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        Masks Required for All


        1. Which would you prefer: A dented anvil or a dented hammer?

          Isn’t it much easier to replace a hammer than an anvil?

          So I would think that you would want your hammer to be less hard than your anvil.

          The top quality anvils that we have tested and sell range in hardiness from HRC 55 - 62 with an average around 58 HRC on the center mass of the anvil.  This is not the horn(s) or edges as many of those areas are closer to the lower figure of 55 HRC.  These ratings are not the same for commercially made hand-held forging hammers.

          Please note I was very specific in writing, “commercially made hand-held forging hammers,” as the term blacksmithing hammer has pretty much become a very loose term.  So loose that some even group ba

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        2. New Anvil Preparations

          We get many questions on preparing a new anvil for its first use and care:

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        3. Will this Spring Swage work on an anvil???

          A question we often get about spring swages is "Will this work on an anvil?"

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        4. To flux or not to flux ...That is the question!

          Use flux or not? The real question is do you understand what flux is for?

          Flux is used to reduce the temperature at which the surface elements (scale, impurities, etc.) become fluid on the surface of the metal. It protects the surface from erosion due to air or gas blasting against the metal. Therefore if you do not use flux you must raise the temperature enough to make the elements on the surface fluid.

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        5. Strike While the Iron is Hot

          Many of us have heard the phase "Strike while the iron is hot," but what about "Strike Where the Iron is hot?"

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        6. Anvil Hardness

          The question we often get is how hard is the anvil. This is not a simple question.

          Hardness depends on several thngs, including:

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        7. Mass or Velocity? Large or Smaller Forging Hammer?

          The argument for forging with a small hammer vs. a larger hammer is much like the argument of which truck is better, Ford or Chevy. If you've been forging for a while you probably have an opinion on this. Hopefully, if you have been forging for a while you also have tested your opinions as well. Have you forged with a larger hammer enough to know it is not right for you?

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        8. Why wet your Coal?

          In the USA bituminous coal is divided into high-volatile, medium volatile, and low volatile groups. Metallurgical grade Blacksmithing Coal would fall into the low-volatile group. The higher the volatile rating the more the coal fire will propagate or spread. Lower volatile coal SHOULD coke without moisture being added. Herein lies the rub.. Adding water does several things that work against us.

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        9. Punch, Drift or Mandrel????

          Punch, Drift or Mandrel

          For Hawks and other stuff

          For some reason there seems to be some confusion on these terms, especially when it comes to tomahawks. SO… let’s take a look at some definitions first.

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        10. Hammer Handles: A living thing.... Part Two

          Did you know it was common for traditional struck tools, which sometime get lumped into the hammer category, to have a STRAIGHT EYE. If these were handled at all it was often with a branch or wagon spoke lying around.

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