Northwest Blacksmith Association

June 2013 at the Mentoring Center


NWBA sponsored another great weekend of blacksmith demonstrations, hands-on work, and comradeship. There were two demonstrators, Dave Lisch on Saturday and Bill Apple on Sunday.  Saturday’s demonstration was followed by an open forge session that went on into the afternoon. A few people stayed into the evening to share a potluck with friends, and some stayed overnight to help with the move out of the Mentoring Center Sunday afternoon. We even had some local Longview smiths return Sunday specifically to help with the move out. ( Every July the building that houses the Mentoring Center is used for the Cowlitz County Fair, and our moving out for that month is included in our lease agreement.) We will be moving back in at our September 28th gathering, mark your calendars and come help with the move and stay for the demonstration. The end of September does seem like a long time from now, but don’t forget that Western States Blacksmith Conference is four full days in August, the 22nd-25th.

Dave Lisch pipe work demonstration

Dave Lisch pipe work demonstration

Dave Lisch demonstrating at our Mentoring Center, June 22, 2013

Dave Lisch demonstrating at our Mentoring Center, June 22, 2013

Dave using his nifty fullering tool.

Dave using his nifty fullering tool.

Approximately 50 people were on hand to take in Dave Lisch’s demonstration, techniques for forging pipe. He showed how to make an insect and an ornamented candlestick, throwing in many ideas about what else is possible with forged pipe. Dave is a skilled demonstrator, sharing his practical and aesthetic experience with humor and candor.

Sunday morning there was a small crowd gathered for Bill’s demonstration on making feathers from a horse shoe. Bill had to put up with people scurrying about moving out while he had a little oasis of forge, anvil and semi-circle of attentive smiths. The feathers Bill makes are quite realistic, and they make a nice decorative gift, a great alternative to the usual rose or bottle opener.

Bill Apple demonstrating at the anvil.

Bill Apple demonstrating at the anvil.

Bill Apple holds the attention of the crowd.

Bill Apple holds the attention of the group.

Bill Apple feather as demnostrated.

Bill Apple’s feathers as demonstrated.

There was not time (or equipment) to follow up Bill’s demo with an open forge, so immediately afterwards it was all hands on deck for moving out the last of the equipment and materials from the building. It looked mighty lonely in there with barely a trace that the NWBA had ever been there. We have had monthly demonstrations and open forges since January 2013, and the Mentoring Center has met and exceeded the expectations of the Board of Directors of the NWBA. In addition to the blacksmith education, many members got to spend time with fellow smiths they had never had the opportunity to hang out with before, strengthening friendships between our members. The learning and fellowship will continue at the Mentoring Center in September.

Bruce Weakly, NWBA Secretary and his wife Janis taking care of the sign-in table and answering questions.

Bruce Weakly, NWBA Secretary and his wife Janis taking care of the sign-in table and answering questions.

The Mentoring Center after move out... we'll be back soon.

The Mentoring Center after move out… we’ll be back soon.

A bit of whimsy found at the Mentoring Center: "Worst Super Hero Name Ever!"

A bit of whimsy found at the Mentoring Center: “Worst Super Hero Name Ever!”

Thank you Dave Lisch and Bill Apple for generously giving of your time and expertise to the NWBA members.

Thank you Darryl Nelson, Bruce Weakly and Janis Weakly for helping out at the desk.

And a very special thank you to those who helped with our move:
Ronnie Selby, Mike Farley, Al Godwin, Mel Nelson, Lenny Eisenbeis, Bill Apple, Dean Mook, and Jay McGowan.

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