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Anvil

Encyclopedy Index

Small anvil
Over the centuries blacksmiths have taken no little pride in the fact that theirs is one of the few crafts that allows them to make the tools that are used for their craft. Time and tradition have provided some fairly standard basic tools which vary only in detail around the world.
"All a smith needs is something to heat the metal, something to hit the metal on and something to hit the metal with."
The forge is the fireplace of a blacksmith's shop. It provides the means to keep the fire contained and controlled.
The anvil at its simplest is a large block of iron or steel. Over time this has been refined to provide a rounded horn to facilitate drawing and bending, a face for drawing and upsetting and bending, and one or more holes to hold special tools (swages or hardies) and facilitate punching. Often the flat surface of an anvil will be hardened steel, and the body made from tougher iron.
Blacksmiths' hammers tend to have one face and a peen. The peen is typically either a ball or a blunt wedge (cross or straight peen depending on the orientation of the wedge to the handle) and is used when drawing.
While a great deal of work may be done with those three basic tools blacksmiths tend to augment their tools with some of the following, depending on the kinds of work they do.
Tongs are used to hold the hot metal. They come in a range of shapes and sizes.


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