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International Ceramics Products

Antique Blacksmiths Bellows (red)

Antique Blacksmiths Bellows (red)

$1,800


Photos from Ted Mays, Tool Collection Tour and Sale   Antique Blacksmiths Bellows (red)

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These are factory made bellows of the type made in the USA at the end of the horse drawn transportation era. Will need releathering to be used.

  • Poplar? Wood, leather and iron fittings
  • Overall Length 64 inches
  • Width is 36 inches
  • Closed height, 6 inches.
  • Iron Nozzle is 10 inches long
  • Top board has water damage to wood (rot) see image.
  • WEIGHT: 67 lbs.
Antique Blacksmiths Bellows

Re-leathering Bellows:

To use these bellows they must have the old leather replaced. To do so the old leather can be used as patterns to an extent. However, a great many bellows have been ruined by making the new leather the same as the old shrunken leather. Bellows should open 1/2 to 2/3's their width in height. The old shrunken leather will only be a small fraction of this size in height.

Short leathering a bellows is like short sheeting a bed, it is very uncomfortable and useless. A bellows that is shorted on leather has to be pumped very rapidly to get any air out of it at all and is nearly impossible to blow a large fire. I've worked in two restorations that had bellows with shorted leather. One was re-leathered at a very prestedious historical institution - and done wrong, TWICE.

Many grades of leather can be used on a bellows. I prefer leather processed for upholstery. It is supple and finished to be water resistant. I used "buckskin", a split cowhide with a rough surface on my bellows I built in 1977. This was a little thin but lasted over 30 years. It takes a lot of leather to re-leather a bellows. It was said at one time that it took a full oxen hide to leather a bellows. That is several cow hides. On a large bellows the leather will need to be pieced. Since the leather starts at several feet wide at the back of the bellows and tapers to a foot or less at the nozle block it makes peicing a sensible solution.

My Great Bellows -guru


Ted Mays Blacksmith Tool Collection


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40 year collection of quality American made blacksmithing tools for sale.




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