I was lucky enough to find a nice diversion after my meetings on a trip to Grapevine, Texas this week. Until Wednesday I had never worked on (or seen) a 600lb anvil, which was in remarkably good shape by the way. You always learn something from working in another smith’s shop. I learned how nice a bellows controls air flow as I had never had the opportunity to use one. His forge was fired with wood. When I asked about making charcoal, Will simply replied that it turns into charcoal in the fire and we were “losing daylight”. I love when so-called rules are busted open so elegantly. Yes, coal is hotter, but you can forge for cheap with just scrap wood. If you come to the next Genesee meeting I will show you the great cowboy hats he sent me home with!
Special thanks to local smith Will Frary of The Blacksmith Shop in the Historic District in Grapevine, Texas for welcoming me into his shop and even providing me boots and a shirt so I could safely work at his forge.