I hate production so I work on one everytime I'm working on something else.

Thomas P - Friday, 05/06/05 11:18:59 EDT

Ralph, the waterfront should work. Get what the boat top people use as one option. There are a number of web sites that make and ship custom tarps to your sketch and dimensions with many features. Search for "Truck Tarps" There are at least two weights of vinyl coated fabric.

And listen to Vic. His tarp setup gets used heavy. It RAINS there. And the sun is indeed VERY hot. grin.

Vic, if the wind isn't too bad, you can weld with solid wire and 75/25 shielding gas outside. I do it all the time. You will know INSTANTLY when the wind has removed the gas from the puddle. If your nozzle insulator isn't built into the nozzle, you may want to get a couple of insulators also. And the gas nozzle. Overhead welding may let sputterballs into the nozzle which may cause the gas nozzle/tip holder and the insulator to need replacement.
- Tony - Friday, 05/06/05 11:51:42 EDT

LIVE-SNAKES: THOMAS P.: On a different note. We have had four people snake-bit this year. We normally will not have more than one or two for the whole snake season.
It seems the snakes are not hissing, much less rattling.
Once, when I was a kid, I beleive it was 1953. The rattlesnakes chased us just like racers. For some reason they were not warning us away, but were very aggresive. I have never seen or heard of this since then. It may be another year of that, so be carefull. They are too well camouflaged, when they strike without warning.

sandpile - Friday, 05/06/05 12:11:48 EDT

What is something i could make from mild steel that is 1/4" by 1". I need to make something that i can sell but the only tools i have is a cross pien hammer. sledge hammer, hardie, tongs of course, and of course an anvil. Does anyone have any ideas on where i could find some instuctions to something i could make? If so thanks for the info.
- Corey - Friday, 05/06/05 14:13:29 EDT

tarps etc: Tony,
suprisingly it gets fairly hot here too. And since I live in the PNWet I too get rain. Perhaps not as much as the VI but plenty for me.
Ralph - Friday, 05/06/05 14:20:44 EDT

Ralph: You actually probably get much more rain than we do; ours just comes at the rate of 2"/hr when it comes. Really, really BIG drops, too. But the real killer of tarps here is the ozone and the UV levels. The vinyl and polyester fabrics are what holds up the best. If youare willing to spend lavishly, a fabric called Sunbrella™ is the go-ahead stuff...about $25/yd down here. Guess why I used the vinyl? Grin.
vicopper - Friday, 05/06/05 14:31:45 EDT

Corey, 1/4"x1"x?????

I've assumed you have looked through the 160+ projects listed on the iForge link?

Decorative hooks, tongs, boot scrapers, Garden arbors, door knockers, Window protective screening, fences...

Thomas P - Friday, 05/06/05 15:15:21 EDT

Flame Retardant Canvas: Since Gavainh had to mention it, I should respond. Yes, photos are also posted on the photos for anvilfire/yahoo site. I forge under canvas and have watched some people get big eyes as the charcoal sparks go up and hit the canvas....

So do you want good flame retardant material, say a tarp ready to put up, or do you want to make it?

Not that I have a lot of money, but I found that I am better off pounding iron than trying to make something from nothing (unless it is iron.) I have been through the routine of trying to use painters tarps, etc. They only work for the short term and require a lot of preparation work, normally about 4 times what I figured it should take. However, if you want the best ready made tarp, go to: . Look for material information about fire retardant material. Check out awnings in particular as their "tarps" are designed for "trekkers." Granted I am prejudice since I make their tent stakes, but when I have compared overall quality, you can not beat them. I have been using 2 of their 12' X 15' tarps or what they call awnings for wall tents for over 10 years. I have not only forged under them, but also cooked under, slept under, still water proof.
- Jymm Hofman - Friday, 05/06/05 15:51:48 EDT

Torin from Colorado?: Ralph, My son and a Torin used to SCA together.
Frank Turley - Friday, 05/06/05 19:17:00 EDT

Anvil Collectors: A buddy of mine has a Star brand sawmakers anvil he would like to sell. It is approx 14 inches tall, face is 6 1/4 by 12. It pegged out on a 250 pound scale. It is in very good condition. Came out of Haban Saw Shop in Columbus Oh. The anvil is in Columbus still. He would like to have $800.00 for it. If you would like to see pics, shoot me an email and I'll send you some.
- Jeff G. - Friday, 05/06/05 20:15:20 EDT

try again
Jeff G. - Friday, 05/06/05 20:16:17 EDT

Torin was in Idaho and is now in PA. But I have no idea if he spent time in Colo....
Ralph - Friday, 05/06/05 21:21:42 EDT

Ralph,: Wrong Torin. Thanks.
Frank Turley - Friday, 05/06/05 23:56:46 EDT

UV resistant "canvas": The woven uncoated stuff used on boats is acrilic. "Sumbrella" by Glenn Ravin is the standard, and it is pricey. I dont know much about the coated products, I think they cost a little less. Tedlar is a name that comes to mind for awning fabric, not sure if that is a brand or a material. Cotton canvas will take the UV as well as anything, but will rot from moisture.
Dave Boyer - Saturday, 05/07/05 01:14:05 EDT

Tedlar: Tedlar is a polymer product. I have seen it in the form of film, but not as a canvass type material. I have seen it used as a very thin, very high strenght wing covering for ultra-light aircraft. Think Mylar but stronger.
ptree - Saturday, 05/07/05 08:10:30 EDT

ptree -- That is the stuff, it is used as the weather resistant outer layer of the fabric. Doyle tried to use it calandered over polyester reinforcing fibers for sail cloth, it didn't work because a green algee grew in the fibers,& customers complaned.The Tedlar was transparent.
- Dave Boyer - Saturday, 05/07/05 23:03:40 EDT

Blacksmith Days at Rough and Tumble June 10&11th: Are any of You planing to atend this event? It is held near Lancaster, Pa. I was thinking of contacting them about puting it on the Anvilfire calander of events. Rough & Tumble has a website: I have been going to the Gas & Steam engine meets all My life, I have never been to this event.
Dave Boyer - Sunday, 05/08/05 00:27:46 EDT

wrought iron: I want to start my own bussiness constructing ornamental fencing, but dont know where to start. I'm an accomplished welder(mig,tig)having worked with stainless,carbon steel and aluminum.Gotta stop making other peoplemore money than I can earn. Any ideas?
- John - Sunday, 05/08/05 03:52:59 EDT

mo money: John,

Most privite bus. owners are not only proud to, but willing to talk about how they got started. Make friends with one that has a good track record and interview him( or her ). Then make a plan, then another, and another,and another. Point is most "NEW" biz. owners go broke 3 to 5 times before they ' Get It Right '(GIT);) .
By the way if your trade is weilding, why muck about? Stick to what you know, or enjoy. Some of the most fulfilled and best biz. owners are doing what they love the most. Thats why they are the best at it.
- Timex - Sunday, 05/08/05 04:19:28 EDT

John: P.S.

Make a welding truck or two, and hire out or rent them to other welders. Use this money to help with your 'ornate ' gates Idea. If done right the trucks will pay for them selfs and more, If taken care of. Oh and K.I.S.S.-- Look it up!. Along with F.M.T.S.O.M.F. and S.U.G.I.G.H.( a quote from Eric Cartman, South park )
- Timex - Sunday, 05/08/05 04:31:19 EDT

John: I'm probably going to sound like the Grinch that stole Christmas, but it needs to be said. If you don't know where to start at getting into business, then you have no business going into business. You will almost certainly go broke. You first need to prepare yourself.

The same way that you wouldn't start to weld inside a pressure vessel without proper personal protective equipment, you can't start in business without preparation. That means you first take business courses at the local college so you understand at least simple accounting, how to form a business plan, basic tax law, liability law, labor law and business management practices. It is actually more important to know *business* than it is to know welding, if you want to be profitable. If you're unwilling or unable to do the business part, you need a partner with that knowledge or you need to hire a business manager.

When starting any business, you need to expect that the first two to five years will be operated at a loss. That means you need that much reserve capital to carry your expenses until you become profitable. Whether or not money is coming in, it will most assuredly be going out. Under-capitalization is the cause of death of most new businesses; roughly 3/4 of all new businesses fail within five years.

I don't know what your personal finances or circumstances are, so I can't give you any specific advice. You can get some of that advise through the Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) and through publications of the Small Business Administration (SBA), as well as a plethora of publications from successful entreprenuers (some useful, much garbage).

Finally, you said, "Gotta stop making other people more money than I can earn." Right now you are almost certainly making more money, in your pocket, than 9 out of 10 small business owners. Without the headaches and risk.
vicopper - Sunday, 05/08/05 08:35:15 EDT

As vicopper said, knowing business and how to do the books is critical. So is the capital to survive the starving years. Our local paper just had an article on an ornamental blacksmith. He had $50,000 in revenue last year! But!!! he works 10 hour days at the shop, and spends 4-5 hours working on bids at the house. He has been in biz for 4 years. Doubled his revenue each year. So.. $25,000 last year, $12,500 the year before, and $6250 the year before that. Perfect illustration of Vicopper's statements on finances.I have a hobby biz, and lucky to have a fantastic biz manager who keeps the books. While she happens to have been my wife for the last 24 years this month, marrying a lawyer does have its benefits!!!!
ptree - Sunday, 05/08/05 08:50:47 EDT

Bidness:: I am a trim carpenter. Self employed. I have a builders license. Am I a builder? No. The builders I work for are not carpenters. They are mangagers, salesmen, and much more PC than I am. They have the people skills and patience that I lack. I do what I do, what I am qualified for. I know my limitations.
Bob H - Sunday, 05/08/05 11:21:14 EDT

John: Certainly you can start your own business, people do it every day. Keep in mind that the minute you do, you have instant employees to feed. The phone co., Your landlord/mortgage holder (if you are going to have a physical location), The electric co., Gas/oil co., Your insurance agent, materials supplier, etc... These people need to be fed before you ever sell a piece, and each month thereafter. None of them care the slightest bit if you've had a "slow" month. Optional employees you may need include; a printer (Biz cards, flyers, etc...) A book keeper, a lawyer, a tax accountant. You may be able to do some or most of these things yourself. If so, keep in mind that while doing these chores you will have less time to do the actual fence building. This is in no way meant to discourage, but you said you didn't know where to start. The previous responses you got already are all excellent. Read 'em a few times.
Gronk - Sunday, 05/08/05 12:57:52 EDT

Ornamental Iron as a Business: First, I would subscribe to the magazine of the ornamental iron business- Its called the Fabricator, and you can get it for about 25 bucks a year, from Nomma, the national organisation of people who just do ornamental iron.
If you are serious about this, I would join the organisation- it costs more, something like $250, but it would really be worth it. Then I would go to their annual conference- you will learn an enormous amount, meet others who are successful at it, and you can talk to them about what they do and how they do it. These guys have some overlap with blacksmiths, and I have met 20 or 30 of them over the years at Abana conferences- they are very friendly and helpful guys.
Their organisation sells how to videotapes on things like railings and spiral stairs, idea books on ornamental fences, and of course they have all the suppliers of tools and parts advertising.

All the advice everyone else gave you about business is of course, true. But I know a lot of people, myself included, who went right ahead and ignored all that advice, and started businesess anyway, and are still at it. Biggest factor in success seems to be, watch your money. Watch it coming in, watch it going out, and dont borrow any. If you cant pay cash for it, in the first few years, then you cant afford it.
P-tree- you are giving away the fact that you have had a real paycheck for a long time, if you think grossing $50,000 a year is impressive- cause in a small shop, you get to keep 1/4 to1/3 of what you gross, which means that this guy is doing about as well as a burger flipper. But it sounds like he is on the right track, doubling his gross every year. Where I live, there are a couple of dozen of real blacksmiths who make a living in their shops, who gross 2 to 10 times that amount. And aint none of em driving cadillacs- the money comes in, and it goes right out again.
ries - Sunday, 05/08/05 14:34:54 EDT

Jim PAW-PAW Wilson hospitalized:
Jim is in the Yadkinville hospital with pneumonia. No other details yet.
- guru - Sunday, 05/08/05 20:51:24 EDT

Most business advisors will tell you that you need a minimum of a year's cash flow in the bank and two years is better and that as most small businesses do not really make money until their third year. . . That money in the bank is CAPITAL and it is nearly impossible to start a business without it. AND once you are going there is working capital necessary to to keep the bills paid while YOU wait to get paid.

The working capital does not include the tools and machinery you need. It should cover rent, utilities, YOUR PAY, and employees pay until things are going good.

THEN there is the matter of a shop rate. In the US your shop has to gross a minimum of $100/hr for you to MAKE $50K. Now if you charge $50/hr you can easily end up making nothing. I could go through all the numbers but I have done so many times in the past and as VIcopper pointed out, if you can't figure it out yourself you don't have any business in business.

However, I WILL give you a clue. If you are VERY focused and VERY lucky you will have 50% productive hours in your shop. Start there.

It is very difficult to make more than just a living off your own labor. To make more requires you to have employees. This makes you more of a manager than ever and one employee rarely pays as you need a second part time employee (an accountant) just because you have the first. Employees are rarely as efficient as you are (close to 30%) so you still need to charge $100/hr shop rate for THEIR time so that you make some profit off of them at the end of the year.

When you charge that high rate you also have to be VERY efficient. In ironwork your competition today is in China, India, Mexico and Pakistan. Folks there are making everything from compents for you or your competition to completed panels to be installed. They are also starting to make all the little bric-a-brac items that have been the mainstay of many small blacksmith shops. If you get into forge work you have to be both GOOD and efficeint. Like many other industries even the small business owner is in a global market competing against slave wage products. SO FAR it has been proven it can be done. But it is not easy.
- guru - Sunday, 05/08/05 21:15:06 EDT

Portalble Vises:
The 55 gallon drum with vise mount is the best I have used. The next best is the one I show in our VICE FAQs. However, the plate needs some ribbing as it is springy. This shows up the worst when filing or sawing. Standing on the plate you can apply ALL the bending force you want.

Most other "stands" are worthless as they are not even sturdy enough for simple filing much less bending, sawing or hammering. Even a big block of steel weighing hundreds of pounds does little for you when you have a 3 foot lever (the vise) attached to it.

Farriers carry a work bench on which they set their anvil. This gives the bench some mass. The vise is usualy a custom foot operated thing with angled jaws. The jaw angle has the user applying force DOWNWARD at 45 degrees into the bench when filing thus not springing the "stand".

Poratable and "vice" used together is almost an oxymoron. You cannot beat a vice on a HEAVY bench or a bench bolted to the wall. But there is nothing more frustrating than a vise that won't hold still. You might as well clamp the work in Vise Grips and hold it in your hand. . .
- guru - Sunday, 05/08/05 21:37:32 EDT

Porrtable Vises:
Bruce Blackistone has what he calls a "field experdiant" vice. There is a photo of it at the end of his helment making articel on the Armoury page. He added two legs to a leg vice to make a tripod out of it. The working angle is odd but it it pretty solid.
- guru - Sunday, 05/08/05 21:40:00 EDT

Reis, I noted that what the blacksmith made in the paper had coming in was revenue, not profit, I noted that the first years were very small. I was bemoaning the fact the after three years he only had $50,000 in revenue. Hard to get the tone in a dry post.
And yes I get a regular paycheck as I and my 5 dependents would starve on my blacksmithing.
ptree - Sunday, 05/08/05 21:50:25 EDT

Self employment: Been there, done that, lost the t-shirt. Prepare to take on 2 very hungry dependents; The IRS and your liability insurance carrier. The IRS will want theirs every quarter, before you even make it, and the insurance company wants to base the premiums on a percentage of your gross. Welding is a high risk business, wherein you stand a better than average chance of blowing things up, or burning them down. That trailer you built for that guy down the road ? The tongue just broke at 70 MPH. Are you carrying product liability coverage ? Check out the cost of medical coverage as a non-group policy holder. Brace yourself. Oh, and that deduction for Social Security you were paying through your employer.... double that. I hate to be the one to rain on your parade, but if you're serious about self employment, you'd better be serious and dedicated. (And, have a very patient and understanding wife, who should also be a CPA.)Good luck.
3dogs - Monday, 05/09/05 01:55:08 EDT

Pete F: Worried about PPW;
A thick skin and a huge heart will only get you so far in the hospital.
Hang in there Paw Paw!....Pete F
Pete F - Monday, 05/09/05 02:10:53 EDT

G.E.D or Diploma?: Guys, I really want to become a smith, but Im not very good at math* - which makes completing school itself difficult. Now before we get deep into this post let me get you all to understand what I mean by I am bad at math, I have trouble learning algebra's - they dont make sense to me and it's likely due to the teacher's I had wanting students to use their method even if we couldn't hope to begin understanding it. Now, to the heart of the post, I do good at doing division, multiplication and I can do a bit of algebra and geometry but am not great at them.

Here are some questions...

- Many people feel I should get my G.E.D since im 19 and still in high school, and really I do see their point since if I get this I can be out faster and begin studying welding, engineering and other things I would actually need to do this career, so is there a critical difference for blacksmiths that have GEDs and ones with Diplomas or can both go just as far?

- As I mentioned Im not exactly the Master of Mathematics, will I still be able to become a good blacksmith even though Im not great at math?

- From what I read about the Sword Making part in the FAQ it sounds like swords are harder to make than knives and are done by advanced smiths right? So what should I start off working on?

- This one I ask because it's one of the places I found in my area but here it goes.. have any of you heard of BAM and can you give me information about it that you may have? It's a smithing association in Missouri but I want to make sure if they are good or not because really I dont care if I lose a bit of money but like martial arts unlearning a improper technique isn't easy and I dont want to go through that.

- I hope to become a smith of fences, swords, knives and the ilk, so far I've decided I'll probably need to learn Welding, Engineering and Smithing but even after I do all this guys where do I go from there? I cant just say 'hey... I want to open up a shop' because like my dad was a carpenter he had to build up a 'name' for himself and then he opened his own business, how would I go about doing this for myself in smithing?

Thank you all who give their time to help me out with my questions, I apologize if they are annoying, but try to remember we were all new to things at some point, but before I finish this post here's a odd idea I had while leaving martial arts class one day..

- If you made a sword or knife with a magnet in the pommel, hilt or blade or a place that use of the weapon wouldn't result in demagnetizing it, one side would deflect metals and the other would draw them right?
Logically wouldn't this be useful to someone who would actually use them for duels and is it possible?
[Some of you may think this sounds dumb but as I said it's just an idea - im sure the lamp that responds to clapping was called dumb too at first but look at it now.]

Sumner - Monday, 05/09/05 07:35:42 EDT

Dang; someone tell Paw Paw, we ain't ready to carve an X on his touchmark! We have years of ribbing left that was custom designed for him. He's got that nes(OLD) anvil coming down the pike...and his wife will *kill* him if he doesn't get better!

Thomas P - Monday, 05/09/05 10:34:03 EDT

Sumner; the first thing to consider is "How are you going to support yourself while learning smithing and building your reputation?"

As you mentioned welding it might be a good idea to look into a "day" job welding and work on the smithing nights and weekends.

The folks looking to hire you will probably be more interested in your welding certs than if you did HS or GED before you started welding school.

Since you are fairly close look into going to the American Bladesmith's School in Texarkana AR.

BAM is just a good group of smiths hanging out. Cost should be minimal---mainly to pay for the newsletter and let me tell you *1* "trick of the trade" learnt from someone making a living at it could pay your membership cost for a decade! If you want to work for a commercial smith---how are you going to meet them without spending time with other smiths?

*NO* a magnet will attract ferrous metals from either pole. Try it out.

Having a swordblade that can be manipulated by your opponent's metal:blade/shield/armour turns out not to be such a good idea...("Now that your sword is stuck to my shield I will drop it and make holes in you to let out the sanguine humours...")

As for math; one thing that helped me was to go to a used book store and get a textbook written by a different author; sometimes their explinations made a lot more sense to me than the textbook we used in class

Thomas P - Monday, 05/09/05 10:48:40 EDT

Sumner: You need your GED! If you skip it, you will close a lot of doors in your future.

You need a basic facility with math to be a good metalworker - this means Geometry, Trig & Algebra *at least*. If you dont get this, you will always be working around this "special weakness" and will depend on others to do this stuff for you. I am a mathematician by trade and have done a fair amount of math teaching. You are quite right that the instructor makes a big difference in this subject. You might try out your local community college where these classes are often taught.

Bite the bullet - do the math - get the GED
adam - Monday, 05/09/05 10:54:55 EDT

To address your questions:
- I've known guys with a wide range of educational backgrounds, from GED to PhD. A higher level of education is always better, but is not necessary to be an excellent smith. Get as much as you can, but more importantly, make the most of what you can get.

-Math is an important skill for blacksmithing, but you needed be a master mathematician to blacksmith as many of the formulas used in layout are used over and over again. Repetition makes them easier to learn over time.

-Start learinig by making basic smithing items: hooks, nails, tongs etc. Get a feel for working steel and see if you like it.

-BAM is a great organization. If you want to smith, you'd do well to be a member. Just remember, these guys are blacksmiths first. Some may make knives, some may not. They all have something they can teach you. You might also consider checking out the American Bladesmith Society. These guys are all about blades, and have a school in Southern Arkansas, so not too far from your neck of the woods.

- Welding courses are a must, as well as a lot of fun. Any smithing courses you can get will quickly advance you on "the path". If you're contemplating your own business, I'd recommend some business classes. It'll save you a lot of learning pains (see business discussions above).

-Finally, I'm not so sure about the magnet idea. However, it demonstrates innovative thinking, and that's a major bonus in our world.

Good Luck!
eander4 - Monday, 05/09/05 11:10:48 EDT

Hm..: Well guys thanks for your input, but I did definitly plan on getting a GED at the least and I can probably pay a bit of money to hire a math tutor to help me learn that on some of my free time.

- As for the Magnet sword If I try it i'll probably do it to a large sword that generally has the weight to "steal" another metal object instead of Being stolen :P
Matthew - Monday, 05/09/05 11:57:09 EDT

Jock??: Any update on Paw Paw today?
- Larry - Monday, 05/09/05 14:40:42 EDT

Matthew: School and GED.

Either graduate or get the GED. You will need at least some form of formal education to get buy in life.Let alone get ahead. I dropped out of school at 15 and went back when I was 16 and got my deploma. Yes it was hard. Yes I hated it. Yes I had to work part time instead of full time and damn near starved. But as soon as my employer found out; he worked with me(hours and pay) and I ended up as a shop forman instead of a shop peon.( After I went to a finishing school) pay diff: Peon= 4.25hr+ on overtime.
Shop Forman= 45hr+ overtime+medical
nuff said.

Mag Sword:

Hmmn neat Idea but magnets attract at both poles. Second most 'sword play' bouts are won by speed and guile. Not by grabbing or trapping ones blade with the opponents. Unless you are a Floritine style fighter.( two swords, cause sheilds are fer lossers :> ). Keep thinking about it though. Your mind is in the right place.
- Timex - Monday, 05/09/05 15:01:01 EDT

i recently saw an actual anvil shoot on
- rugg - Monday, 05/09/05 15:58:50 EDT

anvil shoot: i recently saw an actual anvil shoot on "wild boys". i think the shooter's name was (last name) ryan. i was very surprised how high the anvil went. it was completely under the surface of the ground after it landed. dramatic demo. any one know who this "ryan" is? he claims to have over a hundred shoots. by the way he walked away after lighting the fuse, i believe him..
- rugg - Monday, 05/09/05 15:59:20 EDT

BAM: I'm a new member of BAM, and I recently attended the anual conference. I was a TON of fun. Everyone is soooo nice. The newsletter comes every other month. It's pretty good. The cost for membership for one year is $25. If you joi you should really go to the meetings.

-From another high school smith
- Bjorn - Monday, 05/09/05 16:46:56 EDT

"I was a TON of fun."

My goodness! Somebody's pretty full of himself. (grin)

eander4 - Monday, 05/09/05 17:09:06 EDT

Vises: I have to agree with you about a heavy vise stand not being enough. I made a "vise" from a pair of vise grips and attached it to a 30" piece of pipe and a base I can park one wheel of my Honda Civic on. I use it to hold stock I'm sawing up at the steel center (with my car, I have to). It works great, but I have to use a front wheel -- the back ones lift off the ground too easily.
Mike B - Monday, 05/09/05 18:51:38 EDT

i am trying to find blacksmiths in new zealand. i was being taught how to blacksmith but unfortunatley my freind and mentor has passed away and i am looking to find others that are interested inthis that could maybe help me with information
- Justin - Monday, 05/09/05 19:24:34 EDT

Sumner: If You cant get a diploma this school year [including summer school] You should start preping for the GED now. When You study "shop math" in a trade related course it will be taught from a practical standpoint rather than the theoretical as in high school. It will make a lot more sense, and be a little easier to grasp. Any type of layout work will require a working knolege of algebra, Geometry, & Trig, engineering gets into it pretty heavy.
Dave Boyer - Tuesday, 05/10/05 00:55:45 EDT

PPW Update: PPW Update Midnight May 9 From the prayer list

Jim was moved to Forsyth Hospital in Winston-Salem today (May 9) and is in the Critical Care Unit. He has pneumonia and with his COPD is in serious condition. He is receiving high powered antibiotics and lots of oxygen and breathing treatments.

Our home address is

Jim Wilson
4714 Granite Trail
Boonville, NC 27011

I think cards will be fine and if he is confined, they will help him feel in touch. I have been printing out a few messages and reading them to him. He seems to appreciate that. Thanks for all your prayers.

Sheri Wilson

Sheri can take cards and letter sent to their home, to the hospital, for Jim to read.
Ntech - Tuesday, 05/10/05 02:36:34 EDT

Decorative Metal Work.: Ever wondered how the early 1900s decorative metal workers
transformed ideas and designs into metal work?

Today's Metal Craft workers should truly appreciate the artistic skills practiced by the decorative metal artisans from almost one hundred years ago.

Many people have realise that decorative metalworking is undergoing a new renaissance, there are many people are involved in hobby metal craft.
A basic set of hand tools can be used by metal workers to create fine metal work items.
The magnificent ornamental metalwork's found on many historic public buildings in the USA, United Kingdom, Canada etc, are indeed an interesting lesson in creative metal work.

There are a few old books that explain the methods, techniques and simple tools used to create beautiful designs in metal, whether it happens to be bent wirework, creative sheet metal work, or the wrought iron work created by many creative blacksmiths.

An insight into the methods used to design & create, and an
explanation of metals can be found be reading an original 1906 book, now available as an ebook.
Decorative Metal Work.
Cee Jay. - Tuesday, 05/10/05 07:50:19 EDT

Is that a paid ad, or an endorsement? Methinks 'tis an UNpaid ad. Make me wrong.
3dogs - Tuesday, 05/10/05 10:47:36 EDT

Anvil shoot: Rugg, that's Tim Ryan. He's very good at anvil shooting, to the extent that he can accurately predict the point of impact within a three-foot radius. He's a good smith, too!
Alan-L - Tuesday, 05/10/05 10:59:15 EDT

Yep, looks like an unsolicited, unpaid ad to me, too.
Alan-L - Tuesday, 05/10/05 11:00:23 EDT

anvil shoot : alan, i did not see the bottom of the anvil that was "shot", i suspect that the base was hollowed out to contain more powder. between the two anvils, he had clay. i think i have seen the name tim ryan before, maybe as a demonstrator? where does he hail from? i think the shoot was in tenessee..just curious.

JPPW; hope he pulls out of it OK. i have never met him, but he has always been willing to help me "off site", several times, and that says a lot for someone who he has never actually met..
- rugg - Tuesday, 05/10/05 11:15:04 EDT

rugg, Tim Ryan is or was asociated with FABA ( Florida)
Ralph - Tuesday, 05/10/05 12:21:36 EDT

Cee Jay: Hey dude this isn't ebay, Nor is it an advertisment co.
Do the right thing and buy some ad space!
- Timex - Tuesday, 05/10/05 16:02:20 EDT

Paw Paw: I'm praying for you and your wife, and I won't hammer untill you pull through this. So hurry up and get better already.
- Timex - Tuesday, 05/10/05 16:07:01 EDT

Ads: Ok guys, just hold up a minute here before we jump all over Cee Jay
According to the rules Jock has posted for this forum

"Buying, selling, trading of metalworking tools and equipment. We would prefer dealers to purchase advertising space but we will not throw you out or censor your posts (let your conscious be your guide)."

Lets be freindly and welcoming to him and make him feel this is a place that he wants to advertize at. Besides if we're not nice I'm gonna tell Paw-Paw and then we're gonna get what for when he comes home!
JimG - Tuesday, 05/10/05 16:17:46 EDT

Tim Ryan: Rugg. . Check out our anvilfire NEWS vol 30 for the last SouthEast conference. Next one is in less than two weeks and Tim will be shooting the anvil AGAIN.

Tim Ryan is more well known as an auctioneer and has auctioned hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of stuff off at various chapter and ABANA events.

Tim and the SouthEastern Conference anvil shoot were at the heart of the ABANA controversy over anvil shoots which resulted in the "chapters" becoming "affiliates" with less support from ABANA than ever before. ABANA had a "no anvil shoots policy" and threw out the members of the Southern Conference even though it was NOT an ABANA event NOR an ABANA chapter event. ABANA claimed that you could not get insurance for anvil shoots (you can, its no different than fireworks or cannon fire insurance). They also illegaly tossed Tim off the ABANA board then claimed he was not holding up his end of the work on the LaCross, WI conference. . .
SBA, Inc.
- guru - Tuesday, 05/10/05 17:25:20 EDT

Missionary Opportunity: Dear Fellow Blacksmiths,

My name is Mike Deibert and I’m originally from Bellevue, Ohio. Currently I am a missionary in Managua, Nicaragua. I’m writing to let you all know about something new and exciting that is going on in Nicaragua.
This coming fall I, along with Missionary Ventures International will be starting a vocational school in an effort to train young men an women in a trade to help support themselves. Initially the school will have two main areas of teaching: metals and woods. The reason I am writing to you folks as a group is that I will be teaching blacksmithing as a part of the metals program. I have lived in Nicaragua for three years so I have been developing this vision for a while.
What I would like to see is a group of experienced blacksmiths coming to Nicaragua from time to time for a week or so, like a short-term missions team, to teach blacksmithing. If you are interested in this in the slightest or if you’d like to help us out by donating tools or finances (all is tax-deductible and 100% goes towards missions) please send me an email. I would love to send you more detailed information or answer any questions you may have. This is a great way to reach out to a third world country and share your knowledge of blacksmithing. Thank you for any consideration you give.

In Christ,

Please write me at:
- Mike Deiber - Tuesday, 05/10/05 17:29:27 EDT

Rules: Jim, think you for pointing out the rules to the crew.
- guru - Tuesday, 05/10/05 17:30:56 EDT

Good Books: It is indeed an ad, I checked it out. And the price is waaaaay too high. I purchased a copy on CD, of J.W. Lillico's book on powerhammer forging from Brian Gilbert for a whopping TEN BUCKS. Now that is a good deal. Almost thirty bucks for an e-book is just too high.

While it may not be outside the letter of the law, posting it here instead of buying space smacks of cheapness to me; not appropriate when the product is that expensive. This is MY opinion, and should not be construed to represent Anvilfire, CSI, CIA, FBI or anyone else.
vicopper - Tuesday, 05/10/05 17:33:56 EDT

Math in Blacksmithing:
According to all the OLD trade manuals blacksmithing required an 8th grade education. However, at the time that was written an 8th grade education included basic algebra and plane trignonmetry.

ALL craftsfolk need some mathematics. They need to understand ratios, scales and proportioning as well as understand the difference in volume increases with the cube of the increase in size. They need to know how to layout a square corner using the Pythagorianism theorem, 3,4,5 or 5,12,13 triangles. They need enough math to use any of the algebra or geometry in Machinery's Handbook.

When pricing by quantity you need to know how to estimate one offs as well as items by the thousands then apply them to a square log curve or end up loosing your shirt when a buyer that is more mathematicaly astute than you asks for a quote on thousands when they are going to only buy a dozen. . . This is actually calculus but it can be faked IF you understand a little trig.

When setting up machinery you need to know how to determine missing OEM pulley setups and then apply that to available motors or parts. In production setups you need to know forces and correct speeds and feeds.

You need know the ratios between volumes so that EVERY project is not trial and error. You need to know how to do your own business taxes OR understand the tax code well enough to explain to your accountant what IS and IS NOT deductible or know enough to ask. . .

AND as has been pointed out you will need a job to support yourself while you collect tools and learn this hard to make pay-off trade.

AND if you had read my Swordmaking article closely I pointed out that the top people in the field have advanced degrees or their equivalent. If you want to take a few courses outside of a college or University degree program they will require you to have at least graduated from high school.

Being self employed in the modern world is NOT an occupation for the educationaly challanged. If you think school is tough try figuring out zoning laws, EPA regs, Heattreating specs AND taxes. . .
- guru - Tuesday, 05/10/05 18:23:50 EDT

tim ryan: guru, thanks for the info. i went to the SBA site and noticed a picture of mike boone and his dad. i have tried to find mike's website for some time, but apparently, someone bought his address and it is just an advertising hub. do you know of a new site or address? appreciate any help...thanks
rugg - Tuesday, 05/10/05 19:09:41 EDT

Anvil Shoots: A couple of years ago, I attended the Antique Power Show in Macon, Missouri. I was mainly interested in hit and miss gas engines, but there was a little bit of everything, including about 8 or 9 Steam engines, somewhere around 100 tractors, 30 teams of pulling horses, etc. It is a 4 day event and well worth going to see if you get a chance.
Anyway, I was talking to a guy who had about 3 or 4 hit and miss engines, and brought up that there was an anvil shoot listed in the program, and where would it be ? He volunteered that he was the one who did it, and would I like to be there when he did? Hell, y
He had 2 Peter Wrights, about 180 according to the markings. He did'nt know how to read the markings, so I showed him. The top anvil he had ground out a hollow dead center in the bottom, probably 3 inches round by about an inch deep. He filled this up with gunpowder that he bought at Walmart in one pound jars. Then, he smeared peanut butter all around the edge of the base, quite liberally. To this he placed a piece of brown shopping bag, and pressed it down to seal it. Then, the bottom one was upside down on top of a piece of 1 1/2 inch plate, about 18 inches in diameter. It too had a hollow ground out, but not as pronounced as the top anvil. He filled this up and smeared peanut butter on it.
Then, he took the upper anvil, and we turned it over, placing it on top of the bottom one, The kraft paper holds the gunpowder in place while you are doing this. The top anvil has a hole drilled through the side to the pocket. A fuse is placed in this, and then we all stand at attention whil the National anthem is sung for the opening of todays grandstand event. At the end, he lights it and we run like hell. It went about 45 or 50 feet up, and landed about 10 feet away.
Two important things he told me: don't use a cast iron aanvil on top. He did at first, and found the leg about 100 feet away. Don't use crunchy peanut butter, as it doesn't give a good seal.
He does this for about 5 or 6 events at this show, and the first time or two, the anvil doesn't fly very high, since it is driving the plate into the ground and compacting it. By the third or fourth, it is getting some altitude. I have a full set of pictures of this, and if I can find them, will post a couple.
- Loren T - Tuesday, 05/10/05 20:55:12 EDT

more surgury: Just found out I will be having the pleasure of more surgury.
Wound area form the radiation treatment area is NOT healing. So it was decided that I need to have the bad area removed. INCLUDING the tissue under the skin. Then skin and tissue ( including muscle) will be relocated from my upper back and pulled over to cover the now LARGER and new hole in my armpit......
Not sure when it is to happen. See the specialist on the 18th.
Ralph - Tuesday, 05/10/05 21:17:38 EDT

source for tin: Does anyone have a source for tin or tinsmith supplies? I would like to try to hot-dip my forged forks and spoons in tinplate. I tried pewter but it did not work at all. The molten pewter just ran off. Obviously, I am not doing this right. Anyone have experience with this?
- Robert Dean - Tuesday, 05/10/05 22:53:23 EDT

Robert: YOu need to have the steel clean to bare shiny metal, then flux it with some rosin or tallow. Tallow was the standard for old time tinkers, I believe.

vicopper - Tuesday, 05/10/05 22:56:07 EDT

Paw-Paw:: Hang in there! Hope to see your cantankerous self online again soon. Semper Fi!
Koomori - Tuesday, 05/10/05 23:05:58 EDT

Robert: You could always electro plate it( copper, silver, gold)
- Timex - Wednesday, 05/11/05 03:28:46 EDT

Robert, IIRC McMaster-Carr sells tin by the pound.

There is a description of tinning steel objects in "Divers Arts" that recommends filing *clean* and without touching it putting it in the tin pot with a bit of tallow (IIRC) and stirring it around until it tins---you don't dip as you need the whole piece to come up to temperature to get the tin to adhere in a smooth thin layer.

Thomas P - Wednesday, 05/11/05 10:29:21 EDT

PPW update: 3 pm May 11
PPW is stable and in an induced coma. Sheri
Ntech - Wednesday, 05/11/05 15:00:12 EDT

Mike Boone:
Well. . I TRIED to help the Boones hold on to Mike's site. But Mike had moved into primitive digs with marginal phone service and no Internet. . . Yep a name merchant got his address. He does not have a new web site (I have a copy of the old). Not sure WHAT he is up to these days. . .

If you find a link to Tim's old address be sure to notify the webmaster that the URL has been hijacked. .
- guru - Wednesday, 05/11/05 16:37:38 EDT

Anvil Anvil Anvil: Looking to find an anvil for sale in good condition in the Chattanooga, Tn area.
- Mike R. - Wednesday, 05/11/05 16:40:21 EDT

- KEITH S. - Wednesday, 05/11/05 21:58:11 EDT

KEITH S. - Wednesday, 05/11/05 22:00:06 EDT

PPW update: 10:20 pm May 11

Just talked with Jim's daughter and Jim has double pneumonia (not single) and is still in the medically induced coma. He is in stable condition in ICU at the hospital.

The family would appreciate your prayers.
Ntech - Wednesday, 05/11/05 22:28:32 EDT

Thank you Sheri for the PPW updates.
The man has a great heart and we all want to keep him around for a while yet...Pete F
- Pete F - Thursday, 05/12/05 03:04:34 EDT

PPW: I'm sorry to hear about Paw Paw.
I finaly got "Will's" anvil crated and wanted to ship it out to him this week, but I'll wait on that, unless someone could help on the receiving end when it arives at his place via FedEx, or if there is someone near him that I could ship to who would see that it gets to him.
In the mean time, my boys and I will keep Jim and his family in our prayers.
Keith Barker
- Keith Barker - Thursday, 05/12/05 05:18:05 EDT

Keith, If you want to ship it to me, I'll deliver it to his house, personally. He's about a hour away and I know the way :). Shoot me an email, if you can put it on our dock here at work, I can take it to his shop.
daveb - Thursday, 05/12/05 10:04:29 EDT

Mike R; talk to everyone you know---church, in line at the supermarket, etc. You are trying to find an anvil the folks don't really want but don't know what to do with rather than trying to get one off an anvil miser and coveter like most smiths are.

Shoot yeaterday I was at the thrift store during lunch, (somehow my hobbies go through a lot of clothing---have you ever seen what molten borax spray does to silk taffeta???), and the lady at the checkout saw my Mid Ohio Blacksmiths shirt I was wearing and started telling me about her Father being a blacksmith, (before WWII!), and that she had given all the tools they had left to her son who now has my number....I'll teach him to use them or perhaps they might wander my way...

Thomas P - Thursday, 05/12/05 10:44:48 EDT

Ouch!: 'Egads! I go away for a while and Paw Paw gets laid-up in the lungs; and Ralph gets some more slicing and dicing.

Y'all take care of yourselves; my prayer list is getting way too long.
Bruce Blackistone (Atli) - Thursday, 05/12/05 11:32:25 EDT

Just came back from wandering the campus---and yup we have a real campus to wander---NM Tech---and not a couple of buildings for a business...Well anyway; bumped into one of the MatSci profs and made arrangements for him to come visit the forge, (my daughter found out from his kid that he has an anvil tucked away in his garage---my spies are *EVERYWHERE* bwa-hahahahaha!)

Also picked up two thrown out bandsaw blades from the trash cans behind the machineshop; about time to layer up another billet or two, not to stop by the lumber yard and get some banding material to match the size of the BSB...and some rebar shipping ties---I'm a sucker for free metal, expecially since my last storeboughten stuff ran me out of 2 weeks allowance!

Thomas P - Thursday, 05/12/05 15:05:02 EDT

Silk Taffeta and Borax? :
Thomas is there some even odder part of your life that we don't know about???? ;)
- guru - Thursday, 05/12/05 15:54:04 EDT

Guru, may I pass on these words of wisdom: "Don't ask questions you really don't want to know the answers to"

Though I must admit I used to waer a snazzy leather wrap around miniskirt when forging---made a dandy apron and was a hand me down...dang; I wish Paw Paw would make some rude rejoinder right about now...

Thomas P - Thursday, 05/12/05 16:29:14 EDT

ThomasP, May I attempt to stand in for the CSM on that last post? TMI
ptree - Thursday, 05/12/05 17:33:45 EDT

Thomas P.: You in soccoro?

Mini's with an apron? Please tell me that you don't wear a tube top with that combination. Me, I forge in cut offs and army boots.
- Timex - Thursday, 05/12/05 17:44:00 EDT

Timex, I restate, TMI
ptree - Thursday, 05/12/05 19:55:26 EDT

Yes I am in Socorro. My sense of humour is usually in the gutter. And the mini *was* the apron.

I don't like cut-offs when forge welding, the fringe likes to catch fire, and you only need a bit of hot stuff to drop into the top of your boot but once to encourage you to wear long pants or easily jettisoned shoes...

Thomas P - Thursday, 05/12/05 19:59:36 EDT

Keith Barker, Paw Paws wife has alot on her mind and the anvil would just add to it. I think the best thing to do is for you to hang on to it until Paw Paw gets back on his feet then ship it to him.

I`m not trying to be rude about this just wanting things to go the right way.
- Robert IW - Thursday, 05/12/05 20:24:47 EDT

Not to knock anyone's fashion preferences-- hey, it's a free country, right?-- but open-top shoes and boots cannot be jettisoned fast enough to avert a nasty burn, which will then take a lonnnnnnng time to heal, if some drop/slag makes its way down inside. Which it will, believe me, it will, by some immutable law of an uncaring universe.
Miles Undercut - Thursday, 05/12/05 21:40:01 EDT

Thomas P.: You been to the mine yet? I used to go very week-end untill I went off to school.

Cut offs are Knee long, boots are cuffed and socked. Kind funny looking if you think about it( the leave it to beaver's dad look) but it keeps me cool and protected.

Any up dates on Paw Paw?
- Timex - Friday, 05/13/05 01:48:35 EDT

Miles Uc: Boots are speed laced, and can come off quicker than a normal pair of saftey shoes.
- Timex - Friday, 05/13/05 01:52:46 EDT

aluminum: Just to let yall know I'm gonna melt down some tranny cases and water pumps( cleaning shop up ) into ingots this week- end. If any one needs some Raw Al let me know and we will work some thing out.
- Timex - Friday, 05/13/05 01:58:11 EDT

Timex; I would think that a recycle yard would yield a much better return of money than melting them down. Unless of course you NEED the alum. Ingots for some reason. Scrap solids pay much better than machine chips and you won't have the cost and time spent melting them down.
- Wayne Parris - Friday, 05/13/05 08:53:22 EDT

Timex, *which* mine? I can think of about 10 off the top of my head including coal, bentonite. pearlite, goethite, molybdinite, etc. Shoot the geology student group owns their own mine...

But I'll admit that most of my mining so far has been digging the foundations for my shop.

Thomas P - Friday, 05/13/05 10:54:10 EDT

Timex-- Speed laced or conventional, if the high tops are laced up, why, my goodness gracious, then you've done as much as you can to avert a burn, short of wearing a long leathern apron. It's those Marlon Brando autograph-model Wild One siccle boots and cowboy boots that attract drop and slag down inside like magnets.
Miles Undercut - Friday, 05/13/05 14:29:46 EDT

Thomas P.: dude! things shure have changed since I was there. The only mine that we were allowed to visit( and rummage the tilling pile) was the Waldo or Wallen mine. I think that they were mining sulfer laden iron ore. Lots of fools gold( big cubes) could be found in the tillings and Feildsparr was lining the mine's entrance.

Wayne, No i din't really 'need' to keep the Al but for storage an ingot is better. Just thought that I would give yall first crack at the cases, before I got rid of them, or melted 'em down.
- Timex - Friday, 05/13/05 14:34:30 EDT

Curious. I wear both cowboy and motorcycle boots. Never had an hot foot. But then again I make sure I have good heavy fabric pants that are over the top of my boots. I also have my shirts with sleeves down and buttoned as well as the buttons on the neck fastewned.
Now due to a few heath issues I will be having to wear a glove on my right hand all the time while forging. Which is going to be a major drag. But living is much better than not so I will be wearing the glove....
Ralph - Friday, 05/13/05 14:37:03 EDT

Boonville. NC - Jim "Paw Paw" Wilson:
Patriot, Blacksmith, Chairman of Cybersmiths International and author of The Revolutionary Blacksmith, passed away today.

Jim is survived by his wife Sheri, 4 children and 27 foster children. He died of respiratory failure after a bout of pneumonia trigerred by zinc fume fever.

Jim was my best friend and traveling companion. We shall all miss him.
Jock Dempsey AKA - guru - Friday, 05/13/05 15:11:45 EDT

Words Fail Me...: ...that's all I can say.

Pax vobiscum, Paw Paw.
Bruce Blackistone (Atli) - Friday, 05/13/05 15:48:54 EDT

I never met Jim we only exchanged emails,and i feel to have lost a life time friend,
- bruce wilcock - Friday, 05/13/05 16:01:38 EDT

I had Jim to visit once and feel that I have lost a lifelong friend as well.
A sharp salute, an about face, and a slow walk away with head down.
ptree - Friday, 05/13/05 16:21:00 EDT

I will be out in the shop tonight, 6 pm, and toll the anvil for Paw Paw who has gone on ahead of us.

Thomas P - Friday, 05/13/05 16:21:29 EDT

Jim Wilson: It's dreadful news. I never got to meet him in person - and now its too late - I felt he was a good friend to me and to many, many others. My world is now a colder, meaner and sadder place. I rarely weep but right now I cant stop crying.

Goodbye old soldier.
adam - Friday, 05/13/05 16:28:11 EDT

JIM WISON: SHERI,KIDS,JOCK, and all the rest of the large circle of friends: This a very large loss. He will be mourned for the type of man, husband, father and friend that he was. We will not be able to replace him. The only hope is, that we will be able to hook with JIM on down the road.

Chuck Bennett
sandpile - Friday, 05/13/05 16:57:27 EDT

TYPO: I would have to have a typo in the above. durn.

sandpile - Friday, 05/13/05 16:59:18 EDT

Typo: Chuck,

The first time I found this forum, many many moons ago, my fist question was to Paw Paw. About every third time he posted something, he'd write PTP PP PTP, followed by durn-it, dang-it or some other mild expletive.

I had no idea what it meant and asked him. "Proof then Post Paw Paw, Proof then Post!" was his reply. When I saw your follow-up post, I smiled, for the first time since I heard the news, because I could see Jim in my mind, with a big grin on his face. Somehow that typo seems appropriate.

I'll really miss that old fart.

eander4 - Friday, 05/13/05 17:37:56 EDT

I too am a loss for words, my condolences to Sheri and family, and to all.

I think PawPaw was someone we could all call friend, I wish that I could of met him in person.
- Daryl - Friday, 05/13/05 17:58:55 EDT

Paw Paw: I only met Jim once in person for a few days at Quad States last September but I've been working with him on CSI business for some time now and corresponding by email ocassionaly. I feel like I've lost a good friend far too soon.

Go well my friend to what should be a rich reward!
SGensh - Friday, 05/13/05 17:59:38 EDT

A very sad day...I never met him, but he was always very kind and helpful. I know he was a huge part of this blacksmithing condolences.

Dave Hislop
Gator - Friday, 05/13/05 18:10:58 EDT

good bye Paw-Paw ...

Do not stand at my grave and weep,
I am not there, I do not sleep.

I am a thousand winds that blow.
I am the diamond glint on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain.
I am the gentle autumn rain.

When you wake in the morning hush,
I am the swift, uplifting rush
Of quiet birds in circling flight.
I am the soft starlight at night.

Do not stand at my grave and weep.
I am not there, I do not sleep.
(Do not stand at my grave and cry.
I am not there, I did not die!
Mary Frye (1932)
Mark P - Friday, 05/13/05 18:29:26 EDT

I never met Paw Paw face to face. I was planning to visit him this summer. Still, I have lost a good and faithful friend. I have had several rounds of health problems over the last few years,(pneumonia, cancer and broken bones) and Paw Paw was such a comfort with emails and prayers.

Things look bleak right now, but we must remember that God oversees all and as the old song said, "We'll understand it better bye and bye."

My sincere condolence to Sheri and the rest of his family.

John odom
- John Odom - Friday, 05/13/05 18:46:44 EDT

Paw Paw:
Jim Paw Paw Wilson is not gone. He is in each of us a little. He will always be in the archives and at least a little in what we do and say and write. Those of us fortunate to have met him were blessed more than if we had not.

Our job now is to keep those memories and moments alive and well even though Paw Paw is not with us in body.

Let's be up to the challenge.

Jim, you were a good man as I see it. Hope to see you in the future. Much to do here yet.

- Tony - Friday, 05/13/05 19:02:35 EDT

Paw Paw: I feel very fortunate that I got to meet him a couple of times, at Camp Fenby & at last year's Quad State. Actually, it was more like sitting in on an ongoing lecture or soliloquy, which was just fine for a taciturn type like me. Louise bought one of his books for me at Quad State which has, in this unfortunate way, become a very prized addition to my library. I remember all the help and encouragement he gave unselfishly to newby & journeyman alike. Plus, he could take a ribbing & give as good as he got.
Goodbye, you were taken from us too soon.
Jock, I'm sorry for your loss. Good & true friends are more precious than anything.
- Tom C - Friday, 05/13/05 20:13:47 EDT

Paw Paw: Funny how you can get to know someone from long distance. That's the way I got to know Paw Paw. Here on this forum. Sometimes a little grumpy, sometimes soft as new fallen snow. But always ready to help people, always with a heart of gold. One of my fondest memories will be when I met him at Quad State last fall. He was not as tall as I had imagined, nor as broad in the shoulders, but he was all man. He greeted me warmly, even though he did not know who I was for awhile. He accepted me as one man accepts another. Maybe it was because we had walked the same ground and breathed the same air long, long ago.

We spent a day and a half there under his little shelter, talking, laughing, joking with Jock, BobH, BrianC, Vicopper and so many more the names escape me. It was a good time. I wish we could do it all again.

But as he was a leader in the military, he is a leader in life. When I cross over that is one face I will be looking for. Keep the forge going Paw Paw. We'll be there after while.

Prayers for you, Sheri. He talked of you with a tenderness that could only come from a great love.
- Larry - Friday, 05/13/05 21:08:57 EDT

Paw-Paw: Jim Wilson was the first blacksmith I ever corresponded with. After our first e-mail contact I mentioned that my wife was having cancer surgery the following week. Within an hour he was back with an e-mail asking when & where her surgery was. He told me "you tell your wife that come tues. morning, there will be a crusty old blacksmith in Winston-Salem down on his knes praying for her and the surgeon"

That my friends is the kind of man my dear friend Jim Wilson was.
We have been in almost constant contact for four years and I will miss him so bad.
Brian C - Friday, 05/13/05 21:09:35 EDT

Paw-Paw: I am thinking now of the drawing in The Revolutionary Blacksmith, of Will returning from war wrapped in the arms of his two young children. Rest well Old Warrior.

A toast to a fallen hammer

He was heated in the forge of life, shaped by the hammer of Christ on the anvil of God, quenched in tears of sorrow and joy, tempered in the hearts of those who loved him, and has gone to find his place in the gates of Heaven.

Three times we ring our anvils in his memory. In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. Amen

Mike McGinty AKA Habu
- Habu - Friday, 05/13/05 21:39:26 EDT

R.I.P. Paw-Paw: .
- elkdoc - Friday, 05/13/05 22:06:05 EDT

Paw-Paws' Will returning home:
Home at Last
Habu - Friday, 05/13/05 22:17:44 EDT

Paw-Paw: Very sorry to hear about Paw-Paw. The first thing on my list at Quad State this year was to seek him out so I could meet him face to face. My condolences to his family and friends.
- Jeff G. - Friday, 05/13/05 22:59:33 EDT

Paw Paw: Tonight I came home to learn that I had lost a friend. It saddens me terribly; for Sheri, the children, the community, the craft and myself. We are all better for having had Jim in our lives, and we are all diminished by his passing. He gave so much, to so many, for so long.

Rest easy, old soldier.
vicopper - Friday, 05/13/05 23:10:15 EDT

Paw Paw : : I never met Him in person, but from reading this forum for several months I know He was the kind of man we need more of. He will be missed, and will not be forgotten.
Dave Boyer - Friday, 05/13/05 23:59:23 EDT

Requiescat in pacem.
Miles Undercut - Saturday, 05/14/05 00:51:08 EDT

Ralph-- It's the heavy trousers that make the difference, I suspect. I had some strategically-placed wear-holes just below the left knee in my Levis when I was chopping up a big rusty water tank, and some red hot slag went right into one of them and zipped down inside my motorcycle boot. Never again. But if you do go that way, keep a good supply of sulfadiazene in the medicine cabinet. It is the only thing that stops that nasty puffy red infection overnight.
Miles Undercut - Saturday, 05/14/05 00:58:39 EDT

Paw Paw: I’ve never had a harder time trying to find the words... I was hoping to be able to start paying back a little part of the genuine kindness and generosity that was showed to me and my family in my time of need by Jim and all of you... I was hoping to start with Paw Paw when the chance arrived a couple weeks ago...I really wanted to be able to thank him in person for everything...I’m trying but I just can’t find the words...
My thoughts and prayers will be with his family.
My anvil will ring in his memory.
Keith Barker
- Keith Barker - Saturday, 05/14/05 07:56:17 EDT

walking in other worlds: gone... gone.... beyond the beyond.... all hail the traveler .......... paw paw good luck in your new travels may waylunds forge welcome you with open arms------
blacklionforge - Saturday, 05/14/05 08:35:57 EDT

Paw-Paw: I posted my condolences on the GURU pages, but wanted to say somthing else. I lost my own father less than a month ago and its seems that many people here came to regard Mr Wilson as such a figure. I'm not a religous man by nature or inclination but I am a Romany (hence the moniker: Tinker) and I have 'seen' and felt far too many things that a rational and educated mind cannot explain to be doubtful that death truly is the end of all things.
My own Father has been to see me and I have NO doubt that the 'spirit' (for want of a more accurate word) of Mr Wilson will always be there for his wife and children and the people he loved. I hope that they will draw comfort from this, in the end all you have to do is close your eyes and remember and 'they' will come. I am just a simple man but I know what I know.

"No one is ever truly gone as long as they are remembered".
- Tinker - Saturday, 05/14/05 11:03:35 EDT

PPW: For the military types among us this is how I envisioned his passing. It is the best I can offer in his honor, I will be unable to attend the funeral. I like the ring the anvil idea very much. HABU: very nice picture.

COM-pa-NNEEE! pla-tOOOOn!

Sergeant Major Wilson! FRONT AND CENTER!

In honor of your great faith and achievemets in the execution of your assigned duties and further, in the additional duties you volunteered for, you are hereby assigned to your calling in a more suitable station. You are ordered to report to Heaven at the behest of the Commander in Chief, the LORD GOD ALMIGHTY. WELL done thy good and faithful servant!

PREe SENT presenT!


OR DER order

- mills - Saturday, 05/14/05 11:06:33 EDT

Damnit Mills, ya made me cry again.
Bob H - Saturday, 05/14/05 11:49:54 EDT

Sharply rendered salute,
Sharply sanappedback to attention,
Sharp maove tp at ease,
an about face,
and walk away with sagging shoulders and head down.
ptree - Saturday, 05/14/05 13:13:52 EDT

Paw Paw: Damn Paw Paw, we're going to miss you son..... you a goodun
smitty7 - Saturday, 05/14/05 14:18:07 EDT

Paw Paw: I received an email from Sheri today. She is holding up as well as, or better than, could be expected. She is planning to have a memorial Mass for Jim on Monday evening, although the plans are not yet finalized. If I hear any further details I will let you know, but I am loathe to intrude upon her grief any more if it can be avoided. Those in the area might consider calling the Catholic church in Jim's area to find out specific details if you wish to attend. Jock will probably have the details by the end of the day Sunday, anyway.
vicopper - Saturday, 05/14/05 14:35:05 EDT

CONDOLENCES: was very sorry to hear of PAW PAW DEATH.

- URI HOFI - Saturday, 05/14/05 18:33:33 EDT

Paw-Paws' picture: Mills, the picture that I posted is not mine, it is from Paw-paws' book The Revolutionary Blacksmith. If you have not read it do your self a favor, it is available thrugh the Anvilfire store. It is as much about Paw-paw as it is about Will.

I have a copy of the picture that was given to me by Paw-Paw when I wrote him about how it touched me. It is framed in my home, and Sheri has his in a frame that I made in exchange. I cherish it. The quote under it is:

Over Time Only the Battle Dress Changes Habu
Habu - Saturday, 05/14/05 19:32:10 EDT

Paw-Paw: Mills and Ptree, well done! Paw-Paw, we'll miss you! I'm sure you've already made improvements to Heaven's Smithy. My condolences to Sheri and the rest of his family. Semper Fidelis
Koomori - Saturday, 05/14/05 21:00:09 EDT

PPW - Jim Wilson's funeral arrangments: Jim's forge will be lit and a ringing of his anvil will begin at 5 pm EDT May 16, 2005. If you would like to join them at your anvil, it would be appreciated.

Services are set for 7:00 PM EDT May 16, 2005.

Holy Family Catholic Church
4820 Kinnamon Road
Clemmons, NC 27103

Instead of flowers the family requests donations to the Catholic Social Services or to a charity of your choice.

The family has received many cards already and if very appreciative of the thoughts and prayers. If you would like to send a card or letter, the home address is:

Jim Wilson (wife Sheri)
4714 Granite Trail
Boonville, NC 27011
Ntech - Saturday, 05/14/05 21:21:01 EDT

PPW: Goodbye Jim; It'd be hard to say any man was better...thanks for all you gave us...

About the blacksmith's boot dance...
Do not hesitate to think about it...the boot belongs in the quench tank, sock,foot and all....and fast!
Pete F - Sunday, 05/15/05 04:19:25 EDT

folding steel: hey guys this is my first post here. ive lit up my forge twice to date, made a hot hammer hole punch the first and folded some steel twice, but its not binding. i suspect its dirty or something and thats why not but seeing how its only my second time lol theres quite a bit of tricks im sure im unaware of.
what im doing here is using some steel rebar from home depot to fold a few times to achieve a good thickness for a hammer head. what do you guys suggest? acid bath? more heat? it gets bright red, im using charcoal. should i pick up a wire brush or something? maybe im not using enough force? anyhoot thanks for any tips/tricks you guys can spare for folding metal and smithwelding it ;)
- stephen - Sunday, 05/15/05 07:35:42 EDT

Folding Steel: Stephen, it doesn't sound as though you're getting it hot enough, for starters. Welding heat for low to medium carbon steel is bright yellow, nearing white. Just a few degrees below the point where you see the steel begin to throw off sparks. You say you are using charcoal; if it is REAL charcoal, and not those cruddy briquettes, then you should certainly be able to get a hot enough and clean enough fire with a good air blast.

To get a forge weld to stick, you need certain conditions: sufficient heat as mentioned; the joint needs to have the proper scarf or shape; the metal must be clean and free of scale or rust; a flux, such as borax, keeps scale from forming, as does a carburizing fire; lastly, you need to use the right hammer blows to stick the weld. Gentle blows to first set the weld, then gradually more forceful blows as the weld develops. Rebar can be difficult to weld, as it may have oddball impurities and a varying carbon content, as well as the ridges and lines on the surface.

If I were going to try to make a hammer head from rebar (I wouldn't), I would first square up each piece of bar, then clean the surfaces with a grinder, then tie them into a square bundle of four rods, using iron wire. Heat the bundle to red heat, wire-brush, flux, then return to the fire and bring up to welding heat. The yellow, almost white heat I mentioned already. Make sure the heat soaks through to the core of the metal. Pull from the fire, move quickly to the anvil and set the weld with rapid, *light* blows. Re-heat and repeat as necessary until the entire bundle is welded. Do not work below a yellow heat until you know the welding is all done solidly.

It sounds as though you would benefit from a thorough reading of a couple good books on basic techniques. Look on the Book Reviews page for some recommendations. Check out the Getting Started pages, too. You can access all of Anvilfire through the drop-down menu at the upper right of this screen. The best place to start is on the 21st Century Page and work from there. Welcome to Anvilfire!
vicopper - Sunday, 05/15/05 08:06:10 EDT

First, rebar is pretty hard to work with, and is a pretty trashy steel. Second, hammer welding in the forge is a thing that many struggle to master, so don't get too discouraged. The steel needs to be fairly clean, ie not heavy with rust, so a quick wire brush first often helps. Rebar is shipped with a heavy mill scale, and that is hard to weld thru. First, a good deep fire is needed, this consumes the oxygen from the blast. Next get your steel to a dull red, wire brush the loose scale off and then flux. I use 20 Mule team borax right out of the box. The flux lowers the melting temp of the scale to allow the scale to squirt out in the weld. The flux also helps to keep oxygen away from the steel. Put the steel back into the fire, and with a slow steady blast( remember, excess blast brings excess oxygen, an enemy to a weld) raise the steel to a high yellow heat. A few small sparks usually will come out of the fire. Remove the steel and quickly tap it with the hammer. This is where that liquid scale and flux squirt out. This is where the 2000+ degree flux/scale squirt everywhere, and will burn you and others, so be careful and a heavy apron is good. Once the weld is made then you can forge the shape a bit.

While I suppose that rebar could be forge welded into a billet for a hammer, most will use a solid bar of say truck axle, and drift in an eye.Most people, including myself think the first blows need to be hard in welding, but the first need to be fairly light. A hammer is a tuff early project. May I suggest that some simpler projects like S hooks and such would be a good start?
ptree - Sunday, 05/15/05 08:10:57 EDT

Jim Paw-Paw Wilson: Deep Sadness:

As many of you know Jim was building a NEW shop. It is beautiful, open and airy. He had just gotten the chimney atached to his new forge but it has never had a fire in it. This afternoon his family and I will be putting the blower on the forge and building the first fire and probably the last fire in his forge at 5:00 PM Sunday May 15. The fire will be used by his children and grandchildren to experiance some of Jim's love for the forge. Afterward we will ring his anvil and deface his touchmark time.

A memorial service will be held Monday May 16, 7:00 PM at Holy Family Catholic Church, Clemmons, NC. Coffee and desert will be served afterward. In liew of flowers please make a donation to Catholic Social Services or a charity of your choice.
- guru - Sunday, 05/15/05 08:43:38 EDT

Forge welding: You guys are excellent teachers. The only thing I would add for Stephan is to watch someone forge weld. Books and articles are fine but I was very frustrated by this process until I saw a video by Bob Patrick. Terms like "slow steady heat" took on a whole new meaning. Ptree, you said you use 20 Mule right out of the box. Do you have any problem with it bubbling up and running off? If not I will gladly give up the Borax bake off.

Good-bye Paw Paw, God's comfort to Sheri and all the children. Thank you for your service to this country and this community. I know you knew the One and only One who could say, "I am the Resurection and the Life". You know Him better now.
- larry sundstrom - Sunday, 05/15/05 08:54:09 EDT

tuyere: could anyone here help me? i Purchased a LMF fire pot and would like to know if someone knows if there is a tuyere that will fit this pot or will i need to make one? any info will be apreciated Thank Mat
mat clarke - Sunday, 05/15/05 10:28:51 EDT

we'll go on,: we'll not fail.allover the mountain the eagles and little falcons and all the bright cold hawks... are widening
their wings to wash them in cool clearness,and over the precipices lauching their bodies like ships....on the high waves of dawn...................we're going until the world changes,you and i,like the young hawks
going hunting,we'll take the world by throat and make him give us
what we desire.......... robinson jeffers
- pete - Sunday, 05/15/05 10:29:46 EDT

tuyere: Mat,
Laurel Machine and Foundry sells a tuyere to fit their firepot. They have a website, Call them and ask to speak to Ray Robinson.
Leah - Sunday, 05/15/05 10:57:01 EDT

Keeping the Fires Lit: The passing of Jim “Paw Paw” Wilson, our friend and fellow smith, brings up an issue that I feel needs to be brought forth. As Chairman of the Board of Cybersmiths International, the support group for Anvilfire, Paw Paw gave tirelessly of his time and energy to support this site, these people and the craft of blacksmithing. Paw Paw supported blacksmithing in numerous other ways, with his demonstrations, his writings his mentoring and his enthusiasm. He will be sorely missed by all of us.

Jock Dempsey, webmaster and Guru of Anvilfire, has devoted the last several years of his life to making this site the incredibly valuable resource that it is. Paw Paw, of course, was a significant part of Anvilfire, but he has passed, leaving only Jock. No one man can handle all the duties of this large a website and also shepherd its support group, without draining himself unwisely.

It is imperative that we do everything that we can to broaden the support base of Anvilfire through increasing membership in CSI. With a sufficiently large support base, CSI will be able to hire support staff for Jock and relieve him of some of the burden. Should anything happen to Jock, as it sadly has to Paw Paw, only a strong support organization will be able to keep Anvilfire afloat and growing. We have the knowledge among us to provide the answers and guidance, but we would need to hire a webmaster should Jock be unable to continue. Currently, we are simply not strong enough to shoulder that burden. We simply must grow, if we are to insure the future of Anvilfire.

I encourage all those who read this to consider the worth of this site to themselves and others, and try to envision what a disappointment it would be to log on to Anvilfire one day, only to find that the site was no more. Those who previously frequented the former Keenjunk website know all too well the feelings of loss they experienced when Neil Winikoff closed down Keenjunk. How many of us here want to experience those feelings? Not many, I think. But it is not enough to simply say how great this resource is, or praise those who have built it and run it. We must step up to the plate and contribute financially and energetically if we are to continue to enjoy this experience for years to come. Our friend Jim Wilson gave generously to support this little corner of the internet that we inhabit, and I ask all of you to do the same. Join me and the membership of CSI in carrying Anvilfire into the future. Together, we can do anything.

Rich Waugh
vicopper - Sunday, 05/15/05 11:21:04 EDT

good call rich: i'll second that notion rich........... maybe a fund in paw paw's name ?????to find anvilfire/csi?????? ideas anyone ???
blacklionforge - Sunday, 05/15/05 11:32:43 EDT

rich: have you made anything outta that 1080 yet ?????? would love a pic if you have...........
- pete - Sunday, 05/15/05 11:33:33 EDT

Tuyer: Thanks Leah, didnt see it on there site when i orderd ill call, thanks again
mat clarke - Sunday, 05/15/05 11:55:22 EDT

Funds etc: Personally I think instead of a fund ( which is not a bad idea) Jim would rather everyone who is not in CSI join so we can ensure the continuance of ANvilfire, and everything that it stands for.
As many of you know Jim was all about sharing. The sharing of ideas, time knolwledge. Food and even labour. These are just a few small examples of JIms impact. And I still think Jim would want us to concentrate on building the CSI group in the premiere smithing resource that it is. And also insure that it will last as long as it is needed.
Ralph - Sunday, 05/15/05 12:33:14 EDT

Anvil ringing for PPW: Time change: The anvil ringing for PPW has been moved to Sunday the 15th at 5 pm by the family.
Ntech - Sunday, 05/15/05 13:49:48 EDT

PPW: I am very Sorry To hear of the passing of Jim Wilson. Sheri, his children, family and friends I would like to send you my condolences. I hope his family can keep his new shop working in his memory. He is sadly missed. My heart has been very heavy the last few days over his passing. I hope to see something in one of the future Abana Anvil's Ring in his memory. I am in favor of Ralph's idea to join CSI in his memory...great idea. Money well spent to keep his dream alive. I will be sitting next to my anvil to give a three ring salute in his memory also. Paw Paw, though I never met you in person I feel a real sadness, that I also lost a comrade.
burntforge - Sunday, 05/15/05 16:20:22 EDT


Jim would often send me emails in response to my questions in 'The Den'. He will be missed on my side of the pond too, and no doubt world wide. One day I hope to meet him in a 'better place'.

Rest in Peace PPW.

Bob G.
Bob G - Sunday, 05/15/05 17:43:54 EDT

Paw Paw Wilson: I know this whole event has been especially hard on Jock, and I hate to ask anything of him at this time. However, Jock is probably the right person to prepare an obituary, or short biography of Jim Wilson and post it for the rest of us. I know a little about him, but I would like a more complete bio.
- John Odom - Sunday, 05/15/05 20:06:48 EDT

Funds/Keeping fires lit: To all: Please read what Ralph and Vicopper had to say (scroll up), Paw Paw was not Chairman of the Board of CSI without reason.
Gronk - Sunday, 05/15/05 20:12:32 EDT

Obit: John,
that is an idea. While I suspect Jock will do so, might I suggest something else?
Over on another web site in the Pray List forum it was suggested that we all write our own memory of Paw Paw. Like an online wake. Jim would have like this I am certain. ANd once a proper period of submission time it will be compliled in to a NICE hard copy and presented to Sheri and Jim's family.
Ralph - Sunday, 05/15/05 23:32:02 EDT

just wanted to thank, frank turly for all of the great demonstrations at corvallis OR this week end, and all of NWBA thanks you as well,
- beardlessblacksmith - Monday, 05/16/05 00:21:39 EDT

Frank T: Drats! I forgot Frank was going to be there. I was wanting to go.
Well we can not all go to all the events.
Ralph - Monday, 05/16/05 00:51:20 EDT

folding steel: i feel like im sorta intruding on this obviously loved mans departing, wish i had the chance to meet him.

as to the folding, i think judging by what ive heard from a few people flux and heat is what im missing. as for the difficulty of the project well, ive always been known for biting off more than most can chew for a first project ;) honestly it has been a little annying while i was working on it but its been proven to work somehow so i dont get frustrated and quit, i just ask why? lol :) i thank you guys for your assistance, as far as the rebar goes, i hammered it flat in the beginning :) so it has a... decently flat edge. theres some dips from not evening the hammer blows but most of that was developed the last couple heats i did out of desperation to get it to work ;) so guess its off to the local store for flux and a stronger fan. this one doesnt blow as well as i hoped (old house fan)

while im on the subject, my bellows is a house fan with a garbage bag taped to a steel pipe that is burried under the fire inside a pot of cinderbricks. is there a recommended blower or such i should use? i kinda like having electric fans for the job as i like to break during heats ;)
stephen - Monday, 05/16/05 07:52:46 EDT

I was sad to hear that Jim Wilson's fire has gone out.
- Phil H - Monday, 05/16/05 08:11:37 EDT

stephen: Stephen, first of all, where are you located? It's likely you're near a blacksmith group which'll have get togethers & hammer-ins you can attend. Nothing beats talking face-to-face with more experienced hands who are happy to help out a beginner. If you're not near one, a couple of good books are available such as The Complete Modern Blacksmith by Alexander Weygers and Professional Smithing by Donald Streeter ( the paperback copy). That being said, I echo the sentiment that you should try welding some better steel than re-bar. Most seel suppliers have a "drop" pile, cut offs & damaged pieces, that they'll sell at a reduced price. Put your hard hat on & visit one. Get some cold rolled stock (it's usually better than hot rolled A-36 steel) and try that. I'm sure you'll be pleased with the change in effort necessary to move the cold rolled.
For a blower I'd scrounge one from a surplus store. You don't need much. Control the blast by making a cover for the intake side of the blower. You can even get a heater blower from a car & run it off a battery or transformer/rectifier with a rheostat control.
And lastly, you're not intruding into our on-line wake for Paw Paw; you're helping carry on the tradition. He'd REALLY like that, believe me.
- Tom C - Monday, 05/16/05 08:33:45 EDT

Jim Paw-Paw Wilson 1940 - 2005:
John, Etal.

A bio/obit is coming. Jim's website will be converted to a memorial to him with a bit of information. I say a "bit" due to the fact that he had a very full and complex life. He spent three (I think) tours of duty in Vietnam. He was a police officer (and carried a badge to his dieing day), a fix-it man, raised 4 childrem of his own and 27 foster children THEN became a blacksmith and author. . .

Saturday I did "Paw-Paw's" last demo for him at Historical Bethabara Park with the portable shop I had built many years ago and the help of two of his sons, a grandson, a granddaughter and his young "apprentice" who was like another grandson. We then put out the fire, cleaned out his tools closed the trailer and left it to the museum that owns it. Another personal loss.

Yesterday we finished assembling the old Buffalo forge he had recently installed in his NEW shop and had not yet built its first fire. It was his wife Sheri's wish that we fire the forge for Jim and deface his touchmark per the story of the Master's passing in his book, The Revolutionary Blacksmith.

With the whole family gathered we lit the forge "Paw-Paw's" way (with desiel fuel). Family members took turns cranking the growling old hand crank blower until we had a hot fire. I placed his touchmark in the fire, heated it then clamped in his vise. I held the chisel while his grand children and apprentice struck it with a 3 pound hammer to deface the mark. It was then cooled slowly.

We finished off the fire with more forging lessons to the adult children and grandchildren. A humming bird feeder hanger was made as a group project for Sheri. Leaves were forged with the NC-JYH Tire Hammer.

After dinner we returned to the forge for the ringing ceremony. With tears in my eyes (as I have now as I write this) and barely able to speak I explained about the ceremony and the fact that Paw-Paw was one who had done much to make ringing the anvil a modern tradition and that thousands of others would be doing the same all across the world for him. I then rang the anvil four times and each of the 15 family members gathered there each slowly rang the anvil four times for a total of 64.

Jim had wanted his family to celebrate his life on his passing as it is the custom of an Irish wake. And THAT they have done. We have laughed and cried and told stories about the old cuss as well as his favorite stories. . His children have played for hours in the forge and THAT would have made Paw-Paw happier than anthing else.
- guru - Monday, 05/16/05 08:49:02 EDT

Metal Fume Fever:
Paw-Paw's death was the result of his bad health, stuborness and metal fume fever from burning the zinc off some heavily galvanized pieces of 2-1/2" pipe. It was a stupid thing to do and Paw-Paw knew better. He sent others out of the smoke filled shop while he kept burning off several batches of parts, transfering the flaming parts to the quench tank. . . .

The evidence was still in his shop. We fired up his gas forge yesterday and when it reached full heat there was still enough zinc residue to deposit yellow and white zinc oxide residues on pieces heated in the forge and to make bright yellow flames for a brief period. We had a good breeze and the forge was down wind so I judged the vapors as not a current problem and they abated quickly. But there was still enough zinc in the forge that it COULD have been a problem with still air, as it was the day of the incident.

When the forge cooled I found 1/16" thick zinc oxide deposits around the gasket surface of the forge! They were so thick they would easily flake off like old paint.

It was suggested that an iForge safety demo be posted about Metal Fume Fever and relay this event. One has been submitted and will be posted in a few weeks. I am still at Paw-Paw's helping his wife and family and will immediately be back on the road going to the South Eastern Conference. There will be an edition of the NEWS to produce when I return.

- guru - Monday, 05/16/05 09:08:16 EDT

Paw-Paw condolences:
There have been hundreds of letters of condolences sent to Sheri and myself, some to forward to Sheri. She has read a few and responded. However, the whole, en-mass, is so emotionaly overwhelming that it may be months before she is ready to read them all. Sheri is holding up well as most strong women seem to do in these situations. There has been too much to do to break down and cry at length, but it will come and she will eventually read all your messages. At this time she has many family members helping but may need the blacksmithing community's support that has been graciously offered in the future.

Sheri has not decided what to do about Jim's shop. Much will be sold off but after seeing the family enjoy it so she has thought about maintaining it. It would be a wonderful place for hammer-ins. But that is all for the future.
- guru - Monday, 05/16/05 09:21:22 EDT

Yesterday at 3pm my student Patrick arrived and we rang the anvils for Paw Paw. At the end of our forging session, I helped load up my loaner anvil and stump, some loaner tools, some scrap and Patrick's first forge, a hand crank rivit forge that Miles Undercut sold him for what he paid for it about the time Pangea was breaking up...and so the torch is passed....

Forging has been the best thing I can do to keep from breaking up over Paw Paw's passing. I prescribe it to y'all as well.

Thomas P - Monday, 05/16/05 11:37:46 EDT

Friday was the day I have been dreading for the last week. I have been offering prayers for the family as well as for Jim. I will continue to do so for a long time to come.

The announcement came shortly after I had signed off for the weekend so this morning is the first I have heard of Jims passing. Like many here, I first “met” Jim online and his posts and emails were always in the nature of helping anyone he could. I can only remember one time that he lashed out at anyone online and they did deserve it, though Jim apologized for his lapse.

I got to meet him in person at ABANA 2000 in Flagstaff. He was the same person in a live conversation that he was online. He helped me personally with my feelings of being a “second class Veteran” due to the fact that I was a peacetime soldier. He got me to understand that my service was no less honorable in peacetime as it would have been in war. He was right when he reminded me that if the orders came, I would have went. They nearly did come with the situation in Uganda. We were recalled to base and were standing by to board the aircraft, though tensions backed down and we stayed home. Thank you my friend, so much.

It is only now that I realize that when I went out to do a bit of forging on Sunday, that it was at the almost exact moment of the anvil ringing. I made a pair of BBQ tongs that I was going to sell but they will now be kept in honor of this man that we knew as Paw Paw.

My anvil will ring at the same time as his service his held tonight.
Peace be with you my old friend. Others will come and go but the space you leave in our hearts will stay forever.

God bless you and your dear wife Sheri and all of the children who have had the privilege of calling you Father.

I will be unable to attend the services tonight, as California is a long way from Winston Salem. If it would be possible, I would be most honored if this post could be read at his services.

Thank You, God bless,
Wayne Parris
- Wayne Parris - Monday, 05/16/05 12:00:51 EDT

gas-oil forge ?: hi guys!
Iwant to make a gaz-oil forge (Idon't know what's teh exact word, it is the petrole we used for small radiator!)
some toolmaker and blacksmith have a similar forge, but anyone here have ideas for it?
what is the smaller size you think I must do this forge for a general blacksmith'use!
I'll post pictures when this project will be .........
- fab - Monday, 05/16/05 12:48:55 EDT

I think the fuel you are asking about is KEROSENE. I have never made or used a forge that uses a liquid fuel so I cannot help you much. Good luck!
- Wayne Parris - Monday, 05/16/05 13:19:51 EDT

Metal Fume Fever: I am still very sad over the passing of Paw Paw. I told a blacksmith buddy of mine today about what happened and he too felt great sadness. Paw Paw is still teaching us lessons today. As if there can really be an upside to such a tragedy. He really made me think. Also my wife has been after me about all the stuff I breath and black in my nose over the years. I ordered a respirator today and the best filter canister to protect from such bad fumes while welding and forging. I also bought really good galvanized protective masks for grinding along with protective #3 shaded safety glasses for forging. I always have used a #11 shade in my welding helmet and hearing protection along with saftey glasses. I thought it was time to add a little additional protection to the mix. This may be overkill. I think being too safe can't hurt. I am also now thinking about shop venilation more. This was just some thoughts as Paw has really been heavily on my mind the last few days.
burntforge - Monday, 05/16/05 13:21:53 EDT

R.I.P., JPPW: so long, memory lives on...
rugg - Monday, 05/16/05 15:24:51 EDT

donating stuff for Anvil Fire: I wondered if anyone had had anymore thoughts on the idea of donating stuff for auction on E-bay to help support Anvil fire?
I wanted to help, especially after recent events but I can't afford to join CSI just yet.
I learned a lot here and am now doing somthing I enjoy enormously BETTER because of this site.
With that in mind if someone does develope this idea further I would like to offer to donate a sterling silver 'anvil' pendant, that I made in memory 'Paw Paw Wilson'. If the idea doesn't go any further then what does someone with more knowledge of the Wilson's think about sending it to his widow as a mark of respect?
I really don't want to offend anyone, but I liked the man and wanted to make a gesture.
- Tinker - Monday, 05/16/05 16:49:23 EDT

folding steel: i live in cumming ga, forsyth county. as for the rebar not to be stubborn but im gonna try to work with it since i have it now so i can practice a little :) i like the idea of one of the guys (not sure if it was this list or the other) that said rebar makes for good practice but not good steel ;) im thinking since theres a junkyard down the road i will use mostly leaf and coil springs from trucks. i checkd all local steel workers and they have a no scrap policy, theres only 2 i know of tho so maybe i missed one. what do you think of truck leaf springs?
stephen - Monday, 05/16/05 18:28:57 EDT

well it all depends on what you are looking to use the truck spring for. If you are looking to make a small patch knife I would say no it is not good. Mostly as it will be TOO big and will require LOTS of forging to size.

I am guessing you are talking knives and other pointy things. ANd I also am guessing that you are also wanting to do pattern-weld ( 'folding' )

Several questions, what should or would you do if I said thae piece you are working needed to be upset?
How about it needs a smoother fuller?

Those are only 2 basic processes used in smithing.
Before you get too hot to trot about knives and stuff you need to learn the basics. Is it absolutely required to be a general blacksmith to make knives? No, but if you DO know the basics then you will eventually become a much better bladesmith.

I also think that 'found' metal ( junkyard or mystery steel) is OK for learning basic processes. But I personally think buying known steel new is better for knives and certain tools.

Does this mean I do not use scrap steel? No, as I do routinely. BUT the difference is that I have a few years under my belt which allows me to perform as a seat of the pants metalurgist. IN other words I experiemented till I had a fair idea of how to work and heat treat it.

But if I am making something for someone else or a gift then I always use new steel that I know what the composition is and I can get the heat treat specs for.
Ralph - Monday, 05/16/05 18:40:20 EDT

Pawpaw also talked sternly to me about my peacetime service. He told me much the same thing as Wayne. I sure will miss the CSM.
ptree - Monday, 05/16/05 19:28:23 EDT

tolling of the anvil: tolled the anvil just a few mins ago.
Did not light the forge tho as for one thing my arm is still too sore to even think of forging right now.
Dawn helped me toll teh anvil.
She then said Jim is probably laughing at us ( she and I)
out in the rain ringing an anvil for him.
Ralph - Monday, 05/16/05 19:33:37 EDT

Leaf spring is a bit harder to weld to itself than some alloys, I'd make sure there was some plain steel in between it when you build the billet.

And yes you seem to be wanting to make a jump before you know enough to tell if your chute is packed right.

Thomas P - Monday, 05/16/05 20:12:20 EDT

Paw-Paw, Touchstone: Picked up the news about Paw-Paw Saturday at Touchstone from Jymm Hoffman, consider myself luck to have run into him at Quad-State last year. Definitely put a bit of a damper on the balance of the weekend.

It was my first time to attend the PAABA hammerin, Touchstone is a great site and John Steele, Chris Holt and the crew put on a great event - Kim Thomas did a great brass casting class, Doug Wilson was truly inspiring even though my interest is colonial/medieval iron not architectural. Steve Morhouse did a great demo on tongs - almost made me want to make a pair. As usual I got to stand back a little while John Larson demo'd the hammer he was delivering - tried to keep from drooling a truly great piece of American made equipment. As I'm a metallurgist who does blacksmithing as a hobby, any hammer is currently pretty much outside my price range, but if I hit the lotto I'll be looking John up.

My sympathy goes out to Sheri & the balance of Paw-Paw's family. I don't think you're ever ready to lose a husband or father, let alone one as relatively young as he was.
- Gavainh - Monday, 05/16/05 22:04:06 EDT

White / Hall county line on u.s.129, 3 miles south of Cleveland you’ll see White Co. Ind. Park, first left is Cleveland Steel, special prices on drops if you show up on a 2 wheeler.
LDuck - Monday, 05/16/05 22:23:30 EDT

Hello I have a forging drop hammer for sale but I dont know much about it. it has a leather belt that gose over a flywheel clutch down to a stirup. it is realy neet to see if any one would like to see pics i can send them. Also I have some anvil and tools for sale as well thanks, ken
- ken kristiansen - Monday, 05/16/05 22:31:32 EDT

rigging bars: I had an oldtimer give me a bar that he had mad I cant get'em any place so maybe someone could make them for me.
modern pry bars are just bent at the end. but his was "rolled" this gave a large advantage with leverage.
new bars have one point for a fulcrum.the forged one thats rounded in the back lets fulcrum shift back.please email me if you can help.
ken kristiansen - Monday, 05/16/05 22:52:57 EDT

g'day from Brizzy again: what did i miss?
sorry to hear someone well liked has passed on.
anvilfire needs fund raising for..?

Mick,s backyard bodgie forge
- Mike - Tuesday, 05/17/05 07:24:05 EDT

this is a link to see my drop hammer. any info on it would be helpfull
ken kristiansen - Tuesday, 05/17/05 07:47:23 EDT

Congratulations! You do indeed have a drop hammer. Most people miss-use the term. Drop hammers are great if you have 1000s of parts all the same to make and can invest in tooling for them. If you are open die forging as almost all of us here do, drop hammers are way to slow and difficult to control to be of much use to us. It looks like it is in good shape by the picture. I hope someone who needs this hammer sees it.
- Wayne Parris - Tuesday, 05/17/05 08:24:37 EDT

I got to see a drop hammer used in Germany to make a hoe from 2" sq stock. The hammer was used to draw out the sides from the bar in *2* blows, one for each side. Then a powerhammer was used to draw down the tang leaving a hoe with a nice medial ridge for strength.

Every tool has it's use.

Thomas P - Tuesday, 05/17/05 11:01:58 EDT

My Wife of 30+ yrs and I plan on riding the big 2 wheeler down to Madison Friday morning for S.E. Conference,.. and maybe get some hands on metal mashing time in??
It’ll be our first time at one of these deals, so who knows we might meet some of ya’ll and learn something, I’ll be the one asking all the dumb ?s

I’ve been hanging around the Anvilfire site for 2 or 3 weeks now and have really enjoyed learning from the archives and current postings, I ‘m not to sure how appropriate it would be for me to comment on the passing of Jim “PawPaw” Wilson ( I understand the pain of loosing a friend and father) but I must say, few people continue to teach and inspire others after they’re gone, I hope to see more of his art at the conference.
- Lawrence Duckworth - Tuesday, 05/17/05 11:56:39 EDT

stuff: to upset is to heat the metal and pound it in just such a way that it gets fatter :-p instead of folding i could have done that with the rebar but eh, i wanted to experiment. yea im sure im jumping a little ahead of myself but im playing it safe, a bit different than parechuting :-p since im not going to get more than slight burns here and there (already got one) but i agree with new steel and scrap steel, if i was to do this professionally i would use new steel for the commercial projects. basically i like fire and i like steel and pointie objects and i like some armor, (full body suit just doesnt appeal to me) so i figured why not? take up the hobby and play around with it. im by no means serious yet but i am addicted!

some of the things i hope to make later on when im much more experienced would be a specialized rib guard breast plate thats gothic armorish, gauntlets and shin guards, a six foot great sword some knives etc. and thats just for me :-p. the armors would be purely decorative and thus would not be thick and hevy. well not as heavy anyways. i read a couple books, that by no means is to say i know what im doing but i feel i know most of the health risks and can atleast do this safely if not proficiently. i do hope to work with other blacksmiths for fun and learning later but at this time i dont have much time on my hands to spare, barely any to play in the fire myself.

thanks for the location for scrap, i will have to look into it later.
stephen - Tuesday, 05/17/05 12:05:44 EDT

Well almost all the armourers I know of work cold and do not use blacksmithing techniques. Actually most modern armour is heavier than the original stuff!

Also a poorly heat treated hammer can shatter and send metal slivers everywhere so there is more than just burning to beware of, as has been said, you can walk on an artificial leg but you can't see out of an artificial eye!

Do as you see fit. I generally start people making things that they can use and have a good chance of coming out usable and work their way up to more advanced stuff---they should have hammer control and tong use down pat before having to mess with them and loose their weld doing a pattern welded billet.

Thomas P - Tuesday, 05/17/05 13:30:39 EDT

kids safety glasses: It's tough to find safety glasses for kids(age 3-5). The only ones I have been able to find are listed online, and list no dimensions, so I have no idea how they might fit.

Has anyone had experience with kids safety glasses? What kind? I have my 3 year old making S-hooks no problem(I hold the iron). His aim is right on. I'd like him to wear something other than the massive goggles he wears now.

- Tom T - Tuesday, 05/17/05 15:15:32 EDT

Paw Paw: I haven’t been around much lately due to personal stuff. It was quite a blow to come by and learn of Jim’s passing. I had the greatest respect for him as I am sure we all did. Paw Paw will be sorely missed. I still consider myself kinda’ a newbie around here and haven’t been to the forge in quite a while but my anvil will toll tonight.
Shack - Tuesday, 05/17/05 15:49:21 EDT

service: Will there be a service for Paw Paw for his blacksmithing brothers and sisters to attend? I have tried to read through the posts. Even though I only knew him through these boards, I really feel like I have lost one of my close friends.
Shack - Tuesday, 05/17/05 16:14:47 EDT

I was able to find a narrow frame set of safety glasses with adjustable temples. I think I still have them, and will look tonight. I just happen to have several safety supply houses in town, and went and looked. I will try to post later tonight.
ptree - Tuesday, 05/17/05 16:54:58 EDT

Tom, I used a full face shield for my kids, protects the whole face. It was adjustable so I could dial it down for their smaller heads. They didn't mind wearing it when nthey saw Daddy wearing one too.

Thomas P - Tuesday, 05/17/05 17:32:03 EDT

the Memorial Mass was held Monday night at 7 PM EST.
Ralph - Tuesday, 05/17/05 17:44:30 EDT

The narrow glasses with adjustable temples are a UVEX ASTROSPEC 3000 S. These are pretty spiffy, and my lovely daughter loved them. They also had an adjustable head band added to hold them up to the face. Worked well. I gave these to her, and she kept them in her tool box. Yes at six she had her own toolbox. Gave her ownership of the tools and the safety process. All four of my kids worked in the shop, and will not enter the shop without going straight to the toolbox for their safety glasses. They also had P-100 disposable respirator dust masks for grinding/welding.
As Thomas did, I also used face shields, with the ratchet headgear, and they work also.
ptree - Tuesday, 05/17/05 21:01:36 EDT

kids safety......: I might be a bit of a larrikan with my stuff and forge bare foot but I make my grommet....(kid) wear all the safety gear and he stands back. full face sheild..sheeld...cover and my welding jacket with kid size steel cap boots. hes 10.
never enough safety for kids.
Mike - Wednesday, 05/18/05 02:24:24 EDT

thanks Ralph, I hate that I missed it.
Shack - Wednesday, 05/18/05 08:41:12 EDT

Mike's dog:
That Zoro is a fine looking animal, Mike.

- Phil H - Wednesday, 05/18/05 08:49:22 EDT

kid safety: Thanks for the replies. I think the face shield might be a better way to go. Since the kids are lower down, their face is more vulnerable to the hot scale flying around. I like the idea of giving them their own toolbox, but, considering what they've done to some of their other toys, I'm hesitant.
- Tom T - Wednesday, 05/18/05 09:38:20 EDT

Tom T:
My Grandpa presented my first tool box (complete with hammer, saw, vise, level, etc.) to me when I was about 6. He stressed the importance of maintaining good tools and made a big deal of the whole affair. He then took me out to the shop and showed me how to properly use each one.

I trashed a lot of toys growing up. Nearly 40 years later, I still have that tool box and all the tools in it. Every time I use them, I'm reminded of him, and the values he taught me.

- eander4 - Wednesday, 05/18/05 14:02:12 EDT

Paw Paw: im a bit late on this, I couldn't think of anything to really say. Im greatly saddened by his death, honestly if it wasnt for Paw Paws help online I probally wouldnt be swinging a hammer today. I never met him in person, and i wish i could have, but his online help has got me where I am today and where I will be tomarrow.
- Dan Crabtree - Wednesday, 05/18/05 14:03:27 EDT

Tinker: Tom,
As long as your not giving them the cream of blacksmith tools to dent (say a hoffi hammer) I'd just let them loose, tools are nearly always hardier than toys (apart from a Tonka truck I had as a kid, that thing was LITERALLY bomb proof :p). I have an autistic 9 year old and the casting I do with him is all the more enjoyable because he's fascinated by it and he really comes out of his 'shell' when I let him help. I'd always try to get my kids interested in somthing you can share with them as well as ecouraging their own interests (apart from that b****y Yugio! My son can give you the exact details of around a thousand cards, and I mean exact! I just don't get it!)
- Tinker - Wednesday, 05/18/05 14:03:37 EDT

Portable Vise: Check out the idea from Michael Roth at Emerald Isle Forge
Don - Wednesday, 05/18/05 14:45:41 EDT

Safety Glasses for kids: Check out Lee Valley Tools, they carry at least two styles for kids, including over glasses. However, I endorse going with the full face shield for the reasons given, those are making me reconsider what to get for my kids. DON'T FORGET HEARING PROTECTION - 'Boilermakers' Deafness isn't just for Boilermakers.
Don - Wednesday, 05/18/05 15:04:34 EDT

Tinker: ha!
My first piece just sold!!!
guess what I'm spending the money on?
Six months of CSI membership! Yep its blue for me, and a respectful nod for Paw Paw.
Noones got back to me on the donations post so while I know it isn't much its the best I can do on what I have.
- Tinker - Wednesday, 05/18/05 15:23:25 EDT

zoro.....: yep...circles the bbq area like a shark.....and if you drop something while cooking...its spooky...the white one runs a diversion, its like check and guarde in chess, you know you are gonna lose
Mike - Wednesday, 05/18/05 15:29:59 EDT

Tom T,
My kids helped to make their first tool box, a simple wood box with handle. Cub scouts have a project so all four made them, including the girls. The tool boxs stayed in the shop, with their tools and safety equipment.I have a 19 year old female with her own roll around and she changes her own oil etc. My 17 year old male has no tools except what is between his ears.(computer genuis) The 15 year old male has a roll around, forges some, likes to work on the dune buggy and earn money blacksmithing. The 13 year old female loves to work in wood, wants a rollaround for Christmas. When PPW visited, he chatted with them, and when he returned home sent each of them a signed book. Start them young, teach them safety young and teach them morals young, cause by the second grade its too late. They watch what YOU DO not say, so.. wear the glasses, use the blade guard, and don't even drink and drive, and they will learn by example. I love and cherish the time I spend in my shops with my kids. Enjoy yours, cause if you blink their teenagers.
ptree - Wednesday, 05/18/05 17:16:18 EDT

SouthEast Conference: I will be there for some of it. On Friday afternoon I have an art unveiling of a piece my son has been working on for a couple years. Will have to take off and drive to Savannah. . . Had plans to have company to help drive but that is falling apart. . . Its nearly 11:00pm and I have orders to get out and bills to pay before I leave. . . Another LONG weekend.

See y'all there. Hopefully.

Speaking of hammers. . I ran Paw-Paw's NC-JYH for the first time with hot iron. As sloppy as it was I could forge a leaf under it similar to those done on much better machines. Took longer but it worked well. The shape of the dies makes a BIG difference.
- guru - Wednesday, 05/18/05 23:00:36 EDT

Kids safety glasses:
Most industrial safety suppliers carry narrow glasses (48mm I think) for small adults and children. However, you may have to speak to someone knowledgable AND in charge.

I HAVE gotten glasses like the ones in our store in narrow sizes but I do not stock them. If you guys show some demand I will order a box (10) and list them. The price would be the same as those listed. I probably would NOT stock the green in small. It takes two to four weeks to get them as they are made by the factory on demand.
- guru - Wednesday, 05/18/05 23:06:20 EDT

Paw-Paw's Hammer-In:
Paw-Paw wanted to have a hammer-in at his shop when it was finished (it was VERY near ready). His wife would still like to see it happen. If you are interested drop me a line and we will set a date for sometime in the next couple months.

Those of you that saw his truck at SOFA last year and have any interest in it let us know. It will be sold sans tools but it has internal underfloor stock racks, work benches, wiring, loading ramp, a sleeper for one and many Paw-Paw-isms. This is a truck for someone that wants to make a living out of a truck. Its Paw-Paw's third or fourth "handman" work truck. More details later.
- guru - Wednesday, 05/18/05 23:17:42 EDT

Stephen and Knifes: Yes rebar is a very good learning tool. But for Knifes( other than letter opners), It isn't verry good at all. For general kitchen knifes I use a busted old flat file.( good tool steel!) and for a reasonable field or work knife I use a piece of hard draw pipe. One because its cheeper to cut it and flatten. Two I know what type of steel it is , its carbon count and its top end strength. I also make show or custom long ( 8 or 9 inch blades) from rail Road spikes. They look 'neet' :) and are a clasic style forged knife.They too are high grade steel and hold a 'propper' edge for a loooonnngggg time. The file steel tends to chip or fracture but will hold a razor edge for years with proper care. My brother ( A chef) has several of my file blades and is constantly bugging me for more.
- Timex - Wednesday, 05/18/05 23:46:53 EDT

Post vise: First, let me say that tonight was the first that I had heard about Paw-Paw's passing. I didn't know him personally, but through this site, have learned a great deal and will miss his knowledge and wit. I just hope that I can pass on at least part of what I have learned to my son. My condolences to his family and friends.

Second, I was just given an old post vise. Not as big as I would like, 4" jaws, but free is free. I have access to all of the 3' pine 4x4s that I want and was wondering if a few of them bolted together, stood on end would be sturdy enough to mount it to. Any input would be greatly appreciated.
Haney - Thursday, 05/19/05 02:36:18 EDT

The past few months I have been bugging the Guru's Den with my inane questions and have been using the I-forge demos as beginners lessons (They print out rather nicely!). Considering the amount of knowledge I have gained from using this site, I decided to join CSI.

The jist of the matter is that y'all are stuck with a newbie, wannabe blacksmith for the next year! Please be patient when you have to answer the same questions you have answered a thousand times already!

Ano - Thursday, 05/19/05 06:13:29 EDT

Ano: Welcome to the ranks of CSI! We'll answer all the questions you care to ask, believe me. Thanks for supporting this valuable resourc e through your membership in CSI.
vicopper - Thursday, 05/19/05 07:51:30 EDT

too much folding?: ok so todays steel is strong enough to where folding doesnt make much of an impact? and old blacksmiths didnt really fold swords 1600 times but actually no more than 15 with roughly 32k layers?

does anyone know the trueth to folding? is this accurate? i read it off of a sword making site however it doesnt sound right. furthermore i know a vet who says the swords offered through service is actually folded 1200-1600 times.

the site said to fold it too many times makes the layers too thin (makes sense) soo thin in fact they are thinner than the steel atoms themselfs. but if its one piece of metal as forged i would think this would be of no consequence since the steel would still be "welded" together. however, they say it makes the steel brittle after that.

thanks guys for your patience and answers.
stephen - Thursday, 05/19/05 08:27:27 EDT

Welcome to CSI, Ano. I also wear that newbie hat :). so your not alone. and Thanks for supporting Anvilfire.
daveb - Thursday, 05/19/05 08:36:31 EDT

Paw Paw : just got on to the sight after a bit of a break ,
i was shocked and saddened by the opening page , didn't know him in person but his wisdom and humour will be surely missed .helped me out a few times over the last years , thanks again.deepest sympathy to his family and all who knew him .

wayne ,ipwich . australia
- wayne - Thursday, 05/19/05 09:35:54 EDT

Swords, Steel and Laminations: Stephan, See our Sword making FAQ and the Resources page.

Note that "folding" is a bad term, the steel is cut and laminated, not folded. If folded a tremondous amount of the steel would be waste. As it is nearly 75% is wasted making pattern welded blades.

Yes, modern steels are infinitely better than ancient steels. This only reason for laminations today is the ART. However, in both cases the CARE and SKILL in heat treatment is more important than the metalurgy.

If the steel is laminated too many times three things happen, ONE there is tremondous carbon loss making the steel useless, TWO the steel becomes nearly uniform losing any pattern AND the advantage of hard/soft layering is lost. MORE is not better.

IF you start with a typical two layer Japanese billet cut twice resulting in three layers each lamination. The layering progresses such.

2 (rough), 6, 18, 54, 162, 486. . stop.

The layering an be adjusted by only making one cut and mearly doubling at any given step.

So with 5 lamination welds there are nearly 500 layers. In a typical sword 1/8" thick these layers are only .00025 thick. This is 4000 layers PER INCH. and that is where the confusion comes in. Those ignorant of the process and simple math assume that to create thousands of layers per inch requires thousands of "folds".

Modern bladesmiths typicaly start with a billet of 8 to 32 layers. In this case the progress if only doubling, not tripling is:

8, 16, 32, 64, 128, 256, 512 (7 steps)

32, 64, 128, 256, 512 (5 steps)

But if they triple from 32

32, 96, 288, 864 (4 steps).

Now. . SOME laminated steel makers start with .010 shim stock. A 1" thick billet has 100 layers to start. Two welds and you can have 300 to 900 layers.

It is all simple multiplication and division, but YES math is needed to be a blacksmith or any other artisan.
- guru - Thursday, 05/19/05 09:59:13 EDT

Paw-Paw's Hammer-In:: Guru I'm to far away to make Paw-Paw's Hammer-in, but could you post pictures of it. I would often check to see if Paw-Paw had posted new pictures of his shop. It would be nice to see it completed and in use. If you have time, thanks Daryl
- Daryl - Thursday, 05/19/05 10:21:30 EDT

Stephan, you are probably talking to folks about japanese swords. European swords were pattern welded too in early times but it dropped off as they got better steels---around 900 A.D. (There was one fellow who was talking about making super european swords using japanese technology---I had to tell him that the europeans were making swords with multiple pieces welded together *before* the japanese were; my favorite was 13 pieces with 6 of them being pattern welded billets)

The reason the japanese did so much folding was that they had really bad steel to start with and the massive ammounts of folding was to decarb it---it starts close to cast iron and ends up around .5% and to homogenize it.

No they did not fold it 1000 times----you would have lost the entire piece due to scaling by then! They did do some high layer work but as been seen you can get high layers with a low number of folds---I've talked to a lot of folks who told me they folded some humongeous number of times till I got out the CRC and showed them that the "layers" they were bragging about were thinner than the radius of the iron atom---told them if the forger hadn't died of radiation poisoning then they were just full of BS...

With modern steels "folding" usually decreases the quality; looks pretty but every weld zone is a possibility that something could have gone wrong.

There is a lot of BS out there about japanese swords; can help you wade through some of it if you talk to the folk who actually make them.

BTW even the HC stamped rail road spikes only top out about .3% carbon---not a high carbon by any knifemaking standards. Knifemaking usually use alloys at or above the carbon iron eutectic to get carbides for edge retention---sure you get a tough blade from a spike and you can sharpen it sharp---A.G.Russel once sharpened a flattened Al beer can till it would shave---but edge retention is not that great.

If you search the archives you can find the specs on HC spikes as provided by the manufacturer.

Thomas P - Thursday, 05/19/05 10:54:51 EDT

I've always thought that a good analogy to describe laminating a blade was that of the man who agreed to take his pay for a job starting with one penny on the first day, and doubling the amount every day for a month. Go ahead, do the math. (1,2,4,8,16,32,64,128,etc,etc.)I'd take that deal anytime.
3dogs - Thursday, 05/19/05 12:22:02 EDT

pattern welding: Having recently become interested in making blades and getting some ok results in my first efforts I naturally started thinking about pattern welded blades.

Yesterday I got my copy of "The Pattern Welded Blade" by Jim Hrisoulas. Its a GREAT book that will answer all your pattern welding questions.
Mike Ferrara - Thursday, 05/19/05 13:21:35 EDT

Ano newbies etc: Welcome to CSI Ano, make sure you stop in and say hi on the pvt members forum to where you will find out what "42" is the answer to.
As for being newbies quit appoligising for it we're all newbies, some of us just have been newbies longer than others.
JimG - Thursday, 05/19/05 13:37:18 EDT

Are you from Illinois? Also on the pattern welded blades, I tend not to belive what they are saying if they start talking about how great japanese blades are. Like it was said above, the Japanese had terrible steel to work with, folding just made it fuctional not godly or powerful.
- Dan Crabtree - Thursday, 05/19/05 13:51:31 EDT

The are you from Illinois question was directed at mike ferra.
- Dan Crabtree - Thursday, 05/19/05 13:52:15 EDT

Tinker: Jim G,
thats sneaky, cos if you know what the question is we're all in a whole heap of shinola! :) Note to the Guru: sir, I have a receipt from paypal for my CSI membership so how long before my little drop goes 'splish'?
No pressure or owt (anything, sorry i'm from Yorkshire) its more of a donation. Still we Brits do love the pub:)
- Tinker - Thursday, 05/19/05 14:05:12 EDT

From Illinois?: Dan,

Yes I am originally from Illinois but currently reside in Indiana.
Mike Ferrara - Thursday, 05/19/05 14:45:22 EDT

3dogs the tale I heard it was one of the chinese sages offered the Emporer of China that deal with grains of rice on a chessboard and when the Emperor found out that the end game consisted of the entire output of the country for several years---he had him beheaded, a very gordian knot solution...

Thomas P - Thursday, 05/19/05 15:02:38 EDT

Tinker, you will need to 're-log in' so the program can see you and you can turn blue.
Thank you for joining CSI
Ralph - Thursday, 05/19/05 15:25:46 EDT

Does any one know of a source for dydidium glasses?

My welding supply guy never heard of them and a google search found people who say they use them but no hints where to get them.
Mike Ferrara - Thursday, 05/19/05 16:10:47 EDT

Mike: Centaur forge has clip ons and regular glasses. They have a link here if you want to look
- Jeff G. - Thursday, 05/19/05 16:23:07 EDT

more stuff for sale: Thanks for all your info on the drop hammer. I also found a old hand shear that I will put on my websight on friday. tell me what you think. thaks ken
ken kristiansen - Thursday, 05/19/05 16:54:45 EDT

Paw Paw's Hammer-in: Jock, is there room for camping? Anything you can tell us about a hammer-in there? Time to do the Map Quest thing and see what a trip down there would be for me.
Bob H - Thursday, 05/19/05 17:02:08 EDT

Tinker and Ano:
Thanks and welcome to the "secret blue society".

eander4 - Thursday, 05/19/05 17:08:25 EDT

Thanks Jeff
...while slapping self in head cuz I buy something from centaur about every other day. LOL
Mike Ferrara - Thursday, 05/19/05 17:08:31 EDT

Hammer-in: Rough estimate to Boonville, 11 1/2 hours, 665 miles. Turn right, head south outa Michigan!
Bob H - Thursday, 05/19/05 17:08:37 EDT

What I think: Ken Krisiansen
I am thinking if you are going to be spamming ( an advertisment) your site you need to talk with Guru.
attempting to sell one or 2 items here is not so bad, but once it starts to look as if someone is trying to push their commercial enterprise that is enough.

Of course I may be wrong.

Ralph - Thursday, 05/19/05 20:50:49 EDT

Hey, if you get a pair of those glasses, let me know what you think of them. I've not talked to anybody who has tried them and I'm curious if they work. I did ask my optometrist about them once and you can get them in prescription if needed.
- Jeff G - Thursday, 05/19/05 21:12:57 EDT

That last post was for Mike F.
- Jeff G. - Thursday, 05/19/05 21:13:57 EDT

SPAM?: Depends on your perspective I guess. I have (on occasion) talked about my products and been accused of spaming. Even though most retail outlets for my tools advertise here. (Hmm, the incident may have been on the junkyard). Anyway, this seems to be a salvage outfit that occasionally has something of interest to blacksmiths. He's not going to become an advertiser here. I think if people like this can't mention when they have something, it's only the blacksmiths who will suffer. I admit it should be different for people who regularly deal in blacksmith goods.
- grant - Thursday, 05/19/05 22:18:19 EDT

this fella isnt starting a smith tool business,,,,,,,,,,, hop of your high horse........... this is the sorta stuff that helps us smiths......
- peter - Thursday, 05/19/05 22:25:56 EDT

According to the rules as posted up top.

Permitted Uses: (Just about anything related to blacksmithing)
Buying, selling, trading of metalworking tools and equipment. We would prefer dealers to purchase advertising space but we will not throw you out or censor your posts (let your conscious be your guide).

I think he's ok, but if he becomes a regular then he could considered a dealer.
daveb - Thursday, 05/19/05 22:30:29 EDT

Well almost all his posts are trying to get us to go to his web and buy.

While under the strick letter of teh law it is permitted, I tend to think it is pushing it. SO that is why I said something.
I already said I might be wrong.

Almost all the folks who are also commercial sellers are also contributors.

Peter, just who are you? I am not on a high horse, but I am attempting to let some folks know that if you are going to constanly be advertising a commercial web page then you need to talk with Guru to make sure he is OK with it. Since it is Guru's site he will make the final answer. And it will be one I WILL abide by.

Enough on this.
Ralph - Friday, 05/20/05 01:06:43 EDT

Spamming: I'm just a longtime lurker, but I haven't seen an instance yet where Jock couldn't take care of himself here. As you said, it's his site. Let him make the call.

And for the record, also to address a pet peeve, advertising is *not* spamming. The term "spam" was re-invented to refer to the flooding of multiple Usenet newsgroups with the same message, whether it was advertising, political, or whatever. These messages were usually not related to the newsgroup's intended subject. The term later covered emails as spammers found that to be a nice outlet. But sticking an advertisement or two in one forum is pretty far, IMHO, from the concept of spam. That guy that posted ads for cigarettes a while ago is a much better example.

I think the correct term for advertisement is, um, advertisement.

- BusyB - Friday, 05/20/05 07:15:01 EDT

ralph: your right i was outta place telling you to get off your high horse........ you have as much right ta say what you wish as i do.......and with saying that this is JOCK'S site and as busy bee said jock can take care of himself..... and his site............... there is going to be a tailgating area put here on the site soon........ but til then this is the only place to post that sorta info..........
blacklionforge - Friday, 05/20/05 08:44:33 EDT

Advertisements...: like...
visit your National Parks?
Bruce Blackistone - Friday, 05/20/05 08:44:51 EDT

...I just couldn't resist. I do think that this is a good forum to let folks know what you have, and the analogy of tailgating comes close to the tone we want to set.

Personally I found the pictures of the drop hammer rather interesting, so maybe we should encourage folks to post their sites; just another way to check out what's up, and by reflection, to check them out too. ;-)
Go viking...
Bruce Blackistone (Atli) - Friday, 05/20/05 09:00:32 EDT

plate... 125mm: is any one in here from brisbane? apart from me....
and do you have any broken bits of machinery or heavy plate, 5 or 6 inch? say metre square or bigger?
- Mike - Friday, 05/20/05 09:33:56 EDT

Actualy this is OUR site,
And with the extra load on Jock at the moment we are just trying to do what we can to help Jock keep this place together for us. And by OUR I mean everyone who reads it, not just the CSI members.
So be polite to eachother, even when you disagree.
JimG - Friday, 05/20/05 09:38:31 EDT

Didymium safety glasses: Mike - check with suppliers for the glass industry, and/or with any local crafts people working with glass. Also (just on the off chance) - neon sign makers.

I bought a set a couple of years ago in Toronto Ont. for about CDN$80. They are an over glasses style (since I wear glasses.)

Sunny and cool at 9 Cel. North of the Lake (Ontario.)

Don Shears - Friday, 05/20/05 10:09:51 EDT

Leaves for Paw Paw:

I know it isnt polite to post things from other forums on another site but I found this to be an exception.
- Dan Crabtree - Friday, 05/20/05 11:49:06 EDT

Mike Ferrara: Do you attend the monthy hammer ins at Mount Vernon, IL occasionally? and did you do a demonstration there not too long ago? I might have you confused with someone else.
- Dan Crabtree - Friday, 05/20/05 11:50:59 EDT

Spam vs ads.: Last word from me on this.
AN ad is something that is desired and or requested if it can be posted.
SPAM is un-solicited.

As for being Jocks site I am glad see that. But while I am not one of the 'official' Guru helpers' I have been here since the beginning. ANd we all need to help police the areas so that perhaps Guru can get to some of the other issues he would like to fix or add.

Bruce, having a link is not the issue. The issue for me is that when folks start saying here is my site go look and buy something, that to me is too far.
Sure I like looking at site folks post as all sorts of interesting things show up.

Tailgate comparison. Well every event that I have been to with tailgate sales either was a paid event ( including the sellers) Or a percentage of sales were given to the host org.
So to me the comparison is fairly thin. Just my opinion.

As it is yall can do as you see fit.
Ralph - Friday, 05/20/05 13:15:58 EDT

chess and rice: I play a lot of chess and I always wondered about that legend. The Chinese do play chess but its different from Western Chess. It's called Xiang Qi. Western Chess was basically invented by the Italians about 500 years ago based on a game they learnd from the the Arabs. Chinese chess, which may have been the original game, is played on the intersection of a grid of 9x10 lines. Most of the pieces are similar to their counterparts in the old Arabic game and the moves are similar but different in important ways. Also Chinese chess has a catapault piece which can only strike if there is an obstacle in the way. Tactics in Chinese chess are unbelievably fierce, much more so than Western chess.

There are a couple of incongruities in this story - the first is the discrepancy between 64 sqs and 90 intersections. The other is that in the East, chess doesnt command the same high esteem that it has in the West where it is regarded as "the touchstone of the human intellect". In China, and most of Asia, that position is occupied by Go or Wei Ki and chess has a status about like checkers in the USA (checkers, by the way is a deep and beautiful game that is much underestimated in the USA - just coz the rules are simple it doesnt mean the game is)

Well of course it's just a legend but who started it? Thats the question. To my ear it sounds like as Western invention and the Emperor of China is just an icon for a king in a distant land
- adam - Friday, 05/20/05 15:38:03 EDT

what about the viking chess peices that have been found in archealogical digs? I reckon they're a bit older than 500 years, and the vikings would be classed as a western culture.
nothing wrong with the chinese ( jo shen, ne ho ma?)but like the japanese they get credited with a lot of inovation that isn't their innovation (like folded steel for swords, etc)
The games most likely co evolved in both the western and eastern cultures and have enough similarities to lead to the belief that the chinese did it first.
I'm not so sure
Zia jian! (see you later)
- Tinker - Friday, 05/20/05 15:54:36 EDT

Paw Paw: 'Y know, the way folks joshed about how old Paw Paw was, I kinda expected him to be a LOT older than 64.

Now, it does seem he did a LOT of living in those 64 years. I'm not sure I can catch up with the amount of living he did if I live past 90 (I'm 49, zero kids, zero jumps out of perfectly good aircraft.) And I'm pretty sure I never will catch up with him on the risks taken and made good score.

Sometimes it seems strange how much one can come to care about people you have known only through the Internet. Paw Paw certainly was one of those and his loss felt like loosing a good friend
John Lowther - Friday, 05/20/05 16:00:55 EDT

I certainly agree with you on the checkers though (or draughts as we call it), my old man was LETHAL at it and chess too. Like you say simple rules COMPLEX game.
- Tinker - Friday, 05/20/05 16:03:13 EDT

Spam, spam, spam, spam:

But this is America, and we're all free to apply our own definitions. Language is a fluid thing. But to me, an ad is an ad. I don't solicit TV ads, and most are hardly desired. But they're still ads. Spam is a flood, a mass-mailing.

One of the problems with everybody doing their bit in policing is everybody has different tolerances. Ralph is bothered by that guy who posted a couple links. Others have replied that they found the links useful. Now that's far from a consensus, but I'd hate to see someone leave who might actually benefit most of the members. It's a fuzzy, wide, line. Ken K. crossed it for Ralph, and maybe others. He didn't for others (myself included). So who decides who crosses the line. IMHO that should be Jock and anyone he delegates the job to. Anything more is anarchy. Dogs and cats living together. Total chaos!

I've been to events where the tailgaters didn't pay extra for the privilidge to tailgate. I've been to others that did, like a donation to the Iron-in-the-Hat or something. We're not paying anything (although more of us should) to "attend" this forum. Should the tailgaters?

Ken K.'s site shows that the salvage operation isn't a big part of their business. Maybe a gentleperson's rule should be to become a member of CSI as a minimum if you want to tailgate. If it's your main business, then buy ad space.

Again, just my opinion. Back to the hive I go.
- BusyB - Friday, 05/20/05 16:18:31 EDT

Chess: My wife grew up in Taiwan, so I asked her about the chess story. She'd never heard it. I asked if she'd heard of anything else doubling that way. She said "only population."
- Mike B - Friday, 05/20/05 16:44:26 EDT

Selling here: IMO is doing a favor here and getting tools for sale to a smith site, he could have went to ebay.

ken k, Hey, try selling your blacksmith tools and anvil to an interior decorator or tool collector I know you will get more money for them from these type of people. Try decorators that do bars, resturants ect.

Next time we see these tools somebody will be eating a steak saying "man that anvil will never be used". You can always kick rocks walking out to your car.
- Robert IW - Friday, 05/20/05 17:21:30 EDT

Scandia rigging: I've talked to Ken on the phone as he posted about wanting something made and I jumped on it. He is a nice fella on the phone. He said he takes wish lists from guys and when he comes across something your looking for he'll let you know. I like having people out there looking for stuff for me. I've aquired a lot of tools that way. Yes he's going to make a buck, but maybe that keeps an old tool out of the scrap yard. The local scrap yard does that for me and a buddy also. We've picked up good post vices and such for next to nothing and the scrap guy got a little more than he would have otherwise. If you all don't mind, I'll just have Ken call me from now on when he has something of interest. Grin
- Jeff G. - Friday, 05/20/05 19:28:55 EDT

Mike B,
interesting, but you only to have a look at co-evolution to know that doubling up is common, think bats and insects and birds. totaly seperate species, totally seperate evolutionary lines, yet all came up with powered flight. In modern life different countries come up with the same ideas all the time without the others knowledge or participation, remember the arms races? How many inventors come up with an idea at the same time, or have an idea only to find someone got there first. The list goes on, I believe duality is an every day process, but thats just me. It just wasn't that much of a stretch to think that the vikings would be capable of creating their 'chess' without any influence from the chinese, a culture though ancient, hardly within the reach of the early norsemen. Bruce Atli would be the man to set the record straight on that though.
The swimming in chainmail story had me p*****g myself with laughter, top bombing!
- Tinker - Friday, 05/20/05 20:07:28 EDT

Scandia Rigging:: I think Ken did us a favor. John Odom
- John odom - Friday, 05/20/05 20:14:50 EDT

OLD LOCK: I don't know much about this stuff but this lock looked pretty neat! On eBay #7324586230.
- Tom H - Friday, 05/20/05 20:50:01 EDT

Old Lock: Tom H. I have seen two Hispanic violin padlocks in New Mexico, one in use on church doors. The ones I've seen were smaller than the one shown on eBay. I'm pretty sure the violin style with bar and removable hasp is Mexican.
- Frank Turley - Friday, 05/20/05 21:26:48 EDT

Scandiarigging: I saw Kens drop hammer on ebay long before he posted here.I think someone probably told him about a bunch of good old boys at Anvilfire that might be interested.Being in the buisness he is you never know what he may come across.Sure would hate to miss out on an old Beaudry some eastcoast factory was tossing out.Thanks for posting the info Ken.Now,if you had a 1000 hand forged doohickeys you should advertise thru the appropriate venue.Just my 2 cents.
crosspean - Friday, 05/20/05 21:32:50 EDT

Leaves for Jim Wilson: As a tribute to Jim Wilson, we are collecting hand made leaves to assemble into an art piece, which will be presented to his wife Sheri. Everyone is welcome to contribute. All leaves should in the mail by October 1, 2005.

Leaves for Jim Wilson
- Ntech - Friday, 05/20/05 22:10:16 EDT

Chess: First, I am no chess historian. There are a couple of things to bear in mind. One is that in English and other European languages, "Chess" or its translation, was often used as a generic word for almost any kind of board game - similar to the way we might say "he was playing dice". There are board games all over the world and many of them simulate a clash of two armies - many do not - check out Mancala , an African board game which will fry your brain. The Scandanavians have long had a board game called Hnefatafl (no I cant pronounce it) which is like chess in that its about the clash of two armies and played on a board but it is quite a different game and has AFIK no common ancestry with chess. Its natural for such a game to have figures representing warriors and noblemen etc so when a Viking dig finds "chess pieces" its not necessarily related to the modern game, Chess.

Modern chess has a clear lineage back to the modified Arabic game which the Italians developed. However, chess probably came to Europe along a number of different routes from the East. One of these was probably Russia which has long had a tremendously strong chess culture like the Spanish. The Vikings did a lot of traveling ( much of it through Russia) and were quick to adopt anything new that they fancied and so they might indeed have imported the game themselves. Also there is no doubt that games influence each other and copy each other's ideas - so in that sense there might be some thing of chess in Hnefatafl and vice versa. Until Victorian times there were many varieties of chess in Europe with various board sizes and arrays of pieces. When Philidor (1726-1795),a French player of exceptional strength. traveled to London he learned there to play chess with a 10x10 board and an extra pair of pieces that were a cross between knight and a rook. He quickly became the strongest player at that game too. Some of these variants might have had their own lineages from the East but they were mostly wiped out when Chess was standardized in the form that we now play.

There is a convincing case to be made that the game originated in China from where it spread East to Japan to become Shogi and West to India as Chatranj and from their to Persian and the Arab Empire.

The Chinese game has Rooks and Horses and the point is to mate the Emperor. The game ends, like chess before the actual capture of the enemy king. I find it just fascinating that small details like this have survived thousands of years and traveled across such different cultures - yet we still dont kill the king and horse still jumps funny etc.
adam - Friday, 05/20/05 22:15:07 EDT

i am sorry: sorry if I upset anyone. I am a rigger and machinery mover first and formost. we also cleanout buidings in the new york ,new jersey area. I get all kinds of cool things, most, I don't have any idea what this stuff is. I found you guys and it has already been a great help. now I have a better under standing of anvils [ good sound ect] if This "horse trading" of mine is a problem I will stop "spaming" I am sorry. I went a place in New jersey caled Petes Valley. for their anual blaksmith demo and pig roast. It was a blast. I now have the utmost respect for blacksmiths. Yes I sell stuff. I would rather sell the good stuff to guys that are going to use it. not a prop shop for the movies. If I need to pay to advertise my stuff maybe some one can let me know how much and whats involved. If you have not guesed, chat rooms are not my specialty, but if you need big machinery moved, you got your man. respectfully ken k
- ken kristiansen - Friday, 05/20/05 23:49:25 EDT

I think Jock is in the proccess (amoung other things) of setting up a "tailgate" which will be the perfect place for this horse trading. In the mean time since it is in everyones interest would you (or the person who found you here and is buying) consider a small percentage or something into the Support anvilfire fund?
All on the honour system?

JimG - Saturday, 05/21/05 00:22:15 EDT

Ken K,

I was not trying to shut you down nor drive you off. I was just trying to let you and many of the other new folks know about our 'culture' here. For a LONG time we have had a certain unwritten understanding about selling and other issues.
If you have taken offence I am sorry.
But I am attempting to help maintain the integrity of this site and also trying to help keep this site going. As it is a valuble resource for both the sales of smithing or metal working crafts, AND also the tips and knowledge of same.
Ralph - Saturday, 05/21/05 01:32:37 EDT

Didymium (D-I-D-Y-M-I-U-M) glasses: Mike, whaddaya want 'em (the didys) for? They're designed to block SODIUM FLARE (intense yellow light) from soda-lime glass being torchworked. Just curious. I found 'em pretty useless except for that particular purpose -- I much prefer either shade lenses or cobalt lenses for anything but lampworking soft glass. Of course, if you ARE lampworking soft glass, you should drop me an email :)
- T. Gold - Saturday, 05/21/05 03:22:38 EDT

Chess: Adam,
that answer rightly deserves a nod. So if I understand rightly its clear that the idea of boardgames involving armies (and thus genericly named 'chess' because of their similarity to the modern game we all know), were common all over the world, within their own seperate spheres of influence (which I thought of as co evolution in action) but the 'MODERN' game of chess that we know does indeed owe much to the influence of the Chinese. I can see the flaw in my logic on the viking finds, just because it looks like a modern chess piece, it doesn't mean they played anything like the modern game. I forgot that the trade routes would of course carry more than just silk! Yes I agree that its amazing how things spread around the world over time. Pity that some of the stuff isn't as harmless as chess though.
Wo de ming ze shi Tinker!
- Tinker - Saturday, 05/21/05 08:14:24 EDT

Didymium glasses and Il: Dan,

No I haven't been to any hammerins in Il and I never demonstrated anywhere.

T. Gold I read that Dydymium (actually spelled dydidium in what I read) are the glasses to wear if you're doing alot of forge welding. Looking at the specs of some of the glasses online say they block almost all the UV and IR yet they aren't supposed to be as dark as welding goggles. Is this incorrect?
Mike Ferrara - Saturday, 05/21/05 08:39:00 EDT

Didys & Cobalt: In my experience, wearing either is like looking at the world through "deep purple" lenses, and the heat colors are hard to differentiate.
Frank Turley - Saturday, 05/21/05 08:54:43 EDT

ralph: respectfull i say this you........... leave it be.... yes yes youve been around this site for awhile-- but as ive looked at the csi boardmember list and saw your name no for the longtime of an unwriiten understanding------ive posted steel tabletops hammers on this forum and ive never had anything said to me. and i talk with jock in person or on the phone several times a week........sooooooooooooo this fella is offering a great deal to this page by bringing it here to us instead of ebay...... bear that in mind--------- and i feel certain that if he was using this forum to set up"shop" that we would be justifed in saying something............ so go ahead shoot us all in the foot if'n you would like...... but i for one am glad ken came to us.....
blacklionforge - Saturday, 05/21/05 09:13:52 EDT

rigging, for sale: ken, Stick around some people get their shorts in a twist once in awhile, no big deal. It would be fun working with you clearing out crap and stuff from buildings. I just made a job change from working as a Union Ironworker to a Union Boilermaker, I will always have my Ironworker card. Bring your goods here to sell.

I would think if a guy wanted to make a donation from selling something from this site that would be okay. I would say 5% of the sale price or if its less than $100 in price $5 would do. I`m using these figures cause thats what we done at keenjunk before it closed down.

I have a 25lb Old Style Little Giant for sale, needs a total rebuild $1000 pick-up only in Kansas. If you are "tirekicking" or are a kid looking for something for nothing do not email me. I will bargin but not in price. I will do some work to the hammer, pour new bearings in the crankshaft and put new clutch material in. I had the crank pulley checked and the pulley bearing is within range and does not need to be repoured. The price will go up some after this work is done but for someone who can`t do the babbits it will make your world a whole lot easyer.
I will send pics to those with a real intrest to buy not just jacking around.

Yes Ralph I will send Jock 5% if I sell thru this site.

Robert IW - Saturday, 05/21/05 09:50:13 EDT

Historical footnote dept.: The Guruissimo his very own self on the subject of selling stuff on anvilfire (man was asking re: selling some tongs and an entire foundry): "Paul, You may list these items on our hammer-in page. I am in the process of setting up a sale page but have been delayed.
- guru - Friday, 05/13/05 08:13:51 EDT"
Miles Undercut - Saturday, 05/21/05 09:57:28 EDT

horse is dead and I am gone: blacklion,
in that case you are not looking.
I was the vice-chair of the BOD, and now due to PPW passing I am attempting to fill in as Chair until we have our elections, for the BOD.

Either case I am done with this section. I am too tired and have no energy to spare for this crud. It is sorta like the old Harly-Davidson saying. " If I have to explain, you would not understand" and that is where we are with this situation.

Yall can do as you wish, as I am about to do as I wish.
Ralph - Saturday, 05/21/05 11:00:47 EDT

Ralph: Thats the trouble with "unwritten understandings" - they're not WRITTEN ANYWHERE and nobody UNDERSTANDS THEM! or everyone understands them the way they choose.
- grant - Saturday, 05/21/05 14:16:01 EDT

Didymiums: What Frank said, basically. I would rather not wear didys because (though much less than cobalts) they decrease my ability to see heat colors. I REALLY liked someone's post recently about wearing welding-shade clip-ons that had I believe the bottom half cut off... this is the best thing I have seen for eye protection while forge welding. I believe (check me on this) that polycarbonate, as is used in most safety glasses and optical glasses, blocks out a huge percentage of UV (reference: ). I think I read that polycarbonate also blocks IR fairly effectively, but I'm unable to find a reference on that at the moment. Anyway, if I were doing a fair bit of welding, I would get shade 4 I think clip-ons or make some. By the way, check the dictionary about the spelling... just because everyone spells it one way doesn't make it right :) (I have seen many professional glassworkers, glass tool catalogs, etc that could not spell it either... hence why many people call them "didys" :)
T. Gold - Saturday, 05/21/05 16:54:19 EDT

MANNERS/MOODS: Well, we are already missing PAWPAW. I regret seeing so much nipping/snapping at each other. You can say what you want, without bearing down too hard. Remember one of these days you are going to be face to face. It might be embarassing to some. JOCK will eventially make the call. Leave it alone till he has time to respond. Everybody here is a good guy and have proved it time and again.

Be sweet, till The GURO has time. He has enough to worry about right now .

sandpile - Saturday, 05/21/05 17:15:56 EDT

I was out of town for two weeks and without cyber, so I missed most of the posts re his passing.

Just a note that I was glad to have met him at Penland School a few years ago, and that I have his book, inscribed. Good memories.

- Frank Turley - Saturday, 05/21/05 18:10:36 EDT

Paw Paw: Sorry. Previous post was about Paw Paw Wilson.
Frank Turley - Saturday, 05/21/05 18:12:23 EDT

OUT-OF-TOWN: We knew you were out of pocket. Demoing or something. I started to email you. But figured if you had access to a putor. We would have already heard from you. GREAT loss.

sandpile - Saturday, 05/21/05 18:38:25 EDT

I called A.O. Safety, who make a lot of safety spec's and asked re the polycarbonate blocking IR and UV. The told me that indeed polycarbonate does block UV in a range that I do not recall. I do not recall them mentioning that it blocks IR.
ptree - Saturday, 05/21/05 18:52:53 EDT

Thanks, Ptree. Now I know :)
T. Gold - Saturday, 05/21/05 19:20:30 EDT

Just Heard: Just heard about Paw Paw... My thoughts are with the family. I will look after the cutter I got from him a year or two ago. It was in trade for a CD of the North Bay Ontario Canada area.. God Bless Mr Jim Wilson

From the Northern Smith up here in Canada....
Barney - Saturday, 05/21/05 21:27:49 EDT


My name seems to be yan gway tze.
Mike B - Saturday, 05/21/05 21:35:12 EDT

Hello Folk,
This may be spam to some of you guys, but I have a 4000 amp EPA approved plating room here at my shop, copper, nickel, and chrome w/350gal. tanks. What would you guys think of plating some of your work in an antique copper or verdigris? Nickel can be done to look like pewter.
- LDuck - Saturday, 05/21/05 22:36:36 EDT

LDuck -- Do You do or know anything about electropolishing stainless steel? A friend who I have lost contact with had told Me the chemical and electrical requirements, but I have forgotten them.
- Dave Boyer - Saturday, 05/21/05 23:34:26 EDT

PLATING BUSINESS: HELLO L.DUCK How are you tonight. The GURU and CSI are always looking for new advertisers. When the GURU gets time he or one of his reps will contact you.

I am sure, you will be able to work a deal.

Thanks for joining in.

sandpile - Saturday, 05/21/05 23:36:27 EDT

names: After a tour in Japan and the Korean coastal area. My name became Timex, or Akiria( Japonese for snow ) any one else have have an odd handle ?
BTW Timex was earned for placing a 60cal slug into a Timex at 325 yards.( no spotter , no scope)
- Timex - Saturday, 05/21/05 23:56:22 EDT

L Duck: Nope, that's not spam, that's just a decent gesture to make us aware of something we weren't aware of before. Thanks, I'll keep it in mind, though I'm afraid the shipping would kill me. (There are one or two small downsides to living in the Virgin Islands.) Where are you located, for those of us who might be close enough to avail ourselves of the opportunity?
vicopper - Sunday, 05/22/05 00:17:00 EDT

viking sword: looking for to make a viking sword,ax, helmet ect.
- ken kristiansen - Sunday, 05/22/05 09:44:15 EDT

tsk...tsk... me thinks I spy a pot-stirrer with an identity crisis. Shame on you.
Gronk - Sunday, 05/22/05 10:55:28 EDT

who would you be refering to?
ken kristiansen - Sunday, 05/22/05 12:27:13 EDT

Ken: I think Gronk was referring to himself or herself.
- straight-way blacksmith - Sunday, 05/22/05 12:33:04 EDT

The wife and I spent the last couple days at the SE Conference in Madison, seen a lot of absolutely beautiful work, that’s why I asked about the plating thing, all the finish work looked pretty much the same? No way would I try to make a business plating blacksmiths work, just wouldn’t be enough volume to even pay for advertising let alone electricity, but on an individual special application it may be something to consider.

The Guru page I thought was for Q&A and the Hammer- in format is more like a coffee shop, I personally like seeing stuff like Ken has dug up whether I need it or not,… just coffee talk??? If Ken is out of line….seeya folks.
- LDuck - Sunday, 05/22/05 14:58:45 EDT

Dave Boyer,
What I know about electro polishing SS shouldn’t be repeated, but is as good a place as this to get you questions answered by some very experienced people. I have polished it the old fashioned way though, grease wheel and buffing.
- LDuck - Sunday, 05/22/05 15:15:02 EDT

The discussion concerning what can, and can not, be posted (re: Ken K) has reached a critical point. If viewers to the forum feel uncomfortable enough that they choose to leave, there IS a problem.
Rather than loose new viewers to the forum, cause hard feelings between the present viewers, and cause some viewers to leave, why not just bring the "problem" to Jocks attention and let him decide. After all, he is the final word on the matter.
- Ntech - Sunday, 05/22/05 16:26:15 EDT

GURU'S RULES: Ntech, Cranky Ralph, et al: HE ALREADY HAS DECIDED. Just scroll up a bit. See: guru - Tuesday, 05/10/05 17:30:56 EDT
- Tom H - Sunday, 05/22/05 18:21:40 EDT

whats the deal with folding metal, over rated, compared to modern metal?
ken kristiansen - Sunday, 05/22/05 18:21:59 EDT

Mike B,
My Missus reckons in Red Indian I should be called 'wakes like a bear with sore a**e' :)
If the chinese was all wrong then I know the local takeaway is loosing a customer ;)
- Tinker - Sunday, 05/22/05 19:12:08 EDT

I got mine from my family history (Romany People, so my great grandad really was one, mending pans and sharpening knives etc) and from my immediate family because I'm always 'tinkering' with things.
My Brother (and he alone) sometimes gets away with Tinker-bell, but thats because i'm over six foot tall and eighteen stone (14 lbs to the stone) and we spar together. In suppose its more original than 'Tank' which is what the lads at work call me.
- Tinker - Sunday, 05/22/05 19:22:27 EDT

Names 2: I should have said my Brother calls me that WHEN we spar together, he knows it winds me up and I start flailing instead of picking my shots, it means I lose the reach advantage.
- Tinker - Sunday, 05/22/05 19:28:30 EDT

TomH: I looked at your reference guru - Tuesday, 05/10/05 17:30:56 EDT and his reference to JimG - Tuesday, 05/10/05 16:17:46 EDT where the rules were quoted, "Buying, selling, trading of metalworking tools and equipment. We would prefer dealers to purchase advertising space but we will not throw you out or censor your posts (let your conscious be your guide)."

If, as you say, "HE (Guru)ALREADY HAS DECIDED" then why is the discussion still on going, and why are viewers leaving on Saturday, 05/21/05 11:00:47 EDT

- Ntech - Sunday, 05/22/05 19:32:24 EDT

Tinker: Do you really mean "wakes" like a bear with a sore a**, or "walks". Want to explain why you wake that way? BOG!
- grant - Sunday, 05/22/05 20:24:32 EDT

Is it or isn't it?: Let's be realistic here, folks. This is a forum for blacksmiths and their concerns and interests. Buying and selling is fine, if kept within the bounds of reason and good taste. No one has violated the rules recently, that I can see. The only person I saw who said anything about leaving was Ralph, and that sounded mostly like he was just tired of the issue and had other things to attend to. That's fine; we all get tired of certain threads or topics, and any of us are free to ignore them or not. No reason to get excited.

Ken's posts were well within the limits, as were L Duck's. There is no reason to discredit them, nor to censure or censor them. This forum is the place for that sort of stuff, along with the jokes, politics, social commentary, commiserations and congratulations that we all share. Let's not get too restrictive, lest we miss out on something good. Like democracy, you have to accept the chance of one or two getting something over on you if you are to be able to enjoy reasonable freedom.

This was Jim "Paw Paw" Wilson's forum, and his passing has left a void, that is true. It is up to us to continue to enjoy this forum in the fashion that we did when Jim was around to lay down the law, smooth ruffled feathers or make amends. All of here are big enough people that we shouldn't need a "forum sheriff" to keep us between the white lines. When someone strays over the line, it's okay to let them know, POLITELY.

This post was NOT aimed at anyone in particular, nor is it intended to position myself as the final arbiter of right and wrong here. I'm just calling it as I see it, and as I think Jim would have called it, and asking everyone to be civil and pleasant to one another. Thanks!
vicopper - Sunday, 05/22/05 20:33:42 EDT


I understood your Chinese. Can't say if it was "spelled" right since my wife never learned a system of Romanization, so I don't know one either. And no, I can't read or write Chinese characters.

Just in case: You may not want to try my "name" at the takeaway; it means "foreign devil." My wife's only teasing when she calls me that . . . I think.
Mike B - Sunday, 05/22/05 20:34:13 EDT

Ken Kristiansen: Yup, in this day of modern alloy steels, there is no real mechanical reason to make "damascus" folded steel blades. In the past, working with unknown steels having widely varying carbon contents, it made sense. Modern alloys and modern heat treating methods have made the practice obsolete, except for artistic reasons. But lots of us still do it, just because we can. (grin)
vicopper - Sunday, 05/22/05 20:38:37 EDT

Forum: Good note Rich. But I do think we will all do much better if we can get someone to be the Forum Mom. This forum has always had a gentle, civil tone that I valued greatly. IMO motherless forums get kind of rough. sigh. I miss Jim.
adam - Sunday, 05/22/05 21:36:05 EDT

MOM: Oh, I'll stick my oar in if it gets out of hand. I'm in here every day anyway. Uhhhh...I don't have to wear a dress, do I? (grin)
vicopper - Sunday, 05/22/05 22:29:06 EDT

Viking Wargear: Ken:

Go to the Anvilfire Armoury page on the pull-down menu on the upper right, and check out some of the articles there. Once you wade through them, we can chime in with other sources and information. When it comes to Viking, you need to think about where and when in the Viking age. A Greenlander would have different gear than a Varangian, and a Manx Viking might also have different influences.

If you're in the Mid-Atlantic region (or ever come out this way) we can use your talents on the rowing bench.
Portal to the Longship Company page:
Bruce Blackistone - Sunday, 05/22/05 22:48:20 EDT

vicoppers words: vicopper, You need to be a public speaker or hold some special office to inform and smooth things out whatever that may be. Thanks for larger post above, always good reading.
- Robert IW - Sunday, 05/22/05 22:48:22 EDT

Lets start over, I bought my first anvil this weekend, what a beautify, Josh Smith was very helpful and also demoed a big blue power hammer for us, (looks like a must have tool). As we looked around in admiration of the unique metal art work my wife asked me if the natural metallic finishes are traditional/cultural or what? In other words, why is every thing the same? I said “I dono.” Then we started thinking and talking about all the possibilities of what a copper plate finish might look like on some of the pieces. You see copper can be easily colored with a variety of different acids and techniques, for instance if you urinate on copper it will give it a nice bluish green patina, I think it’s the nitric acid? Betcha the phrase “piss on it” came from a frustrated copper smith. I’m not suggesting you urinate on your work, but what about using some other finish besides the natural metallic?

LDuck, LDuck in blue Letters, or Lawrence Duckworth ( I.D. crisis )
- LDuck - Sunday, 05/22/05 23:04:17 EDT

POLITE: Well it seems to me that my original post was polite. As were my subsequent posts.
And all the various anonomous nasty grams I recieved were not very polite. That is why I am not coming to the Hammer in for a while.
Ralph - Sunday, 05/22/05 23:19:10 EDT

POLITE: May we always remember that the sound of distant thunder just well may be Paw-Paw stroping that knife on his boot sole. Big old girn, with a tear in the eye.
habu - Sunday, 05/22/05 23:42:29 EDT

Names: Habu comes from my association with the SR-71 aircraft that was named by the locals at Kadena AFB in Okinawa after a local pit viper. I got to visit many places that were off limits to the common folk thru the lovely pictures taken by this bird. My job consisted of drawing circles on maps in diameters from 6' to 25 miles.
habu - Sunday, 05/22/05 23:58:58 EDT

Robert Ironworker: Thanks! Actually, that *is* what I do most of the time, as a cop. These days, it's mostly administratively, speaking for the organization or the government, but in the old days it was one-on-one on the street. No real difference, though. I just try to stay focused on what the end result should be, and the nicest way to achieve it. It's kept me from getting shot for three decades now. So far.(grin)
vicopper - Monday, 05/23/05 07:20:19 EDT

Mom: Thanks Rich. LOL. No - dress not required but if you baked cookies every now and then it sure would be nice.
adam - Monday, 05/23/05 10:20:37 EDT

MY friend the opthomologist looked into it for me and told me that IR was what caused glassblowers cataracts and UV blocking was not that much help for a smithing forge. Smithing forges being very different than arc welding...

IIRC Jim Hrisoulas once advocated using gold sputtered lenses for IR blocking.

Paw Paw's knife was not to be feared as much as his strop---you most likely would have lived through the stropping!

Folks I have posted under my own name for a long time on many forums, seems like If I'm willing to post I should be willing to stand behind it.

Ralph; sorry you've received some litter; please stay around even if you go to lurker mode.

Thomas P - Monday, 05/23/05 11:55:12 EDT

******* SALES on Hammer-In ******:
I have been on the road and my lap-top has died so I have been out of the loop. . .

1) Our CURRENT rules plainly alow sales on this page and I routinely invite folks to post sales here. The only limitiation is the seller's conscious. However, if things got out of hand then it would be another thing.

2) Commercial vs. non-commecial is a tweekey area. Providing links to items of interest to US as a community that would otherwise be scrapped is a service. A one time notice is no more than a press release which is also another kind of service. Repeated items sold in competition with our paying advertisers would be frowned upon.

3) The whole reason for this wide open policy on this page was the rude actions of another site owner who started out with everything FREE and then went comercial. . . Policing our "follow your conscious" guidelines should be very gentle and very politic. Sadly we have recently lost our most politic member who largely took care of the goings on on THIS page for me and let me know when something needed my attention.

4) Postings here quickly get swamped in other posts and have little real commerical value. I have setup a new tailgate sales pages which is still being tested. It will be a sales only page thus much more useful to those that want to buy and sell. It will have a list of reasonable voluntary fees. The policy on THIS page, the Hammer-In will not change other than we will suggest items be listed on the tailgate sales page.

Appologies to everyone.
- guru - Monday, 05/23/05 12:07:32 EDT

Forge and Welding Glases and Filter lenses:
Special Didydidium glasses filter the brilliant sodium glare and IR of the glass blowers furnace and are quite expensive. Part of what makes them valuable to glass blowers is the narrow range of filtration so that they can still see delicate features in the glass.

For the blacksmiths forge a standard welding shade gives you the same IR protection at much lower cost. We sell a #2 filter lens safety specticle which is suitable for general shop use at a much lower cost than Didydidium.

The level of filter protection needed is NOT well defined. The general rule is to start dark and then back off to where you can SEE what you are doing safely. Our #2 filters are generaly safe to walk around a normaly lit shop without tripping over things AND they reduce IR. However, in a brightly lit shop you could go darker and have better protection when staring in to the forge. How much protection you need depends on the size of the forge and how long you stare into it. Gas forges are worse than coal but some coal fires present a lot of exposed hot surface and high levels or IR.

Note that Borax flux contains sodium and you can get that same sodium glare from a gas forge. However, we are generaly not doing the same type of work as a glass blower and only need the IR protection, not increased visability.

Note that even the darkest arc welding lenses (#12) can be used to read with in GOOD lighting such as normal daylight. The trouble most people have with filter lenses is the ambient lighting. Have a hard time starting an arc in the right place? Put a spot light on the work! If you do a lot of arc welding then brighten your entire shop. Your frustration level will go down and your quality will improve.
- guru - Monday, 05/23/05 12:30:03 EDT

Ralph: Please stick around. Life is too short to pay attention to the jerks.
adam - Monday, 05/23/05 12:30:28 EDT

Borax and sodium: Dang, I plumb forgot about that. Sodium tetraborate. I guess I just found another use for a good pair of Didys. Thanks Jock!
T. Gold - Monday, 05/23/05 12:52:56 EDT

Just in case: For clarity's sake, my somewhat *cryptic* post from yesterday had absolutely nothing to do with Ken, Ralph or the recent *discussion*. It had to do with names and the person I was directing it at contacted me via email and it is as I thought. I suppose the placement of the post could have been better. Sorry for any confusion.
Gronk - Monday, 05/23/05 12:53:53 EDT

Specs on specs: Perhaps Tyler is already familiar with these folks. They give some pretty good descriptions of the various types of filter glass for glass and metal workers.
3dogs - Monday, 05/23/05 13:49:59 EDT

I thought something was funny on my computer so I ran a Trend Mirco scan and came up with 2 TROJ DELF.PI viruses. I have had this stuff before and went to a step by step removal and the Trend site but cannot find the instructions now. Can anyone point me to instructions to rid myself of the virus. I do remember it was a simple task. I won`t be back online til tomorrow moring sometime. I`m starting 2nd shift today 3pm to 11pm.
- Robert IW - Monday, 05/23/05 14:28:22 EDT

Glasses, Glasses, Who's Got the Glasses?: I've been using a pair of didymium glasses for years (10? 12? more?), they were expensive, but my wif got them for me as a Christmas gift. I like the visibility, and I can easily compensate for the color change with incandescent colors (usually a difference of one shade). My only question is not whether they're overkill, but whether they're in any way deficient for blocking wavelengths in blacksmithing. As long as they're safe, I like 'em.

I presently use my green shades when using the little smelter that Jock rigged up for Camp Fenby, but things tend to be a little more wide-open during a smelt than in my cluttered forge.
Camp Fenby Site (if registered on Yahoogroups)
Bruce Blackistone (Atli) - Monday, 05/23/05 16:25:51 EDT

Smelter or Melter?: Something doesn't quite smell right. ;-)
Bruce Blackistone (Atli) - Monday, 05/23/05 16:37:12 EDT


Are the dydidium and the didymium refering to the same glasses? I'm confused.
- Mike Ferrara - Monday, 05/23/05 17:02:35 EDT

glasses: Mike, yes. Same thing, just the usual confusion in spelling of a semi-scientific word. I say "semi-scientific" because when didymium was first discovered it was thought to be a new element. Later, it found to actually be a compound of neodymium and praesodymium. The spelling "dydidium" is incorrect.
vicopper - Monday, 05/23/05 22:49:13 EDT

Tempering and Anealing Steel for Crossbow Prod: Hi, I am a novice bowmaker and have had little experience in metal working. I am trying to craft a crossbow prod (the bow of the weapon) out of steel. I bought an old leaf spring from a junkyard. My grandfather is a metal machinist and told me that I needed to anneal the steel in order get it soft enought for him to work. I am wondering how i might easily achieve this. I have few resources for metalworking and only the ability to build a small fire in my backyard. Can it be done over a really hot campfire? I also am wondering if I will need to temper the steel afterwards to prevent it from breaking. Thanks for any help you guys can give me, I really appreciate it.
- Nick - Tuesday, 05/24/05 00:58:25 EDT

Nick: First show it to Your Grandpop, let Him test it with a file. It MAY not be as hard as He thinks, and depending what must be done to it He may be able to do it while it is still hard. If You mst anneal the spring You have to heat it a little hotter than where it is no longer magnetic, then cool VERRY SLOWLY by smothering the fire with the spring still in it in a bed of coals with a large pile of ashes and coming back 2 days later. After machining the spring will have to be hardened, then tempered. This is the trickey part.Hardening is done by heating to a little above non magnetic, then colling, in the case of an auto spring, rapidly in warm water or oil, You must try scrap pieces to be sure it sdoesn't crack or shatter when Quenched. Hotter water or oil are less severe, try those if it cracks. The part should now be too hard to cut with a hacksaw or file, but will be too brittle to use. Tempering takes away some of the hardness, so it wont be too brittle. To do this the spring must be heated. Take one of Your test pices and grind a spot on it 'till it is shiney metal. You can try the household oven on it's hottest setting, If the ground spot hasn't turned blue, it isnt hot enough. A campfire won't give the controll You need, if the part is small enough You may be able to use a propane torch, better a weed burning torch if You can get one. The blue color is a starting point, that is why You have test saamples to try different temperatures on. Hotter makes the spring less brittle, but too hot will make it soft enough to bend and not spring back. This is a skill that may take a few tries to master, as it is better done with temperature controlled furnasses, and a steel with known properties. Good Luck.
Dave Boyer - Tuesday, 05/24/05 02:31:07 EDT

Dydidium...........: ..not to be confused with the doowahdidium of the '60's
3dogs - Tuesday, 05/24/05 03:53:42 EDT

PPW: Sorry for the late posting, I don't read AF ver' often, but when I do it's always to my benefit. Just sat here rebuilding a borked server & reading through. Tears in my eyes to read of PawPaw's passing. Never met him, never corresponded. I can't find any more words, I'm just sad he's gone.
- Zedley - Tuesday, 05/24/05 05:23:15 EDT

Smelter?: I never even met her!
adam - Tuesday, 05/24/05 10:37:20 EDT

crossbow prods: This is a job for a professional heat-treater if you value your life. It can be done in a home shop IF you know what you are doing, but I suspect this isn't the case here. Think of what will happen if the prod is brittle and snaps under full draw while you have the bow up to your shoulder: nothing like a chunk of sharp-ended steel in your temples to slow you down a little bit, at the least.

For the best safety, use new steel of known composition. old used leaf springs can have invisible stress fractures in them that WILL let go when stressed after forging.

Home heat-treat is risky for super-critical parts. Even in the time period when steel prods were the cutting edge of projectile weapon technology they were considered very dangerous to the user for exactly this reason.
Alan-L - Tuesday, 05/24/05 11:48:05 EDT

PPW Memorial Hammer-In: Date is set for Saturday June 18th.

Time, 10:00 AM (I will be there earlier).

Activities, See Paw-Paw's shop. Fire his forge again. Impromptue demos. Tailgating if you have em. Stories about Paw-Paw. Reading of the "word list" from his memorial service. A final ringing of the anvil by his friends.

There is a little room for camping in the driveway near the shop or IN the shop (concrete floor). However the rest of the lot is too hilly. There are nearby motels and a campground. More details later.

Location, Rt 601, 1.5 miles north of Boonville, NC which is about 7 miles from the I401 and I77 intersection west of Winston-Salem, NC. Use the I77 and 67 exit, go east on 67 then north on 601.

Please drop me a note if you can attend so we have an idea of the number.
- guru - Tuesday, 05/24/05 12:04:19 EDT

I believe we bought the three or four sets of didys for the glass shop's lampworking equipment from Auralens. Seem to remember buying the cheapest plain didymium glasses we could get. Worked great. Beat all heck outta my cobalts, which worked fine but were hard to see colors with... or rather, the colors started showing right when the glass devitrified.
T. Gold - Tuesday, 05/24/05 12:53:34 EDT

Nick; find a spring shop and get some fresh un-heat treated steel to be machined. Then take it back to them and get it hardened and tempered to "spring"---you would prefer it to be a bit soft than a bit brittle.

Thomas P - Tuesday, 05/24/05 17:04:04 EDT

Off to go pack for my campout---gotta take 2 anvils as I and another smith will be teaching a smithing class at this SCA event...

See you all next Monday or Tuesday!

Thomas P - Tuesday, 05/24/05 19:05:49 EDT

Metal Finishes: Mr. LDuck- as I am fond of saying, blacksmiths, and other metalworkers, come in every flavor- every race, color, sexual orientation, age, and shoe size.
This means that although many blacksmiths like natural, silvery colored metalwork, there are tons and tons of them who do it differently. I have seen beautiful, hand forged work of the highest quality in natural colored steel, wrought iron, copper, bronze, aluminum, stainless steel, iconel, and titanium.
I have also seen hot dip galvanized steel, painted work of every color, powdercoated work, and yes, plated work.
Plenty of people like colored iron- in fact for some eyedazzlingly bright colored stuff, check out Nick and Jeans work-

As for copper plated steel, yes, its right purty- but unfortunately for most of us, its also purty expensive. I put out several tons of ironwork a year, mostly stainless lately. And plating would probably be 2 to 5 times as expensive as the finishes I currently use. I have done a few small pieces, but its hard to build the cost into prices for resale.

On a related note, there are some pictures of some copper plated forgings in the copy of the Anvils Ring that came in the mail yesterday- and if you are starting out, I would recomend joining Abana, if only to get the magazine. I know, there are people here with various grudges and political and historical reasons they dont like Abana- but I still say, for a beginner, its best to get as much information and knowledge as you can, and reading the magazines are really helpful in that respect. In 10 years, when you know everybody personally, you can feud with whomever you like, as you will then already know everything there is to know. Me, I am still learning daily, and so I read every magazine and book about blacksmithing (and machining, sheet metal, welding, and fabricating) that I can find.
ries - Tuesday, 05/24/05 19:33:37 EDT

CSI Query: I'm sorry to bother you (Jock) because I'm fairly sure your busy (well run off your feet!) I just wanted to know if you got my payment for CSI membership? I don't have outlook as my main email and as this computer is 'er indoors' property I thought it would be easier to ask here.
I'm not bothered about WHEN I get the CSI membership because you've enough on, I just wanted to make sure paypal aren't playing silly b****ers.

- Tinker - Tuesday, 05/24/05 21:09:49 EDT

Tinker: If you'll go to the Guru's Den page and cllick on the Guru's name at the end of one of his posts, it will open an email window to email him directly. Since you said you don't use Outhouse for email, I don't know if it works the same for you. If not, let me know and I'll email Jock for you. I don't want to post his email address here because this forum is public and the evil bleedin' address harvesters work it, as we have found out in the past.
vicopper - Tuesday, 05/24/05 21:18:32 EDT

I meant WAKES as in from asleep to not asleep. As to why?
Its inherited! My Grandad, Dad, Brother and myself all have a catatonic snap reflex when woken from 'deep' sleep. What it means in real terms is that if you were within arms reach when you wake me up from 'deep' (REM)sleep its a coin toss that I'll nail you before I'm fully conscious and recognise you aren't a danger. Luckily for me I usually just 'surge' bolt upright looking like I'm 'about' to commit murder (the wife follows the rules I gave her so I've never actually murdered anyone yet!
1)SHOUT First, from well beyond arms reach.
3)Use soft furnishings, eg pillows, as expendable 'canon fodder' missiles in conjunction with rule 2.
4) If non of the above have roused me then try tapping my feet in conjunction with rule 2) taking into account my 'lunge' capabilty.
5) Ensure you DO look friendly when I do wake up, a cup of tea also works very well.
6) If and only IF all of the above have have failed dial 999 and ask for an ambulance urgently.

As kids we used to shake my Dad by the toes to wake him (or send the dog in!) and jump back as he flailed all over till he came round, and he DID look like a bear with a seriously sore a*se!
As for my Grandad it did LITERALLY save his life during WW2, which although an amazing story is too long for here, so I guess theres a reason for everything. Funnily enough it only ever happens with me if I'm in bed alone. If the wife is next to me I tend to just 'start' a little. Even went to the doctors about it, but his advise was and I quote 'Perhaps it would be simply better if you ensure that you are the first person to rise in the morning among your household'
what can you do? :)
- Tinker - Tuesday, 05/24/05 21:44:17 EDT

Vicopper: missed your post writing that last 'saga'! ;)
Would you mind? I don't want to set up another internet connection (which is what this furkin thing keeps asking my to do when I try the webmaster@anvil fire link) on the wifes system. I like peace and quiet too much! Like I say I couldn't care less when he gets around to hooking me up I just don't trust 'paypal' too much (see as to why!).
- Tinker - Tuesday, 05/24/05 21:48:28 EDT

vicopper: I think the address harvesters work every site on the web. Of course, they can always have one of my favorite addresses-
Ano - Tuesday, 05/24/05 21:52:10 EDT

Am I Blue? Long Overdue!!!! What took me so long? I should have done this a long time ago. I'm headin' back to the shop...later folks.
Gator - Tuesday, 05/24/05 21:55:27 EDT

LDuck: That website [] is HUGE I will definatly read more of it when I have time. Thanks
Dave Boyer - Wednesday, 05/25/05 01:54:58 EDT

language use: I would like to remind everyone this is a family site. Please do not use bad language even by spelling it slightly different allowing it to have the same sound and be understood by children. Thank You. This is just a reminder.
- straight-way blacksmith - Wednesday, 05/25/05 09:52:14 EDT

CSI dues: Since, I'm the Treasurer, I'll take this question.
Tinker,(West Yorkshire UK ? ) if so payment received and deposited. I forward a copy of all transactions to Jock.
PayPal has to clear the payment first (3 to 4 business days) it will show your payment but will not let me transfer until cleared with your bank, then I have to transfer the payment to CSI's bank account. ( 2 to 3 days for the bank to post it). Some times it seems to take forever, It's just like dealing with three banks at once.
We have not had any problems yet with PayPal tranfering the money.

And thanks for supporting AnvilFire.
daveb - Wednesday, 05/25/05 10:05:59 EDT

daveb: See, that's why I knew you'd be the right man for the job; you're right on top of things. Jock may have missed getting Tinker signed up, so I did send him an email reminding him.
vicopper - Wednesday, 05/25/05 14:38:01 EDT

family site?: SWB, i agree that this site may be vistited by "children", however, i would say that "children" wouldnt understand the goofy spelling, and the site wouldnt hold the interest of a child. the post you are referencing is really soft. i am sensitive to what children are exposed to (did you see the paris hilton carl's jr. tv ad??truely an outrage), but i think you were a tad quick to pull the trigger on this one. just my $0.02...i dont know that it is accurate to describe this site as a family site; metal working by nature involves mature people. that said, profanity doesnt add to the value of anything..
- rugg - Wednesday, 05/25/05 14:39:40 EDT

Rugg: Jock promotes the site as "family friendly" in the sense that if say: a ten year old wants to do a class report on blacksmithing, so comes here his/her little ears (eyes?) are not exposed to a tirade of potty-mouthedness (What!?! Not from a blacksmith!). Basically, since those reading the site are not exclusively the crusty old metal hounds we all know and love, we try to keep it clean.

That said, I agree that the average child wouldn't pick up on the goofy spellings, but I don't mind the occasional reminder either. I personally prefer the use of !@#$%* characters to express my inner angst. If it's good enough for Beetle Bailey....(grin)

eander4 - Wednesday, 05/25/05 15:08:30 EDT

eric: totally aggree and understand. as an adult, profanity in public sets me off. there is very little of that nonsense here. i just thought that the reminder was a tad quick in the context of what was posted. 'nuff said...
- rugg - Wednesday, 05/25/05 15:27:41 EDT

side draft hood: could some of you help me out here? im building a new forge it is 40" by 30" 1/4 plate. i would like to build a side draft hood and have been looking around for some ideas. im concidering using a hood like the one on ... has any one used this hood or could make a recomendation on a hood plan any help would be greatly apreciated thanks Mat
- m . clarke - Wednesday, 05/25/05 15:53:47 EDT

Tinker and PayPal: Please send me your particulars while the accountants are investigating PayPal. I'm sure you paid and I didn't get the details.

We have had consistant trouble with paypal not forwarding information as emails. We get about 1 out of 5 and the rest must be dug out of their system. In comparison I get 999 out of a thousand from my regular credit card handler. Ocassionaly email systems glitch but paypal's is BROKE and doesn't work.
- guru - Wednesday, 05/25/05 15:56:34 EDT

They DO NOT work with our public forum system. However, their new ploy is viral harvesting. You send mail to someone infected with a virus and your name is now mud. . . Only took mine two weeks after changing it. However, the one used HERE has not been harvested.

This is hacking for profit and the Feds could jail these guys OR the people that profit from it for life EASILY if they tried. They cost our economy more than all the world's terrorists combined (except for our misguided wars against the innocent). . .
- guru - Wednesday, 05/25/05 16:02:28 EDT

Side Draft Hood: Look at our plans page. We have 3 that work. They are the best way to go.
- guru - Wednesday, 05/25/05 16:03:11 EDT

Re: 'nuff said.

Are you a fellow fan of the inimitable Stan Lee?
eander4 - Wednesday, 05/25/05 16:09:51 EDT

side draft and wire rope: m. clark,
I built the side draft hoof off the plans page here and it works great! I ran my stack out the window so I have 2 90's in it and it still draws very well..oh, I have tons of big trees too.

BTW, does any one else have trouble finding cable to make cable domascas? I looked all over and finally went on line for some.
Mike Ferrara - Wednesday, 05/25/05 16:28:23 EDT

side draft hood: Mike, which of the hoods did you build??
m . clarke - Wednesday, 05/25/05 16:36:38 EDT

Language, Family and Children:
We regularly have 2nd graders and their teachers looking for information on anvilfire. That means 7 year olds and single young women younger than most of our daughters. . . I have personaly given forging lessons to a number of 8 year olds and suggested they come here to look for information.

The prime ages of school children looking for information about blacksmithing is 5th and 7th grade. That is 10 to 12 years old. Many between the ages of 6 and 15 are home schooled have more freedom to research things on-line.

As to language use, some of the greatest authors of our time when asked why they never used curse words in their writings said it showed a lack of imagination, poor use of the language and ignorance in general. They could all call you a low life without stooping to gutter language and generaly without you knowing it. Our departed Paw-Paw may have been an expert at swearing but he could also disparage your parentage in polite language.

Regardless of the public acceptance of low language it is always best when speaking in public (and this IS public) to speak or write as if to your mother or grandmother.

Bad languarge use also costs me time and effort cleaning up the mess. In a few circumstances we have had to ask folks to take their business elsewhere and will do so again if necessary.

- guru - Wednesday, 05/25/05 17:17:56 EDT

Language: I personaly don't like bad language and when a teacher I forbid it in my classroom, even though some of the text books for other subjects were full of it. To me it marks the user as incabable of expressing themselves in standard english.

That is one reason why I don't go to movies except when one of my kids brings me a strong reccomendation, and that knowing how I feel on the language issue.

Thanks for the policy, Jock.
John Odom - Wednesday, 05/25/05 17:36:45 EDT

Paris-- What is she doing, exactly, except displaying a human female bod-- clad, mind you-- in terrific shape? What, pray tell, is going on in the ad-- a soupcon of sensual writhing, some wiggle, a little jiggle-- that has not been done a jillion times before on TV, as in Victoria's Secret ads, Kellogg's breakfast food ads, etc.? As that great blacksmith Ray Charles said, it don't mean a thang if it ain't go that swang. What, are we going to have a little Taliban of our very own here in the forge, too, as we seem to be having everywhere else in American life? And--hey, what's a pretty girl like Paris got to do with smiting and onsite language, anyway?
Miles Undercut - Wednesday, 05/25/05 18:10:38 EDT

Mike Ferrara,
I find my wire rope(the correct term for what most call cable)at the local wire rope shop. I get the drops, for free. Took them a show and tell, and promised a simple knife to the shop guys. Worked like a charm. Look in the yellow pages under wire rope. If you have a local rigging company, ask them where they get chain and wire rope slings, and try there.
Good luck
ptree - Wednesday, 05/25/05 18:18:20 EDT

wire rope and chain: if you need wire rope and chain, you got the right guy. let me know what you are looking for. we scrap alot of it.
ken kristiansen - Wednesday, 05/25/05 20:08:31 EDT

I also like the idea of a simple knife in trade
ken kristiansen - Wednesday, 05/25/05 20:10:11 EDT

Swearing: Firstly my apologies to Jock if I have made any extra work for an already overworked man, secondly I did self censor in as much as the funny spelling goes but will in future follow the example of others in using *%$£@~# and whatever else I can reach on the keyboard. I was unaware that so many children came to the hammer-in pages, it was my (apparently misguided) belief that they mainly went to the GURU pages to ask questions. I agree fully with the sentiments expressed about profanity in front of children, I use the language I do because I choose to, but would never encourage others to do so.
I am indeed from west yorkshire, and was raised in a small mining town. If anyone else here knows miners they know why I swear :) It was never my intention to offend and I am certainly capable of erudition that does not require profanity to emphasise a point, however the idea that profanity shows a lack of mental capacity is laughable. I often swear like a trooper and yet am a paid member of MENSA and have an I.Q. (when last tested) of 169. My Father often turned the air blue and his I.Q. was 172. Profanity is emotively driven and fundamentaly human in its nature. We can all speak like elocution experts if we take the time to but then we lose our both our individuality and our humanity.
That small rant aside if I want to use a potty mouth I will happily use ******* these instead.
- Tinker - Wednesday, 05/25/05 20:17:18 EDT

what is the best stock to have for smithing? we just scaped a load of new round, flat and square all sizes.
ken kristiansen - Wednesday, 05/25/05 20:20:18 EDT

foul language.: Why use it at all?
On a slightly differnt tack, I was demoing in a 1920 era blacksmith shop and one gentleman in the crowd, used a very minor 4 letter word, I can't even remember what it was. But I'd been waiting all day for this...
I dropped what I was doing stared right at him with a smile and said "Sir. Language like that may be acceptable in the Pool hall and Elevator but not here thankyou."
Got a good laugh from him and the crowd.
JimG - Wednesday, 05/25/05 20:28:59 EDT

Paypal: Jock,
I don't know if you have my details yet (I've tried to log in without any sucess) but I'm not able to use the direct link to you on the site because of the set up on this P.C. and my terror of the wife if I fiddle with it ;)
I have tried to email you through accounts I have with MSN and Yahoo, but kept getting the host doesn't like you routine :(
I'm sure thats to avoid spam and such, so I've set up a 'throw away' e-mail adress I can give you out 'in the open'

If you email me on that then hopefully I can reply giving you my normal adress without the filters on your mail chewing me up.
If you have my details ( username and password etc) then let me know and I'll happily wait until your squared away.
Thanks for the warm welcome
Ian (a.k.a. Tinker)
- Tinker - Wednesday, 05/25/05 20:30:11 EDT

language use:
That which can be considered 'bad' is subjective. This is true not only with language but in many other aspects of life as well. As with the Paris Hilton ad, one person finds it repulsive while another considers it stylistic.

While I do not consider the language I used in a previous post to be 'bad', it is obvious that at least one person found it offensive. I do not wish to cause an affront to any.

I apologize to any that I may have offended with that post. I will maintain a decorum which will be considered pristine by even the most sensitive in all my future postings to this forum.
Ano - Wednesday, 05/25/05 20:53:11 EDT

BLARNEY STONE: TINKER: Me thinks you have kissed the BLARNEY STONE, rather profoundly.BOG.

sandpile - Wednesday, 05/25/05 21:47:30 EDT

CSI DUES: Tinker, I will sent Jock your details again, just to make sure he gets them.
daveb - Wednesday, 05/25/05 22:41:40 EDT

curses: I've been known to mutter a few, well OK yell a few. I've found that if they are over used they loose the desired effect.
Hey just as a bit of tivia : Does anyone know the diff between curssing and swearing?
- Timex - Wednesday, 05/25/05 22:45:32 EDT

BOG to IQ: Sandpile,
Here's the funny thing, I can tell you off the top of my head that the Blarney stone is at the top of Blarney castle near cork in ireland (my brother went there once), that blarney comes from the old irish 'an blara' which if i remember means the field or plain, and that the popular legend is that it grants the smoocher the gift of 'eloquence', I can even remember the story of how it came about, BUT its 04.38 here and I can't for the life of me figure out what BOG means. :)
Or if you think im telling porkies, either way I last paid my membership to MENSA in 1999, and got my last test score from them in 1997, they may be still up in the loft. If its that hard to belive from how I come across on here I'll try to dig them out for you, now I just do the tests in the sunday paper for fun.
- Tinker - Wednesday, 05/25/05 23:59:20 EDT

daveb: Cheers mate I appreciate all the trouble everyone is taking to help me settle in.
- Tinker - Thursday, 05/26/05 00:00:29 EDT

Cursing vs Swearing: As Explained to me by a Lawer/chaplin( Navy )

To curse is to invoke or to summen an action by uttering words or invoking spirit.
IE: " GD it" , "I hope you die" ect...

To swear is to place and oath or to speak a verbal promise and contract.
IE: " I would give my rt arm to have this", " By the hair on my chinny chin chin"

As you can see one is mentioned in the bible as something not to do. The other is not mentioned. Both are considered 'Bad Form'.
- Timex - Thursday, 05/26/05 02:06:08 EDT

BOG = Big Ole Grin

- Ntech - Thursday, 05/26/05 03:00:57 EDT

Stock for smithing:

All of it.

(assuming it is not sulfur- or lead-bearing, that is.)
T. Gold - Thursday, 05/26/05 04:29:36 EDT

it all comes out of machine shops, or fab shops, nice, clean, and new, a shame to scrap
ken kristiansen - Thursday, 05/26/05 07:07:21 EDT

wire rope: Ken Kristiansen

I could use anything...oh probably 3/4 inch or larger. I'd be happy to swap a knife. I just have to warn you that while things are comming along I'm a new knife maker so you won't exactly be getting a Don Fogg knife or anything. LOL. Shoot me an email or I'll shoot you one later.
Mike Ferrara - Thursday, 05/26/05 08:24:20 EDT

Paris add:
The thing with the add is that society has been so degraded that people can look at the add and say, "What is wrong with it?" and be serious. It was not that long ago that you would only see such soft porn as that add in a strip bar or burlesque show. To use soft porn to promote a hamburger is just wrong. Let alone the reputation of the woman in the add.
There are things that are wrong because they are wrong and that add is one of them. I love the hamburgers and that is my favorite fast food chain but they are way out of line with the add.
Wayne P - Thursday, 05/26/05 08:38:51 EDT

stan lee: eric, the spiderman guy? not in particular, but i do have an appreciation for the punisher (did he have anything to do with that series?)

miles; it was i that mentioned the paris hilton ad. it was an example of what children can be exposed to that probably is not psychologically healthy, spurred off from a soft "curse" from one of the posters, pertaining to what is OK and not OK on this public forum. and the take home message is that kids do visit the site not infrequently..and, as you can see, the topics here at times do not have anything to do with steel.
rugg - Thursday, 05/26/05 10:23:46 EDT

Slutburger: Right on,Wayne. Lemme see, now, should I look for advise on fine cuisine, such as a Carl's burger, from a Bimbo whose claim to fame is a self produced porn flick and a wealthy Grandfather ? No, I think not. However, there are some perfectly lovely hotties (3dogs, you sexist swine!) working on The Food Channel who are easy on the eyes, AND, are qualified to speak on the subject of good grub.
3dogs - Thursday, 05/26/05 10:31:38 EDT

TINKER: I must admit, that the use of the Pound Sterling symbol will add a lot of class to your obscenity substitution efforts. We in the colonies don't have convenient access to that one. Good form, lad.
3dogs - Thursday, 05/26/05 10:55:03 EDT

Paris Ad and Naughty Words: What is this tasteless ad and where can I catch a glimpse of it without further delay? Just scientific curiosity

On the innocence of children. This is is a silly fanatasy that adults have about children. Children know (and use) *those* words. But adults like to pretend that children live in some kind of fairy land and have never heard them.

Naughty words are a *legitimate* part of every language. They are there for a purpose. Namely to be rude which is necessary from time to time. Using them no more indicates a low intellect than does using any other word - this is vestigial snobbery probably dating back to Norman times. Notice that many of the naughty words in English are AngloSaxon while their Latin (or French counterparts) are perfectly acceptable. eg "excrement" vs "unprintable AngloSaxon equivalent"; "urine" vs "unprintable AngloSaxon equivalent". I could go on but I wont : ). The point is do you want to sound like an educated French nobleman or like an iggarunt AngloSaxon peasant? It's snobbery. Any attempt to make a real distinction is just a bunch of "unprintable AngloSaxon equivalent"

The selection of words in a language as "naughty" vs their acceptable equivalents, is entirely arbitrary. Which brings up the second issue. People often make the mistake of confusing arbitrary with unimportant. True, we could have chosen anything for a naughty word - but the fact that we have chosen this particular "unprintable AngloSaxon equivalent" represents an important consensus. After all the whole damn English vocab... er excuse me .. the entire English vocabulary is arbitrary but it adds up to a tremendously useful tool. The word for "chair" is arbitrary - it could just as well have been anything - but the fact that all English speakers agree on what "chair" means is very valuable. It allows me communicate the concept of , well, chair. Likewise when I utter an "unprintable AngloSaxon equivalent" everyone understands that I mean to be rude - which was my intention.

I agree, for the sake of civility, lets keep the language in this forum "clean".
adam - Thursday, 05/26/05 13:25:57 EDT

Adam and All; Cussin': "That which we call a rose by any other word would smell as sweet". Shakespeare

I cuss and use a little bathroom humor in my classes. I do it as a wake-up and for emphasis when there is a lull. Sometimes, it looks as though some of the group is nodding off. However, using that kind of language can be overdone. I think my usage is spare, and the timing has to be right.

I concur with the others who have written on this subject, that in our anvilfire forums, our language should be "Friendly Family Fun".

Frank Turley - Thursday, 05/26/05 15:17:56 EDT

cussin: I did not realize my reminder concerning no cussin in this forum would have been viewed with such great attention. This I am greatful. As to agree with Mr. Turley this anvifire forum is to remain "Friendly Family Fun". However, there is never a time or place for any cussin in any situation. It takes away from the integrity of the teacher/speaker and the legitimacy of the situation. No room for moderation. If one would cuss in my shop I would turn him/her away. The straight-way blacksmith
- straight-way blacksmith - Thursday, 05/26/05 16:15:56 EDT

adam: Very well said, sir! Dead right, too. I know a number of particularly vulgar terms in thoroughly obscure languages, and no one has ever questioned the appropriateness of them. Now, if they knew the agreed-upon meaning in the country of origin, they would no doubt have me in the pillory forthwith. Here, a public place where the uninformed and unformed may wander through, we do need to moderate our language.

I do disagree that the use of any expletive "takes away from the integrity of the teacher/speaker and the legitimacy of the situation" as Mr. striaght-way avers. Like real estate, the value of expletives determined by location. And frequency, audience, intent, context and connotation. As with most things in life, absolutes aren't often appropriate.
vicopper - Thursday, 05/26/05 16:42:14 EDT

COLORFUL LANGUAGE: As to all the comments on absolutely no profanity. I was raised in, around, under and behind some of the most colorful speakers in the world. I can, have and will again on a chosen moment, say whatever I think is needed to clarify any given topic. BUT here is not the place and I don't want JOCK or FRANK holding me while some body else kicks my shins and hollers down my wind-pipe.---BOG.

My Mother gave sense enough to know when to use it and when to refrain.BOG..

sandpile - Thursday, 05/26/05 18:01:51 EDT

OBSCENITY: I respectully submit that the absense of bad language is NEVER bad form. You can debate the finer points of when it might be good form but if you eliminate it entirely, you can't go wrong.
- Tom H - Thursday, 05/26/05 18:12:30 EDT

el cheapo drill press: Curtious greetings and salutations to all,
I thought I'd throw a metal related question in to help move things back towards the left hand lane.
Have any of you lads heard of 'Rockwell' tools? They sound American don't they? :)
The local B&Q Mega (great stumping arodrome sized) Store stock them, theyre reasonably cheap and include lathes, belt grinders, drill presses, air compressors, well basicaly loads of neat stuff.
If anyone is familiar with then I wanted to know their opinion of the under £50 bench top drill press.
It looks well set out, but I'm thinking of the internals.
I 'only' want to use it for silver working and I couldn't get at it 'working' to see if it had too coarse a control mechanism.
I'm thinking of a drill that requires a fair input from me to move say 1mm deep. The idea is countersinking for stone setting, or hinges and lots of other uses. Do the more expensive drills have a way of adjusting the turns it takes to lower the bit onto the surface to be cut?
Okay, how about the finest drill bit these things can take? 1mm say? or less?
Any info on somthing in Britain that might fit that bill and not give my wallet an angina attack would be tickity boo.
- Tinker - Thursday, 05/26/05 18:36:13 EDT

vicopper: I humbly submit the connotation of a cuss word is vulgar as its intent. Very few absolutes in life. One for certain is the sum value of the use of expletives is zero. This is also found to be true in educated public speaking forums or theological views. They cheapen a persons value and integrity. Just like a lie is the same as steeling. One is not sanctified if he or she utters a single obseen word in any moment.
- straight-way blacksmith - Thursday, 05/26/05 19:38:07 EDT

Rockwell tools: Tinker, yes indeed you're right; Rockwell is/was a great name in tools here in the USA. Most of the more modern ones were called Rockwell-Delta and were pretty heavy duty industrial tools. That being said, I'll bet the ones you see over there in the Mega Mall are Chinese knock-offs. On this side of the pond we have a couple of el-cheapo tool retailers , Harbor Freight & Northern Tools & Hydraulics who sell tools with American sounding names like Rockford or Chicago but are actually pretty cheesy products from China. They actually will work for a while, but are not made of very good materials & wear out if used with any regularity. The last tool I bought from one of them was a $16 angle grinder (yes $16!!!) I figured it'd get me through a job & I'd toss it, but it's worked okay for 6 months now, although it's getting pretty loud as its gears & bearings wear out.
Are there any used tool dealers where you live? Places who specilize in rebuilt or surplus equipment? I'd check them out; lots of times they have REAL tools for mega mart prices. I bought a nice bench grinder with a Baldor motor on it for $75 here at a dealer in used equipment. It's so smooth you almost can't tell it's running.
As far as really fine drill presses go, be prepared to pay some good money; you want REALLY good bearings in it so the bit won't wobble or break. They're called sensitive drills (no, not because their feelings are easy to hurt) because you can put really teeny bits in them & have some feedback as to how the hole is progressing. My wife's a jeweler & has a couple of drill presses, one of which has a chuck that goes to 0. She regularly drills holes in silver that are .020" or smaller.
I guess what I'm saying is: money spent now pays off in longer tool life & better workmanship.

Anybody know if The Metals Museum was able to get any of the items from the Sorber Auction?
- Tom C - Thursday, 05/26/05 20:39:29 EDT

If you can, what about a tapping drill press? they use real small taps. If some one I know would like a small drill press, I tell them to spend the money on a clausing tabletop mill.nice and small and accurate. but could be big for your job
ken kristiansen - Thursday, 05/26/05 20:53:37 EDT

I have been away, illness in the family. (Son lost mind on drugs. getting better now.) Friday the thirteenth, we lost Paw- Paw.

Funny thing happened that day. I am a ham radio operator, or I would not have known. The sun had a BIG coronal mass ejection. The resulting storm reached earth maybe six hours later. It silenced radio communications, screwed up TV reception for 6 hours, more in some places.

What does it mean? I don't know. I don't believe in coincidence, though. And looking back, Jim was certainly one of God's special people. Twenty seven foster children? Wow.

Jim prayed for me when I had trouble. I believe he trusted Jesus while he was alive, and will live forever in Heaven.

I miss him deeply. So what to do? Pick up the slack! pray for each other; the sick and distressed, those alone. Pray for our men & women serving overseas. Extend encouragement to those we meet.Lend a helping hand. Walk with God in all we do. If you can't walk there with God, it's best you don't go.

Mighty pretty in North Florida

Shannon Boal
- Shannon Boal - Thursday, 05/26/05 21:05:53 EDT

Adam-- (Warning, parents are advised that this message contains explicit factual information and they may want to remove children from the viewing area) you can see the entire commercial, plus additional material that was deemed too steamy for viewing, at http://www.spicyCENSORED Oops, sorry, let me try that again, Adam. http://www.I SAID CENSORED AND THIS IS THE AYATOLLAHISSIMO SPEAKING, SO YOU BETTER LISTEN UP!! Gee, sorry about that, Adam, I guess you'll just have to google it yourself. Or go to the gym or the beach or the mall if you want to glim what the fuss is all about: a real, live girl. Naughty, naughty!
Miles Undercut - Thursday, 05/26/05 21:15:06 EDT

Champion restoration: Restoration of the Champion smithy goes apace. I have now forged the feed pawland arm for the Model 200 1/2 drill press and welded the feed arm. It just needs to have the holes drilled to affix the pawl to the arm and upend the damn thing and sturdily fasten it to the wall. The champion coal forge with the broken off down pipe was rewelded today with the 55 nickle rods and it did not screw up. I will now find some pipe to repair the part below the blower elbow and weld up the support table for the forge and I am ready to go. (vigourously pats self on back). I even got a hood that can be modified to go on the forge.
John W. - Thursday, 05/26/05 21:37:35 EDT

straight-way blacksmith:
There are no absolutes in life except those that each of us chooses to make absolute within us. That which you find to be an absolute is not an absolute to me; I find great value in the use of expletives.

I vehemently disagree with several other premises that you propound in your last post. However, since this is not the place for a lengthy theological discussion, I will not post a complete rebuttal. (I wouldn't want to bore everyone into a stupor anyway!)

If you are interested in such a discussion, please feel free to email me at
Ano - Thursday, 05/26/05 22:14:35 EDT

cussin: Ano
I believe it is well understood that this is a family forum and vulgar language is not acceptable. I believe no more discussion is needed. I know that would be Jock's view. Lets not try to provoke arguments on various subjective opinions and let it me understood as an absolute on this forum. If anyone feels the need to cuss they can do it in their own homes or shops. NOT THIS ONE!!
- straight-way blacksmith - Thursday, 05/26/05 22:40:56 EDT

Sensitive Drills and such: Tinker,

I've used lots of different drill presses in the under $1000 (£548) range and none of them had much of anything other than a rack and pinion for advancing the quill. Some better and some worse, but none of them capable of holding a .039" (1mm) movement accurately or smoothly. Most of them drop the quill about 1-1/2" per revolution of the quill feed handle. Very coarse, in other words.

There are some companies that make highly accurate drill presses for the electronics industry, but they are remarkably expensive. But with a bit of ingenuity, you caould easily duplicate (even improve upon) the one that I made several years ago.

Mine was made to utillize my Foredom #30 flexible shaft handpiece as the drill head. The main column was a salvaged linear bearing from some piece of office equipment that I can't remember. One from a printer would probably work. The quill feed, (if you can call it that since it didn't truly have a quill), was a piece of threaded shaft with follower nuts brazed to the mounting plate for the handpiece. The threaded shaft rotated in a bearing collar at the top and a drilled detent at the bottom, and was turned by one of those spiffy-looking little crank handles that used to be all the rage for amateur electronic tuning dials. Everything was scrounged and strictly "make-do", but once I had it all cobbered together it worked exceptionally well. The handpiece would hold bits as small as #70 and had very accurate bearings so it stayed concentric. The screw advance rig allowed precise depth movements of as little as .001" (~.02mm). The addition of an inexpensive dial indicator, while something I didn't do then, would make the thing drill very repeatable holes.

Now get busy and build one. If I can do it, anyone certainly can. Tom C. should build one for the lovely Mrs. Chenoweth. (grin)
vicopper - Thursday, 05/26/05 23:00:44 EDT

Ano: There are absolutes in this world. Take for example theft. If you have something I want and I take because I don't want to earn the money to buy one, is it ok for me to steal it from you because I have justified it in my mind? Is it ok for me to kidknap your children because my wife can't have any. Was it justifiable for Hitler to slaughter Jews by the millions becuase they didn't fit into his big picture? Of course not. Don't tell me there are not any absolutes. There is still right and wrong in this world, just that some people will say that there are no absolutes so that they can justify any type of behavior. I don't buy it. And for Adam, childhood innocence does not have to be a fantasy, My kids (I do have some, the above was an example)do not know or use profanity. And neither does anybody else who comes on my property. You would all be welcome to visit my shop, but if you can't keep your mouth clean, you would be asked to leave. We don't have cable because of the commercials like the one discussed and we monitor what our children are exposed to. I will keep them innocent as long as possible because some day I will answer to God for how I raised my family.The reason children aren't innocent anymore is because their parents don't want to be bothered to take the time to do it right. Most things in life that are rewarding take effort to do well.
- Jeff G. - Thursday, 05/26/05 23:03:27 EDT

Perhaps George carlin would make Us a lis of "Words You can't use on Anvilfire"
Dave Boyer - Thursday, 05/26/05 23:09:39 EDT

Tony Hillerman has a line in one of his novels-- it is okay to read make-believe novels if you skip the parts like about kissing and stuff, isn't it, Atatollah?-- about a Navajo saying that some people would tell the sheep which weeds to eat. It sounds to me as if we have right here among usCENSORED!!! AND NO MORE OF YOUR SMARTASS... OOPS! I MEAN SMARTALECKY, THAT'S THE WORD I MEANT TO USE... TROUBLEMAKING!!! THIS IS THE ATATOLLAHISSIMO SPEAKING!!
Miles Undercut - Thursday, 05/26/05 23:23:23 EDT

Tinker: From what I have seen of the cheap drilpresses, the fit of the quill is pretty sloppy, and the rack & pinion isn't smooth. Some don't have a depth stop, and most have way too much return spring tension, and no easy way to reduce it. Some chucks don't go all the way closed, even good quality ones in the larger sizes, so You may need a small precision chuck on an arbor that can be chucked in the larger chuck.
Dave Boyer - Thursday, 05/26/05 23:23:25 EDT

New subject !!!: now that we have debated the " other words "

Ive been testing home made charr coal( direct burn and smother, no retort). So for I've tested wite pine, yellow pine, berch, ash, balsa, maple( good stuff ) pin oak, and teak. All give off lots of smoke, untill the temp reaches combustion point and the gasses ignite. after that its just a matter of keeping the fire out of the coal and in the smoke then smothering it. Most soft woods (Balsa and Teak) tend to coal quicker and give less heat in the forge. The harder woods( maple and Oaks ) take longer( over night or an all day burn) but produce a hotter burning coal. So far to date the best , for yeild and general forging, is pine( yellow). Next I'm gonna try some green, unprocessed woods or even tree stock.
- Timex - Thursday, 05/26/05 23:25:02 EDT

As executive director of the NAAWN, The National Association for the Advancement of White Nostrils, I want to commend the Ayatollah for coming down and I mean hard on fuzzy-minded liberal coneheads like this "Miles Undercut" which it probably isn't even his real name, on account of he is too cowardly to sign his writing which is the kind of thing that has this country in the "anything goes" shape it is.
Arthur Dimmesdale - Thursday, 05/26/05 23:42:29 EDT

Opinions: It is a fact that different folks sometimes have differing opinions. There is nothing inherently wrong with that, nor is there anything inherently wrong with expressing one's views. As long as those opinions are plainly labeled as opinions, we can debate them here. BUT...there are some ground rules that really should be followed. NO, repeat NO, ad hominem (against the person) attacks. NO slurs on anyone's race, creed, ethnicity, gender, gender preferences or nationality. Fundamentally, just be polite to one another and moderate your language and temper. That's not too hard, is it?

If you determine that you are unwilling or unable to comply with any of the foregoing, then I suggest you refrain from posting anything that may draw a response with a difference of opinion. We don't need any flame wars here, and we don't want to offend anyone if we don't have to. This is supposed to be a pleasant place to relax and share a collegial time with other smiths, wannabe smiths, and passers-by. Causing deliberate offense to anyone puts a severe crimp in the 'ol good time, don't you think?

Personally, I avoid the subjects of religion, politics and marital advice, because I've learned the hard way that those are areas where you're going to wind up wrong, no matter how right you are. I will admit to a rather unfortunate tendency to barbecue people's sacred cows when they loom too obvious, but I really *do* try to keep in under control. Honest!(grin)

Smithing content: Tomorrow I have the day off (supposedly) and I am going to go to the shop and forge something, even if it constipates the whole of St. Croix. I have worked waaaay too much the last week.
vicopper - Thursday, 05/26/05 23:49:48 EDT

Arthur Dimmesdale: John, you never fail to crack me up. (pun intended)
vicopper - Thursday, 05/26/05 23:55:25 EDT

Yeah, well, Vicopper, it's all well and good for you to think the Rev. Dimmesdale is being funny, but I couldn't agree more with him. This site is for serious stuff like alloys, whatever they are, and how to fasten down your leg vise without really fastening it to anything, and which way to point your anvil, and how to turn mild steel into high carbon with dish soap and the difference between cursing and swearing and important blacksmithing stuff like that. We just don't have time or space for "Undercut" or whatever his name is. And what's more, anybody knows female-type people should always be properly attired, in long black shrouds and veils. And if you don't like it, "Undercut," you can move, or we know where you live and.... I hope I am not being ad hominy or whatever, but goldarn it.
T. Torquemada - Friday, 05/27/05 00:44:30 EDT

words: straight-way blacksmith, Are you a good Christian man and do you home school your childern?
- Robert IW - Friday, 05/27/05 02:04:19 EDT

Language: There are several examples in the archives where questionable words were used. At that time, they did not draw a response. Let's move on to something with blacksmithing content as the bad word bandwagon is getting a little crowded.
- Masher of Metal - Friday, 05/27/05 02:22:08 EDT

Burgers & Bimbos and more : Weather You think that add was in poor taste or not doesn't matter to the people who paid for it, You are talking about it aren't You? Sure a few will boycott the product on principal, but more will now recognize the name. This is probably the most talked about burger add since "Where's the Beef?" and how long ago was that? I can get over a tastless add if the burger is tasty.I understand that young childern should be insulated from some of the realities of the adult world, but in the end it is the ability to make good choices thet will keep them out of trouble when You cant, and learning how to make these choices needs to start earlier than a lot of parents want to believe.
Dave Boyer - Friday, 05/27/05 02:32:09 EDT

Tinker RIP: Vicopper,
that sounds like a stonking idea! Right up my alley, of course the Mr's will pitch a fit when I take over the kitchen again (sadly I live in a shoe box, this is the U.K. so no workshop till we move) but hey she never complained when I built her a light box for her photography (and saved her £800 to boot)
Yes the Tinker is apparently now dead (news to me!) it seems others who I haven't come across have already pinched the moniker (I wonder if you can change your NIC without any hassle to Jock? I'm thinking of Tinkerer instead?)
brought to you (and worth the wait) by the colour blue and the letters CSI.

To all the non paying members:
This site is an incredible treasure trove to both you and me and operates on a shoestring. The skills of the blacksmith helped shape civilisation and were very nearly consigned to the history bin, this site helps prevent that and has helped me. If it helps you PLEASE consider joining, I had to wait for a piece of work to sell before I could join (I have a special needs son and money is somthing other people have) but if I did it on what I have so can you.
Help Jock and help yourself, support CSI!
Ian Lowe - Friday, 05/27/05 05:33:36 EDT

Just trying somthing: I wonder what happens if I do this?
Tinker - Friday, 05/27/05 05:35:43 EDT

Aha the Tinker Lives!!!! :) S'okay I figured it out myself (Doh!)
Tinker - Friday, 05/27/05 05:36:46 EDT

vicopper for president: you guys must admit the ole boy is well spoken-----------lets vote him in.........
blacklionforge - Friday, 05/27/05 07:58:30 EDT

Tinker/chuck sizes: The maximum/minimum sizes are usually stamped on the body of the chuck. That is, unless one is buying out of the van of the Cheapus Maximus Travelling Tool Show and Driveway Sealing Co. Ltd.
3dogs - Friday, 05/27/05 08:06:20 EDT

Timex and Charcoal:

Balsa wood? Where are you getting enough balsa wood to charcoal? As a former model rocketeer, I'd have turned all that into nose cones and fins when I was a teenager!

So, are you rick burning this (my favorite method) stock? What are you dumping it into to smother it? Where is the wood coming from?

You should definately keep us informed on further results. One of the experiments in early medieval iron smelting in Europe skipped the charcoaling step altogether and fueled the smelter with plain wood, with some good, but inconclusive results.
Visit your National Parks
Bruce Blackistone (Atli) - Friday, 05/27/05 09:12:34 EDT

Accurate drilling: I'm drawing out a plan now, I can use the chuck head and gears from a £3.99 handrill, as it closes totally so small bits will fit and has a nice cranking handle that I can pirate The local scrap metal merchant had some computer gear in the yard yesterday so I'm just heading out the door to see if he has any printers for the rod, I was looking at my dremmel with interest to provide motive force, if I can get a threaded tube to fit on the end of the dremmel I could attatch the chuck to that. I'll keep tinkering with the ideas and let you all know how I get on, big thanks to vicopper, nearly all of my gear is B&S made and for a bright lad I can't believe I didn't think of somthing similar.
Tinker - Friday, 05/27/05 09:15:19 EDT

Tinker's Dremel: Ian, since you're already using a Dremel, are you aware of the "drill press" that they sell to mount your drill in? I have one, and while it IS rather unsophisticated, I was able to drill a .013" hole through a 1/4" piece of Micarta without breaking the carbide bit.
3dogs - Friday, 05/27/05 10:20:28 EDT

You guys think you’re out smarting me again but I know a filibuster when I see one, all this talk about proper language and stuff is diversion to avoid talking about metal finishes. IF IT’S WORTH STARTING………. IT’S WORTH FINISHING!!!!!!!!!!!!
- LDuck - Friday, 05/27/05 11:26:14 EDT

FINISHING: OK, it's finished.
3dogs - Friday, 05/27/05 11:53:23 EDT

POTTIMOUTHERY: "Some folks have to use obscenities to fill in the gaps in their vocabularies" (Granny 3dogs, 1949)
3dogs - Friday, 05/27/05 11:56:54 EDT

Is this a quote you personaly heard from her as you were getting your mouth.............. ;o)
JimG - Friday, 05/27/05 12:13:18 EDT

JIM G: No. A 1949 model Granny could reduce you to an insignificant piece of pond scum with one look. Then she'd tell my Ma, and Ma would go get the Ivory & the toothbrush. Do you have any idea how long it takes to get that taste outa your toothbrush ? It's the gift that keeps on giving.
3dogs - Friday, 05/27/05 13:04:03 EDT

Language: Masher of Metal, Please go to the GURU page and talk about blacksmithing, this page is to talk about what you want to talk about.

I may be wrong but it seems to me there is someone hiding behind a couple of names crying about whats being said here.
- Robert IW - Friday, 05/27/05 13:09:56 EDT

Tinker: If no one has said this already then Welcome to CSI and thank you for your support! : )

Drill press. The 50 quid press may be useful but I dont think you can expect a really fine machine for that price. It's going to be a cheap Asian thing with what used to be a good American brand on it. That's my guess.

You seem like the sort of guy who would get a kick out of Dave Gingery's book on making your own dro;; press. The project is based on DIY alumninum castings - lots of good ideas even if you dont follow his design.
adam - Friday, 05/27/05 14:16:45 EDT

cussing: I'm with Ano (Rich, Frank and others) on this one. I find bad language very useful and I am certainly not bashful about letting off steam if I am by myself. Of course it has to be used sparingly or it loses it's effect. Also, there is no reason to offend people unecessarily so if I am in the company of someone with "delicate ears" I will dial it back. But otherwise, these words exist in every language AFAIK. They are there for a purpose and I enjoy using them. :)

Also, we've all agreed, several times that such language is not appropriate here.
adam - Friday, 05/27/05 14:25:34 EDT

Hey!: It has been a while since I posted on a Blacksmith’s forum and today I felt the need to see what the virtual smiths were up to. Well, I have discovered that during my period of inattention, the internet ‘smithing world has changed.

First, I couldn’t find the Junkyard! After a flurry of Googling and link following, I was in a virtual panic and decided to head over to Jock’s place to get my fix. Ah, yes, the Anvilfire page was loading! Soon, I would be able to absorb the banter that I missed during my absence. It was then that I received my second jolt.

PawPaw is gone.

I was stunned – a feeling I’m sure you all can relate to. I searched the Hammer-In and gleaned the stories from your postings of the demise of a great man and a great website. Both of whom were examples of just how good the worldwide web can be.

I am very happy, though, that Anvilfire (another prime example of the best of the web) is still here and going strong and that so many of you are all still around. So, Hello Everyone! My heart is a bit heavy, but I’m counting my blessings!
- Ron Holcomb - Friday, 05/27/05 14:26:57 EDT

Tinker's drill press: It sounds as though you're well on the way, old son! I knew that if we gave you a prod in the right direction, you'd come up with something. When you get it finished, post a photo or two of it, okay?

Congratualtions and my sincere thanks for joining the ranks of the true blue. When I see what some folks spend on a "higher" education, versus what they seem to have learned, a membership in CSI and Anvilfire seem like a fantastic value for the money, aye?


Fillibuster? We don't need no stinkin' fillibuster! What we really need is more time on our hands to think up arcane and/or obscure topics to thrash around. As Thomas Powers has remarked upon occasion, "We're not beating a dead horse, we're tenderizing the meat." (grin) I would like to hear more information on plating, perhaps some tips n how we might do it at home on a moderate scale. You're the man with the knowhow, pass some along!
vicopper - Friday, 05/27/05 14:38:11 EDT

Passings: Ron, welcome back! Glad you were able to find us okay. The passing of Keenjunk was a sad thing, and the passing of JIm "Paw Paw" Wilson was truly a terrible shame. Both will be missed, but Paw Paw was irreplaceable. We will all keep him alive in our memories.

The passing of Keenjunk brought to the fore the issue of just what a fragile thing a good website can be. One good thing that came of Keenjunk's passing was that awareness and the impetus it gave for more folks to join CSI, Inc., the non-profit support group for Anvilfire. CSI exists for the purpose of fostering the success of, and permanence of, this website. If you would like to join us in our efforts, we would love to have you. Go to the Store page or the Guru's Den page for links to the CSI membership sign-up. As Paw Paw said so many times, for the cost of a cup of coffee per week, you can help ensure that Anvilfire is still around for the future.
vicopper - Friday, 05/27/05 14:44:55 EDT

For plating, offers a complete DIY kit and also has a very good support forum. I think they can supply a 5 gal. bucket size kit w/chemicals, they also have small rectifiers, but a car battery will do fine on small parts.

LDuck - Friday, 05/27/05 15:26:35 EDT

3dogs: Nope I wasn't! (mainly because I inherited it from the wife, and didn't buy it myself,I always look at what goes with the toys when I buy 'em) I'll have a trundle over to the local mega mart style B&Q tommorrow as theyre the nearest Dremel stockist and ask them if they can let me look at the catalogue. (A while back I did look at the dremel drill bit set they carry, goes down to under 0.5mm) but its £29.99 or $54.69 for 5 drill bits, and i'm tight fisted about paying that much for something so easy to break by hand)
Its worth a look at at least but Vicopper's idea has set my TinkerING side off, its jumping around and wagging its tail going..."Oooh I know what'll work, I know, I Know!!!"

be honest who else here always took their toys apart to 'see how it worked' :)
Ian Lowe - Friday, 05/27/05 15:37:58 EDT

vicopper: I agree and I came to those same realizations. I get paid next week...
Ron Holcomb - Friday, 05/27/05 15:53:16 EDT

Robert IW: Squooze me if your post is referring to me.
If I have offended anyone here, please except my apologies, My comments about metal finishing were not meant as criticism directed at anybodies work. Being new to the smithing culture, I really and truly was surprised at the common metallic finishes on display at the Madison conference, and you’re correct in that the questions and comments should have been directed to the guru.
LDuck - Friday, 05/27/05 17:00:24 EDT

LDuck: I suppose that since this forum is set up to talk about anything we want, we can certainly talk about iron finishes if it so suits us. (grin) By the way, that's an absolutely cool site! ( I was particularly fond of the animated tutorials.

eander4 - Friday, 05/27/05 17:22:10 EDT

Jock: Will there be an iron-in-the-hat at Paw Paw's Memorial Hammer-in?

eander4 - Friday, 05/27/05 18:07:55 EDT

well said. As a former military type, and a guy who has worked every day since the 1st of May, there are times that a well chosen word helps. One is when a $500,000 rebuild does not work! (Did 16 hours later). But that is in a shop full of like minded persons.
Not here! not now! not ever! Jock set the rules, and they are corect for here as you stated. Do you suppose that you happen to have a razor strop? Or would the correct sound be that of charging a magazine? I think PPW would be happy to let you have the use of that strop from here on out.
Off to bed at 7:23pm, as that 16 hours later was yesterday. only worked 9 today, and I am supposed to get Monday off.
ptree - Friday, 05/27/05 19:21:57 EDT

good ole boys: Sounds like some things here are good for the goose and not the gander. Are you kidding me with this razor strop nonsense ptree?? It seems there is a set group of people here that can say pretty much what they want too toward anyone. Then if anyone else has another view it can easily turn into a few days of who should have a razor strop. I don't really care if this upsets ptree or vicopper. I am telling it like I see it.
- burntforge - Friday, 05/27/05 21:22:23 EDT

Jeff G.:
You and I concur that the examples you give as absolutes are wrong. This makes it a consensus, not an absolute. If they were absolutes, then you could not have used them as examples for such things could never occur; it would be impossible for any to justify such actions within them selves. There is indeed right and wrong in this world, but each individual chooses where the division is made.

I agree that childhood innocence is not a fantasy. However, I believe that extending that innocence "as long as possible" is a great disservice, and quite possibly dangerous, to the child. My next door neighbors raise their children as you do yours. Their sixteen-year-old son is the most innocent sixteen-year-old I have met. He will soon be going off to college. I cannot help but wonder which type of predator is going to prey on him first because his parents didn't bother taking the time to prepare him for the experience of living in the harsh reality of society as it now exists. It is far easier to hide the reality of life from a child than it is to teach them the ability to defend them selves in the world of today.

Ano - Friday, 05/27/05 22:02:38 EDT

ABSOLUTES: Ano, are you quite sure there are no absolutes?
Are you ABSOLUTELY sure?

Someday you will die. That is absolutely true. Are you ready to face eternity?
- Tom H - Friday, 05/27/05 22:22:20 EDT

whats a razor strop????????????????????????????????
- ken kristiansen - Friday, 05/27/05 22:23:16 EDT

Ano: I do agree with you about your neighbor kid. I don't plan on sending my children off with out being prepared. Part of sucsessfully raising children is eqipping them to be well adjusted adults who can take care of themselves. I mean to let mine be children while they are young and as they grow up, they will be taught how to fend for themselves. Our church is very conservative, but also very soul winning oriented. We get all parts of the picture as we come in contact with very diverse beliefs. But vigilance along with proper instruction hopefully will turn out youg adults who can get along.
- Jeff G. - Friday, 05/27/05 22:36:29 EDT

Ken Kristiansen: A razor strop is the leather piece used for putting the final edge of a razor.

Ptree's reference is to something Paw Paw used to "do" online when we harassed him (which was often), or when folks started getting testy. Usually the line consisted of something like "the sound of Paw Paw slowly sharpening his knife (grin)". It was his way of reminding us to lighten up.

Hmm... Lighten up. That seems like a good idea, folks. (grin)

eander4 - Friday, 05/27/05 23:17:32 EDT

Tinker: Of course we all took our toys apart, the question is how often could We put them back together?
Dave Boyer - Friday, 05/27/05 23:54:33 EDT

adam: Mark Twain said "Profanity provides relief denied to prayer" and He probably never grabbed a hot piece of metal.
Dave Boyer - Saturday, 05/28/05 00:07:37 EDT

Lighten up indeed: Yea verily, Eric. Everyone lighten up. As far as the rules go, everyone knows them, and most everyone knows just how far they can be bent before the limits of elasticity are exceeded. Some folks prefer absolute limits, and they are welcome to impose them on themselves. Some folks will deliberately break the rules no matter how liberal they are, and those folks should probably rethink their motives. Generally speaking, everyone here gets along pretty darn well, for a bunch of diverse people from all the different corners of the globe (okay, I know globes don't really have corners), and different walks of life.

From time to time there are minor misunderstandings and bad feelings, usually brought about by the one-dimensional nature of the internet. What works fine across the bed of a pickup or around the dinner table sometimes gets misinterpreted when written. That's why I sometimes put (grin) after something I've written that I think might get misinterpreted. Soometimes I don't put in the grin and then someone misinterprets what I said and takes offense. Sometimes, it gets misinterpreted no matter what.

In such a flat medium as an internet forum, there is a bigger burden put on the writer, or sender, than there would be when talking face-to-face. It is the "duty" of the writer to do the best job possible of getting the *intended* message across. (The viewer, or receiver, is in an essentially passive role and should not be held responsible for the meaning of a post.)

All of us are inevitably going to miscommunicate here once in a while. The one obligation that the viewer, or receiver, has is to make the effort to construe things in the *most* favorable light, rather than the least favorable. In other words, accept the limitations of the medium and try not to find offense where none was meant. If I *want* to offend someone, there will be no ambifuity about it...I will be very direct, even blunt if I need to. I try not to need to. This is supposed to be FUN.


After having read the above, can you tell me just what it is you are trying to say? I'm not "upset", but I get the feeling you might have wanted me to be, and I don't know why. Can you be more specific as to what inequalities you are seeing? You may email me directly if you think that more appropriate; just click on my name for the email window. I would like to understand your feelings.
vicopper - Saturday, 05/28/05 01:02:36 EDT

LDuck, No I`m not talking about you. straight way blacksmith and metal masher seemed to be the same person to me, running at mouth in his perfect world hiding behind a fake name.
- Robert IW - Saturday, 05/28/05 01:29:58 EDT

second hand religon: --------- this is NOT a jesus forum---- nor a prayer forum---- ssssssssoooooooooooooooooooo please stop bringing it to this forum------------ and for ya'll that care to notice i used my real screenname. unlike"straight-way blacksmith............... and straight-way..... it would be easier to take you to heart if you used your real screenname........ but alas you didnt-------- so we know your full of feces like that???? no cursing.......... well maybe a lil curse here you go straight -way........ may your dogma rise in your throat and strangle you -------
blacklionforge - Saturday, 05/28/05 07:20:04 EDT

vicopper: Hi Vicopper
I am sorry as I was not trying to upset you. You give good blacksmith direction and write very well. I just don't think this room needs to be guided by a razor strop. I agree with certain people about no swear words on this site. It just seems sometimes people get a little carried away trying to take charge of this forum. As long as opinions are clean I see no harm in different views without blasting others. vicopper I think you are correct in many things. Just sometimes a little harsh on people with other views. I do respect you. I am sorry for I probably wrote my opinion to strong also. I am sorry to ptree also. I just got a little irritated with the razor strop law and who should have control other than Mr.Dempsy. Anyway I want to get down to blacksmithing.
I bought the Uri Hofi video and I like it very much. I also ordered the hammer and can't wait to give it a try.
burntforge - Saturday, 05/28/05 08:39:14 EDT

screen names, absolutes and religion on a blacksmith forum: Screen names...

My first experience with internet forums was scuba diving boards. At the time I owned a dive shop and I'm an instructor. I used my real name. Now I'm on farrier boards, here and knife forums and still use my name everywhere. Maybe it will get me in trouble someday but it hasen't yet. I don't have anything to hide and while I might be wrong sometimes it's honest and you know who's mouth it's comming from.


To state there aren't any is itself a statement of an absolute that the statement itself says doesn't exist. There's a name fo such contradictions but I can't think of it right now. I believe the denial of absolutes is a big part of the problems we have these days. I've heard that Satan has a sign at his gates that says "There's no right or wrong here. It's whatever works for you." LOL

blacklionforge is right this isn't a Jesus forum. I heard some one say that you should teach the good news always and if you must, use words. Maybe the best way to share such things is by the way you live and not by what you say.
Mike Ferrara - Saturday, 05/28/05 09:08:19 EDT

Ptree: I am sorry for my comment. To clear it up please read my post to vicopper just above. Thanks
burntforge - Saturday, 05/28/05 09:12:38 EDT

The way we live: While on the subject...does any one remember the smith missionary that posted a while back that he's trying to start a metals/woods trade school in nickerwagwa (spelled phonetically, sorry) and was looking for smiths to help by teaching or doing whatever?

I spoke with him by email and phone. It just so happens that the end of June I'll be out of work so I'll have time. No money of course but time. I plan to talk with him more when he's back here later in June trying to round up tools.

I don't know a lot about it right now or what I might be able to do but I thought I'd drop a reminder of his post. If any one is interested, I could certainly share what I find out as I find it out. Just drop me an email or something. If it works out, at the very least, it could be an oportunity to share blacksmithing with folks who need the skills and can't jump in their SUV and head off to a hammer-in.
Mike Ferrara Ferrara - Saturday, 05/28/05 09:21:41 EDT

Replies,etc.: Burntforge,

I agree that this forum doesn't need a sheriff, and I surely don't want to be one. I get enough of that stuff in my full-time job. (grin) I do think it is okay to remind folks when they seem to be heading towards getting out of control, because Jock has too many other things to do to spend much time moderating in here. Jim Wilson was the moderator for this forum before his death, and joked often about stropping his Fairburn-Sykes commando knife in response to jibes directed at him. It was all in fun though, as were any references to it that anyone made. It's one of those things that has become an inside joke among the old time regulars here and is probably a bit confusing to someone who doesn't know the background. No one meant anything other than humor by mentioning it. Just filling you in, not criticising.

I got that Uri Hofi video, too. I found it to be pretty good, but I wish he had gone deeper into the reasons for the design of the hammer and how it is best used. What he said about hammer technique for saving your body made a LOT of sense, and I'm going to be changing the way I do some things based on his ideas. After his hammer technique becomes automatic, I'll probably look into buying or making one of the hammers. Right now I'm spending all my extra money building my powerhammer, and that sure sucks up the money fast. I bought some scrap 3/8" plate yeaterday and had to pay $12/sq. ft. for it. Ouch!


I do my best to avoid any discussions of religion because I always manage to step on someone's toes. I will confess to getting weary of having anyone's relligion shoved in my face, whatever it is. Some things should remain personal, I believe. I usually just ignore it, but if it gets too insistent I often go away. No good ever comes of arguing religion, any more than it does with politics. Telling someone that they are "full of it" (for any reason) only starts a flame war, and we don't need that.


I *think* I said there are very few absolutes in life. I try not to propound oxymorons (I think that's the word), when I remember to check myself. (grin) I heartily agree with you that the best way to "sell" any religion, or philosophy for that matter, is to live it as an example. All the talking is just the noise of an empty drum, if you don't "walk the walk" as they say. Look at Jim Bakker and some of the other phonies. I admire those who practice, rather than preach. By the way, I heard that the sign at the deepest ring of Hell says, "Reserved for those who work iron cold." (grin)

I think it would be pretty neat to do that smithing thing in Nicaragua. I actually came to St. Croix initially as a volunteer with the Lutheran church after Hurrican Hugo demolished the island in 1989. (I'm not very religious, but my sister-in-law is a Lutheran minister and suggested that it would be a good thing to do since I was not working at the time and had some years of construction experience.) Guess what I wound up doing during my volunteer stay? Building a set of gates for the parish hall. So my first "job" here was actually as a smith. If I was not working, I would probably go do that gig in Nicaragua, it sounds like a worthwhile thing to do and would probably be a lot of fun. If the air fare isn't too bad from here, I might go for a week or so, just to help out. Let me know when you find out more, please.

If there is anyone here who doesn't know my real name, I'd be surprised. Just in case there is, my name is Rich Waugh. My friends call me Rich or Sarge, other people call me all sorts of things that I can't print here. From long years of listening to my mother, I answer best to "Hey You!" (grin)

Ah well, that's enough pontificating from me. I'm going to go to my shop and work on my powerhammer project. Since I don't know what I'm doing, it is much more fun! (grin)
vicopper - Saturday, 05/28/05 11:16:30 EDT

Razor Strop: Burntforge: Jock just doesnt have time to supervise this forum. Jim Wilson, (PawPaw) used to do that for him. Now Jim is gone and we temporarily (I hope ) are motherless. Rich, (VICopper) is one of the most senior members here was just trying to fill the gap in the meantime.

The razor strop thing is really just a backhanded salute to PawPaw whom we all miss - a lot. He was, among other things, a Vet, an MP, a police officer. He liked a sharp knife and it was a running joke on this forum how if you didnt watch your act you would get the keen edge or the strop. In practice he was a complete pussycat. Razor strop was never meant as a threat - it's a way of remembering Jim.
adam - Saturday, 05/28/05 11:34:41 EDT

Hey Sarge!: OXYMORON:
"A rhetorical figure in which an epigrammatic effect is created by the conjunction of incongruous or contradictory terms"
For example....
Act naturally
dead tired
Civil Service (Okay thats just my dif at the red tape brigade;)
Always knew that degree would come in handy for somthing (GRIN)
Tinker - Saturday, 05/28/05 13:05:36 EDT

The man's name is Mike Deibert and his contact is
- Frank Turley - Saturday, 05/28/05 13:34:27 EDT

Mike Deibert, the Missionary in Nicaragua: Sorry, I should have filled in the heading.
- Frank Turley - Saturday, 05/28/05 13:36:52 EDT

Don't forget "jumbo shrimp" or "military intelligence" (grin).

eander4 - Saturday, 05/28/05 13:37:09 EDT

Mike Ferrara; Spanish spelling: I've worked on learning a couple of languages which I speak fluidly, pun intended. There is something I learned years ago called the "Continental Vowel System", and I'm assuming this is coming from the continent of Europe. Many of the continental languages have a fairly set way of pronouncing the vowels. For example, "a" is "ah", as when tongue is depressed by M.D.; "e" is "ay" like "hay", or sometimes "eh", as in "bed"; "i" is "eee"; "o" is "o"; "u" is "ooo" as in "boo". Your on the way, if you can learn those. Using this method, Nicaragua would be pronounded "Nee-cah-rah-gwah. The last syllable is a diphthong where the two vowels "ua" are "slurred" together, but that is another chapter.
Frank Turley - Saturday, 05/28/05 14:07:36 EDT

who would have thunk it? [grin] I just put some things on this post to sell, then BAM I get a lesson in culture,ethics and gramer. [I don't think it helped]
ken kristiansen - Saturday, 05/28/05 14:18:37 EDT

I understand now: Ralph, vicopper, ptree & Adam
I get the razor strap thing now as on going joke from PPW. I think it caught me off guard when I was tired. I feel silly now. No harm done then. ouch, Ouch, OUch, OUCh, OUCH. Stop!!! I wont do it again!! LOLOLOL BOG ;)
burntforge - Saturday, 05/28/05 14:23:05 EDT

Bruce the Atli: Ive been scrapping pallets for the hardwood and I work at a casino( master painter and shop forman) so I can pretty much get any wood in any quanity that I want. ( broken rattan chairs, Iron wood tables ect. )
I'm using the direct burn( easiest way) in a 20 gallon paint thinner can with the lid cut and capped( looks like a big jelly jar). I just heat a iron block to red in the forge and drop it in the can. For air flow and control I've gouged five 1/24 in holes in the lower sides of the can and can cover or uncover as needed. To help keep the smoke down I light a fire brand and place it in the smoke's( must be yellow or lighter color) edge and " Fump ! ROAR!" after roughly 2hours 12min( depends on the wood type) I open the can and 'stir' the charrings around, close and seal all openings. Most the time I can get about a 80 to 95 % yeild but every once in a while I open the can too early and lose some product due to fresh air getting into the coaler can. the whole process usally takes me 4 hours. But I have hadf it run longer and shorter( longer 7-8hrs, shorter 3hrs even)
The real trick is to get the escaping gasses to burn as quickly as possable, while not letting any of the flame to get into the can with the wood to be coaled.

As fer burning raw wood in the for( hack hack) forg( couff wheeze gag) forge I have had some displeasing ( gasp , choke, whezze hack hack) results.
Largest solid peice of wood coaled with out breaking was a 4"x10"x 1' ( aged pin oak)
- Timex - Saturday, 05/28/05 14:53:21 EDT

That sounds way too much like my Latin classes in college. I think I'll stick with the traditional Arkansas Redneck Drawl if it's all the same to you. (grin)

Ken Kristiansen:

What can I say? Welcome to the often entertaining and sometimes bizarre melee that is the Hammer-in! (grin) I'm glad we didn't chase you off.

eander4 - Saturday, 05/28/05 15:19:56 EDT

Pennsic Bound: I just signed up for Pennsic this year and was wondering who from is going to be there so I can meet you. I'll be camping with Casa Bardicci & working in Oakwood Hall on merchants row. I tend to only go to Pennsic every few years.
I know I don't post too often, but I do read the posts almost every day. BTW, I don't post often because I have had to put learning blacksmithing on the back burner for a while. I still read everyday so I can learn the theories and tricks of it.

Steve in New York
Smulch - Saturday, 05/28/05 17:03:07 EDT

Ken Kristiansen,
This is a neat place with VERY smart people, who often have VERY strong opinions. If you ask a how to question on any subject, someone will post an answer, and often several with slight variations will answer. Often people with many years of experience.
By the way, in you scrap clearing, besides the obvious anvils and tongs, have you got a good feel for the other tools we drool for? Things like camelback drill presses, swage blocks, trip hammers, post vises, forges, forge blowers, small lathes and mills etc? If you come across such, I am sure that several, including me will be quite interested. We can probably help to identify as well.
Rivets are also something we like.
ptree - Saturday, 05/28/05 17:07:16 EDT

No offense. Not aimed at you but the razorstrop was a gentle request to a friend I have not met in person, to pick up the good work of a mutual friend to us both.
PPW loved this forum, and carried a somewhat gruff scene presense, but was indeed a true gentleman and a pussycat. You would not have believed how he melted when my tiny 13 year old sat next to him on the couch and gave him a goodnight kiss. The razor strop was a standing joke, and i was one of the ones threatened most as I often made jokes about his age. As I just had another birthday, it may be my turn for the age jokes, and I don't even have a strop.
I do have other usefull things however :)
ptree - Saturday, 05/28/05 17:14:47 EDT

Hey Sarge!
I guess that name is gonna stick Rich. I still answer to that one as well. Mine is from the ARMY though.
Still going to quad state?
ptree - Saturday, 05/28/05 17:18:10 EDT

I usualy get machine shop equipment mills, lathes,welding machines, sometimes acorn tables and post vises. Generaly what we do is ask people to email or fax us a wishlist of what you would like, what you have to sell. our main business is rigging and our costomers are always asking for stuff
ken kristiansen - Saturday, 05/28/05 18:49:39 EDT

Thanks Frank. I guess I should have taken a moment to look it up huh? LOL
Mike Ferrara Ferrara - Saturday, 05/28/05 20:23:09 EDT

ptree: Yep, still planning on attending Quad States. I may be merging it with a trip to the inlaws in Michigan, but that part is kinda iffy. Quad States though, is a dead bang. If you don't see me there, it's time to put my picture on a milk carton. (grin)

Last years QS was about the most fun you can have with your clothes on. I met a bunch of terrific people, learned a bit, saw a lot, and generally had a ball. The days and evenings sitting around with Jock, Steve G, Bob H, 3dogs , Tony B, Paw Paw, John Larson, Tom Chenoweth, John Fee and a whole host of others were what really made it special for me. I got to meet the guys from Big BLue and play with their hammer, meet Steve Barringer, Steve Parker and others, and I got to play some more with John Larson's nifty power hammer. I got to experience a near-terminal case of envy just seeing all the tailgate stuff I couldn't carry back on an airplane. (grin) I may have a cure for that this year, though.

Steve G lives pretty clos eto a shipper that ships down here, and he usually drives to Quad States. I may try to work something to fly up there and then drive back with Steve and fly home from there. After a quick trip to the shippers to offload all the goodies, of course. We'll see what happens. SO far, Steve hasn't actually made the offer, but I know he's just waiting for the right time. (grin)
vicopper - Saturday, 05/28/05 20:37:18 EDT

Ken Kristiansen: Where are you located? As mentioned in the previous post, getting thing here is a bit of a challenge at times. (I live in the Virgin Islands.) If you're anywhere near Port Elizabeth, New Jersey, that open up some possibilities for me. I've been looking for a lathe, an acorn table, a really big post vise, a geared-head drill press, and a few other things, but shipping overland is a killer. The ocean freight isn't all that bad, strangely enough. But that starts at Port Elizabeth NJ or Miami, FL. Kind of limiting.
vicopper - Saturday, 05/28/05 20:41:40 EDT

vicopper: A while back I had been trying to get hold of a forge that Pawpaw was looking for. He and I had been talking back and forth and I was looking forward to meeting him at Quad State this year. I'd like to meet some of you guys in person if possible, how can I find you once there?
- Jeff G. - Saturday, 05/28/05 23:03:50 EDT

Missionary: Here is the info was going to post in news soon.
- guru - Saturday, 05/28/05 23:09:22 EDT

Bruce and others : hey I'm gonna compile my notes about charring and see if I can get some pics of it. If I wanted to send it in how or whare would I send it to. Mail or e-mail.
- Timex - Saturday, 05/28/05 23:18:45 EDT

What is a Vet?: Posted by a friend elsewhere:

"What is a Vet
Anonymous author

He is the POW who went away one person and came back another - or
didn't come back AT ALL.

He is the Parris Island drill instructor who has never seen combat -
but has saved countless lives by turning slouchy, no-account rednecks
and gang members into Marines, and teaching them to watch each other's

He is the parade-riding Legionnaire who pins on his ribbons and medals
with a prosthetic hand.

He is an ordinary and yet an extraordinary human being - a person who
offered some of his life's most vital years in the service of his
country, and who sacrificed his ambitions so others would not have to
sacrifice theirs.

He is the three anonymous heroes in The Tomb Of The Unknowns, whose
presence at the Arlington National Cemetery must forever preserve the
memory of all anonymous heroes whose valor dies unrecognized with them
on the battlefield or in the ocean's sunless deep.

He is the old guy bagging groceries at the supermarket - palsied now
and aggravatingly slow - who helped liberate a Nazi death camp and who
wishes all day long that his wife were still alive to hold him when the
nightmares come.

He is the bar room loud mouth, dumber than five wooden planks, whose
over grown frat-boy behavior is outweighed a hundred times in the
cosmic scales by four hours of exquisite bravery near the 38th

She (or he) is the nurse who fought against futility and went to sleep
sobbing every night for two solid years in Da Nang.

He is a soldier and a savior and a sword against the darkness, and he
is nothing more than the finest, greatest testimony on behalf of the
finest, greatest nation ever known.

So remember, each time you see someone who has served our country, just
lean over and say Thank You. That's all most people need, and in most
cases it will mean more than any medals they could have been awarded or
were awarded.

Two little words that mean a lot, "THANK YOU."

It's the soldier, not the reporter, Who gave us our freedom of the

It's the soldier, not the poet, Who gave us our freedom of speech.

It's the soldier, not the campus organizer, Who gave us our freedom to

It's the soldier, Who salutes the flag, Who serves others with respect
for the flag, And whose coffin is draped by the flag, Who allows the
protestor to burn the flag.

Prayer for our Servicemen

Lord, hold our troops in Your loving hands. Protect them as they
protect us."
Ralph - Sunday, 05/29/05 00:49:10 EDT

Vicopper: shipping is no problem. we are located in paterson new jersey. we can crate almost anything, or load out a container for you. Port Elizabeth is 30 min down the road
ken kristiansen - Sunday, 05/29/05 01:35:17 EDT

timex : I don't know where you live but if you live by the water,that means that you can find a dockbuilding company that uses green hart piles for dock work. it's a hard south american tree that I heated my house for years with ask for "cut offs" thats the top of the pile that they cut off to make grade. don't know if thats a help
ken kristiansen - Sunday, 05/29/05 01:44:50 EDT

Vicopper: Whereabouts in Michigan? Every now and then I see a sporty car in my neck of the woods (just over the Ohio/Michigan border)with the vanity license "WAUGH".
3dogs - Sunday, 05/29/05 01:54:43 EDT

wood fer coaling: what is the name of the wood ?
I'm currently researching the charring process( have to take some bio classes to understand all the chem that is going on) but if you can name it; I should br able to get of it.
I'm in Las Vegas, Nevada. The closest H2O is lake Mead( 45 miles away) average humidity is 0 to 1.05%. Konda ;ike staring down a hair drier.
- Timex - Sunday, 05/29/05 03:23:05 EDT

ralph: From one vet:

Thank you.

nuff said
- Timex - Sunday, 05/29/05 03:26:22 EDT

I don't think Lake Mead would have green hart or bengazi. too much $. I was a dock builder in New York city. You would use this wood around big ships. [ pine would snap like match sticks} It just burned real hot , real long.
ken kristiansen - Sunday, 05/29/05 05:19:30 EDT

Jeff G.: In previous years we have "modified" our name tags by adding affiliations to the bottom of them. Examples are "anvilfire", "CSI", etc.. Often accompanied by your screen name.

Since Paw Paw is gone we will need to find a new spot to loaf in this year. (grin)
Brian C - Sunday, 05/29/05 08:27:27 EDT

Hey Sarge!
I intend to be at Quad state as well. Was planning to camp next to PPW. Bringing the #2 son. Also bringing some goodies for tailgating and trading. How will the group assemble? PPW's truck and personage was a beacon.
ptree - Sunday, 05/29/05 08:31:18 EDT

Coaling Data Research: Timex,

How the wood coals is not as critical as how it burns in the forge. Here are some properties, you may add more:

1) Amount of ash. Some woods produce little heat and a lump of ash equal to the wood.

2) Fleas and sparking. Many dense hardwoods and sappy softwoods make little explosions as they burn sending hot "fleas" everywhere. The rain of sparks can be as bad as arc welding and is NOT a desirable property.

3) Breakability is important. Good charcoal can be broken up by hand or gently by hammer to best usable size (1" to 1.5"). Some charcoal is nearly as stong as uncoaled wood and very difficult to break up.

Species is important but some guide to the general type and character of the wood could be useful. Charcoal is made world wide from varieties unheard of in other parts of the word. In Costa Rica they use saw mill waste that includes many varieties of rare tropical hardwood. Some makes hard dense slatelike coal that is difficult to break up and makes fleas like crazy. Others make good soft charcoal that breakup and almost do not flea.

Someone mentioned balsa. In Costa Rica a balsa tree grows to 30 feet and a foot in diameter in 3 years. . . It is expensive here only because of rarity and the fine little boards it is cut into.

If you send me your research I will add it to our coal-charcoal FAQ or as a standing article. Submissions should be in plain text or HTML (no propriatary formats like Word docs).
- guru - Sunday, 05/29/05 09:34:35 EDT

Paw-Paw's Deals - Welder:
Paw-Paw had arranged to purchase a buzz box from someone in Maryland. I would like to complete the deal. It is still needed in his shop.

I am helping his grandchildren to build a much needed railing for the deck stairs and we need a welder in Paw-Paw's shop to do the job. This is going to be a forge/fabricate job with large butterflies (Sheri's favorite decorative item). With the help of his grandaughter (HS student) we have done the measuring, layout and preliminary design. In the coming weeks we will start making the components. Its a big job for a bunch of teenagers that can only work in the shop on weekends when I or another adult is here to supervise. I may need to take off more than a weekend to see it through completion.
- guru - Sunday, 05/29/05 09:50:48 EDT

Dates: Quad State: I didn't find Quad State Roundup in the anvilfire Calendar. Could someone please furnish the dates and location? Thanks.
Frank Turley - Sunday, 05/29/05 10:19:25 EDT

lsundstrom: Miles, quit are Cracked.
- lsundstrom - Sunday, 05/29/05 10:49:24 EDT

charcoal report: thank you I will compile a list of the type, time to coal, usability, and general heat vs waste.
if I find the time I will also send some pic.s of how to/ how not to, as well.
- Timex - Sunday, 05/29/05 11:04:45 EDT

Frank Turley and all other anvilfire regulars.
I intend to be at Quad state, and as I have access to new, unheat treated axle stock in huge quantities, I will bring a fair amount with me. I can get bars say 4' long in 1 1/4" to 2 1/4 in the 1541H and 1050H. I can get the 4140 and variants in 3 to 5.5". If interested, I will try to bring some for all, at the scrap price I pay, or trade. I will also be bringing some of the magic lube we forge with as samples for those interested. CSI membership is a requirement for the non-comercial rates:)
ptree - Sunday, 05/29/05 11:08:58 EDT

ken's hartwood: Ken Lake Mead is a man made lake ( Hover dam) that is in the middle of the desert. No green around that bad boy at all. Well not including the yuppie tree and the yuppie grass. Out here the only way to get tree is to cut a house tree down or drive the 56 miles to Mt. Charlston.
Sorry If I wasn't clear on my location.
8:27am 84F cloudy.
- Timex - Sunday, 05/29/05 11:13:23 EDT

Jock, Look around PPW's shop and supplies for a container labeled P-185 Forge lube. I sampled him when he was here and if I remember it was in a plastic coffee can with the label on in paint pen. The product should look much like coke syrup. Smells a bit odd. Dip a hot, say 400 to 600F tool in it and it will turn a brownish yellow. It is a bit high in Ph say 9 to 10. Should be diluted for use to say 50:50. Try it on punches if you need lube there.
ptree - Sunday, 05/29/05 11:13:54 EDT

Frank, its on the calendar, end of September.
- guru - Sunday, 05/29/05 12:39:10 EDT

Big Day for Quenchcrack: Fired the forge for the first time in over 7 months today. Bum elbow kept me on the injured reserved list. Elbow is still tender but I just got fed up with waiting. First project was a three-legged trivet about 12" in diameter (slit 1/3-2/3 from one piece) to put the Dutch Oven lid on. It keeps the dirt from falling into the stew when you putthe lid back on. Not my best work, but I was happy as a clam to get back to it! :)

God Bless our Troops!!!
quenchcrack - Sunday, 05/29/05 15:07:08 EDT

Good for you! I'm part way through my flask burnout as we speak (and getting more nervous by the minute! Casting some silver flowers for the wifes birthday, so far its 3-0 to Loki :) so fingers crossed on that one.
Please don't make the same mistake as my brother did, he got restless too... end result was a major operation to fix the extra damage he did to himself. 'Slow and steady wins the race' at least with recovery anyway!
Tinker - Sunday, 05/29/05 16:18:36 EDT

Welder: Guru,

That must have been me with the welder (I'm actually in the Virginia suburbs of DC). PawPaw was going to pick it up on the way to Camp Fenby. I've just about decided to go myself this year; if you're going, I can probably bring it. If not, we'll work something out. If the welder's going to help PawPaw's family one way or another, I'll make it a donation.
Mike B - Sunday, 05/29/05 16:22:35 EDT

Good on you Mike B!
ptree - Sunday, 05/29/05 17:50:43 EDT

Glad to hear you are mending. I hope my elbows heal quicker than that. Straightened a tractor tie rod yesterday, about 10 hammerblows and need the #3 tylonol last night.
ptree - Sunday, 05/29/05 17:53:08 EDT

Larry-- Nahhhh. Ol' Cracked is still there, back in the '50s, playing shuffleboard and drinking Gunther, listening to Earl Bostic, smoking Camels, at the Dizzy Club on Holabird Avenue... with Chastity Dangerfield, and Yummi DeLisch, and his faithful henchperson Swarf....
Miles Undercut - Sunday, 05/29/05 18:02:55 EDT

I always pictured Cracked as a Lucky Strike non-filter kinda guy. "Turkish blend" Camels....whodafiggered. (grin)
eander4 - Sunday, 05/29/05 18:19:44 EDT

Tinker and ptree, I took it easy, only worked about 1-1/2 hours; only used light hammers, wore my armband, hydrated frequently, took three ibuprofins before I started. So far, it feels really good. I may do some more tomorrow. I still have some camp gear I want to make.

God Bless our Veterans!
quenchcrack - Sunday, 05/29/05 19:27:54 EDT

Well, now, some out there might say that employing Memorial Day as an occasion to denigrate the press and people upset with the government is an insult to the intelligence of the brethren here gathered, and that a vigilant press and vocal, active protesters are needed as never before in the history of this land. Me, though, I say ship 'em all to Gitmo and that'll teach 'em about that hogwash in the so-called Bill of Rights about "freedom of the press" and the "right of assembly for redress of grievances," whatever that means.
Nelson Magruder - Sunday, 05/29/05 20:17:41 EDT

eander4-- You're right. But, then, Cracked would smoke just about anything that burns: Luckies, Camels, Sweet Caps, Picayune, Home Run, Fatimas, Chesterfield, Philip Morris, DuMaurier, Gitane, Gauloise, Delicados, Balkan Sobranie, Rum River Crooks, Tops, Bull Durham. Five packs a day back in the 60s. Until, that is, he got a close-up look (and listen) at/to those poor souls hacking and gasping and gurgling their way toward the Pearly Gates in the Respiratory Intensive Care Unit. I think he pretty much quit after that. But who knows?
Miles Undercut - Sunday, 05/29/05 20:24:47 EDT

Quad States: easy to find me, I'll be the guy driving te rental car. (grin)

I suggest that we determine shortly before the meet just who is going to get there first and than have that person glom onto a good spot. PPW grabbed a spot not far from the west (I think) end of the SOFA building, right on what passes for the main thoroughfare of the meet. It was convenient alright, but it puts you right under the watchful eye of the "no booze" police. Some of the guys form the old Keenjunk site got together in the camping area that was about 50 yds to the north (again, I think) of the Sofa building. That worked pretty well. I imagine they'll probably be there again this year. Tony B, who posts both places, has an old Hummer that he camps in and he will be there, I'm sure.

One other thing we could all do is to make up sweatshirts with our names, screen names and/or affiliation(s) so we can spot each other. I suggested t-shirts last year, but that was before I'd been there...too cold for just a tee. At least too cold for this tropicalized boy. (grin)


That plate is no relation, as far as I know. My inlaws are all named Stears, anyway. My wife is the only one who took my name, for some reason. (grin) They're in Romulus, just south of Detroit.
vicopper - Sunday, 05/29/05 22:25:35 EDT

Eander: You are showing your youth, son. Back then, if you smoked Camels, they WERE unfiltered. Those namby-pamby Camels with the cellulose mouthpiece didn't come out until the 70's I think. I smoked the short ones, myself. And Luckies, Picayunes, Galoises, Chesterfield, Pall Mall, Kools, and a few others I can't remember. All unfiltered.

Unlike Cracked, I never smoked Tops...the only guys who smoked that, picked up the habit in the joint. That and Bugler, which was served up in some of the lesser quality city jails. I did try Bull Durham once, thereby discovering what they do with the leaves that aren't good enough for Picayunes. Almost as bad as the Russian cigarette I tried, though that one still holds the honor of being the absolute worst use of tobacco I have ever witnessed. I was surprised that they had any smokers at all in Russia, if that was all they had available.
vicopper - Sunday, 05/29/05 22:56:37 EDT

LOKI 3 Tinker 1: You know, I'd love to come to one of these "do's". I'll have to do some digging for things in the U.K. although I have managed to persuade my son he REALLY wants to go to the 'Royal Armouries' in Leeds to watch the Armouror at work in his shop... bog :)
(I'm not a knife nut, but its a hammer and an anvil, and completely fascinating!)
Yep, I've clawed a goal back from the trickster god, and feel quite good about it. All my castings have come out, and only a few nodules here and there to clean up, best so far!
Tinker - Sunday, 05/29/05 23:38:57 EDT

Bugler! How could I have forgotten Bugler? And Black Cat, and Pall Mall, and Herbert Tareyton, and Winston... but no Mail Pouch or Red Man or Garrett, or other snuffs. I know. Why burn it when you can eat it? But....
Miles Undercut - Sunday, 05/29/05 23:58:52 EDT

Tobacco: If any of you had ever used a tobacco that came under two different names,"Cutty Pipe" or "Five Brothers", it would have been burned into your memory. People of the Appalachian persuasion were known to roll it in paper, stuff it in a pipe or chew it. The stuff smelled like burning hay that'd been run through a draft horse first, and you can use your imagination as to the taste. It looked similar to dried cornsilk, or very coarse hair, 'nuff said.
3dogs - Monday, 05/30/05 03:57:56 EDT

Platen Table For sale: Hi guys. I saw this today on ebay and thought some of you might be interested. It's ebay item #7518774105 a 5ft X 5ft Platen table. Looks like it has no legs, but the top looks pretty good. It's near Seatle WA, but the guy will ship it.

5X5 Platen Table
FredlyFX - Monday, 05/30/05 05:51:00 EDT

Shipping a roughly 3500# platen ought to be a cheap exercise!
PPW came and got an Acorn from me that was 4' x 5'. squatted the car hauler he brought, but he got it home.
ptree - Monday, 05/30/05 07:17:54 EDT

the sword of our nation: all hail to the men and women that form the sword of our nation-------- my only wish is that that sword was being used for something other than a "war or terror" sounds like the red scare of the 50's if you ask me..... but o well honor and blood dont always walk hand in hand
blacklionforge - Monday, 05/30/05 08:06:11 EDT

shipping an acorn: call freight quote or landstar ranger. say LTL [less than load] give size and lbs should not be bad
ken kristiansen - Monday, 05/30/05 09:01:11 EDT

Tobacco saying: Did we mention Dukes Mixture? In Missouri, my home state, it was used to mean not only a tobacco brand, but an odd assortment of things, a misch masch.
Frank Turley - Monday, 05/30/05 09:40:26 EDT

I quit smoking over a year ago. Today I found two pouches of my favorite pipe tobacco stuffed in a bag I had forgotton about. Hmmmmmm.....temptation, get thee behind me. Threw them in the trash. I could inhale my pipe and inhale cigars but some cigarettes were enough to blow the top of my head off. That can't be a good thing.......
quenchcrack - Monday, 05/30/05 12:33:17 EDT

"Qutting smoking is easy," Mark Twain said, "I've done it many times."
Miles Undercut - Monday, 05/30/05 14:15:40 EDT

Waugh Plate:: Could be a mountain man re-enactor. I've seen it spelled as Wagh and as Waugh. If'n ya know what I'm a talking about, Pilgrim!
Bob H - Monday, 05/30/05 14:19:12 EDT

I never meant to imply that a Camel should be filtered. It's just that dang Turkish Blend always left a taste in my mouth like cat poop. I didn't even know you could get Luckies WITH a filter 'till I move to North Carolina! That said, I used to be a Prince Albert man, myself. Switched to Luckies when I got tired of rolling. One of these days, I'll switch to fresh air.

eander4 - Monday, 05/30/05 15:07:08 EDT

HELLER: HELLO FRANK; Hey!! I am fixing to rework a pair of Heller pull off pinchers. Are they worth anything for a collector???

sandpile - Monday, 05/30/05 17:11:40 EDT

Rides: Rich, Do I have to pick you up at the airport too? Hey, If we have your get out of jail free card with us maybe I can get the drive time down a few hours. Of course the van is a lot slower than the car so that part might not work out.(grin)
SGensh - Monday, 05/30/05 17:35:52 EDT

eander4: Just curious how you know what cat poop tastes like
Jeff G. - Monday, 05/30/05 18:44:40 EDT

I smoked Camels for almost twenty years. (Filtered Camels? There aint no such thing... those are just imposters!) A friend of mine had some Jester tobacco one day. He suggested that since I liked non-filters I should try a hand rolled Jester. I have smoke them ever since.
Ano - Monday, 05/30/05 18:47:25 EDT

Jeff G.:
Some things are better left unsaid...(grin)
eander4 - Monday, 05/30/05 19:07:37 EDT

Quad States: Vic, I'm hoping to be there. May not bring the truck unless fuel prices drop or I'm needing to bring heavy stuff there. If you are visiting Michiganites, gonna stop over for a day or three? We'd like to extend the hospitality if you have the time. Let us know when the time gets closer.

And remember, Cruzan rum is good, Cruzan rum is your friend, Be One with Cruzan Rum. And be careful if A certain Central Illinoisan wants some..... Grin!

The bestest meat market closed however so I have to find a new one.

Thanks to all in the services who fought, fight, worked and work for what rights an responsibilities we have.
- Tony - Monday, 05/30/05 19:19:05 EDT

copper patina: Is there a way to quickly age copper to give it that nice green color? Thanks in advance.
- Robert Dean - Monday, 05/30/05 20:57:00 EDT

Copper Patina: If you want quick, use a dilute solution of copper sulfate in water, applied warm. Takes about an hour.

If you want good, then use sawdust wetted with urine. Stuff the copper in the pile, wait a few days and remove. Rinse and dry. All natural, too.
vicopper - Monday, 05/30/05 21:13:30 EDT

Tony: If we get to MI, we will certainly plan a few days over your way. We don't know yet what is happening with the MI trip though, so I'll let you know when/if I learn anything.
Naturally, when traveling to the States, I do my duty as a good citizen and travel with my maximum allotment of duty-free Cruzan. I'm devastated to hear that the meat market closed; that was the best beef I've ever had. I hope you can find a replacement, before I schlepp all the Cruzan up there for nothing. (grin)
vicopper - Monday, 05/30/05 21:19:07 EDT

Copper patina: Copper suspended in a closed container with ammonia will give deep greens and blues. Dont put the copper in the ammonia, it's the fumes that do it. Also muriatic acid is quick for light colored patina, just wipe or brush on. This works in minutes.
Jeff G. - Monday, 05/30/05 21:20:22 EDT

copper patina: Is there a quick way to age copper to give it that nice green color? Thanks.
- Robert Dean - Monday, 05/30/05 22:18:43 EDT

Thanks for the responses. Sorry about the double post. I do not know what happened to my first post. As soon as I reposted, it popped up on the forum.
- Robert Dean - Monday, 05/30/05 22:27:48 EDT

we have a real nice buffalo ranch about 20 mins from my house.....
And I almost never say no to rum......
Ralph - Monday, 05/30/05 22:29:00 EDT

Quad States Spot: I've been asked to carry Paw-Paw's tent and a box of his books to sell at SOFA Quad State. At this point as all my traveling plans are related to finances I have not yet said yes or no. I was hoping to go to CanIron this year and that will be a significant cost, just before SOFA.

It might be more cost effective for me to just buy the books and stay home. . . I thouroughly enjoy Quad State but I always have to buy SOMETHING on top of the expense. And I also realized at the SouthEast conference this year that some of the events are the same year after year and does not make good NEWS to report on. So I should be looking at other events. . .

Indescisive. . .
- guru - Tuesday, 05/31/05 11:23:59 EDT

Quad-State I'll be camping with da MOB (Mid Ohio Blacksmiths) they will have a sign out by their camp and the Flaming anvil at night.

Most foks recognize me by the disreputable red hat, (it has horns and a tail too) and in honour of Paw Paw, if the weather cooperates I should be wearing lederhosen and an aloha shirt at least one of the days---usually Friday. (from a RAH book we both liked)

Frank; Quad-State is the last full weekend in September. I was thinking of flying out but might be willing to carpool if there were more NM smiths going out.

Ptree; how much Mn in the 1050? sounds like good katana stock...if you have a triphammer!

Absolutes: of course there are absolutes---everybody has a set! Miles got his by taking rubbings off the sides of anvils used to test chisels on and scaning it in and using a free on-line chinese idiogram translator. I got mine from a Myan stella found under a desirable street car---I decoded the glyphs in a marathon session using an egyptian hieroglyphic dictionary and a lot of rum. Jock has a version he garnered by taking all the input to /dev/null and running it through a randomizer function, truncating the result into ascii and printing it out on an old teletype...

This forum has a live and let live gesalt (gesundheit!). We have also supported a lot of "light hearted" banter that folks new to the forum might not recognize as such---I'm sure Sandpile knows that my TX comments are all in jest and he can stop saddling up the horses for the necktie committee...

There are plenty of other places for flamewars; lets keep this one cryo!

Thomas P - Tuesday, 05/31/05 12:23:22 EDT

AWRIGHT!!!!: Glad you can make it Thomas!! Now stuff Frank and Adam in yer trunk, and come on over. Good post otherwise, too. (You always were a snappy dresser.)
3dogs - Tuesday, 05/31/05 13:51:31 EDT

- lsundstrom - Tuesday, 05/31/05 14:01:09 EDT

I am deeply shocked.
Miles Undercut - Tuesday, 05/31/05 14:38:14 EDT

HEY SARGE! Precision Drill: If you want them I took some phone snaps of the junk bits I'm ammassing, just got over the bank holiday so everyones open again! By Tutatis the price of bearings came as a surprise! 4 little 'pillow block' 12mm bearings (the smallest my suppliers do) of machine grade quality come to £49.91! (thats over $90 bucks) Not in keeping with the Tinker philosophy methinks so a trip to the tip was in order and some bicycle bits salvaged. I know theres a risk of slop but I can always spend money later, these were free! I got some reasonable 12mm diameter threaded bar from Bapp, a tool company, that runs at 2mm for every full turn (360)of the thread, using the hand drill gearing (reversed so the little gear has the handle, 4 to 1 instead of 1 to 4) I'll get 0.5mm for every full turn of the hand crank, so I guess that will mean its pretty fine? whaddya reckon?
I also found some old dumbells at the tip and took a couple of the 10kg ones, they're rusty and have a nice ring so they may be steel, but to me they're a good base to stop it all falling over:) I was thinking of using two threaded rods and the printer rod in a triangle ( but done so the threaded rods take all the stress and the printer rod justs acts as a guide.
Anyhow just thought I'd let you know how its going. I'm gonna have to go to the engineers to get the threaded bar cut and milled down to size, and the dremmel to chuck adapter made too. I hate it when you need the tool you want to make to make the tool you want to make! BOG :)
Tinker - Tuesday, 05/31/05 16:20:50 EDT

Dremel Spindle Nose:
These are a bastard size, also known as a series thread. 5/8"-12 I think rather than the common 5/8"-11 NC. If they had used the common size you could use nuts or standard taps to make special tools. However, I suspect you can purchase that tap size from pros.

Please do not use the above size without checking your Dremmel first. My Dremmel is at my Dads along with the threaded attachements so I cannot check. But I had in the past and it IS a inch series thread.
- guru - Tuesday, 05/31/05 17:43:09 EDT

It is always cruel to laugh at people, of course, although sometimes if they are wearing an ugly hat it is hard to control yourself.

-The Austere Academy

Hey, I'm just saying...
Gronk - Tuesday, 05/31/05 19:07:53 EDT

ThomasP; Quadstate: I'll be returning from my Australian workshop about September 20, then sleeping for one day. One of these days, I'll sue the airline for Elder Abuse. I suppose I should take a rain check on driving across country right after 18 hours in the air. I really appreciate the offer, though. Thanks.
Frank Turley - Tuesday, 05/31/05 21:24:44 EDT

edwards shear: I have a hand shear that someone could use . would like $100.for it + shipping. ken
- ken kristiansen - Tuesday, 05/31/05 21:39:05 EDT

Frank Turley,
Change flight to somewhere close to Quadstate and ride back with ThomasP? Or is the thought of lederhosen and an aloha shirt working tricks in your mind too?
ptree - Tuesday, 05/31/05 21:55:34 EDT

Ken Kristiansen
On shipping of an Acorn by LTL. The issue is that many of the guys have no shipping dock or any way to get a 3500# platen out of a van trailer. I harvested several partial platens that were 4' x 5'. Easy to load at work with a fork truck. My very heavy duty 3/4 ton got them home. Unloaded by reverse and Newton. To load PPW's trailer, i borrowed a tractor with front loader. Took an hour to worry it on the trailer as the farm tractor could not lift it clear of the ground. I still have one to load in July, and a couple of smaller chunks. Lucky to borrow the tractor.
ptree - Tuesday, 05/31/05 22:01:00 EDT

Ken Kristiansen: Edwards Shear
I am very interested in purchasing your shear. I sent you an email.
- burntforge - Tuesday, 05/31/05 23:04:26 EDT

ptree: Good idea on flying to Ohio, except the non-changable Aussie air tickets were bought about six weeks ago. The other route would be to buy a roundtrip ticket from Albuquerque to (where?) in Ohio, and hitch the car ride back. I've always been told that a roundtrip airfare is cheaper than a one-way. Go figger.

Frank Turley - Tuesday, 05/31/05 23:16:35 EDT

patina/copper: Patina agents act differently based on temperature, humidity,and other factors. Try different dilutions on small samples and mark them so you know what you did. Quick acting patinas I have used tend to want to flake off. I use a more dilute form and use a spray bottle of clear ammonia to make sure it bites into the copper or brass. Then, just before it is completely dry, I hit it with a spray of clear enamel (99 cents a can). This bonds the agent to the copper and after a few days, you can't hardly scrub it off.
- Loren T. - Wednesday, 06/01/05 01:19:04 EDT

Frank Turley: Dayton International Airport is the closest big airport to Quad State. Dayton is just south of Troy (which is where Quad is held)
- Jeff G. - Wednesday, 06/01/05 08:19:01 EDT

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