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  • anvil stands question

    I bought this anvil a couple weeks ago and I want to make a stand for it. I have looked at google and see a few ideas I like, but I'm not really sure what height the top surface should be at? Or should I just make the legs adjustable?

    Its a 200lb trenton and is a little beat up, but not real bad. I got it for a dollar a pound.

    Also since it is a little beat up, is it sacrilegious to clean up the dings and light rust and paint it? I realize its mine now and I can do as I please, I'm just curious

    There is a place in Camp Verde, AZ that does blacksmithing classes during the fall and spring, hopefully I can make it to some of them one of these days


    Last edited by mochinist; 05-04-2009, 03:50 PM.

  • #2
    Anvil height is a personal preference thing, and it depends on the kind of work you do.
    I know guys who do a lot of almost jewelry like work, hand stamping, careful manipulation of small stuff, who mount their anvils almost chest high, and others who mostly swing 4 pound hammers on huge workpieces, who like em real low.

    the old standard was, let your arm hang loose, and your knuckles should graze the top.

    Me, I find that a bit low, but its close.

    There are several anvil stands over on www.anvilfire.com

    here-
    http://www.anvilfire.com/iForge/tutor/jd_stand/

    Of course, logs are traditional.

    I have an "urban stump" on mine- made from scrounged 2x4's


    the Arizona blacksmiths meet regularly-
    http://az-blacksmiths.org/

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    • #3
      If I were setting it up I would put the top of the anvil at belt level or slightly below. You want your arms in a relaxed position as much as possible. The idea is to let the hammer do as much of the work as possible without a lot of stress on your arms. You want the head of the hammer and your forearms parallel with the top of the work as the hammer strikes it on the anvil. Striking the work at any other angle will make a mess of the work and/or place a lot of unnecessary stress on the arms and shoulders trying to get a flat hit. If this is going to be a working anvil and the top face of the anvil is not dinged up to bad you can have a shop re-grind it to flat. This would not be an unusual procedure for an anvil. You can find some old anvils that have the top face plate replaced or even have another one welded over the old one.

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      • #4
        Ries is right about the height around were your knuckles are. It depends on what you are going to do with it some face the top with welding rod but which kind is almost as much debatable as repairing it and grind it down. As to the stand some use the stump, make sure in is bug free! other use a welded stand and rubber pads. Other make a box like structure and fill it with sand.
        Others put wheels/casters on one end and a jack point on the other, so you can dolly it around easier if you will be moving it.
        Glen
        Been there, probably broke it, doing that!
        I am not a lawyer, and never played one on TV!
        All the usual and standard disclaimers apply. Do not try this at home, use only as directed, No warranties express or implied, for the intended use or the suggested uses, Wear safety glasses, closed course, professionals only

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        • #5
          You want the hammer face and your forarmto be parallel with the anvil when the stroke ends. So, hold a steel rod in your left hand and and bend ever so slightly like you would tend to do and then drop your average hammer to the rod. The hammer face and your forearm should be parallel with the floor/anvil. Now measure the height from the floor to the top of your rod/workpiece and thats the height you want. You can wail along all day and not be quite as tired as guys who have to adjust their body to the anvil.

          Tree stump sections work great for me as they can be easily moved around the shop when it's in the way. I think the stumps help eat up some of the sound as well.
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          Thank you to our families of soldiers, many of whom have given so much more then the rest of us for the Freedom we enjoy.

          It is true, there is nothing free about freedom, don't be so quick to give it away.

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          • #6
            Knuckle height is about right that is if you are going to do any blacksmithing as when striking the metal they would like the hammer head to be horizontal so I suppose the height would vary as to the stature of the blacksmith.
            So all in all it would depend wht its main use would be, large lumps of wood were used to deaden some of the ringing made worse when mounted on steel dolly, dollies would be used with a swaging block so as to allow metal or dollies through the holes.

            Peter
            I have tools I don't know how to use!!

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            • #7
              I have one mounted on a section of log , (a very hard wood it is )
              if you could find a section of white oak or such you would be doing ok

              that is the traditional way of mounting an anvil.

              no complaints about the set up, being on a round base it makes the anvil easy to move .

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              • #8
                I'll have my friends keep their eyes out for a big mesquite stump, since were kinda lacking in oak around these parts, until then I got some basics to work with and a height to build around .

                I'll also be tossing it up on my big mattison grinder and cleaning the face up

                Thank You

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                • #9
                  well post a picture then ......

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by mochinist
                    I'll also be tossing it up on my big mattison grinder and cleaning the face up

                    Thank You
                    Not sure that is wise. Anvils are not one slug of hardened steel. They do have a tough outer hardcase but under that they are of much softer steel.

                    Why remove the character of the anvil anyways?

                    Also, Good o'l Gordon. You can catch him about every saturday in Jerome.
                    He operates the old blacksmithy shop out at the "Old Gold King Mine".
                    It's located about a mile and a half west of the town.
                    Go for the tour, on your own lead, and just sit and watch him work for a few hours.
                    I get a chance to see him several times a year. A nice guy to meet and know.

                    Patch

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                    • #11
                      I have mine on a camphor tree stump - smells nice, and seems to not rot too fast as my anvil spends time in the rain; no space in the shop. It isn't any rustier now than when I bought it . Wood definitely is quieter than a steel stand.

                      The knuckle test for height is about perfect, maybe a tiny bit higher.

                      - Bart
                      Bart Smaalders
                      http://smaalders.net/barts

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by thistle
                        well post a picture then ......
                        I did in the first post, is it not showing up for you guys? I can see it

                        Originally posted by Patch
                        Not sure that is wise. Anvils are not one slug of hardened steel. They do have a tough outer hardcase but under that they are of much softer steel.

                        Why remove the character of the anvil anyways?

                        Also, Good o'l Gordon. You can catch him about every saturday in Jerome.
                        He operates the old blacksmithy shop out at the "Old Gold King Mine".
                        It's located about a mile and a half west of the town.
                        Go for the tour, on your own lead, and just sit and watch him work for a few hours.
                        I get a chance to see him several times a year. A nice guy to meet and know.

                        Patch
                        It has a plate on the top surface that has been forge welded on(I think that is the correct term). Its my understanding that the top plate is a lot harder than the rest of the anvil?

                        I'll look into checking out gordons tour. Jerome is such a cool little town, and a fun drive if any of you local AZers have never been up there.

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                        • #13
                          Get a chance be sure to say hi to Don. He's the owner of the mine and ghost town.

                          He is really into some of the early motorcycles.

                          He'll talk your ear off, never repeats himself as everything he says is always something new. He's a pretty cool dude.

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                          • #14
                            I found the perfect anvil stand over a year ago, and posted a photo of it here: http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net/sho...light=mesquite. It's yours, if you want to drive over to my house in Phoenix. It will take two strong men to lift it into the back of your truck. Or you and I can roll it up a plank.

                            Allan Ostling

                            Phoenix, Arizona

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                            • #15
                              As far as your blacksmith school, John C Campbell Folkschool in Brasstown NC
                              Teaches blacksmithing year around. https://www.folkschool.org/
                              John L

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