Blacksmiths Forum
Recent Photos
Add a Photo
Request Password
Rated: PG
Click "Long Length " for the last 125 posts.


Buck Brown - Sat 03 Mar 2018 11:06:56 #0


I agree with Jeff that it's probably cast steel Cast iron will arc weld with special rod, but it has a nasty habit of not staying welded. When the weld fails, it pulls a rut out of the cast iron. Peening the bead after welding helps

Joe Rollings - Sat 03 Mar 2018 22:21:10 #0

Thanks, guys

I was trying to figure how to get a grinder to it for a spark test, and then figured out I have an air grinder that will run off of the co2 tank I use for airing up tires, so tomorrow I will go spark test it.

Those old crawler tractors are from the 40's and 50's right after the war, so maybe lots of scrap steel around to cast. I know they threw enough of it away overseas.

I built one power hammer before, but was never very happy with it's control and sold it at a decent profit. This time I have the time and material to make a good one if I am smart enough.

I dunno if it has been done before or not, but I am going to build it with the crossed leaf spring linkage and a blue engine for power. Those blue engines have a remarkably good governor for speed control, and that way no electricity or compressed air will be required. I will construct a really effective muffler to make it comfortable to be around.

Will need to figure out how to match the hammer weight with the size of the leaf spring bundle, amongst other things.....Joe

Chuck - Sat 03 Mar 2018 23:25:38 #0

Hammer anvil

JOE- the more you can put under the hammer the better.
700 pounds and up would be where I would shoot on another hammer build.- 10 to 1 ratio.
Three or four leaf--plus 30", with a 60 pound total throw weight. This design kind of mimics a Little Giant.
4' X 4' packed caliche or concrete under it.
The Piddler--Ray Clontz has a good design on the spare tire hammer.
Got a good report on the Prostrate deal. PSA number was .47. Sounds good.

Alex Ivey - Sun 04 Mar 2018 15:31:46 #0

Frank Turley

Frank, has parkinson's and can't do any smithing. I found out yesterday that he's in some type of rehab and there is a GoFundMe to raise money to make his place handicap accessible when he goes home. I don't know all of the details about the situation but if anyone wishes to make a donation do a search for (gofundme for Frank Turley) and it will pop up. I will be suggesting that our guild New Mexico Artist Blacksmiths Association make a sizeable donation . Frank has giving so much to the smithing community over the years, i'ts sad to see him in this condition. LXIV,

Joe Rollings - Thu 08 Mar 2018 22:58:32 #0


First time I read your previous post I missed the decimal point in your prostate number. Went back and looked again and was much relieved. Not the sort of things we were comparing with others in our youth, but times change, for sure.

Tomorrow I will go down and pull off the tractor weight and start sawing off the I beam sections to weld together for a base.

I am a bit paranoid about the spring for the DuPont linkage on the hammer. Seems like it should be sensitive to being either too strong or too weak. Anybody ever tried an adjustable air spring? I have plenty of leaf and coil spring sections so I will not voluntarily spend money if it is not needed, but it looks like it would be easy to make a mistake in that department.

So far I am calculating the anvil at 1000 pounds and the base at nearly 400 pounds. I can cut the hammer stock at any length up to 180 pounds.

NO limiting factors except, as usual, my own stupidity. Easier back when I could plead poverty as an excuse.... :) .......Joe

Joe Rollings - Sat 10 Mar 2018 21:36:58 #0

never mind

studied the problem a bit and I can see how to move the pivot points and change the levers around to alter the work load of the spring. Got a couple of rear coils out of an old Geo Metro today and will just have to work up all of the parts until they do the job properly.

Even at my age, one sometimes forgets that the final answers come from the workbench, NOT the cad drawing......Joe

Jeff Reinhardt - Mon 12 Mar 2018 17:01:23 #0

Joe Rollings, I do my best engineering at the bench :)

Brian C. - Fri 16 Mar 2018 15:26:37 #0


Chuck, good news on your PSA! Mine was .15, the best ever. Early detection and treatment is the key. Get yourselves checked gentlemen.

Loren T - Sat 17 Mar 2018 07:09:02 #0


This article addresses this test. You Decide!

Brian C. - Mon 19 Mar 2018 16:04:57 #0


Loren T., that is not new info. My PSA numbers had been erratic since my early 50's. It shot up and red flagged my cancer. It would have been undetected without the PSA and subsequent biopsy. As it was it was caught early and I was able to be treated with radiation and without surgery or chemo. YMMV

Loren T - Tue 20 Mar 2018 09:48:50 #0

Brian C.

Thanks for the info. I have spent the majority of my life without insurance, and with Medicare, I am learning a whole lot I never knew.
This comes with regular Dr. visits, and 21 pills a day. Oh, and a B-12 shot every month. I receive a report after a blood test, and I have signed less paperwork when taking out a mortgage than I have to read in test results. I now have a good Doctor who listens, lives where he works (a small rural community), and doesn't feel the necessity to order unnecessary tests. He reminds me of my Doctor when I grew up. I used to think A1c was the third revision of the first model of a new product. And PSA was Pacific Southwest Airlines.
Hammering! (Had to put something about blacksmithing in here)

Joe Rollings - Wed 21 Mar 2018 11:33:16 #0

power hammer

Had a bit of ill health lately and have noticed something funny.

On the days when I am feeling great, the power hammer design flowers and grows and expands, and when I am not feeling so good the thing turns more basic and simple and "just get it done" style.

I am learning that on those days I need to either work on something else or nothing at all......Joe

Bert - Fri 23 Mar 2018 11:20:15 #0

Joe R

I have the same problem, feeling well or not...! There are days and then, there are Just Days....

Chuck - Thu 29 Mar 2018 00:13:23 #0


I am getting tired of this infernal machine helping me type then of all things it goes to reading my post to me and I can't shut the damn fool thing up.
We gave been barn cleaning and working on a splitter/press affair.
It has not rained in 180 days.
Dry is fashionable these days but not very becoming.
Trying to figure out how to rain dance in a birthday suit that is wrinkled pretty bad from all the dry weather.
The splitter/press is ready for wheels and a slide on the table of it.
No better than I weld it takes some grinding to straighten up the bed for the slide.
JOE hope you are faring well this days. Some days I am on slot some days I am not on slot. The sad part is--No body but Helen and I seem to give damn. Grin Been that way for years.
Nah, not really two Nietos have been helping(doing)with the barn clean-up.
New babies chicks took a bath tonight. The water deal was turned the wrong way.
I better go check them. It is cold here tonight.
Good night and
God Bless

Darrell - Sun 01 Apr 2018 13:33:55 #0


A blessed Resurrection Day to you all.

Chuck - Sun 01 Apr 2018 21:57:06 #0


It was a grateful day.
We had several Grand-Kids---all six Greats. All attended Mass.
We had fine cool day, hid the Easter eggs and candy filled plastic eggs in the house for the little ones. The high was 39.

Barn is pert near cleaned up. Splitter is coming together slowly. New chicks are growing exceptionally well. A warm spell back a few days back gave us a small mess of Asparagus.
Everyday is a gift.
God Bless

bruce godlesky - Tue 03 Apr 2018 15:26:40 #0


All it does , it seems lately, here in w Pa. is rain or snow then rain again.....
on the bright side, the ramps are up!!!!!

Got 2 hawks finished, one got raffled off Saturday night at a sportsmens banquet. Tuned 3 more up yesterday. Mebbe get them ground today and tomorrow. All so far have been either Damascus or welded cable.
Lookin' to cut out some osage handles for them.
Does anyone have a home brew for the fluid used in electro-etching stamps and logos?

Darrell - Tue 03 Apr 2018 20:47:17 #0

Salt water works. you just need enough salt to conduct electricity.

brucegodlesky - Tue 10 Apr 2018 15:02:39 #0

thanks Darrell.

Buck Brown - Mon 16 Apr 2018 10:28:10 #0

Ramblings from Southern Utah

We had an extremely mild and dry winter, and now here it is spring. Friends in western Colorado say the same thing. Cow camp cabins in the high country that are normally snowed completely over have only a foot of snow.
We are planting some cold weather plant seeds in the garden and have pepper plant seeds in peat pots inside.
Baby chicks came last Friday and are doing well.
I'm going to fire up the forge one of these days. A friend wants some branding irons to wood burn a sign for his driveway.
Take care my friends!

Chuck - Tue 17 Apr 2018 00:44:05 #0

smithing -weather + stuff

Trying to get ready for a G & K show at Raton, NM.
Slow but gaining. Kindling Splitter, Pig Tail flipper , spatulas, meat forks , a few knives that were ground before the Macular deal. Grand son BRADY Wagner is helping.
No winter to speak of -pop corn fart dry winter. Less than 2 tenths moisture in almost seven months.
HELEN is having plenty health problems----Eyes, Auto Immune, R.A., F. M. Renown's. Way too much for my sweetheart. All are painful.
Age is a rough deal but we waited too long to skip it.
Blessings to all of you.

bruce godlesky - Thu 19 Apr 2018 09:18:18 #0

Hang in there Sandpile!!
Old age ain't for the timid and you folks certainly aren't timid!!

Every time the weather breaks , I get into the forge shop and bang out a few knives and hawks. Then, WHASM, it snows again! This crap is gettin' old!
Any suggestions on steel type for making slitters?? For opening up hatchet holes??

Joe Rollings - Thu 19 Apr 2018 17:53:38 #0

leaf springs


Joe Rollings - Thu 19 Apr 2018 17:58:29 #0

leaf springs

Power hammer is coming together, but I need some straight leaf springs and got no way to heat treat something that long, so I called the spring shop and asked them about dong it, because they do all kinds of stuff to springs.

Guy tells me he gets his 5160 already heat treated and arced and can alter the arc or flatten it or whatever in the press. Anybody care to take a guess if he is just getting it as rolled? If he is doing that, I can just buy 20 feet from admiral and cut it up like I want it and use it. Seems pretty hard when it comes in, so maybe it is used "normalized".

Any thoughts?......Thanks.....Joe

Jeff Reinhardt - Thu 19 Apr 2018 18:51:48 #0

leaf spring steel

I get what is called "Repair plates" and they are from Triangle spring co. Definitely already arched and heat treated. But the heat treat is not full hard. I can cut them with my cutoff bandsaw with a bimetal blade.My spring shop where I buy them will de-arch them for a little extra and that is what I use in my power hammer. He has a press and tooling made from the very large U bolts from truck axles. Pushes between the u bolt laid on its side between the legs and takes many many bites to easily level the spring to flat. The Triangle spring rep was there one day as I visited and he told me Triangle uses ONLY 5160 in the leaf springs.

Chuck - Fri 20 Apr 2018 23:19:35 #0


I have used 5160 in the 'done' stage to annealed.
5160 straight from the spring joints works for 'kindling splitters' but are to soft for dies in my 'Little Giant' fifty. I rose budded the face of the dies to a high(1400+) red, quenched in a warm Texaco quench, colored it back with a rose bud. It works pretty well.
JOE If your making a 'Helm' type just use it as is, while making the arch work for you. A couple of springs(used tandem)off a dodge one ton or even a 3/4 ton should work for a helm. It might be hard to figure the fulcrum.
I use 5160 drops from an Amarillo spring joint for knives. I anneal then re-harden and draw. I really like 5160.
BRUCE--I got suckered into going to Raton, NM for a G & K show. Neitos were gung-ho now they are dragging. I can't see well enough grind to a line or cut handle material to fit. Will just grind to fit. GRIN. Have blacksmithed enough stuff to fill a table, with some older knives.
Good luck to all
God Bless

Jeff Reinhardt - Sat 21 Apr 2018 06:58:28 #0

Helve hammer spring

I use spraings tempered as bought in my helve hammer. Mine is a 70#.

Joe Rollings - Sat 21 Apr 2018 14:05:17 #0


Well, I took the advice and straightened the springs as instructed right down to pressing them between the legs of the U bolt, and it worked just dandy!

Turns out after much agonizing that the hammer will be 100 pounds, the anvil around 1300, the base plate is 3 four foot sections of 10" H beam welded together that should come to about another 600 pounds. Should be close to a 20/1 ratio, and I could have added more hammer but I dunno what I would do with more than 100 pounds of hammer. I can't pick up much more than 100 pound work piece any more, and even then I better be picking it up from a bench, not the floor.

Ready to address the pivot and guide, now. I was going to make the clutch a slipping flat belt, but I guess that tire clutch has such a good reputation that there is no need bucking success. I'm thinking I may use a stack of hard rubber wheels instead of a metal roller to rub against the tire, though. Might make the tires last longer and be cheaper than a big old slug of metal anyway.

Thank y'all for your help, and everybody be careful. We don't hold up like we used to....God bless.....Joe

Jeff Reinhardt - Sun 22 Apr 2018 07:01:18 #0

tire clutch

Joe my hammer has the tire clutch and it far out performs the slipping belt I had before. I used the rear bearing hub assembly off a 1990 Gran Voyager. It has a bolt flange, sealed taper roller bearings and has worked at 70# weight for years now. I mounted the lower pivot for the pitman that would have been welded to the compact spare to the cut out center of another wheel that fit that hub and then did not have to weld to the compact spare wheel. that took away the issues of welded to a wheel with the tire on it, I just used the same lug bolts that held the tire wheel on to hold the pivot wheel center on. I used a heavy turnbuckle from a building wind stay for the pitman and to give adjustment. Go as big here as you can as the threads take a beating load. My pivot for the helve is the rear cap off a hydraulic cylinder, with the mounting clevis to match. I used the original pin too. cross drilled every pivot for grease holes and added zerks for the grease. I use moly grease and have seen no pivot wear since 2002. I also uses rod end clevises and pins for the pittman end as well.I copied The Tire Hammer slide design and it works well.

Loren T - Sun 22 Apr 2018 07:01:50 #0

Joe-Picking up from a bench

I can relate to that. I tell people that anything close to the ground is no longer my friend. I had a conversation with a guy in Washington State at a yard sale. He had a new metal building shop about 30 x 50. It was pretty much empty and I wondered what was going on. Seems he had it built for a retirement
project. He did transmission rebuilds and figured he would do some side work when he retired. What he didn't foresee was that he could get down, but not back up. AND he didn't have enough head room to put in a hoist.

Jeff Reinhardt - Sun 22 Apr 2018 07:05:18 #0

Tire clutch

Joe there are photos under my name in the gallery that show some of the details that may be helpful. I used a steel slug for the tire. It has the as turned finish on the rubbing surface. No observed wear since I installed it years ago. Some folks I know have used a Knurled surface and it makes the clutch too grabby and eats the tire. Have no fear of excess wear with a steel tire. Mine was made while I worked at the axle forge shop so it is a hunk of truck axle stock.

Joe Rollings - Tue 24 Apr 2018 10:28:36 #0

Thanks, Jeff!

The forces in those machines are interesting. That spring provides a LOT of isolation for the parts holding and moving it. When I was running the one I built previously, it occurred to me that the linkages and pivot on the spring could be beaten to death in a couple of minutes under the hammer, but they run smooth and last long on the other end of the spring.

I also admired your trowels and other stuff. Would you care to share how much you sold those for? I am acquainted with a lot of mineral diggers. Again, thanks....Joe

Jeff Reinhardt - Tue 24 Apr 2018 16:29:15 #0

trowels and stuff

Joe I sell the RR spike trowels currently for $50 each and I sell my Messaluna choppers for $45. The choppers and trowels are both on ETSY and the choppers are on Handmade at Amazon.The trowel sales peaks and ebbs, as does Mesalunas.

Joe Rollings - Thu 26 Apr 2018 20:43:25 #0

Thanks, jeff

I won't get into your marketplace or even online. I just think the rockhounds and arrowhead diggers would "dig" them.

Got the toggle assembly ready to put together and starting on the offset pin for the crankshaft. I'll prob'ly not weld it to the wheel, but only because my eyes tell me I should not trust my welding amy more. Mig is broken down and the wheels I have a pretty thin material for stick.

I might just turn some really long lug nuts on the lathe, thread them, bolt a plate to the tops of them and put the pin in the plate.

Taking the project slow and enjoying it.......Joe

Loren T - Fri 27 Apr 2018 08:09:40 #0


Joe, I am also questioning my welding. I haven't used a stick welder in years, and find out that old standby rod 7024 isn't stocked anymore, at least locally. I am replacing the tongue on a 25' trailer for a customer, and using a Miller Thunderbolt 225 AC I have had for 20 years. I forgot that the duty cycle is important, and when it just quit, I discovered I had melted the end off the transformer winding, which was aluminum. I have always wanted it to be a DC weld, and went to You Tube. For $25 I bought a bridge rectifier and rewired it. Now it is a DC and works great. I hooked up the High range, and just abandoned the low range. Now my welds are a lot better looking.

Joe Rollings - Fri 27 Apr 2018 11:05:25 #0


My problem is more in eyesight. I delivered a violent attack to a high lift jack handle with my head :) a long time ago that affected my right eye and it has had both good and lousy doctoring since then, some of which destroyed it's ability to react to light.

I simply cannot make out what is happening in the weld puddle like I used to. I guess I have some other rims like the one I will be using that I could practice on, but the idea of putting that kind of strain on the thin metal of the spare tire wheel has me picturing the whole plate coming off under load and giving me a thrashing.

I have gotten more cowardly in recent years, because at my age there is a decent chance that my heirs may be using or selling what I am building today....Joe

Jeff Reinhardt - Sun 29 Apr 2018 06:52:44 #0

pivot mount on tire clutch

Joe Rollings, I would recommend using the lug nuts to hold another steel part against the clutch wheel as a geed alternative to welding to the actual wheel. That is what I did and it has worked well for many years. If you use the center of another wheel with the rim cut off, you may be able to use the existing lugs. if you use the rear hub bearing assembly as I did and then remove the backing plate and the brake drum it is pretty clean and the thickness of the brake drum is about the thickness of the second wheel center.

Joe Rollings - Wed 02 May 2018 22:58:27 #0

power hammer parts

I am working with the rear tire and wheel from a Geo Metro, which has 4 lug bolts. I took off the rear hubs which have the brake drums integral with the hubs and discovered that the splines on the lug bolts were a tad undersize to drill out for 1/2" uss threaded rod, so I drilled them, and tapped for 1/2" coarse thread, extended them a bit and will soon mount an old sprocket to the extended lugs with pipe spacers and weld a large nut to the sprocket to accept the crank pin.

Next chore is to either salvage the spindles from the Geo or turn fresh ones and weld them to a support block. Getting cranked as things come together.

Remaining major component is the guide for the hammer. Part of me wants to just go steel on steel and use a high quality grease, but another part wants to make brass gibs that are adjustable. 5/8" round brass is available for gibs and I have everything I need to make them, but doing it right is one thing and wasting time and material is another.

Any thoughts? And, by the way, thank you for your help. Nothing in this world is equal to a guy who has "been there and done that"....Again....thanks ...Joe

Jeff Reinhardt - Thu 03 May 2018 19:03:47 #0

power hammer parts

Joe, I did a take on the tire hammer ram and guides. I used 1/4" wall 6" square tube with a 5" square tube for the ram. I used 1/4" UHMWPE for the bearing surfaces. Has worked well for 7 years and just now thinking about some new poly for the bearings. I used countersunk flat head screws through the tube wall to retain and that has worked well. The ram has a 3" or so think block welded inside the open end and was plug welded from the side. That is drilled and tapped for the dies. I filled the open remaining space with drops of 2.25" by .5" flat bar with lots of stick weld.I had two of those bars extended up above the tube to carry the rollers to ride above and below the spring. If I rebuild I will probably go to a rubber bushed link as there is a clatter as the rollers bounce back and forth against the spring.

Chuck - Sun 06 May 2018 18:15:24 #0


DARRELL--- Which island do you live on? The Hawaii Island is catching it? Lava flow and quakes, bad mocus.
Not likely to let up anytime soon?
HOT and DRY here.
Planting garden--hope the heat does not turn up like it did last year.
We have had a steady high wind for weeks. Less than an inch of moisture in the last seven months. Fires keep cropping up around the panhandle.
I put a kiddy wading pool of water out(with a 2X4 in it)for the quail and pheasants, in case any wanted to nest around here.
We are closer each day to having a rain.
God Bless

Darrell - Mon 07 May 2018 03:59:48 #0

Big Island

We are about 80 miles from the lava outbreak. It is moving away from us and
the current outbreak is no danger to us. We did have a 6.9 earthquake a
couple of days ago. We were far enough away that it was simply a small shaking. It is quite a trial for the people that live in the subdivision
where the lava is surfacing. As of tonight, 30 homes have been destroyed.
The sulfur dioxide gas is quite heavy in the Leilani subdivision.
They let people in 2 selected areas to retrieve property when it is safe.

Buck Brown - Thu 10 May 2018 10:08:26 #0


Thanks for the up-date, Darrell. Knee mail up for those not so fortunate.

Joe Rollings - Sat 19 May 2018 22:33:57 #0

Power hammer stuff

To catch up anybody else who is building one, the easy way out for the drive wheel to rub the tire is an X series weld-on sprocket hub in the proper size bore for the motor shaft. The OD will be about 2 1/2" but one can bore and then turn on the lathe a 2" hole in a larger round bar and weld in the hub, if one has a metal lathe. That will get you an accurate hole for the motor shaft, a proper set screw and keyway to keep the hub on the shaft and running true.

Total price.....$12....well worth the money.....Joe

Jeff Reinhardt - Sun 20 May 2018 06:40:10 #0


Joe Rollings. The weld in hub is a good shortcut. My steel wheel to rub the tire is about 2 1/2" od so that would work as is on mine.

bruce godlesky - Sat 26 May 2018 10:57:45 #0

Decoration Day

Hope everyone enjoys this special day coming up. It's not about the celebration , it's the sacrifice paid by many.
I always attend a small visitation by the local VFW to the "home" cematery where I was raised and a lot of family is buried. Lots of memories there......
Been attending since I was a kid.

Smithing content..... getting some cable billets cleaned up I started this week. Making a run of BBQ tools, flippers and squirrel forks. Labor intensive but fun stuff!!

Alex Ivey - Wed 30 May 2018 19:50:33 #0


Sorry to say I had to cancel my registration for the conference today due to the wife's continuing cancer treatments. I thought we would be able to attend but found that it just can't happen. LXIV,

Tom C - Fri 01 Jun 2018 21:21:44 #0

Sorry to hear you can't make it. I was looking forward to catching up with you. Family comes first,however, especially the missus.Here's hoping for a full recovery.

Tom C

Joe Rollings - Sat 02 Jun 2018 20:02:26 #0


Really sorry to hear of your wife's illness. Prayers up for her quick recovery.....Joe

Joe Rollings - Sat 02 Jun 2018 20:34:28 #0

Power hammer stuff

Power hammer is well along the road to completion, and have to come to a few decisions that would be a bit difficult to re-make after the fact.

Have a 7" mechanical stroke and guesstimate will have about 12" of combined total stroke. There is 16" of ram movement inside the guide, so I can do an additional 4" max of adjustment with the turnbuckle, and even more by adding and removing dies and anvil extensions.

The anvil top itself is about 10" deep, front to back and about 2 feet wide, side to side. It is an old tractor weight somewhere between 1000 and 1300 pounds, so the entire hammer may be near a ton, but it seems like I should put a smaller top on the anvil, like a 5 " round or square, up a few inches from the top of the weight, just because of the difficulty of finding a way to get tongs flat on the side of the hammering surface, if that makes sense. I have lots of material to choose from, including 3" square bar which I can double up on to make a 6" square, 3 inches high, or a 1" 16 X 16" plate I can cut any shape from.

I also have to choose what goes on the bottom of the ram. I have read endless discussions about dies V. bottom tools like spring fullers, etc. The ram is made from the 3" square bar, and it would be easy enough to put a 6" section of that crossways on the end of the ram and make a pins-in-holes arrangement to lock other 3" wide dies to that, but which might make it tougher to use bottom tooling.

So far, after I truly got started, things have gone really well, and I have made the guide with brass gibs inserted into milled slots and adjusting screws, got a removable plate system for the wheel and took far more time and care than I ever used to when building a machine, because at this age, my Grandson may wind up running it after I am gone, and it would suck for him to get hurt on my machine. Or anybody else, for that matter.

Of course, I realize most of the questions I have asked are up to the individual and have no 100% always-right answers, but anything along the lines of discussion about what causes the most frustration will help to make my choices. Once I have that guide mounted, it would be a major hassle to decide it needed to have a 6" block welded to or taken off of the anvil and the guide height changed.

I also wanted to add that if anybody has a surface they would like to add a hardy hole to, those same weld-on x series sprocket hubs come in square holes from about 3/4" to maybe 1 1/4", and one could drill a round hole topped with one of those and have a nice tight hardy hole.

Thanks in advance for any help......Joe

Chuck - Tue 05 Jun 2018 23:48:53 #0

Stuff and hammer

ALEX Sorry to hear about the Missus. Hoped she was doing better. Blessings to y'all you are on our prayer list.
JOE you need room to change dies and work your metal and tongs--fullers. I like the room on my Giant '50'.
I would like to have at least 6" clearance including top and bottom, more if possible.
I work around my hammers to 180 or 200 degrees. Sometimes a helper is holding tongs or fullers from a 90 to me.
My dies are close to three inches wide and as much as six inches long.
Hope this might be something you were wanting to know.
Blessings to the folks on 'Big Island'.
Cimarron, NM folks got to go back home. Ute Park, NM still has 200 dwellings threatened.

Joe Rollings - Thu 07 Jun 2018 22:41:05 #0

Glad to hear

that ute park still HAS 200 buildings. News made it sound like they were all gone.

Good stuff about the hammers, Chuck.....Thanks......Joe

Buck Brown - Fri 08 Jun 2018 12:20:54 #0

Anyone heard from Darrell?

We're in the high 90's here already. Need to make handles for 2 branding irons I made for a friend, so I better get it done soon.

Talked to a friend near Glenwood Springs, Colorado, my old home town. The Colorado River usually peaks after June 15th. It peaked the 1st of June this year at 50% of normal run off.

Darrell - Fri 08 Jun 2018 12:58:42 #0

Still here

Finished re-building the Bridgeport and now I am converting the Enco lathe to CNC.
Made the timing pulleys for that on the Bridgeport.
Pulled the engine on my 98 Forester and fixed the oil leak and put it back.
Next project is to re-build my power hammer and see if I can get it to run the way it should.

Alex Ivey - Fri 15 Jun 2018 17:00:12 #0

Joe & Chuck

I thank you both for your prayers concerning my wife's cancer and treatments. She is done with chemo and radiation and things are looking better at this point but only time will tell if everything she went through works out for her. Her doctor that did the operation and guided her through the treatments is very optimistic that she will have a full recovery Thanks again guys. LXIV,

Chuck - Sun 17 Jun 2018 01:45:54 #0

Alex Ivey

ALEX glad to hear a positive prognosis.
The bad part of growing older is the gradual--sometimes drastic downward spiral of our health.

Looks like my eye deal is permanent, I will find something to occupy my time. Garden is off to a good start.
We got an inch and a quarter Friday, with another sixty seven hundreds this afternoon. This old country is going to be green once again.
The prospects for more rain this coming week seems good.

Tonight Derek, our fifth grandson brought a ten foot piece of two inch draw bar stock. I would guess this steel to be 40 series steel.

DARRELL good luck amigo, the volcano seems to want to turn its self wrong side out.
Keep the gas masks handy. Meter the Sulphur Dioxide(sp) bad stuff.
Good night
God Bless

Tom C - Fri 22 Jun 2018 08:02:27 #0

Big doings in the Old Dominion

Well it's less than a week to the start of the ABANA Conference here in Virginia. Our gild has lent a bunch of equipment to help out. I've lent a Vulcan anvil to the Learning tent. It looks like the weather will be cooperative with PM showers on Thursday only. I look forward to seeing my metal mangler buds here on my home turf. Besides the gallery at the conference, there are 2 shows of metalwork in the area. Gallery Flux in Ashland has a show of various smiths & CVBG has a little exhibition at Artworx in Richmond. I invite anyone to get in touch with me for shop visits or a trip to Dominion Salvage on Southside for interesting metal doodads.

Darrell - Sat 30 Jun 2018 19:38:41 #0

CNC Mill

Well I have the CNC mill up and running. Just one major problem, I can't seem to get the darn thing to do what I wanted to do. It keeps doing exactly what I told it to do. Seeings as it refuses to learn I guess I'm just going to have to break down and teach myself.

Alex Ivey - Fri 06 Jul 2018 12:57:30 #0


So how was the conf. Sorry I had to miss it, LXIV,

Joe Rollings - Sat 07 Jul 2018 22:36:13 #0

still stroking

on that silly power hammer. The older I get the slower I get and the less sure of myself. 10 years ago I would have had it together in 1/4 the time and lived with how it turned out, but all of a sudden I am picky and questioning everything I do.

Ready to deal with the dies, and have noticed from reading that everybody who started out with flat dies is REALLY glad they did, while everybody who started out with changeable bolt-on or dovetail dies is ALSO really glad that they did. Go figure.

I looked at Clifton Ralf's die clamp and like it, but dunno if it will keep a top die in place or not. Not a good thing to be hit in the chest with if the clamp fails.

The top die attachment will be my last big decision, or perhaps deciding whether to just stick with flat dies and loose tooling. Anybody got any opinions to add that might help me make it?

Chuck, as you might recall, I gave up on my eyes for any precision work almost 20 years ago after being whacked with a jack handle and seeing curves where none existed. After a few years passed, my mind corrected what I was seeing and I got another decade of hand grinding silversmith tools off hand to REALLY tight tolerances. Take your pulse every morning. If you ain't dead, you ain't finished......Joe

Darrell - Sun 08 Jul 2018 00:22:47 #0

Change in the wind

Well working towards a new adventure. If I can sell this house in the near future
we will be moving to Eugene Oregon area. There is a lot to do to make this happen.
We need to get the extra stuff sold off and some minor repairs on the building
and then find somebody that wants to buy this place.

Chuck - Sun 08 Jul 2018 23:56:29 #0

DARRELL---We are with you. Anything we might be able help you with let us know. We have some twice removd cousins in Eugene.

I am like you I would just move on. I can imagine the day to day worry that everybody is experiencing over there.

Joe we have got a strong idler button over here. Can't stay hooked on a hoe handle very long at a time. Just now starting to get gather a little from the green patch.
We have had a total of just over three inches of moisture since September 30. Nine months and most of this came in small increments. We had one rain of 1.25 ---thought we had a flood. Grin. Could be worse---We have not had a fire or killer storm come through.
Blessings DARRELL hope everything works out alright.


Joe Rollings - Mon 09 Jul 2018 19:47:53 #0


Darrell, we moved 11 times in 50 years, and always recall those moves, the big ones at least, as times of big excitement and anticipation, with good cause. Born under a wandering star, I guess. Still get the urge from time to time, but I suspect we will finish up here.

One piece of unasked for advice, simply because I can't help myself.

In all of those moves, I cannot recall a single time when our previous house was sold by a realtor. Not that we have not tried them, but if they get an inkling that you are in a bit of a hurry to get the place sold, they will overprice it, go through all sorts of contortions to stall it off, then when they sense you are desperate, bring around a favored client that will kick some money back to them ro make an offer on it themselves.

Just saw that story get re-played again just down the road. Owner was happy that the realtor thought the place was worth so much and listed it so high, months dragged by, next thing you know, the realtor owned it for a pittance and now has it up for rent.

In the instances when we listed homes with realtors, the term expired and they cane around to relist, I refused, had it sold myself in about a month both times. Just saying......Joe

Darrell; - Mon 09 Jul 2018 22:33:14 #0


Thanks Joe. Not much in favor of agents myself. Seems they want a lot for not doing much of anything.

Darrell - Tue 10 Jul 2018 12:46:22 #0


The X axis ballscrew is working now I just have to get the Z axis going.

Loren T - Wed 11 Jul 2018 08:07:53 #0

Real estate agents

The town where we lived in the AZ mountains had a population of about 3000, 5000 plus cabins, and 7 real estate offices plus 3 new developments that had their own agents. I knew one couple who bought a cabin from one agent, then sold it and bought another one 3 more times over about 6 or 7 years. I lump real estate agents together with lawyers, accountants, and bankers. They produce NOTHING and merely live off the labors and heartaches of others. Years ago the Multiple Listing Service publication was like the holy grail and not to be shown to the general public. It was jealously guarded. Now you can take virtual tours via the internet put together by homeowners themselves. Sale documents are handled by a title company. Now who needs agents?

Darrell - Wed 11 Jul 2018 23:52:50 #0


I need 6 pieces of steel, 4340 or 5160 1/8 of an inch by 3/4 of an inch by 18 inches.
Where what I look for something like that? I could get away with 1 inch with but I am not having any luck finding anything close. Any help would be appreciated.

Joe Rollings - Thu 12 Jul 2018 11:05:24 #0


I dunno anything about 4340, but 5160 is all over the place in the form of auto leaf springs. I think you might have to split the width and forge the thickness down from about .200 which is a fair amount of work, but that would get you there.

I have been caught in those shopping "traps" where you spend lots more time searching than if you had just resolved to resize what is easy to get. The bi-metal bandsaw blades will split the leaf springs as-tempered and if you have a power hammer you can use a kiss block to beat the stuff to thickness.

You can copy and paste this to get to admiral steel's offerings of 5160;

Rotsa ruck......Joe

Joe Rollings - Thu 12 Jul 2018 11:13:08 #0


These guys have the right thickness but it would need to be ripped more narrow...


Chuck - Sun 15 Jul 2018 00:02:49 #0


DARRELL: The various steel sell about any steel you want. You may have to work it over a little.
The one steel outfit I have found with drops and the 18" --36" lengths is Amektek Steel. I will be in the shop tomorrow.
Freddie Haire told me about them. I kinda like them except I believe might be an Arab. company.
Good service, prices, assorted sizes.
If you have anybody building -off road vehicles-----Like from Jeeps-- They take the brand new coiled springs off the Jeeps. The 9/16" or 5/8" 5160 in these coiled springs works excellently.
You do have a hammer or press?
How much you need?
Dryer than a pop-corn fart out here.
I hope the lava flows have slowed up. We are not getting news about them now.

Chuck - Sun 15 Jul 2018 00:05:50 #0


AMETEK STEEL----I will be in the shop tomorrow for the right addy.

Chuck - Sun 15 Jul 2018 00:09:45 #0


AMTEK STEEL= This seems to be the National or Global addy.

Hope this helps.

Darrell - Sun 15 Jul 2018 13:23:49 #0


I ordered some 1095 from Adm. Steele because I figure it will do what I need It to do.
It came in the 0.125" x 1" x 18" that I needed. Thank you all for the help.

Tom C - Wed 25 Jul 2018 13:26:20 #0

Abana Conference pix

I've posted several pix from last month's Abana Conference. The first one is of "Bad" Roger Degner flexing his muscles. I'll put some more up later.

Joe Rollings - Wed 25 Jul 2018 20:22:49 #0

New hammer

OK, got the new 100 pound hammer far enough along to try a few beats. Still gotta build up a lot of welds, put in some braces, etc, but my foot was itching to caress that pedal.

Hits good and hard, machine is heavy enough to hold steady without hold-down bolts, but I need to get a bit more control. Can't make it just tap lightly. I think I may have messed up by spraying some belt dressing on the tire. Pretty grabby now. I also think I need to stiffen the spring, because just starting off with a 5 inch separation between the hammer and die it will kiss.

I will work it out, but any comments welcome....and thanks......Joe

Jeff Reinhardt - Wed 25 Jul 2018 20:29:23 #0

Joe's tire hammer

On my tire clutch powerhammer I have the steel roller "as turned" and no belt dressing. I have also found the sweet spot for tire pressure. It does make a big difference. I run mine at about 30 psi instead of the 50 for a spare tire use.I see some "denting" of the tire when the treadle is fully pressed. I also find that in changing weather I get condensation and that makes Too much slip

Joe Rollings - Sat 28 Jul 2018 22:02:27 #0

tire pressure

makes a profound difference....thanks.....Joe

Joe Rollings - Tue 31 Jul 2018 22:35:13 #0


is a sweetheart! Thought I was finished except for the paint, tossed a 3/4" hex nut, cold, on the flat die and closed it up tight in a half dozen beats, each beat well controlled. Later, the clamp that binds the ends of the spring leaves together sheared a 3/8" bolt, so I will have to bore them out for 1/2" bolts and put double-nuts on them, tack weld the clamps to the spring leaves. Other minor tuning and finishing, but that ultra controlled power tells me I am almost there.

My uncle I was named for told me once that "you have not lived if you have never throttled any steam", and I think the power hammer is a close substitute, at least when it works right.

Thanks, one and all, for your help. Can't believe I started building it in March. Time flies when you are having fun.....Joe

Bert - Wed 01 Aug 2018 10:27:39 #0

So Joe....

Pics when you can??? Inquiring minds and all that...


Joe Rollings - Thu 02 Aug 2018 14:16:12 #0


Yeah, I took some lousy ones yesterday, but will do a good bunch in a few days and post them. Might wait for the paint.... :) ...Joe

Darrell - Fri 10 Aug 2018 02:59:50 #0

Power hammer

Well I have most all the bugs worked out. I can do single blows, clamp,
pound light and pound heavy. The best part is that it is doing this on 35# of air pressure.
Here is a clip of it,

Chuck - Sun 12 Aug 2018 19:13:15 #0


DARRELL--Got a good lick and stick. Great on the low pressure. Hope things are going well on your planned move.
We don't hear anything on the news anymore.
Hope your health stays good.

JOE sounds like you got it coming your way. We are not using our shop much--
Gardening mostly. We did put some handles on blades that were ground years ago. Started carrying six inch Knipex pliers to favor stiff hands and THUMBS. Made a sheath for them put an A2 chisel ground inside the sheath behind the pliers. Could have been better designed.
Blessings to all
---send us a rain.

Tom C - Fri 17 Aug 2018 08:40:52 #0


I am a day or so from starting the engine in my '57 Chevy project. Some wiring, fluids & installing a temporary driver's seat & I can try it out. It's been an interesting 2 1/2 years.

I'm looking forward to taking a break & going to Quad States in a month. Who else is going?

Chuck, We have had 42" of rain so far this year in Richmond, about 18" more than normal. We could spare a foot or so if we were able.

Tom C

Jeff Reinhardt - Tue 21 Aug 2018 17:24:10 #0

Quad State

I am goiang as I and the BFH team are the Friday Night demo! :)

Loren T - Fri 24 Aug 2018 14:05:09 #0


How are you faring with the hurricane? Hope all is well.

Loren T - Fri 24 Aug 2018 14:06:14 #0

Meant for Darrell

Lane is the hurricane

Darrell - Fri 24 Aug 2018 14:22:12 #0


Here in Ocean View we have renamed it to Hurricane Lame. So far we have 1.5" of rain
and a gust of 36 mph. Hasn't even tipped over the plastic lawn chair.

Loren T - Sat 25 Aug 2018 08:07:26 #0


That's good news. When we lived in Lake Stevens, WA, storms from the west would hit the Olympic peninsula. There they would split and come back together right over us. It is known as the convergence zone. Now that we are living in Eucha, OK, storms from the west split just before reaching us, putting us squarely in the divergence zone. Don't know how this relates to blacksmithing, except that sometimes I really miss my shop in the mountains of Arizona. Forge work is much more comfortable with 7-10% humidity rather than the 84% it is here.

Darrell - Sat 25 Aug 2018 15:00:42 #0

Hurricane Lame

Well Lame has broken up. We have got about 3" more rain. Our 12,500 gal. tank is
almost full again. It should be full by Wednesday. We depend on rain for water.
It's called "Catchment system". So far we haven't had to buy water for the last 2 years.

Joe Rollings - Mon 27 Aug 2018 10:12:36 #0

Got lost in the heat

A couple of weeks ago I either dehydrated or caught a bug and started getting dizzy, then started getting so dizzy I barfed and barfed. I thought I was low on salt, but doc says there is a bug that affects the inner ear and people get so dizzy they cannot sit up and barf until they pass out. Sounds about right. She says it takes 2 weeks to get back from it, and that sounds about right, too.

Going for paint for the hammer tomorrow if everything lines up right, and I seem to be back straight again, so here we go!

I will post hammer pics when it is painted, but I wanted to point out that one can "tune" those leaf springs on a hammer pretty well with the two "bundle clamps" that hold the ends of the spring bundles together.

A weak spring makes it hit harder but you lose some control and a strong spring makes it not hit so hard but you can control it better. To strengthen the spring, lose some impact strength, gain some control, move the bundle clamps as far from the center as you can and still capture all of the leaves in the clamps.

To gain impact strength, sacrifice some control, you weaken the spring by moving the clamps closer together, away from the ends of the bundle. One caution, the more you weaken the spring bundle, the longer the stroke, so you could start hitting the guide with the hammer head.....Talk to y'all soon....Joe

bruce godlesky - Thu 30 Aug 2018 07:01:44 #0


That inner ear bug must be all over the country. Got it her ein w Pa. Twice actually. Thought it might be the wet humid conditions we have had all summer.
Rather annoying at times, stand up and dizziness puts ya right back down!

Had a really close call in the shop last weekend. Had a pair of guys here learning the Damascus process. Let a hot billet get away from me. Smacked me right between the eyes. Didn't even see it coming..... Lucky fer sure!! Not many options on a Saturday afternoon for repairs, so ER it was. 6 stitches. YOW!!
It actually cauterized part of the wound. Gals attending said I had made their afternoon since they don't get many knifemakers/smiths on a regular basis (BOG)

On another note, I think I can make the trek across Ohio to Quad States this yr.
Gonna meet 10 Hammers there and who knbows who else.....

Loren T - Thu 30 Aug 2018 08:16:47 #0


I have had my share stitches throughout the years. One time I was laying on the table while a doctor put 7 or 8 stitches in my scalp. The local nurse practitioner ran into my wife in the hallway and asked what she was doing at the hospital. She came in the emergency room and asked if they were taking good care of me. Later when I got the bill, there was a $90 consult fee from her! (Which I didn't pay). Now is a good time to review the cautionary tale of Paw Paw Wilson's tangle with a grinder across the street. It has accompanying pictures. I NEVER use a bench grinder that I don't think about that.

bruce godlesky - Thu 30 Aug 2018 09:16:44 #0


not the 1st time for me :-) I've gotten to the point where superglue is my friend. This time, no.

Sure are a multitude of ways to hurt yourself in the shop. I'm familiar with a lot of them, heheheh

Joe Rollings - Sat 01 Sep 2018 11:27:11 #0


I have had a lot of grinder injuries and they are especially prone to infection, but my most humorous set of stitches was in Miami, New Mexico. We lived just a mile or so from the doc and it was a weekend, but he always told us to drop by if we needed anything, so my wife drove my tore-up hand and me over to his house and he sat me down at the dining room table, washed it up, and was fixing to start sewing when his wife came into the room and told him it just was not right to have his spit-cup on the table when he was stitching me up, so he threw it in the trash outside, changed gloves, got down to business.

He was a guy who always had his black bag with him, like the old timey docs of yesteryear......Joe

bruce godlesky - Mon 03 Sep 2018 11:06:13 #0


Joe, sounds like a good ol boy to have in the neighborhood!!

Tom C - Wed 05 Sep 2018 13:05:58 #0

Big day yesterday

I started the engine in my '57 Chevy restomod project yesterday. After 2 years & 8 months, it's come alive. The engine is from a 2011 Silverado & was an order of magnitude more complicated to install & get running than a stock setup. I have a date with the painters next Friday.

Tom C

Chuck - Sun 09 Sep 2018 00:45:18 #0

Grandson's car wreck

Our Grand-son CY WAGNER had a bad car wreck at 1:00 Monday the 13TH of August.
He is still in ICU at Northwest Hospital in Amarillo.
He did a number on his head. Still not really awake. Seems to be his own self part of the time but not much. He is going to be laid up for a long while.
The Doctors think he will recover because of his age and health.
He is in a neck brace to hold his head up and back when they set him up.
Sure hard watching a 27 year old that is helpless as a new born. He was and will be again as tough as a junk yard dog.
It is going to take us a spell to get there.
Any unused prayers would be appreciated.
God Bless

Jeff Reinhardt - Sun 09 Sep 2018 07:07:33 #0


Prayers being sent Chuck

bruce godlesky - Sun 09 Sep 2018 20:44:49 #0

Sandpiles grandson

Had a serious TBI near 20 yrs ago. It's a long road but not impossible with a lot of prayer and gumption.
Kneemail sent!!

Tom C - Wed 12 Sep 2018 08:03:20 #0

Looks like we'll get some serious weather here on the East Coast. The hurricane has taken a turn to the left a little so it might not be as bad for us in Virginia, but the coastal Carolinas look to get pasted, again. Last time we had a hurricane come through Richmond, Gaston in 2004, there was widespread flooding from all the rain.It was good we had a flood wall because it kept all the cars from getting flushed into the James River.

bruce godlesky - Wed 12 Sep 2018 20:15:58 #0


keep yer waterwings handy Tom!
We had near 7 inches here in w Pa last weekend. Pretty uncommon. Ready for some warm dry again....

Jeff Reinhardt - Thu 13 Sep 2018 16:29:36 #0

Tom C be very careful. We got 6.5" here last weekend, I can't imagine 20".

Chuck - Thu 13 Sep 2018 19:01:45 #0

Cy & storm.

TOM I hope all of you on the right coast get by this huge rain/wind-storm.
It has let up a little on the high wind part of the storm but is so slow moving it is going to dump a tub of water, and a relentless wind will find a hold somewhere to tear things a part. A slow moving storm with even 60 or 70 MPH can rip things apart.
CY WAGNER our second Grand-son is having a time of it. He has not moved his feet or right hand as yet. He had lung surgery Tuesday. It was successful.
They put a electric toothbrush in his hand this morning. He eventually got the brush part in his mouth. VICTORY.
Looks like he is going to have to learn it all over--Everything--Maybe we can clean up his vocabulary a little.
We have been blessed with tons of prayers from all over.
BRUCE your head heal up?

bruce godlesky - Thu 13 Sep 2018 22:04:06 #0

Sandpiles grandson

Ya, my heads all healed up , at least it ain't leakin' anymore.....

That relearning stuff is not a bad thing, tho it didn't help MY vocabulary(BOG)
19 yrs ago this month I decided I wasn't going to set on the porch and vegatate any longer. Ordered a Grizzly knife grinder and began an interesting journey. I attempted going back to my former occupation as an autobody repairman. Found I had to relearn everything I had learnt in the past 28 yrs. Not a fun time.....
About the same time became aware of this thing called the internet. Discovered there were guys making things from hot metal.
It's been quite a journey since then!! So Chuck, give Cy all the encouragement ya can! He's gonna be a bit different than the guy you formerly knew but that's OK too.

Chuck - Sat 15 Sep 2018 00:29:18 #0

Relearning and staying to the line.

CYRUS TYLER WAGNER-- Is about as hard-headed and determined as anyone you will ever meet. The family moved almost every year to another town for their Dad to keep teaching in NM.
Three boys --four years apart. It got to where they would just toe the mark--tell the new town toughies to send out the best. The pecking order was straightened right quick. The boys have friends scattered all over the state.
CY and Brady played in the state finals in BB and FB . Lost each by a point and one touch-down.
I am aware of how hard a road CY has got. Brady has not left the hospital except to clean up. Cy's wife and Mother have stayed everyday and night.
It has been 30 days since his accident.
Pneumonia along with the head injuries, broke the front off his face, both eye orbits, top jaw, bottom jaw not so bad. Completely bed ridden just barely conscious.
He has no control of anything but his left hand. He is dragging his right hand around by his ID bracelet.
Motions for his Mom to prop up his head. He has figured out how to 'thumbs up' when they figure out what he wants.
Treach in, ventilator in, feeding tube in. One eye open.
Best demonstration of pure guts I have ever seen. It may take a year or two years but this guy will be back.
He has lots of moral support. It is going to financially break every damn one of us. But we did not have anything when we started this old life--We can go out the same way.
Just needed to let folks know how tough a tussle my second grand-son is into.

Darrell - Sat 15 Sep 2018 01:23:30 #0


I know there is hope. I myself have gone from full paralyzed on the right side and part
paralyzed on the left to a full recovery in a little over one year.
Physical therapy got me started in the 1st month after the stroke, actually after the 2 strokes 1 of which happened in the hospital.
That one was the worst. As soon as I got some motion, I went to the mouse and keyboard
on my computer and started working bookkeeping and taxes. I was using my right hand
which I had the least control of to work the mouse to improve coordination.
We will keep CY in our prayers. We have experience with answered prayer.

bruce godlesky - Wed 19 Sep 2018 07:01:18 #0

"we have experience with answeresd prayer" YEP!!!!

See some of you at Troy, I hope!

Tom C - Mon 24 Sep 2018 15:34:46 #0

Quad States

I got back from Quad States last night at 11:00 after driving through West Virginia in the rain. I was a good conference with a hugh amount of tailgating.Anvil asking prices seemed to have taken a jump. For instance,I saw a 100 lb. Vulcan anvil someone had for $440. There were a few good deals to be had & I was there mainly for the comraderie, anyway. There seemed to be a few more younger folks showing up which is good.I'm sorry I didn't see you there Bruce. I should have given you our location, I suppose. Anyway, John Fee had his Blacksmiths' Stew on Friday evening & I did a couple of pork shoulders on the ol' Weber for Saturday. I was fun to see Jeff Reinhardt & his crew make a couple of their big crosses for Friday nite's main demo. Good job. Jeff. All in all, another fine event.

Tom C

Jeff Reinhardt - Mon 24 Sep 2018 18:04:37 #0

Quad State

Had a great time, my team made 2 each of the 3" crosses and an great time was had by all.

bruce godlesky - Mon 24 Sep 2018 22:17:26 #0

quad state

Tom C , prolly saw ya and couldn't put the name to a face. Met so many folks I've talked with over the years! I was really surprised how many I did know! Saw a lotta folks I know from the trapping fraternity too! Quite a crossover!

Jeff , your gang really out on a great demo!! Good talkin' with ya!

Did Billy Epps judge the smithing competition Saturday nite? I headed home late afternoon.

John Fee sure did a great job on the possum stew!!

Tom C - Tue 25 Sep 2018 13:14:31 #0

If you were at John's eating Possum stew, I saw you, or you, me. I was the tall guy with the grubby SOFA hat & kinda long beard.
We'll talk next time.

Tom C

Brian C. - Tue 25 Sep 2018 17:50:28 #0


Another one in the books. The Blonde and I didn't see much of the demonstrations, too busy visiting with old friends. John Fee and Tom Chenoweth both put on fine meals, thanks again for the hospitality. A great event.

bruce godlesky - Tue 25 Sep 2018 22:28:50 #0


Yep, we were at JohnFees possum dinner :-) Came in with TenHammers, Keith Sommers and Bill Epps. The grubbyhay/long beard description fits a large percentage of attendees Ha!

Tom C - Wed 26 Sep 2018 09:08:01 #0

Yeah, I guess it does. I don't suppose adding that I had a slight limp (plantars wart on left foot) & a ponytail helps either.

I took my '57 Chevy project to the painters last Wednesday so now I can attend to stuff I've let slide. After I straighten up the shop first, of course. A car restoration project is the ultimate mixed media piece.

Tom C

Mike B - Wed 26 Sep 2018 18:46:42 #0


I've meaning to ask how you put a late-model engine in a old car. Do you have to try to transplant all the computer stuff, or is there an aftermarket kit to connect it up?


Tom C - Thu 27 Sep 2018 12:03:41 #0

It's quite a challenge, Mike & one which, had I known how difficult it would be, wouldn't have done. Luckily, there is a forum devoted to '55, '56 & '57 Chevys which proved invaluable to this project. Yes, There are aftermarket kits to hook up the electronics but that's the simple part...... This being a site devoted to smithing, I won't post a litany of what else you have to do to put a 2011 truck engine & transmission into a 61 year old car, but if you're going to Spring Fling, I'll probably have it there & will point out the salient details to you then.

Tom C

Mike B - Thu 27 Sep 2018 19:09:24 #0

Look forward to seeing it (and, more importantly, you) in April!

Loren T - Sun 07 Oct 2018 22:17:45 #0


I was looking through the gallery and came across a bunch of pics posted by Ellen. i know a while back some were asking about her, not having heard for a while. I noticed that Sandpile had sent some stuff back and forth with her. I have visited her at her home 4 years ago or so, but don't remember exactly where it is. Anyone know updated information?

Chuck - Sun 07 Oct 2018 22:48:28 #0


LOREN T. I will have to see if I can find the addy.
ELLEN lived in Apache Junction.
Her sister called here and Helen spoke to her.
Ann Reid was Ellens name. I think. Here sister said Ellen had had some serious strokes then had another. Her sister she was in bad shape. Later e called the number and got no answer.
We suspect Ellen has passed.
JOHN LARSON might still have address.

We were going to out to Phoenix, stopping at Joe Rolling's and then Ellen's. I got sick and we did not go.

Tom C - Mon 08 Oct 2018 10:08:48 #0

I visited Ellen a couple of times a few years ago & she stayed with us when she took a motorcycle trip East about 10 years ago. I tried calling her but got a recorded message. She was an accountant who did peoples' taxes & one of the numbers was for a fax machine. I have her address somewhere but I won't put it up here. I, too, suspect she has passed.

Tom C

Loren T - Tue 09 Oct 2018 10:22:59 #0

Motorcycle Trip

I remember her posting about that trip. If I remember correctly she had bought an Iron Kiss hammer and went to take a class on using it from John Larson.

Joe Rollings - Wed 10 Oct 2018 13:56:11 #0

Prayers up

for Cy Wagner. That is a REALLY tough break, but I betcha he will overcome it in spite of the hardship.

Sorry I have been missing for a while, just sorting out a lot of false starts on my next adventure. Got the power hammer done, and boy is it a hitter, but not sure yet if I am the man for it. 100 pounds of hammer on a 1300 pound anvil sometimes can do more damage than good to a project. Not really accustomed to long learning curves any more I have been doing the same stuff over and over again for so long.

Hammer is not even bolted down, just sits there and wiggles a tiny bit because the floor is not flat. Almost any crowned die, no matter how large the radius, leaves big old dents. Maybe I need to be making bigger stuff so the dents don't show so much BOG.....Joe

Tom C - Thu 11 Oct 2018 08:52:38 #0

Loren, she was also a history buff & toured many of the historic sites in Virginia regarding the Revolutionary & Civil wars. I think there's a pic of her & her bike in the photo gallery under my name. I was impressed that she made that trip, solo, at her age. She was a tough one.

Tom C

Buck Brown - Thu 11 Oct 2018 12:22:14 #0


I remember when Ellen first got her power hammer. She was discussing what to name it and decided on Thor.
There's a pic somewhere of her on a tall Thoroughbred bay horse. Seems she had a cabin or something up in the hills near Apache Junction.

Tom C - Fri 12 Oct 2018 10:54:09 #0

If you click on her name in the Gallery, there's a pic of her on her horse. The caption says that her cabin was in New Mexico.

Tom C

Bruce Blackistone (Atli) - Sun 14 Oct 2018 14:47:05 #0


Pax vobiscum.




Recent Photos
Add a Photo
Request Password