"Not all those who wander are lost."

J R R Tolkien

HOME...................................................EMAIL: joel.delorme@btopenworld.com............................................. MY WEBSITE

14 December 2010

A bit of forging...AKA...hot metal bashing!

I had a bit of time this afternoon, so I fired my  new 2 brick forge and made a couple of things. One is a medieval dining skewer, precursor to the fork as we know it?  I followed this picture to make my copy.

Here is mine. It started as a 4 mm square bar of mild steel. The taper is not so easy to get right as it looks. Also, I should have forged the whole length before I twisted the bar, as I think it would have looked better. Getting the round, tapering tail need to do the handle was relatively easy to do. Getting a nice round shape was not as easy either, and I haven't quite succedeed. But all in all though, I am very pleased with it

What I am trying for is to get the feel for manipulating the metal. It is quite different from working wood, which is within my comfort zone: what you do is to remove material. Same with stock removal. . Forging is more intuitive I believe. you need to learn through your hammer what it feels like, where the metal is moving to, because, with wood, you remove material. With forging hot metal, you displace mass. I made this skewer to get the feel for making a long taper. Also to get the feel of how the hot metal moves when you make a round out of a square.

The other object I made is this wrist band. On the face of it,  a simple shape. But it's not that easy to get that simple shape! I started from a 4mm square mild steel from the local DIY shop I had kicking about. I am quite pleased with this one as well. I'll be wearing it for now!

I am really enjoying forging, and will be making more small objects as practice. Next will probably be a try at a two prong fork.  There is a lot to learn!


  1. Excellent work. Not being able to judge the size, I had assumed the skewer was in fact an 18th century vent pick for a flintlock gun!

  2. Thankyou Le Loup. It would have to be a very large gun: the skewer is 8" long! It does indeed look like a pick though. :-)

  3. Awesome. Full. Stop.

    That´s really your first try? I can´t believe it. You are a very talented smith. I love the clean lines. Usually a swan´s neck is people´s nemesis when they start forging. Yours looks as if you have forged for ages!

    Back to the drawing board for me, now;-).

  4. Yes indeed, it really is the first time I made one of those. I have little forge work experience, but I have done a fair amount of metalwork and woodwork over the years and have acquired a pretty good eye for straight lines and curves :-)

  5. Great, anyway, but great as usual... I´m a little jealous;-)... but that will go with practicing *hehe.