Northwest Blacksmith Association

Archive for Blacksmith Announcements

Tire Hammer to be Auctioned!!

Thanks to the generosity and ingenuity of Randy Cryderman and Ron Selby the NWBA will be auctioning off a Power Hammer at our annual conference, May 11-13, 2018.

Randy and Ron have been making 3 tire hammers, one for each of them to keep and one for our auction.  This video is of the first run of the power hammer.  Randy said, “That was the very first run still have some fine tuning to do it it soon will be to the powdercoaters.”   

The finished tire hammer will be ready to be your work horse, come to the auction ready to bid!

NWBA Election 2017 Results

The ballots have been counted and the new NWBA Officers have been elected.  

The ballots were counted on January 13,2018 at 1PM at Nimba Anvils by Jim Garrett, election committee chair. 

Members of the NWBA are welcome at the annual election vote count, and there usually is some kind of treat for those attending: 
Jim said, “This year, it was a big pot of Gumbo for lunch and if you missed it…………… missed it!  Then, tasting at Propolis Brewing!  I like the one brewed with nettles.”  

The results of this 2017 Election, after 3 countings of 97 ballots:

  • Kellen Bateham           87
  • Lee Cordochorea         69
  • Silas Maddox               70
  • Paul Thorne                 83
  • David Tuthill               75
  • Jim von Mosch           82
  • Nitzan Lilie                  1

THANK YOU, EVERYONE!!!, for all your work in carrying the organization forward and making it friendlier and better!

Board officers were elected by the Board of Directors at the January 27, 2018 Board Meeting.  

Officers and board members for 2018 (current term of service): 

  • Lee Cordochorea – President, Appointed by the NWBA Board of Directors from the general membership to serve as President (2018)
  • Kellen Bateham – Vice President (2018-19)
  • Peggy Gudgell – Secretary (2017-18)
  • James von Mosch – Treasurer (2018-19)

Directors at large (current term of service):

  • Jeff Cawley (2017-18)
  • Silas Maddox (2018-19)
  • Steve McGrew (2017-18)
  • John Paul (2017-2018)
  • Paul Thorne (2018-19)
  • David Tuthill (2018-19)

Contact information for the current board can be found on the Board of Directors page. 

NWBA Election 2017 Candidates

This year we have six excellent candidates offering time, energy, talent and organizational skills to the continuity of our group. There are 5 positions open, with 6 nominees and a space for a write-in candidate vote. Please participate and cast your ballot for the five volunteers you feel best represent what you think the NWBA should become as we grow and move forward.

Positions are a two year term, 2018 & 2019

Kellen Bateham

I have been a serving board member for two years now and have spent the last year of that as Vice President. As I see it, there are two halves of the NWBA: Conferences and the Mentoring Center.
CONFERENCES- I’m a conference guy and absolutely love to see them go off well. I feel that with the occasional exception, they have been getting better every year recently. Adding Swaptoberfest to the schedule really filled a void for us and I want to work to make it a Fall staple for us and the tool selling community. The Spring Conference is already running fairly smoothly and I would work to maintain that as well as expand on aspects like competitions and merchandise. Planning these events and having boots on the ground during them would be my main focus if I am reelected.
MENTORING CENTER- I live a little too far away to make many of the mentoring center events and would expect that trend to continue for me. I do feel that it is time for a change in how it is ran and managed though. If the NWBA is committed to the success of the Mentoring Center it is time to hire and pay someone to manage it. When we needed the website and the HIN to run smoother we hired Amy Mook (who does an outstanding job!) to solve our problems. This is no different. If reelected I would advocate for making this happen.
BIO- I currently live and work as a Sole Occupation Blacksmith in Bend, Oregon with my son Silas and my dog Doon. Beyond the NWBA I am also on the Board of Directors for CCAC on Mt. Hood, where I am working towards expanding craftsman programs, helping to put on events like Blacksmith Week, and acting as liaison between the NWBA and CCAC. I am also the Education Czar for the Central Oregon Metal Arts Guild (COMAG).
Cheers and happy forgings,
Kellen Bateham

Lee Cordochorea

In my opinion, the real job of a director of the NWBA is twofold. A director must serve the best interests of the collective general membership. A director must impliment the Association’s Mission Statement. I have not always been successful at these. Not always.
I do think I’ve done a good job overall. If you agree, please consider voting for me to continue for a third and final term.
Whether you think I’ve done a good job or not, PLEASE consider running for the board of directors yourself next year! Serving on the board is the single best way I know of to insure the continuing success of this terrific Association.
Lee Cordochorea

Silas Maddox

In the early 2000’s my first real exposure to blacksmithing was attending an NWBA conference in Mt. Vernon. This was a life altering experience. I was already hooked on metalworking but had little idea of what blacksmithing was. The energy and enthusiasm at those first few conferences that I attended nudged my path in life and led me to the road that I currently travel.
After travelling the country to train and work with different smiths I ended up back in the Northwest working for blacksmiths in Seattle and eventually opening my own business, Forge & Nail, in 2011. I have since moved to Sedro-Woolley, WA where I am self employed doing architectural blacksmithing and assorted other pursuits.
The NWBA gave me the exposure to blacksmithing that started my journey and has provided me with some of my best friends and access to some of my blacksmithing heroes. I figure it is time to pay it forward and help to keep the NWBA the best and most active blacksmith association in the land.
Thank you,
Silas Maddox

Paul Thorne

Dear Friends,
During the Spring Conference I was nominated to serve on the NWBA board. The NWBA is very special to me and I can’t imagine what my career would have been without it. I have been a fulltime smith for 35 years and a member of NWBA since 1988. Most of my work is interior architectural/ sculptural in nature. Many of you celebrated these good years with me and helped me through the lean ones. You are my core friends. Thank you.
We live in confusing times. I believe that there is a strong desire from the pubic, particularly young people, to learn smithing and to get in touch with a worthwhile life focus. During the last few years I’ve refocused my work into teaching and tapping into the expertise of other smiths. If elected, I would like to focus on education and training.
Paul Thorne

David Tuthill

I’ve been a member of the NWBA since around 1995. In that time I’ve had varied levels of involvement, and have seen a lot of changes- some good and some not so good. One thing that has not changed, has been the need for a core group of people both professional and non professional, to keep the club moving forward. I served on the board in the early 2000’s just prior to our groups journey into the dark ages. I’m happy to see that we have mostly recovered from that episode, and thanks to the determination of some of the board members that followed that chapter, there have been some new and exciting things taking place.
By re-joining the board, I hope to help generate even more momentum, so that we can not only continue growing as a group, but also meet a much bigger challenge, which is to create events that are higher profile, involve the public, and bring a more modernized and contemporary perspective into our unique and amazing craft. I am of the opinion that this would benefit professionals and part-timers alike, by challenging many of us to get out of our comfort zones, and try new things. In my numerous conversations with smiths and other tradespeople both in our country and abroad, there have been a number of parallel themes. One that stands out for me, is that ultimately it is up to us as blacksmiths and designers to understand the ideals and esthetics that come with todays architectural trends. If we can’t speak their language, we are doomed. Likewise, we must know how to communicate to our clients, both literally, and physically to show that we are up to the task of participating in the dialog of contemporary architecture, sculpture, or what have you, and be a relevant part of the conversation.
As both a participant and an observer, I have numerous thoughts on how we can implement some of these concepts as a group. However, it will take a concentrated and coordinated effort between our board and our membership to see these things come to fruition. Among the ideas that I have are bringing more interdisciplinary craftspeople into the loop at conferences, so that we have an opportunity to gain perspective on how our work can interact with the work of others. Also in the forefront of my mind is how to tackle the challenges associated with involving the public either at our conferences, or by bringing a group, or groups of smiths to events that could support the building and completion of sculptural work that would be for permanent public display. We have so much potential as a craft and as an art form, and though I have seen some things moving forward over the years, I believe that we still need to be wary of stagnation if we are going to keep going in this world. Let us make our presence known!
Thank you,

Jim von Mosch

I am Jim Von Mosch, and have been the NWBA treasurer for this term. There are a lot of details to the treasurer’s job and a long learning curve. I have met some of my goals, not so much on others. I am interested in serving a second term in order to complete these goals in order to pass on to future treasurers a turn-key system of record keeping and budgeting.
Thank you for your support.
Jim von Mosch

NWBA Elections 2017 ballots are in the mail, you should receive yours by mid-December.
If you are a current NWBA member and you do not received your ballot please contact Jim Garrett, the Election Committee Chairman,



Date Change for August Mentoring Center Event!

The Fairgrounds are host to a car show on the 26th. No one gets into the grounds without paying car-show admission. 
We moved the maintenance day to Aug 12.


Help NWBA maintain our Mentoring Center.

Put in a few hours of work fixing the fuel lines at the center and a few other maintenance tasks in exchange for an afternoon of open forge, no charge… And you will be doing a great service to YOUR organization, helping the NWBA to offer many more great events in the coming months.

9:00 AM: Mentoring Center Cleanup
Noon: Break for Lunch
1:00 PM: Open Forge

Cost: $10  We’ll waive the normal fee for folk who are willing to help clean-up in the morning.
Attendees must be current NWBA members due to insurance requirements

Mini Maker Faire

Calling all makers!

Whether you work with tech, crafts, cars, robots, sculpture, robots, mad science, or something in between, we want to show it off at the 2017 Seattle Mini Maker Faire!

We’re seeking makers of all ages including individuals, hobbyist groups, schools, non-profit organizations, and commercial businesses. Exhibits that are interactive or highlight the process of making things are especially desired.

As you prepare to apply for the Call for Makers, here are some helpful tips to keep in mind:

  • Be descriptive as possible about your project
  • Think about what your exhibit space will require to run
  • Provide good photos or video content, if available
  • Ask questions if you’re not sure about something (contact us at

For examples of projects, visit our Makers page or browse the archive.

See you at the Seattle Mini Maker Faire September 16-17 at MoPOP.

Application Deadline: June 26, 2017

Become a Sponsor page for more information.

Here are just a few of the things we’re looking for:

  • Robotics
  • Wearables, E-Textiles, Fashion Tech
  • Biology/Biotech and Chemistry Projects
  • Drones & RC Fun
  • Homesteader & Domestic Arts
  • Kinetic, Fire & Installation Art
  • Digital Fabrication – 3D Printers, CNC, ETC
  • Open Hardware Projects
  • Design: Industrial, Fashion, Product, Urban
  • Young Makers & School Maker Clubs
  • Music Performance
  • Hacks of Any Sort
  • Glass
  • Ceramics
  • Foundry & Blacksmithing
  • How-To Workshops, Panel Discussions and Presenters
  • Electronic Projects
  • Textiles and Arts and Crafts
  • Rockets and RC Toys
  • Sustainable Transportation
  • Radios, Vintage Computers and Game Systems
  • Electronics
  • Puppets
  • Bicycles and Human-Powered Machines
  • Shelter (Tents, Domes, etc.)
  • Unusual Tools or Machines
  • How to Fix Things or Take them Apart (Vacuums, Clocks, Washing Machines, etc.)

Our standard setup for a Maker exhibit is a 10’ x 10′ outdoor space.  If you need more space for your exhibit or project, please let us know. Use this space to display your work and/or demonstrate how you make something.

Performances, presentations, or workshops receive 10, 20, and 30 minute time slots.  These can be demos, stories, how-tos, and group (panel) conversations. Any maker-spirited entertainers may apply to perform at Seattle Mini Maker Faire.

Longview Outdoor Gallery

Beautifying Longview 

The Longview Outdoor Gallery program was inspired by the Visual Arts Commission trip to see the Puyallup, Washington outdoor gallery in 2009. A small task force started and has increased over the years. The City Council made a resolution to support the project and citizens and organizations have been supporting this important program.

Our Mission:
Provide a rotating exhibit of outdoor sculptures in historic downtown Longview and acquire new pieces for the City of Longview’s permanent art collection.

Our Vision:
Enhance the beauty of our community and attract more visitors and citizens to the downtown area.

Increase community involvement through volunteer programs, student education, tours, festivals, and other activities.


Artists contribute sculptures to be installed at various public spaces in the city of Longview.  The pieces remain on display for approximately 2 years. At the end of the 2 years the public votes on which 1 or two sculptures to purchase for the city of Longview. The city or donors fund the purchases.  Our very own Berkley Tack installs/welds the sculptures in place.  During the loan period your sculptural work can be for sale to the public.

Visit the Longview Outdoor Garden website for more information and to see the previous and current exhibits.

Contact in Longview: Janeen LeRay  360-414-3103
or NWBA contact: Billy O (Ottaviani)  360-701-8451


Local Blacksmiths Star in ‘Forged in Fire’

Local blacksmith Nick Marcelja of Red Troll Forge crushed the competition in the “Forged in Fire” Episode that aired on April 11, 2017.  NWBA invited Nick to demonstrate at our Mentoring Center in July 2016, where he demonstrated blade making.  You can watch the entire episode HERE.

And, coming up next week, April 18, 2017, our very own Rashelle Hams will be competing on the show as well.  Tune in Tuesdays, 9/8c pm on the History Channel. 

GO RASHELLE, we are cheering for you!!

NWBA Conference 2017 Schedule

Repousse All Day Friday and Saturday

Black Smoke Alley Open All Day Every Day
(individuals set up forges and demonstrate and work, often a great hands on opportunity)


  • 8:00 a.m. registration begins
  • 9:00 a.m. Main demonstrator David Lisch
  • 12:00-1:00 Lunch
  • 1:00-4:00 p.m. Main demonstrator Maegan Crowley techniques with tubing
  • 1:00-4:00p.m. hands on demonstrator (let you know)
  • 6:00 P.M. POTLUCK!!!!!!!!
  • Bring some meat and a side to share, a grill will be provided.
  • 7:00 p.m. Eagle Eye Competition to be announced PRIZES!!
  • Midnight Madness!!



  • 9:00 a.m.-12:00 main demonstrator David Lisch
  • 9:00a.m.-12:00 hands on demonstrator Arnon Kartmazov (let you know what he is making)
  • 12:00-1:00p.m. LUNCH
  • 1:00-4:00p.m. Main demonstrator Maegan Crowley tubing
  • 1:00-4:00p.m. hands on demonstrator (let you know)
  • 4:00-5:00p.m. Metallurgy class in mentoring center by Arnon Kartmazov
  • 6:30 p.m. Banquet and General Meeting – everyone welcome
  • After Banquet:
    Eagle Eye Competition to be announced Prizes
  • Midnight Madness!


  • Bronze pour demo by Matt Moore
  • Conference Break-Down

Registration Now Open

back to Conference Info

NWBA Conference 2017 Registration

Shapes and Patterns

May 12-14, 2017

Shirts and banquet tickets may be available but not guaranteed.

Prefer to send it in the mail?  PRINTABLE PDF REGISTRATION FORM


MEMBERSHIP REQUIRED: All conference attendees are required to be current NWBA members (or household members of a member.)
Please add Membership Fees to your conference registration if you are not currently a member.

Camping Fees will be paid at the registration desk when you arrive at the conference.
Trailer Hookups w/ water and electric: $15 per night
Dry camping in the Tent Barn, and outdoor camping: $5 per night

The shopping cart appears on the right when something has been added. 
Add all the items you need for the conference and check out when you have added everything.

Conference Fees:

Household is a Member and the members of their household, same residence.

3-Day Individual, $90

3-Day Household, $115 

1-Day Individual, $65 

1-Day Household, $80

Banquet Dinners:

Change Quantity in the Shopping Cart to purchase more than one dinner



Men’s Sizes:

Size :

Women’s Sizes:

Size :

NWBA Membership:

By Submitting Payment for NWBA Membership you agree to the following RELEASE OF LIABILITY:

US Resident membership, $60 per year:

Foreign Resident membership, $70 per year:


Now Casting History Channel’s Forged in Fire!

  Currently casting competitors for the hit show Forged in Fire on the History Channel, and after taking a look at your website, I thought you might be interested in hearing more!
We’re searching nationwide for charismatic bladesmiths, blacksmiths and armourers looking to showcase their skills on a national level. This series focuses on enthusiasts that pride themselves on producing the best blades in the world, whether they be historical or modern, large or small. Participants will be given the opportunity to showcase their talents for a chance to win a substantial cash prize.

Contact the Casting Producer:

For more information on Forged in Fire, please visit


The board has created a new position of Volunteer Coordinator.  This is a large organization and we are trying our best to provide outreach programs, mentoring opportunities, and fun and informative conferences. Being a volunteer organization we can only accomplish this with the help of the members. Below is a list of areas we can use your help. We want to start a data base of potential volunteers. When a need arises we can call from our list of volunteers. Putting your name on our list in no way obligates you. If called you can decide then if you can help. We are not asking for long term commitments. An hour here and there can make a big difference. For new members this is a great way to meet people and get to know your organization better.


CONFERENCE: Help with the registration desk and auction. If you have a spouse attending who doesn’t see the beauty in hot steel, they can help at the desk. It has proved so helpful in the past. We also need help with moving the library and for set up and tear down

DEMONSTRATORS: Always a need for the Mentoring Center, outreach hammer-ins and the conference.

MENTORING STEWARDS AND REGISTER:A great program that always needs help. We need people who can take money and sign in attendees. You don’t have to do it every month. Sign up for one. We also need people who live near by willing to open and close the center and keep an eye on tool condition.

SURVIVOR BENEFIT: A new program we hope will help spouses of deceased members. We need volunteers to assess the value of the deceased’s shop and tools so the survivor will get full compensation in a sale.

MENTOR YOUTH GRANT: The NWBA board of directors is developing a program, inspired and funded by a generous NWBA member with a vision. The major stumbling block to implementing our youth mentoring grant is the requirement for oversight of the youths being mentored, i.e. VOLUNTEERS!

If you want to help, please send your name, phone number and email to:

Peggy Gudgell

Let me know which way you prefer to be contacted and please put NWBA as subject on email so I know who you are.


NWBA Election 2016 Board of Directors Nominations

The 2016 NWBA Board of Directors nominations is open until November 15th, 2016.
Are you or someone you know interested in becoming part of the decision making process for NWBA? Interested in contributing to preservation of the art and craft of blacksmithing through NWBA outreach and offerings?

It is by the dedication and commitment of its members that enables the NWBA to be the great organization that it is. Please consider supporting your NWBA.

Contact one of the Election Committee Members with your nominations:
Jim Garrett
Steve McGrew
James von Mosch
The NWBA has contributed to the education and success of many members.


Ron Wailes 1934 – 2016

Ronald D. Wailes Jr. was born and raised in Edmonds, Washington and when he was 15 years old he earned his Eagle Scout badge under the guidance of Phil Smart.  He continued his studies at the University of Washington excelling as an oarsman at the UofW. Rowing consumed a great portion of his life continuing at Yale for his graduate work, and was proud to be given the opportunity to coach the freshman crew. These freshmen made him proud when they beat their arch rival Harvard 2 out of 3 races.

His business took him around the world. But first he settled down and married Bonnie, and as often happens, first daughter Jeannie was born followed by son David. This responsibility kept him grounded for some time, but it wasn’t long before he was filing a claim to dredge for gold on the Frazier river. His hard work was washed out in a flood, but his curiosity that there “indeed was gold in them there hills” took him on a long hike over the Chilkoot Trail.

While working in New York he had the thrill of a lifetime. His expertise was waterproofing and he had to climb out on the ice shield at the very tip top of the Empire State Building to inspect his company’s application. Shortly thereafter he was invited to go on a hike in Nepal under the expert guidance of Phil Erschler. He and his friends made it to the top of Kala Patar in the Himalayas at 18,300 feet. They looked down on the base camp of Mount Everest marveling at the mountains’ beauty.

In 2000 he finally retired. He and Bonnie sold the llama ranch and the log home they had built in Duvall and moved to a modest 3 acres in Cle Elum. The first structure to go up was the blacksmith shop he had been dreaming about for years. A corner of the shop was temporarily cordoned off for them to live in while the main house was being built.

Whether it was designing the tool to create the perfect acorn; or putting just the right pressure on the hammer to create the vein in an oak leaf, his forge was his friend.

The ring of his treasured Hay Buden anvil is silent now and he’s missed.

Blacksmith Week 2016 Updates

Blacksmith Shop at Summit CampThursday – Sunday, August 18-21, 2016

Demonstrations, open forge time, and great times with fellow smiths… don’t miss it!

Demonstrators: Dave Thompson, and team demo by Dave Tuthill and Silas Maddox.

Demonstrations for the public by Ben Czyhold.

A workshop has been added to the Blacksmith Week event in August 18-21, 2016.

Alan Flashing will be giving a workshop on Friday and Saturday, August 19&20.
He will be forging small totemic sculptures.

Two 4 hour classes: Friday and Saturday 10AM – Noon, 1 hour lunch break, 1PM -3PM
Cost is $110

*If you are planning to participate in the workshop please bring tools: Hand Chisels, Punches, top and bottom fullers.

More info about Alan Flashing at his website, and facebook page.

Blacksmith Week Details:

  • Demonstrations will take place Friday and Saturday, morning (9AM-Noon) and afternoons (1PM – 4PM), and Sunday morning.
  • Thursday: Registration and Group project forging.
  • Open forging every evening.

Bring your works to display and sell to the public!

The gallery will be located right in the middle of bustling Government Camp and will be open during business hours to the public.


  • Individual Entire Event       $90
  • Individual One Day            $45
  • Family Entire Event           $120
  • Family One Day                $60
  • Student (valid ID req.) Entire Event   $60
  • Student One Day              $30

Registration at the door.

Click here for Government Camp Map

Sponsored by Cascadia Center for Arts and Crafts.

Ron Wailes Passes

Longtime NWBA member Ron Wailes, and friend of many of our members, passed away early June 2016.

Anyone who is so moved may want to contact Bonnie Wailes, Ron’s wife, and send your condolences personally.

The NWBA was a very important part of Ron’s life and Bonnie would love to hear from some of Ron’s friends and colleagues.

Read Ron’s Obituary Here

You can contact Bonnie through the following contact info,

Bonnie Wailes
341 Pioneer Trail Rd
Cle Elum WA 98922

There will be a memorial for Ron at his and Bonnie’s home on Pioneer Trail Rd on August 14th, 2016 between 1 and 4 pm.

Blacksmith Shop For Sale

Ron Wailes’ blacksmith shop contents is for sale. Please contact Bonnie Wailes for more information. Serious Inquiries Only!

Blacksmith Swap Meet July 23rd 2016

2016! 2016! 2016!  So, its time to tell your friends and spread the word the Blacksmith Swap Meet is July 23rd . so bring some tools bring some cash and add some good tools to your stash. it will be held at the same location by friends of mine of the same vocation. 3600 E Marginal way south seattle wa see you there 9 to 3.

IMG_6057 13428561_10153856442004022_5083856333273659286_n 13445762_10153856442564022_7779363944059377835_n IMG_6054  IMG_6060 IMG_6061 IMG_6062

Donate to Ypres 2016

PoppyThe NWBA participated in the Ypres Poppies WWI Memorial event in January 2016 by making over 100 poppies to send and include in the project.  Some of our members are going to Belgium in September to be part of the blacksmith event there. Others of you may want to support this event with a donation.

Ypres Poppies  World War 1 Memorial Event

In the War of 1914 -1918 blacksmiths and farriers were indispensable in sustaining the war effort on all sides and the blacksmiths of today are coming together once more to use their skill to craft the Cenotaph. In September 2016 a striking new World War 1 Cenotaph is being created in Ypres, Belgium.

Hundreds of blacksmiths and farriers from around the world will come together to create the Cenotaph in a week-long event in Flanders.

Two ways to donate in the USA

  1. This is the crowd funding site. If you contribute through this site you can use a credit card or pay pal. You can also receive a perk for your donation. Poppies, key fobs and tshirts are some of the perks available. Postage will be added to your contribution.
  2. Send a check in dollars to

Kate Dinneen
1582 N 1500 Rd
Lawrence, KS  66046

Make the check out to Kate Dinneen Ypres 2016 Fund. Kate will coordinate with Steven Pitt who is the person sorting the Finances for the event. The money raised will be used to help get the US Master over there, lodged and fed for the week and any other expenses we have on the US side. Any remaining funds will be sent to the main account overseas.

Mark Aspery’s Stag Horn Hinge

Stag Horn HingeStag Horn Hinge: Mark Aspery Demo, 12 March 2016, Longview, WA. Notes by Ike Bay

Editor note: Dan Bowyer took extensive pics of this demo.  See the full gallery of images HERE.

Best Quote: “Find the difference between handmade and custom made”

General info: This style hinge can be in pairs of matched sides, unmatched sides or on pintles. Suggested referances, “Professional Smithing” by Donald Streeter which gives a detailed how-to section. Examples of original pieces can be found in “Early American Wrought Iron” by Albert Sonn and Colonial Wrought Iron, The Sorber Collection” by Don Plummer.  This demo was for a non pintle style hinge.

Stock: 1 1/4″ X 1/4″ was used, Mark would have preferred 1 1/4″ X 3/16″

Draw an even, centered taper 4 to 4.5″ long, 3.5″ is rather short. Do not put a fine point on the end, as is mass needed here when the piece is cut in half length wise.

Cutting: point bar on anvil to strong light source so shadow does not distort your vision of center line. Index end and a few other points on proposed cut line as witness marks.  Use chisel with slight radius face and walk up cut line. (1/16″ good radius on this type chisel).  Start on end of taper and walk up to end of cut point. Cut from one side and use cut plate for last part of process.  Cutting from one side like this results in a ragged edge, but forging two sides in the “S” curve in will eliminate this.  Chisel with front and side cutting edges gives you a sight reference when using the front cutting edge.  Use narrow fuller to clean up the cleft of the cut.

Spread horns: First push one side down so both sides are accessible to the hammer. Then bend the horizontal “S” shape over the horn.  Forge so both sides are equal in form that pleases your eye.  Get both sides close and then tweak, rather than getting one side right and then trying to match it.  Flip back and forth to eyeball for uniformity.

Draw out (peen and dress) humps, Do both top first and then both bottom. Keep things even with eye.  DO NOT LET GET OUT OF EVEN/UNIFORM AND PLAN TO CORRECT LATER. Through all steps keep sides even and uniform.

Prongs: can cut now or later but do not turn out. When cutting prongs, give them a tall root or will be too thing when you form them later. Use round face chisel as before. Technique- tongs between legs, chisel and hammer in hand.  Remember tool migrates to path of least resistance when cutting, punching, slitting, Etc.

In retrospect might do face and barrel first.

Face: Preform to spreading/fullering face is two half face notches with a “butcher profile” on outside. This is below the horns and before the barrel of the hinge. Work inside notches with fullers that are fir for the space. Take bar to slightly less than half thickness and move extra mass evenly to sides.

Barrel Math: how much length needed to form barrel. Bend takes place in the neutral axis of the bar (center line) not inside.  If bar tapered still the same but a different calculation.  3/8″ ID plus two half wall thickness less a little for taper = about 1.5 inches.

Bend such: bend in a bar will produce a cup on the outside of bend. This makes for loose hinges if not compensated for. Counter bend is solution. Face up to counter bend and face down to start rolling barrel. If nesting barrel with another parts of barrel must be removed.  Barrel is divided into three sections, center (major) is always larger than outer two (minor).  When cutting layout lines for major/minor determinations cut outside lines, not on them, so you have a snug fit in final hinge, not bad if parts do not fit and careful file work needed to fit.  For this demo Mark anticipated major and did a slot punch without removing tab.  This allowed him to break off major at end of process.

Spread prongs at this point. Push to one side of horn so accessible by hammer, work over horn for curve. Mark used special tongs to hold hinge by barrel while finishing up the final forms.


hammer  fuller side  Fuller front  hinge tongs  hinge tongs 2  Tools in rack  Tools on deck

Editor note: Dan Bowyer took extensive pics of this demo.  See the full gallery of images HERE.




April 23rd 2016 NWBA Event Update

Berkley TackWe proudly present to you :

Berkley Tack demonstrating
Skills and Trinkets: Small projects building skills

Demonstration begins in the morning.  There will be open forge in the afternoon, when NWBA members can get into the forge fire and try their hand at the demo tricks and tips.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

9:00 AM: Demonstration Begins
Noon: Break for Lunch
1:00 PM: Open Forge time until 4 PM

(The demonstrator for April 23rd was changed, Tim Gabriel is not able to demo, hopefully he can reschedule a fly press demo)…

Also scheduled on April 23rd is an NWBA Board meeting, the meeting begins at 12:30 PM.  All current NWBA members are welcome to come. The board meeting location has been changed.  The meeting will now be taking place at the Longview Public Library,  1600 Louisiana St., Longview WA 98632

Touchstone Center for Crafts

Hart Moore - ExteriorBlacksmithing Opportunities at Touchstone Center For Crafts
1049 Wharton Furnace Rd.
Farmington, PA 15437

About Touchstone
Touchstone Center for Crafts is a unique three-season, 501(c)(3) nonprofit craft school in the beautiful Laurel Highlands, only 60 miles southeast of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Founded in 1972 as Pioneer Crafts Council, Touchstone’s original mission was to foster interest in the preservation of traditional mountain crafts. Today, this unique craft school has expanded to include contemporary and experimental techniques in addition to traditional and historic methods in disciplines such as blacksmithing, ceramics, metals, textiles, glass, oil and watercolor painting, photography, printmaking and sculpture.  As Pennsylvania’s only residential craft school, Touchstone offers both beginners and seasoned artists more than one hundred week-long and weekend courses taught by some of North America’s finest artists and artisans.

Hart Moore - ForgesTeaching Opportunities

Touchstone is currently looking for high-caliber instructors to teach blacksmithing and/or other art/craft forms. For those interested in teaching, information on how to submit a proposal to be considered for the 2017 season can be found at

I wouldn’t have enough room to list all of our fabulous instructors in our 44 year history, but to give you an idea of who you might see in our catalog each year, I’ve included some instructors and demonstrators I’ve been fortunate to work with over the better part of the past decade:

Tom Latané • Mark Aspery • Fred Crist • Peter Ross • Alice James • Japheth Howard • Phil Heath • Alison Finn • Stephen Yusko • Bob Rupert • Glenn Horr • Jonathan Nedbor • John Medwedeff • Jody Best • Richard Sheppard • Jerry Darnell • Wayne Apgar • Ken Carter • Dennis Gilkey • Marc Yanko • Ken Roby • Greg Gehner • Randy McDaniel • Nigel Tudor • Nick Ireys • Chris Winterstein • Bob Elliott • Michael Walker • Tom Boone • Kim Thomas • Pat Livengood • Bob Parks • Richard Becker • Nicholas Kimball, and more.

Studio Fellow, Technician and Assistantship Positions

Touchstone is currently seeking seasonal staff to help manage and assist workshops and operations in our Hart Moore Blacksmithing Studio. More information on the positions and how to apply may be found at

Hart Moore InteriorHart Moore Blacksmithing Studio and Metals and Jewelry Studio

Touchstone’s Hart Moore Blacksmithing Studio is well-equipped with 12 coal student forge stations, 1 coal master/instructor forge station, and 2 gas forges are available for use. We have a number of power and treadle hammers, including a Bradley 100, Big Blu Max 100, and Bick Lick. The shop has additional equipment for welding, grinding, sandblasting, plus swages, mandrills, and more for use. The tool room has various hammers, tongs, clamps, files, etc., enough for a full class. We keep steel and other materials stocked based on instructor submissions for what is needed to carry out their workshop(s). I’ve attached a few photos of the shop. One photo is of the shop as a whole; please note some of the equipment has since been replaced with newer equipment and the fly press is no longer here.

In addition to the Hart Moore Blacksmithing Studio, we have a Metals and Jewelry Studio where we host a variety of workshops with renowned instructors. This studio also provides 1 instructor and 12 students with their own jewelry bench/workstation for the duration of each workshop. The space is well-designed by Wayne Werner and will suit most needs to carry out classes on a myriad of techniques in metalsmithing.

For the majority of our workshop sessions, a studio technician and/or assistant will be available to help instructors and students with workshop needs.


Each year, Touchstone brings amazing, knowledgeable instructors to teach weekend, extended weekend, and week-long sessions in blacksmithing and other art/craft forms. We host classes to accommodate all skill levels, from beginner to advanced. Most of our students are adults (ages 18-90); however, we do have some classes for teens (high school students, ages 13-18) and children (ages 6-12). I’ve attached a listing of our 2016 blacksmithing and metals workshops, plus more information may be found on our website (

Most of our students choose to lodge on our campus during their session. You’ll find a variety of lodging options that include a meal plan to our dining hall. Our culinary manager and chef Meryl makes delicious and filling meals, and can accommodate most special dietary needs with advance notice.

Scholarships and Discounts

Touchstone has a limited number of scholarships available to deserving students each season. Information on the available scholarships and how to apply is found at

Touchstone offers a 10 percent early bird tuition discount to those who register for a workshop by April 30th. Additionally, we offer discounts to those who live within Fayette County, Pennsylvania, and in nearby counties, plus discounts to K-12 teachers currently employed in any school district. Anyone who is current on their Touchstone membership may also qualify for certain tuition and/or other discounts. More information may be found on our website.

If your group is willing to place information regarding Touchstone in a newsletter or on your website, we would be happy to add your guild to a listing of groups of which would qualify for a maker’s discount of 5 percent off tuition. I would only request a copy of the newsletter and/or a link to your site showing Touchstone’s info. To verify that someone is a member of your guild, I would also request a listing of your members – I am not requesting contact or other personal information, only names (for verification) of current members of whom the discount could be received.

Annual Symposiums: Jim Campbell Hammer-In and Alchemist Picnic

The Jim Campbell Hammer-In is a yearly celebration of all things blacksmithing, honoring the enduring legacy of longtime volunteer and friend to Touchstone, Jim Campbell. This year’s symposium is being held in conjunction with the Alchemist Picnic, an annual gathering of metalsmiths and jewelers from the mid-Atlantic region and beyond offering attendees a wide variety of metals-related demonstrations.

The May 6-8, 2016 weekend will include artist lectures, forging demonstrations, gourmet camp food, a tool swap, roundtable discussion, and good old blacksmithing and metalsmithing camaraderie. The crossover presenter for both these events is Paige Davis. The Jim Campbell Hammer-In demonstrators are Ellen Durkan and Nick Ireys. The Alchemist Picnic presenters are April Wood, Heidi Lowe, and Andrew Haviland. More information on our presenters and event pricing may be found on our website.