Blacksmith How-to with Robb Gunter

Top photo
photos by Rob Edwards

published in ANVIL Magazine, July 1998
Photo 1
1. Any size barstock can be used for this particular project. The piece I am using here is 5/16" x 3/4". The tip is forged down to a point. Note: This is a 25-lb. Little Giant power hammer with a new mechanical brake system designed by Sid Suedmeier of the Little Giant Company.
Photo 2
2. A neck is forged utilizing the dome side of the die.
Photo 3
3. The forging is further refined using hammer and anvil. Finished sample element visible on anvil step.
Photo 4
4. The piece is put back into the forge. This is one of the forges that I designed at Scandia Laboratories. Early example of the recuperative gas-fired forge, well used (for 8 years), every day. Blueprints and test data available from ABANA. Quiet, efficient, forge welds easily.
Photo 5
5. The piece is brought out of the fire and edges thinned down on the anvil face.
Photo 6
6. Utilizing a handled fullering tool and a treadle hammer, the center vein is formed.
Photo 7
7. This shows the treadle hammer in use.
Photo 8
8. A curved tear drop chisel is used to start the side veins.
Photo 9
9. A handled side cut tool is further used to define viens.
Photo 10
10. A bottom swedge is used in the anvil hardy hole to form the curve of the leaf with a handmade angle pein hammer.
Photo 11
11. It is further defined over the horn of the anvil to achieve a compound curve.
Photo 12
12. The scroll at the end is started over the anvil edge.
Photo 13
13. And further refined over the horn.
Photo 14
14. The piece is constantly wire brushed to remove scale.
Photo 15
15. A fine brass wire brush is used while the piece is at a black heat to burnish it with a bronze motif.
Photo 16
16. The patina can be darkened by putting it back into the forge for just a moment.
Photo 17
17. And there is your finished product!
This element would typically be used in a
gate or to decorate furniture or light fixtures.

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