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Sledgehammer

So I had an idea....blacksmith striking anvil

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I’ve been thinking about building a striking anvil. What is that you ask?  Good question. A striking anvil is a large, heavy block of steel mounted on a 3 legged stand that is simply used to beat on. This saves wear and tear on your anvil and generally has a hardy hole (square hole on anvil) to accept hardy tools to perform different tasks like bending, cutting, or fullering. They can be made however you would like but are normally shorter than your anvil because when used with a “striker” (another person swinging a large hammer while you hold tooling) you don’t need a really tall platform to work from.  Anvil height should be the height of your knuckles with a clinched fist standing up straight on a level surface. Mine is 30-3/4” off the floor.  
I stumbled across a guy on YouTube that made one I really liked.  He had more money in tools than I do in my house but I figured I could make one with what tools I have easy enough.

I already had a spare post vise rebuilt and sitting there along with a piece of 2” thick steel that was 12”x18” I had picked up (barely) somewhere a few years ago. The pictures below are a gentleman referred to in this video who makes and sells these on Instagram. I don’t have social media but I was able to look him up. He looks very talented and handy to me. I have this mostly done minus the wheels and welding the top on so here are some pictures as I went

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Made a trip to the metal store for some 2”x3” tubing.

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Started cutting pieces similar to the video. Ordered a piece of 3/4” plate that was 12”x24” for my base.

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Legs on one side have an 8° angle to broaden the base. The third leg is 4” box tubing that I cut flush so it would be vertical. The point is to make it so heavy that it won’t move around when striking it.  I wanted a good mobile post vise also so this was a win win design. 

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The hardy hole was a long process. I stepped up my holes until the final one which was 1-1/32”. There were 13 holes to get to this point. 

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Once I got to that point I had about 3hrs of filing with a little bit of die grinder work to get a 1” square hole through the 2” thick steel plate. I placed it off center on purpose to miss the leg and give myself plenty of flat space when not using a hardy tool. The round hole in the 3/4” base plate was cut with the old Victor gas axe so the hardy tools could pass all the way through the 2” plate.

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I drilled and bolted the post vise mount with 1/2” hardware, spaced accordingly to the 3/4” plate. 

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Next was mocking up the post vise, shortening the leg, and making a mount for the leg.  Once it was all welded and the leg mount was done I flipped it over to fill the legs with sand and cap them. This added weight, sound, and vibration deadening. 

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Flipped back upright I stood back and looked it over. So far so good. Then, I set the plate in place. By my math, the 2” plate is 122lbs by itself. Not sure what the rest weighs but if you are mean enough to run away with it I’ll let you have it 😁. Finally I set the wheels in place to get some ideas on how to make brackets to hold them. That is where I left it because I needed to get cleaned up to go work a night shift tonight.  

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Boy I like that, when we moved I lost access to such a platform, I am able to mount a vice but the pound table would be an asset, any idea where I could find an anvil up here? That doesnt cost an arm and a leg.

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22 minutes ago, Dasnake said:

Boy I like that, when we moved I lost access to such a platform, I am able to mount a vice but the pound table would be an asset, any idea where I could find an anvil up here? That doesnt cost an arm and a leg.

You probably won’t find an anvil that doesn’t cost an arm and a leg sadly. You can thank “Forged in Fire” for that. A piece of heavy gauge railroad track can be a cheaper alternative for something to beat on that works fairly well. 

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Hammer-----

To be an old school blacksmith-----that sure is some nice welding you laid out there!!!!

Question:  how would an old school blacksmith have welded the components together???   Or would they have bolted it in lieu of forged welding.

Really looks good.👍

 

 

DD

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8 minutes ago, Delta Dirt said:

Question:  how would an old school blacksmith have welded the components together???   Or would they have bolted it in lieu of forged welding.

Thanks DD.  In old days they would have probably bolted things together as much as they could. It is possible to forge weld something like this (as in the 3/4” to the 2” plate) but I can’t imagine anything short of a foundry that would have large enough furnaces or forges to get that much steel up to over 2100°.  The legs would have been threaded into a cast mount or possibly an angle iron cradle of sorts would have been bolted together to hold the 2” plate for something of this nature I suspect. 

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You will find that round hole you cut in the plate handy for a lot of things.

I cut a hole in one of my workbenches when I was at the JD dealership, which allowed the housing to lay flat, when rebuilding the 2-speed clutch pack on a Quad-Range.

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My grandfather was a blacksmith in Holland at the turn of the century I met him once in ‘57, he passed in ‘61, my mother never really talked much of the work aspect but one story she told was one day a customer came into his shop ( Amsterdam) with a baby in a carriage, gramps was forging a metal piece which broke and the red hot piece flew into the buggy beside the baby, no time to think he grabbed the piece in a bare hand just as the baby went for it, I’ve burned myself pretty good with steam and red hot and it would get infected this was a 100 years ago before penicillin but it all worked out.

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Thanks Hammer-------I wondered how heavy material could actually be forge welded.

****

I have a combination welding table and and pounding anvil------but never had heard them called "pounding anvils" before your thread.

It could really use a post vise on it but I never have run up on one.

My table/pounding plate is made up from a 2,000+ lb counter weight off an old Link Belt dragline------sitting on 4×4" tubing.

I put it together in 1975 when I built my "new shop".  It hasn't moved since-------lots of cutting, welding,  pounding and prying in addition to sweat dripped on it in years gone by.    It also acts as a junk storage table------needs to be cleaned off right now!!!!😰

Reckon------it is one of my prize possessions that never gets much attention.

****

Great story Dasnake.

Bet your grampa treated the burned hand with coal oil.  That was one of the old timers remedies for near everything down this way.

 

DD

 

 

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That’s pretty cool sledge, looks light weight too!

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7 minutes ago, vtfireman85 said:

looks light weight too!

Yeah.....about that.....

I know the 2” is 122lbs. Not sure what the rest weighs. I may need to try and figure a way to weigh it. I can pick it up without the 2” plate on it but it’s not fun. I was hoping for somewhere north of 300lbs total be we’ll see.

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10 minutes ago, Sledgehammer said:

Yeah.....about that.....

I know the 2” is 122lbs. Not sure what the rest weighs. I may need to try and figure a way to weigh it. I can pick it up without the 2” plate on it but it’s not fun. I was hoping for somewhere north of 300lbs total be we’ll see.

You want north of 300 lbs huh? Have you met my SIL?

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1 hour ago, Delta Dirt said:

Thanks Hammer-------I wondered how heavy material could actually be forge welded.

****

I have a combination welding table and and pounding anvil------but never had heard them called "pounding anvils" before your thread.

It could really use a post vise on it but I never have run up on one.

My table/pounding plate is made up from a 2,000+ lb counter weight off an old Link Belt dragline------sitting on 4×4" tubing.

I put it together in 1975 when I built my "new shop".  It hasn't moved since-------lots of cutting, welding,  pounding and prying in addition to sweat dripped on it in years gone by.    It also acts as a junk storage table------needs to be cleaned off right now!!!!😰

Reckon------it is one of my prize possessions that never gets much attention.

****

Great story Dasnake.

Bet your grampa treated the burned hand with coal oil.  That was one of the old timers remedies for near everything down this way.

 

DD

 

 

Never would have thought of that, thanx DD.

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Looks great, Todd!! 

The little guy will get use out of that when he gets big enough!!

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Todd,

That is an awesome creation that you have there!!

 

Anson,

 I am regretting sending the old Hanson crawler crane carcass off to be reincarnated as razor blades.  You have an “Armeggedon Proof” workbench there!!

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Todd

      That is some beautiful work that you have done.   Your Craftmanship is wonderful.

Fred

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Nice piece of work. An old school blacksmith would have hot riveted it together.

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Thanks for sharing! Wish i had the time, space and talent to do this stuff. I will settle for watching your threads. Maybe some day i can commision you make me some sort of decorative piece for my corncrib gazebo.

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3 hours ago, Dasnake said:

My grandfather was a blacksmith in Holland at the turn of the century I met him once in ‘57, he passed in ‘61, my mother never really talked much of the work aspect but one story she told was one day a customer came into his shop ( Amsterdam) with a baby in a carriage, gramps was forging a metal piece which broke and the red hot piece flew into the buggy beside the baby, no time to think he grabbed the piece in a bare hand just as the baby went for it, I’ve burned myself pretty good with steam and red hot and it would get infected this was a 100 years ago before penicillin but it all worked out.

That reminds me of a time my friend was over with his son who was very old. We were cutting a piece of steel with a acetylene torch. The piece dropped to the ground and before we could do anything the little guy reach down and picked it up. Luckily he let it go pretty fast and didn't get hurt very bad. 

That is going to be one handy tool! If I wasnt so lazy I might build one. My anvil was stolen years ago. I dont remember how much it weighed but I couldn't pick it up. My blacksmith friend said it was an old one that came over from England.  It belonged to a farmer I worked for who gave it to another farmer I worked for who is a good friend now. I'm still and will always be pissed about it!

 

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7 hours ago, acem said:

Nice piece of work. An old school blacksmith would have hot riveted it together.

X2 on the hot riveting. That's the way a lot of old iron was attached. In many ways it is preferred over bolting. When the rivet is set it will expand to completely fit the hole and not allow any slop. It is something of a lost art. 

Rivets were used before bolts were commonly available. Really old school...

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Nice work there. Looks good and sound. Between you and Bitty if you two got together there wouldn't be any stopping in what you guys could make and put together oh lets not forget Finny in there.

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That looks as handy as a pocket!

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If anyone is interested a friend has alot of wrought iron. He lives in central arkansas. Thx-Ace

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Worked on the wheels last. Night. They are old cast wheels that are about 6” OD with a 3/4” arbor. The small axle they came off of was hand made so they have been around a looooooong time. A blacksmith friend gave them to me for helping him teach a class last week. 1 adult and 6 kids from 10-15yrs old. Their Grandfather paid my friend to teach the kids something. It was a lot of fun and I told him I didn’t want any money for helping when he asked. He gave me something I could use instead so I was fine with it. I stamped my mark and the date yesterday also.

I have no idea what “17” means but it’s cast in there....

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