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Sandy Nickles

William Foster 1842 Anvil

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  • Hi fellas, I am not sure if this is the place for it but came across your website for info. Have this anvil from my husbands family farm and want it to go to good use. If I am right the weight marks 1 1 18.. could you steer me to who might be interested or tell me if I am right about the kind I have? Will try to send pics. Thanks!

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Its considered a coach makers anvil. 

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It looks to be in nice shape.  Hopefully Alan will weigh in, he has "The Book".

"Older blacksmiths' anvils are often stamped with a three-digit number indicating their total weight in hundredweight, quarter-hundredweight (28 lb, abbreviated qr), and pounds. Thus, an anvil stamped "1.1.8" will weigh 148 lb (112 lb + 28 lb + 8 lb) which  should mean that yours is  158lbs +/-

 

For an anvil that is nearly 200 years old, she's nearly perfect.  She's got a lot of life left in her.

 

Geoff

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I think that you would find a fair amount of interest right here on this site.  Where are you at in the world?

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The other guys beat me to it! :lol:  It is indeed a coachmakers' anvil, made in 1842.  That little side horn is the thing that makes it one.  William Fosters are nice, because they are always stamped with the date they were made, which is rare on English anvils.  It was made in the area northwest of greater Birmingham, England, called "The Black Country" for all the heavy manufacturing that went in back in the day.  Somewhere in the vicinity of Wolverhampton or Dudley, if you look it up on a map.  

 

It is made of wrought iron with a thin steel face.  For this reason among others, trying to fix the chipped edges by welding would do more harm than good, and trying to mill it flat would ruin it completely.  Like Geoff said, it's in excellent shape for its age!  All it needs is to be used and it'll clean up well.  Don't let anyone tell you it needs to be fixed, it's perfect the way it is.   The holes in the body are handling holes.  When it was made by forge-welding together many lumps of wrought iron, they were used to hold the thing in place.  Then after the face was forge-welded on, the hole in the bottom was used to "steer" it while the face was ground smooth on a large stone wheel.  

 

While it is old, it's not an antique by anvil standards.  The side horn adds some value because it's a rare feature.  As for what it's worth, that depends entirely on where you are and how fast you want to get rid of it!  You're in a place (admins can see your IP address and can figure it out from there) that has more anvils floating around than most, which does lower your local price a bit.  Someone may drive to pick it up, though, which evens things out.  If you want an estimate of fair market value, send me a private message.  

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Thank you for all the info!!! I am in Amish country in Ohio, so probably a little drive:) It is all very interesting!! I am so glad you guys are in the trade!

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There is a blacksmithing club up your way right off Route 36.  I can't remember the name or exact location.  I was at an ABS hammer-in there a few years back.  Maybe someone on this site can supply you with contact information or maybe you could google up blacksmithing clubs in north west Ohio.  I'm sure someone there would be interesting in snapping that anvil up.

 

Doug

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