If you’re interested in finding a way to make a little side money (that could turn into a full-time business), which offers flexibility, the opportunity to work at home and could be a skill in huge demand when the SHTF, Blacksmithing might be for you!
Let’s start with a basic definition (from Wikipedia):
A blacksmith is a metalsmith who creates objects from wrought iron or steel by forging the metal, using tools to hammer, bend, and cut (cf. whitesmith). Blacksmiths produce objects such as gates, grilles, railings, light fixtures, furniture, sculpture, tools, agricultural implements, decorative and religious items, cooking utensils and weapons.
While there are many people who work with metal such as farriers, wheelwrights, and armorers, the blacksmith had a general knowledge of how to make and repair many things, from the most complex of weapons and armor to simple things like nails or lengths of chain.
Blacksmithing is one of the world’s oldest professions, with references dating back to Greek and Roman mythology.
If you’re interested in learning more about becoming a blacksmith, we recommend visiting AnvilFire.com. Here are a few interesting highlights from their website:
Blacksmithing is not all pounding iron, it is design, layout, cutting, drilling, joining, finishing, tempering, welding, brazing, tool making. . . Blacksmithing is almost ALL the metal working trades all combined
How old do you have to be to learn blacksmithing?
There is no minimum age other than that required to do business (18 to work full time).
To learn as a hobby you just need to be old enough that your parents will let you work with hot iron and light a fire. I have taught young people when they were only 8 years old. We recently worked with a group of Boy Scouts for the Metal Working merit badge (minimum age 11) and I worked with ONE fellow that was in the Cub Scouts (age 9 I think). I believe age 8 is about the minimum age that one is mature enough to start smithing.
…join ABANA, find a local ABANA-Chapter and join that, assemble your shop, try to meet other blacksmiths (this is your best source of tools). As part of your ABANA membership you will receive The Anvils Ring and The Hammers Blow, publications full of good current information and how-to articles. THEN, DO IT!
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Photo by Hans Splinter licensed under Creative Commons 2.0.
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