Views last month

Montag, 4. April 2011

Great day at the smithy again

 On Saturday I rode to Volker´s place, the Bethaus in Witten, thge Muttental. Volker had asked for my help, and since he is simply a nice guy, I was pleased to help out forging. Doesn´t hurt me a bit, working with children and enthusiastic adults, mind you;-)! Had loads of time to spare, though, and did a striker and two knives. This one´s made from ancient Mercedes truck leaf spring steel, very rare now, since mercedes uses air springs now! It´s a free Celtic interpretation (They had no swan´s neck scrolls but simple rings or animal heads). I drilled the handle for balance in the meantime, and I like it, for it has a rather thin blade that is forged to sharpness. Had to grind it down a bit for tempering.
 I annealed it near the forge, every time when a kid came to forge, and it went nice and soft by that and took an even temper.
 Some girl with a horse hobby (or was that hobby horse;-)) came around and asked if we could fit any horseshoes. It was only after we had already looked for some steel that she told us she were joking;-)... brutish blacksmiths, and a bit thick in the head, we are;-).
 Letting it cool on the anvil for grinding....

 This is an ancient drilling machine, working on transmission, Volker just has lying around....
 This is a look into Viktor´s smithy. Viktor is an old Russian blacksmith of Kazakhian origin, from whom we have learned so much we cannot even tell, and keep learning. This guy´s the real thing, some 74 years old and still going strong. He wasn´t there, but he managed to build the forge anew last week, and I am always astonished how cleanly he achieves forge work. He avtually forged new bolts for it and an axle(!) for some wheels so that it´s a cinch now to move it in and out. The wheels run as smoothly as if the axle were turned!
 That´s an ancient, and very sturdy blacksmith´s vice. Quite a joy to work with, and can stand a lot of pounding!
 That´s Volker´s forge with the wheels on, and the rest of the smithy;-).

 Volker with a neighbour kid and his mother. The kid was enthusiastic, and Ma no less...;-)
 Volker forging a cobra snake. You can already see the head. he loves to make these, and they are quite some detail work.
 It´s me again;-) forging a medium sized bush blade that should have become a Nessmuk replica, buuuut, I messed up the preform and made a Seax from it with a hump on the back I ground off, was losing nerve;-).
 This time I had my knives at hand, for I had been asked quite a lot if I had something to show. I´m normally not into selling my blades much, for they have a personal history and a background for me, but, hey, I live in a heap of sharpened metal and it´s starting to get some sick dimension;-) so I thought I´d get rid of some. Didn´t work that day, though, but no loss, really.

I forged a striker from some file steel. The left side has some sharp edges, rest´s round and still shows the structure. I simply hardened it in water, and it works quite well.

This one ´s an ancient grinding stone used to repair miner´s tools. It worked with a leather transmission belt on water power. Nowadays there´s no water wheel, no transmission and no working grinding stone. And before you ask, no, we are NOT allowed to build a motor in;-).
It was another great day at the smithy, and we packed at some 6 pm and did some cleaning up.


  1. Hey, nice to see some more forge work Markus! I love to see those. And how anybody can work so cleanly and keep the workshop tidy is a mystery to me...mine is alway a bit of a tip...:-( I need a cleaner I think!

  2. You have great skill, I am very envious!, Lovely work!

  3. Totally enjoyed reading and looking at this post,thanks Markus.

  4. @joel: Viktor would whack us with a stick if we messed it up;-), my private shop that is my kitchen and living room looks like a warzone after the war;-)
    @the others: I keep on trying, thanks for those kind words again. It´s people like Viktor or Mielenko giving me the opportunity to progress and my respect for the elderly giving me the opportunity to actually learn from them. And, of course, many blogs on the internet, you know who you are!;-)


Now go on, discuss and rant and push my ego;-). As long as it´s a respectful message, every comment is welcome!

Beliebte Posts