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I've been wanting to learn the Blacksmithing trade for a few years now and finally getting to the point where I'll be putting things together.  Part of our homesteading plans are to diversify our income streams, so what better way to do that then to make a bit of money from something that's handy and fun?

I've got a bit of background in metal working doing some fabrication in the offroad vehicle hobby and I've taken some welding classes at the local college.  What I've learned about that experience is I love working with metal and miss it.  I've done some research into what I would need and found a great site with TONS of information I'll be linking to down the article, so check them out: www.beautifuliron.com

Setting up a forge and acquiring the tools on a shoestring budget can be done if you have some patience.  After about 6 months of searching the online classifieds, I finally came upon a deal and was able to pick up an anvil, blower, a few hammers and some tongs.  A setup from someone who was selling as he didn't have the time and lost interest.

The blower is in great shape and is the piece I'm most excited about!  It's a hand cranked Ontario centrifugal blower and even has the tripod stand.  I was going to use an old blow dryer or something like that as these blowers don't come available around my parts very often.. so it was meant to be ;o)  Here is a great guide on blowers and firepots.

The anvil will need some work.  It's pitted a bit and needs to be surfaced.  It has a chip off one of the leg corners.. it's not the best out there but it should do fine to get started until I find a really good one or buy a new one.  Here is a great anvil guide from beautifuliron.com to learn about anvils and what you need to look out for when shopping for a used one.

Next step is to build the fire-pot and hearth.  I have some ideas on what I want to build for a fire-pot and have to spend some time at the scrap yard to see what I can find to put it together.  I'll keep posting progress on the forge build, smithy setup and my learning curve.  Can't wait to get it done and start making sparks ;o)

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