Why blacksmithing? I have heard it said that blacksmithing is the King of all Arts. It is the foundation of all trades. I am convinced of it . You might ask how I believe this is true. Name another Tradesman who does not use tools created by the blacksmith in making any artistic, shaping or building trade? The carpenter uses many tools made by the Smith. The Goldsmith uses hammers, shears and many other tools such as mandrills for ring sizing that are made of steel. The stonemasons all used tools made by the blacksmith. There are many types of specialized Smiths that all used tools made by the blacksmith. There is the Goldsmith, the tinsmith, the coppersmith, the silversmith, to name a few.
Above is a original advertisement for 1 of the Kerrihard hammers I have in the shop.
Prior to the Industrial Revolution every tool made in the world that required durability and toughness was made by the blacksmith. The Advent of the Iron Age changed the shape of kingdoms and dynasties. When steel came up on the stage of the world it changed weapons, tools, and the processes of everyday life. Just one item the hand saw. Think about how that one little item changed everything. If you wanted to cut a piece of wood in half prior to the hand saw you had to chop it in half and if you wanted the ends nice and square you had to use a hammer and chisel to make it so. Think about it a thin piece of Steel with little teeth on it that could cut through a board! Producing a smooth finish and square ends that were easy assemble and make things out of. That was just one of the items that caused Great change.
Some people say that Blacksmithing is a forgotten and/or Lost Art. This could not be further from the truth. There are many blacksmiths even thousands of them who practice this forgotten art.
I am naming my organization Malone Forgotten Arts. I practice blacksmithing as well as Flint knapping and I am a scrimshander. In fact if you go to Google Maps and look up Malone Forgotten Arts in Des Moines Iowa you will find my shop and learning center.
There is a story about King Solomon inviting all of the skilled trades men who built the temple to a feast after the temple in Jerusalem was finished. Search around the web and see if you can find it. It is very interesting.
I enjoy philosophy and religion. I would love to discuss it with you at some time if you are so inclined. Some people shy away from these subjects but I find them fascinating and very fulfilling.
A photo of me hard at work in the shop
Getting back to the Fun and Profit part of blacksmithing. There is nothing so satisfying at the end of a frustrating or difficult day as to heat a piece of metal to over 2000 degrees and then beat the tar out of it. In doing so making a useful tool or art piece that can be used or sold. You may ask what is the fun part. Well I have made several Spears based on the movie 300 and have used them very efficiently over and over. You may ask what is the profit side of it? I know A Smith named Alec Steel who is making good money making Hammers and other tools and conducting classes. So there are ways to make money in this sport. You just have to have the will and the drive and the never-say-die attitude that will Propel you to be successful in blacksmithing. There is a whole Market in repairing bent or broken iron implements for people. There is huge earning potential in this area. I have repaired and refurbished many post vices and made a good deal of money at this.
The picture above shows tools made by Alex Steel in his tool making class.
Well, I hope you have a great day. Peace my friends.
This is a photo of the author having a good beard day in the backyard.
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