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Blacksmithing on a Home Made forge - Part 2

On this page I am going to look at a few simple things when it comes to actually doing some blacksmithing. These are just some of the basic skills that a blacksmith uses.


The object of blacksmithing is to manipulate metal into a variety of shapes and there are a lot of different ways to do this. You of couse heat up the metal in a forge then you manipulate it in a variety of ways on the anvil.

The three techniques I am going to show you here are :

  • Folding
  • Twisting
  • Straightening

Twisting and straightening metal are pretty straightforward and easy to understand but folding takes a little bit of extra know how. When you are folding over metal like I show you in the video you are forming air gaps between the layers. These air gaps have to be removed or it will cause weakness in the metal. You do this two ways: First by heating and hammering. This fuses and forges the metal into one piece but there still could be air gaps and you remove these by liberally sprinking something called borax on the metal!

This use of Borax is called using flux on the metal and it actually serves several purposes. It helps prevent the metal from oxydizing and it lowers the melting point of scale on the metal making it more liquid and helping it to squirt out contaminants.

This video shows you these beginner skills in action.



Let's continue on with the Tutorial and learn the technique of how to Draw out Metal


A Blacksmithing Primer

A Blacksmithing Primer: A Course in Basic and Intermediate Blacksmithing

Virtually every task beginning and intermediate blacksmiths must master is presented in this excellent book. Over 400 detailed drawings help increase comprehension levels. This is a reference manual that will be found lying open on the workbench more often than found on the bookshelf and is highly recommended to anyone swinging a hammer to shape hot metal. This is an excellent introduction to this glorious craft and an excellent resource for advancing your knowledge, skills, and vision for blacksmithing.


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