Jump to content

how do I become a beginner


JoelBibee
 Share

Recommended Posts

Hello this is my first post so i will start with an intro. Im in the us navy and just got stationed naval base norfolk in va.I want to begin my journey to becoming a bladesmith but finding resources has been tough in my location. I have wanted to start doing this for a while but didn't have a place until now. I've read alot online and in books about cheap ways to get started but I'm having trouble locating these makeshift tools. Could someone give me some insight on where to look for rail sections for anvils and scrap parts for forges and maybe even some contacts to some local bladesmiths or blacksmiths. Thanks in advance.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hello this is my first post so i will start with an intro. Im in the us navy and just got stationed naval base norfolk in va.I want to begin my journey to becoming a bladesmith but finding resources has been tough in my location. I have wanted to start doing this for a while but didn't have a place until now. I've read alot online and in books about cheap ways to get started but I'm having trouble locating these makeshift tools. Could someone give me some insight on where to look for rail sections for anvils and scrap parts for forges and maybe even some contacts to some local bladesmiths or blacksmiths. Thanks in advance.

 

 

Welcome!

 

 

To start out, we'd need your location to refer you to local smiths.

 

 

 

I would imagine that there is plenty of scrap and possibilities on just about any base, go visit the machine and vehicle shops and ask if they have large steel cut-offs or bits that could be made into an anvil. That's probably the hardest piece of gear to source, hammers and tongs and files are all a bit easier to come by.

The Tidewater Forge

Christopher Price, Bladesmith

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Welcome aboard Joel! The shops certainly are a good place too look, and I would also recommend a local scrapyard or recycling centre. If you can find one that lets you either but or even just have parts lying around, you can scavenge some parts for a forge and there might be some good anvil material lying around. If that fails, you can probably find a good deal on the internet somewhere, ebay or craigslist etc.

I wish you the best of luck in your quest, and hope to see you find some tools.

 

John

Not all those who wander are lost. -J.R.R. Tolkien

-Shards of the Dark Age- my blog
-Nine Worlds Workshop-
-Last Apocalypse Forge-

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just keep hanging around here grasshopper.

[font="Book Antiqua"][color="#0000FF"][size="5"][b]Perfection[/b][/size]

[i][size="3"]is achieved not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.[/size][/i][/color][/font]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

My .02... Read as much on the subject as you can find /stand,

search scrapyards for anvil and blade materials,old springs are fairly easy to find and work with, another source for info is of course on this site, as well as anvilfire.com

Iforgeiron.com is another great resource for forging info DO NOT be afraid to ask questions

In my experience the only dumb question is the one you didn't ask before you really screw something up and/or hurt yourself and/or others.

Most of all do it !!! the old saying experience is the best teacher can not be debated.

I'm sure through this and other sites you can hook up with local people with the same interests.

I do not claim to be an expert but I have had my share of experiences and failures as you also will in this venture I call it funstrating.

I'm sure you will find constructive criticsm and non along the way but the most important thing is your personal satisfaction in your accomplishments and the experience you gain in the process.... Again My .02 and btw Welcome to the forum..!.... B)

 

C.Brewer MRFN U.S.N. U.S.S AJAX 1978-81

Thank you for your service

Edited by Clifford Brewer

If ya can't be good don't git caught  !!                                        People who say stuff can't be done need to

                                                                                                        git the hell outta the way of people who do stuff   !!!

Show me a man who is called an expert by his peers         

And I will show you a good man to listen to ......

Show me a man who calls himself an expert

and I will show you an egotistical asshole...............!!

 

                             

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I used to live in Portsmouth, as a matter of fact that is where I got started. There are several bladesmiths in that area and some that do stock removal but there was no organization at the time I left. As a matter of fact, there was a Chaplain who was headed that way from Pearl who does stock removal. I think he was headed to the Iwo but I don't recall his name and he hasn't posted here for a while. There is a blacksmithing group that meets down in souther Virginia Beach/Chesapeake/Suffolk area, though I don't have my contact information anymore. Also they are more into decorative blacksmithing but they may have members who do bladesmithing also. There was a hardware store out in Suffolk when I lived there that sold blacksmiths coal and coke. They may be able to put you in contact or you could do a Google search.

 

I would recommend against a railroad track anvil. They just don't have much mass under the work area. A block of steel would be better if you can find it. I actually started out with a stump anvil from Old World Anvils (talk about something with little mass under the work) but they do offer a 4" cube of heat treated 4140, which is a little on the small side still, but better than what I started out with. You could ask if they would cut you a longer piece and not round the edges as much. You can get their phone number from their site but you might have to call a couple of times because this is also a blacksmithing shop and they don't always hear the phone if the office person isn't in.

 

I also worked with files and EDM stones until I could afford a grinder. You will still need files even after you get a grinder, so the investment won't be wasted.

 

Doug

Edited by Doug Lester

HELP...I'm a twenty year old trapped in the body of an old man!!!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You're not even all that far from me... just outside DC. There's a gathering of bladesmiths and interested folks in the spring, near Baltimore, which I'd highly reccomend attending so you can see first-hand some of the techniques you're reading about here. I'll be happy to spend some one-on-one time with you there, if you like, and answer any questions you have. I'm sure there are a half dozen of us willing to make the same offer, so just pipe up and ask around. It's a great community.

The Tidewater Forge

Christopher Price, Bladesmith

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Pick up the book "The $50 Knife Shop" by Wayne Goddard.

 

It's a great book for outfitting a shop with just a few dollars.

 

Welcome!

 

--Dave

-----------------------------------------------

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again; because there is not effort without error and shortcomings; but who does actually strive to do the deed; who knows the great enthusiasm, the great devotion, who spends himself in a worthy cause, who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement and who at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly." -- Theodore Roosevelt

http://stephensforge.com

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Welcome!

 

Read, look, listen and have fun. There are some incredible makers on this forum who

are more than willing to help you.

 

Just by asking you've already started down the dark path from which there is no return. :D

 

Bill

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was actually stationed in southern MD for the last 2years and still have friends there that I will visit so I may work one of my trips around that. Also the person who got me interested in knives is located in white plains/la plats MD. His name is Kieth Bagley. Only problem is he was too far away for me to drive after work and weekends were even harder.

 

I already read 50 dollar knife shop. Very informative only problem is not knowing where to find some of the stuff.

 

Thanks for the motivation guys I'm about to go to the scrapyard now.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank You for your service.

I haven't spent alot of time on bases, but have known alot of guys in the military. From all the things I've heard, the resources on base are near limitless. Get to know the guys in the various maintainance facilities. Motor pool, machine shops ect. Somebody has got to fix, maintain and up-grade all the vehicles and equipment. Military is famous for scrap. They cut from new stock all the time rather than sort thru and find useable peices of drops. Motor pool might have oil drums that can be used as forge shells, broken axles/shafts that can be used as anvils. Machine shop might have appropriate plate to top the makeshift anvil as well as a means to heat-treat and weld it. Parts for a grinder could be anywhere. There is no shortage of wheels, bearings, plate, handles, motors ect around these facilities. It's just a matter of finding who's got what and what kind of beer they like.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On the coal v. propane argument, I would recommend propane simply because it would be easier, cleaner, and more precise for a beginner. The temp control is much more fine tuned and even compared to coal. Also, propane is far cleaner, at least in my experience. Besides, propane is easier to find (at any gas station) than good coal/charcoal. Price wise, I don't know which is cheaper, but I recommend propane. Another thing to consider is the rate at which the forge comes to temperature and back down again. A little while ago I was trying to make a similar decision, and it came down partially to this. Propane may take, say five to ten minutes to heat the forge to where it needs to be, but a solid state fuel may take many times that, and even longer to come down to a safe temp to leave unattended. Propane is also easier to store, in my opinion.

Just my thoughts. Hope it helps

 

John

Not all those who wander are lost. -J.R.R. Tolkien

-Shards of the Dark Age- my blog
-Nine Worlds Workshop-
-Last Apocalypse Forge-

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Im not sure how its gonna be at my new command but in the aviation community I've worked in the past have had to be accountable for everything including old containers like buckets etc. However I just got back from the scrapyard and have aquired what will be my anvil. It is a die to a pipe bender its rather large and has a hole that should work as a hardier hole. Guess I'm gonna make a gas forge next. However I may have to shop at a different yard because they don't seem to like selling stuff as the prices are high and they don't seem to want to sell anything good. I asked if they ever have any anvils come through but wouldn't you know the owner keeps them for himself and will not sell. The other place I stopped at said if they had anything anvil worthy they wouldn't want to sell it. I guess I don't understand how they work or something.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...