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  • conradh@efn.org
    I m a blacksmith who s getting interested in woodworking, from the toolmaking side. I ve always made my own hammer handles and such, but tried my hand at
    Message 1 of 17 , Jun 24, 2008
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      I'm a blacksmith who's getting interested in woodworking, from the
      toolmaking side. I've always made my own hammer handles and such, but
      tried my hand at making planes and found it fascinating. So now I've set
      myself a couple of ambitchious projects, like a period _portable_
      blacksmith shop, hopefully deliverable on a long Agricola-style open
      wheelbarrow in one trip by tired old me.

      The other is to make working replicas of the tools shown in Jean
      Bourdichon's 1500 picture of the carver-cabinetmaker. So far I've done a
      few simple chisels and gouges, and the big jointer plane that the guy in
      the picture is using. That turned out well, in air-dried ash that has
      been pretty stable, with hand-forged blade and crosspin of OCS steel. It
      works fine for edge-jointing, but surfacing (like the guy in the picture
      is doing) takes a very careful setting of the blade. Put down a hair more
      than the finest shaving, and that broad blade will stop you dead! Perhaps
      if you trained a gorilla to use a push stick.... Anyway, learning things
      like that is what period projects are about for me.

      As a smith, I specialize in hardware and housewares, including door and
      chest hinges, box irons, handles, latches, brackets, and of course
      toolmaking. I'm open to custom orders from and interesting collaborations
      with woodworkers, especially the large number who know cool stuff that I
      don't.

      I live in Adiantum in AnTir, which I helped found lo these 35 years ago.

      Looking forward to learning more from folk here!

      Ulfhedinn inn vegfarandi

      mka Conrad Hodson
    • Bill McNutt
      Have you managed to document a portable forge in period? Master William _____ From: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com [mailto:medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com] On
      Message 2 of 17 , Jun 25, 2008
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        Have you managed to document a portable forge in period?
         
        Master William


        From: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com [mailto:medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of conradh@...
        Sent: Tuesday, June 24, 2008 6:10 PM
        To: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: [MedievalSawdust] Hello--New to group

        I'm a blacksmith who's getting interested in woodworking, from the
        toolmaking side. I've always made my own hammer handles and such, but
        tried my hand at making planes and found it fascinating. So now I've set
        myself a couple of ambitchious projects, like a period _portable_
        blacksmith shop, hopefully deliverable on a long Agricola-style open
        wheelbarrow in one trip by tired old me.

        The other is to make working replicas of the tools shown in Jean
        Bourdichon's 1500 picture of the carver-cabinetmaker . So far I've done a
        few simple chisels and gouges, and the big jointer plane that the guy in
        the picture is using. That turned out well, in air-dried ash that has
        been pretty stable, with hand-forged blade and crosspin of OCS steel. It
        works fine for edge-jointing, but surfacing (like the guy in the picture
        is doing) takes a very careful setting of the blade. Put down a hair more
        than the finest shaving, and that broad blade will stop you dead! Perhaps
        if you trained a gorilla to use a push stick.... Anyway, learning things
        like that is what period projects are about for me.

        As a smith, I specialize in hardware and housewares, including door and
        chest hinges, box irons, handles, latches, brackets, and of course
        toolmaking. I'm open to custom orders from and interesting collaborations
        with woodworkers, especially the large number who know cool stuff that I
        don't.

        I live in Adiantum in AnTir, which I helped found lo these 35 years ago.

        Looking forward to learning more from folk here!

        Ulfhedinn inn vegfarandi

        mka Conrad Hodson

      • conradh@efn.org
        ... So now I ve set myself ... Not directly. They re strongly implied in text accounts, though. For example, the account of the guy who couldn t be found to
        Message 3 of 17 , Jun 25, 2008
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          On Wed, June 25, 2008 7:36 am, Bill McNutt wrote:
          > Have you managed to document a portable forge in period?

          So now I've set myself
          > a couple of ambitchious projects, like a period _portable_ blacksmith
          > shop, hopefully deliverable on a long Agricola-style open wheelbarrow in
          > one trip by tired old me.


          Not directly. They're strongly implied in text accounts, though. For
          example, the account of the guy who couldn't be found to claim his prize
          after winning the tournament, and was finally located at a blacksmith's
          booth, head on the anvil while the smith worked to get the jammed helmet
          off his head. This apparently was a temporary setup at the tourney field
          (presumably for field repairs such as this, resetting thrown horseshoes,
          and the like)--there is no mention of them going into the town and looking
          for him there.

          The implication is that some smiths would set up in a temporary booth at
          such events, especially those who specialized in armor, blades and
          farrier's work. Such smiths are known to have traveled with armies as
          well. What we do _not_ have, AFAIK, is any depiction or artifact evidence
          of what portable gear was like.

          Smiths tend to be pragmatic problem solvers, because customers are always
          coming up with odd requests and challenging repairs. So my approach has
          been to look at known equipment of the period, with an eye to light weight
          and maximum versatility--just what any smith would do if he had to operate
          away from his regular shop, in any era.

          Most smiths you see working in the SCA are using nothing close to medieval
          gear. Half of them use late 19th Century hand-crank blowers (when they
          aren't using propane forges!) If you do see a bellows, it always seems to
          be a "great bellows"--the over-and-under style of reservoir over pump,
          invented about 1600. Medieval Europeans used a pair of single bellows
          side by side, with a rocker beam and weights so that one recharged with
          air while the other was blowing the fire. Anvils are almost always the
          London Pattern (the kind everybody thinks about when they hear the word
          "anvil", the kind that gets dropped on hapless cartoon characters) That
          anvil was developed around 1700. Period anvils were generally smaller and
          often hornless blocks of iron--horns were frequently on bickerns or small
          stakes completely separate from the main anvil used for general forgings.
          That main anvil would likely be stone, in the first half of the Middle
          Ages especially. I've done this; the surface roughens very quickly, and
          so does the surface of your iron workpiece. Heavy forging would be done
          on the stone, and then the surface cleaned up and final details done on a
          small iron stake, some of which weighed only a few pounds.

          Medieval forging hammers had a different profile than smiths use
          today--typically a straight bottom line where a modern one would be
          symmetrical around a center line from face to peen. Vises were only
          available toward the end of our period--I've not seen one before 1500, and
          then only in south German illustrations such as Jost Amman. Southern
          Germany was the high-tech center of the world at this time, and pioneering
          innovative uses of screw threads in particular, as fasteners, in the
          printing press, the first rifled gunbarrels and, seemingly, the first
          screw vises. Before that smiths had to use work-arounds such as punched
          plates to hold the other end of workpieces, or just husky assistants.

          A working smithy at an event is a fine thing--I just had the idea that it
          would be nice to have something earlier than a 19th Century smithy when
          the event is an SCA one. So my notion is to assemble a smithy entirely of
          period tooling, and then make it as portable as possible using period
          transportation technology. Since I don't have a horse or a place to keep
          one, I'm trying to see if I can fit all my gear on a period wheelbarrow
          and still be able to lift the handles. It's not really a portable craft,
          but the demands of war and commerce have forced smiths to pretend that it
          is, for at least a couple thousand years now!

          So far I have a small side-draft forge (the kind English smiths are still
          using), a small block anvil with a horned stake off to one side, a
          five-pound hand hammer of period style, and I'm working on an ironbound
          toolchest and a period bellows. I tested the forge and anvil at Egils
          Tourney here in May, and they worked quite well even though I had a
          hand-crank blower for an air supply. I _sold_ that blower at that event,
          though, and I've bought some very nice pigskin for the bellows, so
          hopefully by next time I'll have a more period upgrade in action.

          I thought of coopering up a tub for quenching water, but I've never done
          cooperage and wooden tubs weigh quite a bit, so I may just dig a hole and
          line it with a piece of hide. (Documentable back to the Mesolithic!)

          So my notion is that a portable smithy with actual period tooling, and
          movable by period means, is a drastic improvement on what I've seen at
          events for the last thirty years. I can't document the total arrangement
          of items, but period illustrations show no standardization of smithy
          layouts anyway. "Whatever works" seems to have been the rule, then as
          now. So I'm focusing on a setup that will show people how medieval, as
          opposed to 19th Century, smiths did their work, and trying to make that
          setup out of materials that would raise no eyebrows in the 16th Century.
          Fastenings are rivets, tusk-tenoned mortice joints, and forged nails, the
          bellows is boards not plywood, and there won't be a single arc-weld in the
          whole thing.

          I'd be very interested in any info (especially period illustrations) that
          anyone could provide on smith's tools in period. I have quite a file of
          them, but almost all from England, Scandinavia, France and Germany. Even
          from those countries, I'm sure my collection is far from complete.

          Ulfhedinn
        • kirkdrago
          Welcome, I have no doubt your expertise will likely be called upon to fill in some of the gaps in our knowledge as well. KirkD
          Message 4 of 17 , Jun 25, 2008
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            Welcome,

            I have no doubt your expertise will likely be called upon to fill in
            some of the gaps in our knowledge as well.

            KirkD

            --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, conradh@... wrote:
            >
            > I'm a blacksmith who's getting interested in woodworking, from the
            > toolmaking side.
            >
            > Looking forward to learning more from folk here!
            >
            > Ulfhedinn inn vegfarandi
            >
            > mka Conrad Hodson
            >
          • Jeff Johnson
            Color me intrigued... Got photos of the tools? Geoff B. ... I ve set ... done a ... steel. It ... more ... Perhaps ... things ... collaborations
            Message 5 of 17 , Jun 25, 2008
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              Color me intrigued... Got photos of the tools?

              Geoff B.

              --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, conradh@... wrote:
              >
              > I'm a blacksmith who's getting interested in woodworking, from the
              > toolmaking side. I've always made my own hammer handles and such, but
              > tried my hand at making planes and found it fascinating. So now
              I've set
              > myself a couple of ambitchious projects, like a period _portable_
              > blacksmith shop, hopefully deliverable on a long Agricola-style open
              > wheelbarrow in one trip by tired old me.
              >
              > The other is to make working replicas of the tools shown in Jean
              > Bourdichon's 1500 picture of the carver-cabinetmaker. So far I've
              done a
              > few simple chisels and gouges, and the big jointer plane that the guy in
              > the picture is using. That turned out well, in air-dried ash that has
              > been pretty stable, with hand-forged blade and crosspin of OCS
              steel. It
              > works fine for edge-jointing, but surfacing (like the guy in the picture
              > is doing) takes a very careful setting of the blade. Put down a hair
              more
              > than the finest shaving, and that broad blade will stop you dead!
              Perhaps
              > if you trained a gorilla to use a push stick.... Anyway, learning
              things
              > like that is what period projects are about for me.
              >
              > As a smith, I specialize in hardware and housewares, including door and
              > chest hinges, box irons, handles, latches, brackets, and of course
              > toolmaking. I'm open to custom orders from and interesting
              collaborations
              > with woodworkers, especially the large number who know cool stuff that I
              > don't.
              >
              > I live in Adiantum in AnTir, which I helped found lo these 35 years ago.
              >
              > Looking forward to learning more from folk here!
              >
              > Ulfhedinn inn vegfarandi
              >
              > mka Conrad Hodson
              >
            • leaking pen
              Thats a very interesting read. blacksmithing is an interest of mine that i want to get into, but beyond making a few small things with modern materials for
              Message 6 of 17 , Jun 25, 2008
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                Thats a very interesting read. blacksmithing is an interest of mine
                that i want to get into, but beyond making a few small things with
                modern materials for friends, ive not the time or money. YET.

                now then

                I thought of coopering up a tub for quenching water, but I've never done
                cooperage and wooden tubs weigh quite a bit, so I may just dig a hole and
                line it with a piece of hide. (Documentable back to the Mesolithic!)

                if youre using some kind of wheelbarrow, why wouldnt the barrow do
                double duty? empty it out, take the leather cover and line it with
                it, and boom, wooden tub. I think a lot of things would do double
                duty in such a situation.

                On Wed, Jun 25, 2008 at 3:02 PM, <conradh@...> wrote:
                > On Wed, June 25, 2008 7:36 am, Bill McNutt wrote:
                >> Have you managed to document a portable forge in period?
                >
                > So now I've set myself
                >> a couple of ambitchious projects, like a period _portable_ blacksmith
                >> shop, hopefully deliverable on a long Agricola-style open wheelbarrow in
                >> one trip by tired old me.
                >
                > Not directly. They're strongly implied in text accounts, though. For
                > example, the account of the guy who couldn't be found to claim his prize
                > after winning the tournament, and was finally located at a blacksmith's
                > booth, head on the anvil while the smith worked to get the jammed helmet
                > off his head. This apparently was a temporary setup at the tourney field
                > (presumably for field repairs such as this, resetting thrown horseshoes,
                > and the like)--there is no mention of them going into the town and looking
                > for him there.
                >
                > The implication is that some smiths would set up in a temporary booth at
                > such events, especially those who specialized in armor, blades and
                > farrier's work. Such smiths are known to have traveled with armies as
                > well. What we do _not_ have, AFAIK, is any depiction or artifact evidence
                > of what portable gear was like.
                >
                > Smiths tend to be pragmatic problem solvers, because customers are always
                > coming up with odd requests and challenging repairs. So my approach has
                > been to look at known equipment of the period, with an eye to light weight
                > and maximum versatility--just what any smith would do if he had to operate
                > away from his regular shop, in any era.
                >
                > Most smiths you see working in the SCA are using nothing close to medieval
                > gear. Half of them use late 19th Century hand-crank blowers (when they
                > aren't using propane forges!) If you do see a bellows, it always seems to
                > be a "great bellows"--the over-and-under style of reservoir over pump,
                > invented about 1600. Medieval Europeans used a pair of single bellows
                > side by side, with a rocker beam and weights so that one recharged with
                > air while the other was blowing the fire. Anvils are almost always the
                > London Pattern (the kind everybody thinks about when they hear the word
                > "anvil", the kind that gets dropped on hapless cartoon characters) That
                > anvil was developed around 1700. Period anvils were generally smaller and
                > often hornless blocks of iron--horns were frequently on bickerns or small
                > stakes completely separate from the main anvil used for general forgings.
                > That main anvil would likely be stone, in the first half of the Middle
                > Ages especially. I've done this; the surface roughens very quickly, and
                > so does the surface of your iron workpiece. Heavy forging would be done
                > on the stone, and then the surface cleaned up and final details done on a
                > small iron stake, some of which weighed only a few pounds.
                >
                > Medieval forging hammers had a different profile than smiths use
                > today--typically a straight bottom line where a modern one would be
                > symmetrical around a center line from face to peen. Vises were only
                > available toward the end of our period--I've not seen one before 1500, and
                > then only in south German illustrations such as Jost Amman. Southern
                > Germany was the high-tech center of the world at this time, and pioneering
                > innovative uses of screw threads in particular, as fasteners, in the
                > printing press, the first rifled gunbarrels and, seemingly, the first
                > screw vises. Before that smiths had to use work-arounds such as punched
                > plates to hold the other end of workpieces, or just husky assistants.
                >
                > A working smithy at an event is a fine thing--I just had the idea that it
                > would be nice to have something earlier than a 19th Century smithy when
                > the event is an SCA one. So my notion is to assemble a smithy entirely of
                > period tooling, and then make it as portable as possible using period
                > transportation technology. Since I don't have a horse or a place to keep
                > one, I'm trying to see if I can fit all my gear on a period wheelbarrow
                > and still be able to lift the handles. It's not really a portable craft,
                > but the demands of war and commerce have forced smiths to pretend that it
                > is, for at least a couple thousand years now!
                >
                > So far I have a small side-draft forge (the kind English smiths are still
                > using), a small block anvil with a horned stake off to one side, a
                > five-pound hand hammer of period style, and I'm working on an ironbound
                > toolchest and a period bellows. I tested the forge and anvil at Egils
                > Tourney here in May, and they worked quite well even though I had a
                > hand-crank blower for an air supply. I _sold_ that blower at that event,
                > though, and I've bought some very nice pigskin for the bellows, so
                > hopefully by next time I'll have a more period upgrade in action.
                >
                > I thought of coopering up a tub for quenching water, but I've never done
                > cooperage and wooden tubs weigh quite a bit, so I may just dig a hole and
                > line it with a piece of hide. (Documentable back to the Mesolithic!)
                >
                > So my notion is that a portable smithy with actual period tooling, and
                > movable by period means, is a drastic improvement on what I've seen at
                > events for the last thirty years. I can't document the total arrangement
                > of items, but period illustrations show no standardization of smithy
                > layouts anyway. "Whatever works" seems to have been the rule, then as
                > now. So I'm focusing on a setup that will show people how medieval, as
                > opposed to 19th Century, smiths did their work, and trying to make that
                > setup out of materials that would raise no eyebrows in the 16th Century.
                > Fastenings are rivets, tusk-tenoned mortice joints, and forged nails, the
                > bellows is boards not plywood, and there won't be a single arc-weld in the
                > whole thing.
                >
                > I'd be very interested in any info (especially period illustrations) that
                > anyone could provide on smith's tools in period. I have quite a file of
                > them, but almost all from England, Scandinavia, France and Germany. Even
                > from those countries, I'm sure my collection is far from complete.
                >
                > Ulfhedinn
                >
                >
              • Rebekah d'Avignon
                I ve also wanted to bang on metal on occassion....nothing long-term, mind you, just the occassional piece that is needed or an idea that needs investigating.
                Message 7 of 17 , Jun 26, 2008
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                  I've also wanted to "bang on metal" on occassion....nothing long-term, mind you, just the occassional piece that is needed or an idea that needs investigating. This is probably a "period pursuit" as much as modern. Not every rural person "runs to a carpenter" every time he needs something cobbled together, nor is he a combination carpenter-blacksmith-electrician-etc. Most likely (very hard to document) the average person (middle class?) would bang out something that would work - especially if it was a small job or he didn't have the coin to run over to the blacksmith.
                   
                  Concerning the wheelbarrow - double-duty was a good idea. St Roy made a wheelbarrow over the course of two shows that would pass for period. I found a source for several metals including cold-rolled steel (for the tyre) and planned to make an overhead, hanging pot holder for the kitchen since Harbor Freight has decided not to carry them any more.


                  leaking pen <itsatrap@...> wrote:
                  Thats a very interesting read. blacksmithing is an interest of mine that i want to get into, but beyond making a few small things with modern materials for friends, ive not the time or money. YET.

                  if youre using some kind of wheelbarrow, why wouldnt the barrow do
                  double duty? empty it out, take the leather cover and line it with it, and boom, wooden tub. I think a lot of things would do double duty in such a situation.
                  .




                  RdA
                  Tools alone do not a craftsman make.

                • conradh@efn.org
                  ... Depends on when and where you were. In all areas, the more rural you were the more likely the attitude you mention. In medieval European towns, guilds
                  Message 8 of 17 , Jun 26, 2008
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                    On Thu, June 26, 2008 4:29 am, Rebekah d'Avignon wrote:
                    > I've also wanted to "bang on metal" on occassion....nothing long-term,
                    > mind you, just the occassional piece that is needed or an idea that needs
                    > investigating. This is probably a "period pursuit" as much as modern. Not
                    > every rural person "runs to a carpenter" every time he needs something
                    > cobbled together, nor is he a combination
                    > carpenter-blacksmith-electrician-etc. Most likely (very hard to document)
                    > the average person (middle class?) would bang out something that would
                    > work - especially if it was a small job or he didn't have the coin to run
                    > over to the blacksmith.

                    Depends on when and where you were. In all areas, the more rural you were
                    the more likely the attitude you mention. In medieval European towns,
                    guilds often enforced trade secrets and exclusive jurisdiction over
                    products and tools and training. "Right of search" when granted a guild
                    gave it what amounts to a search warrant to go through people's shops and
                    confiscate products that did not meet guild standards or were produced in
                    bootleg fashion. There were places on the Continent where it was
                    literally against the law for anyone outside the guild to cut a mortise or
                    own a plane.

                    With blacksmithing in particular, the equipment was very specialized and
                    expensive in period, which made it hard for amateurs. Metal, especially
                    carbon steel, was expensive enough to be a major barrier for a journeyman
                    smith who wanted a shop of his own. This is reflected in the
                    near-universal custom of designing tools where a small strip (the "bit")
                    of carbon steel was forge-welded to a larger piece of wrought iron to make
                    an axe head, a chisel or even a plane iron. (Fine Japanese tools are
                    still made this way).

                    Because even the wrought iron was expensive, we see the smiths going to a
                    lot of extra work to adapt the tool to a wooden handle--often as great a
                    proportion of wood to metal in the tool as possible--such a thing as a
                    forge-welded socket for a chisel handle just about triples the work
                    involved in making a functional chisel compared to simply making the whole
                    thing from iron and steel!

                    Even in Scandinavia, where self-reliance was valued and guilds much
                    weaker, blacksmithing was a specialty. There every farmstead was expected
                    to have a smithy, even if no one there knew the craft. The smiths
                    traveled about the district for part of the year, and didn't have to carry
                    so much because the forge, anvil, water tub and charcoal supply was there
                    at each farm. (The famous Mastermyr box of tools and scrap and repair
                    projects was apparently lost by such a traveling smith while crossing a
                    lake; as lakes do, it gradually silted up, was turned into a farm field,
                    and a thousand years or so later a plow snagged the box.) In this area,
                    there would be no legal repercussions if some farmer did know how to do
                    his own smithing, but if he did the neighbors would probably start
                    bringing work to him, and pretty soon he'd be another part-time
                    farmer/smith, just like the Mastermyr guy.

                    One place where I know your model fits well is rural America from Colonial
                    times on. Maybe one farm in four or five had someone who could do basic
                    ironwork, and had a few tools for it. He'd shoe his horses, draw out his
                    plowshare to extend its life, make simple tool repairs. Often he'd do a
                    bit for the neighbors too. When he got a job that was beyond his simple
                    skills and few tools, it would go off to the full-time smith a few miles
                    away. But that took time and money (and then and now, farm tools always
                    crap out at busy times of year!) so there was incentive to do the work
                    yourself if you could. This self-reliant attitude clashed with British
                    mercantilist politics, which wanted a monopoly of manufacturing skills
                    concentrated in the mother country. All sorts of taxes and laws tried to
                    restrict ironwork to basic repairs, as opposed to cottage-industry
                    production of nails, hardware, guns and so on. American rural
                    stubbornness eventually prevailed, with nailmakers as with whiskey makers,
                    but it was a struggle. By colonial American times, however, iron was at
                    least an order of magnitude cheaper in real terms than it had been in the
                    early Middle Ages. If an American-type handyman situation occurred back
                    in Medieval times, I would bet on finding it in the fringe areas more than
                    the Continental core. Places such as Scandinavia and the Celtic areas,
                    perhaps, where self-reliance and general bloody-mindedness were valued and
                    authority was thin on the ground.

                    Whether this actually happened here and there I don't know. It could have.


                    >
                    > Concerning the wheelbarrow - double-duty was a good idea. St Roy made a
                    > wheelbarrow over the course of two shows that would pass for period. I
                    > found a source for several metals including cold-rolled steel (for the
                    > tyre) and planned to make an overhead, hanging pot holder for the kitchen
                    > since Harbor Freight has decided not to carry them any more.

                    A nice project. I have a half-finished one in my smithy right now I need
                    to finish up in time for the fair in a couple weeks. :-)

                    >
                    > if youre using some kind of wheelbarrow, why wouldnt the barrow do double
                    > duty? empty it out, take the leather cover and line it with it, and boom,
                    > wooden tub. I think a lot of things would do double duty in such a
                    > situation.
                    >

                    In my plan, I'm hoping the barrow can serve as the foundation for the
                    bellows and forge, which otherwise would have to be an extra bench or
                    table, plus overhead rigging for the bellows levers. I'm basically making
                    a portable framework for the heart of the shop, and overbuilding it enough
                    that it can carry the anvil/block, a toolbox and a sack of charcoal as
                    well. It's a cool-looking thing on paper; we'll see if the result is
                    anything a mortal can lift and move!

                    If the dream of having the whole shop on a barrow, with a fire going ten
                    minutes after dropping the barrow handles, turns out to be too much to
                    hope for, the barrow will become a general hauler and the smithy will be
                    set up piece by piece. (This of course may have been how some smiths
                    moved their stuff out to tourneys and the like in period, too.)

                    Ulfhedinn
                  • conradh@efn.org
                    ... Just getting a website together for them. If you don t mind a few typos I haven t cleaned up yet, the part that shows the joiner s shop tools is up. The
                    Message 9 of 17 , Jun 28, 2008
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                      On Wed, June 25, 2008 6:39 pm, Jeff Johnson wrote:
                      > Color me intrigued... Got photos of the tools?

                      Just getting a website together for them. If you don't mind a few typos I
                      haven't cleaned up yet, the part that shows the joiner's shop tools is up.
                      The URL is www.freewebs.com/ulfhedins/index%2D2.htm

                      I plan to have another page for the portable smithy, as it comes together,
                      and of course pages for other projects.

                      Ulfhedinn

                      >

                      >> I'm a blacksmith who's getting interested in woodworking, from the
                      >> toolmaking side. I've always made my own hammer handles and such, but
                      >> tried my hand at making planes and found it fascinating. So now
                      > I've set
                      >
                      >> myself a couple of ambitchious projects, like a period _portable_
                      >> blacksmith shop, hopefully deliverable on a long Agricola-style open
                      >> wheelbarrow in one trip by tired old me.
                      >>
                      >> The other is to make working replicas of the tools shown in Jean
                      >> Bourdichon's 1500 picture of the carver-cabinetmaker. So far I've
                      >>
                      > done a
                      >> few simple chisels and gouges, and the big jointer plane that the guy
                      >> in the picture is using. That turned out well, in air-dried ash that
                      >> has been pretty stable, with hand-forged blade and crosspin of OCS
                      > steel. It
                      >> works fine for edge-jointing, but surfacing (like the guy in the
                      >> picture is doing) takes a very careful setting of the blade. Put down a
                      >> hair
                      > more
                      >> than the finest shaving, and that broad blade will stop you dead!
                      > Perhaps
                      >
                      >> if you trained a gorilla to use a push stick.... Anyway, learning
                      > things
                      >> like that is what period projects are about for me.
                      >>
                      >> As a smith, I specialize in hardware and housewares, including door and
                      >> chest hinges, box irons, handles, latches, brackets, and of course
                      >> toolmaking. I'm open to custom orders from and interesting
                      > collaborations
                      >> with woodworkers, especially the large number who know cool stuff that
                      >> I
                      >> don't.
                      >>
                      >> I live in Adiantum in AnTir, which I helped found lo these 35 years
                      >> ago.
                      >>
                      >> Looking forward to learning more from folk here!
                      >>
                      >>
                      >> Ulfhedinn inn vegfarandi
                      >>
                      >>
                      >> mka Conrad Hodson
                      >>
                      >
                      >
                      >
                    • julian wilson
                      I tried cutting and pasting - and freewebs can t find that page. Would you please check it and re-post the URLfor us, please? Matthew Baker, old Jersey ...
                      Message 10 of 17 , Jun 30, 2008
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                        I tried cutting and pasting - and freewebs can't find that page. Would you please check it and re-post the URLfor us, please?
                        Matthew Baker,
                        "old" Jersey

                        --- On Sat, 28/6/08, conradh@... <conradh@...> wrote:


                        On Wed, June 25, 2008 6:39 pm, Jeff Johnson wrote:
                        > Color me intrigued... Got photos of the tools?

                        Just getting a website together for them. If you don't mind a few typos I
                        haven't cleaned up yet, the part that shows the joiner's shop tools is up.
                        The URL is www.freewebs. com/ulfhedins/ index%2D2. htm

                        I plan to have another page for the portable smithy, as it comes together,
                        and of course pages for other projects.

                        Ulfhedinn
                      • Wolf
                        http://www.freewebs.com/ulfhedins/index-2.htm (there s a few random spaces that get in the way ) Wolf
                        Message 11 of 17 , Jun 30, 2008
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                          http://www.freewebs.com/ulfhedins/index-2.htm

                          (there's a few random spaces that get in the way <g>)

                          Wolf

                          On Mon, 2008-06-30 at 21:50 +0000, julian wilson wrote:
                          > I tried cutting and pasting - and freewebs can't find that page. Would
                          > you please check it and re-post the URLfor us, please?
                          > Matthew Baker,
                          > "old" Jersey
                          >
                          > --- On Sat, 28/6/08, conradh@... <conradh@...> wrote:
                          >
                          > On Wed, June 25, 2008 6:39 pm, Jeff Johnson wrote:
                          > > Color me intrigued... Got photos of the tools?
                          >
                          > Just getting a website together for them. If you don't mind a few
                          > typos I
                          > haven't cleaned up yet, the part that shows the joiner's shop tools is
                          > up.
                          > The URL is www.freewebs. com/ulfhedins/ index%2D2. htm
                          >
                          > I plan to have another page for the portable smithy, as it comes
                          > together,
                          > and of course pages for other projects.
                          >
                          > Ulfhedinn
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                        • scott gates
                          So did you have any surviving tools to base the sizes off of? Or did you base them on scale considering the size of an average French craftsman of the time?
                          Message 12 of 17 , Jun 30, 2008
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                            So did you have any surviving tools to base the sizes off of?
                            Or did you base them on scale considering the size of an average French craftsman of the time?
                            That planer looks like once you have learned that shallow is the only to way to use it, it might be very efficient.
                            It certainly is a beautiful piece of work.


                            Evil is, as Evil does



                            To: medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com
                            From: wolfeyes@...
                            Date: Mon, 30 Jun 2008 15:25:07 -0700
                            Subject: Re: [MedievalSawdust] URL doesn't work for me - was - Bourdichon Shop replica tool pix

                            http://www.freewebs .com/ulfhedins/ index-2.htm

                            (there's a few random spaces that get in the way <g>)

                            Wolf

                            On Mon, 2008-06-30 at 21:50 +0000, julian wilson wrote:
                            > I tried cutting and pasting - and freewebs can't find that page. Would
                            > you please check it and re-post the URLfor us, please?
                            > Matthew Baker,
                            > "old" Jersey
                            >
                            > --- On Sat, 28/6/08, conradh@efn. org <conradh@efn. org> wrote:
                            >
                            > On Wed, June 25, 2008 6:39 pm, Jeff Johnson wrote:
                            > > Color me intrigued... Got photos of the tools?
                            >
                            > Just getting a website together for them. If you don't mind a few
                            > typos I
                            > haven't cleaned up yet, the part that shows the joiner's shop tools is
                            > up.
                            > The URL is www.freewebs. com/ulfhedins/ index%2D2. htm
                            >
                            > I plan to have another page for the portable smithy, as it comes
                            > together,
                            > and of course pages for other projects.
                            >
                            > Ulfhedinn
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >




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                          • conradh@efn.org
                            ... Thanks, Wolf. Dunno why those spaces were there--I don t think I typed them. But my partner s computer sometimes gives you messages with these little
                            Message 13 of 17 , Jul 1 7:48 AM
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                              On Mon, June 30, 2008 3:25 pm, Wolf wrote:
                              > http://www.freewebs.com/ulfhedins/index-2.htm
                              >
                              >
                              > (there's a few random spaces that get in the way <g>)
                              >
                              >
                              > Wolf
                              >

                              Thanks, Wolf. Dunno why those spaces were there--I don't think I typed
                              them. But my partner's computer sometimes gives you messages with these
                              little extras!

                              Ulfhedinn
                            • conradh@efn.org
                              ... Thank you! It was a fun project, and I m looking forward to doing the smaller plane. I think that will be more challenging even though easier to pick
                              Message 14 of 17 , Jul 1 7:58 AM
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                                On Mon, June 30, 2008 4:40 pm, scott gates wrote:
                                >

                                > So did you have any surviving tools to base the sizes off of?
                                > Or did you base them on scale considering the size of an average French
                                > craftsman of the time? That planer looks like once you have learned that
                                > shallow is the only to way to use it, it might be very efficient. It
                                > certainly is a beautiful piece of work.

                                Thank you! It was a fun project, and I'm looking forward to doing the
                                smaller plane. I think that will be more challenging even though easier
                                to pick up--the front tapers to make the horn, and I haven't done that
                                sort of spiral carving. I've already made the iron--of course, that's the
                                easy part! :-)

                                Surviving tools seem to be all sorts of sizes, within the limits of human
                                hands of course. This jointer plane is pushing those limits, IMHO.

                                I'm taking all my sizes off the artwork. Look at his hand width--that
                                plane is wider, perhaps half again as wide. So I called that five inches.
                                The length is from his elbow-to-fingertip distance. ISTR that medieval
                                Frenchmen averaged a little smaller than I am, but the plane is about as
                                big on me as the one in the picture is on him, or perhaps slightly
                                smaller.

                                Ulfhedinn
                              • Jeff Johnson
                                That s a great looking plane and drill, Ulfhedinn. I m a woodworker who s been looking at getting into blacksmithing from a toolmaking side. My intent has been
                                Message 15 of 17 , Jul 3 2:42 PM
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                                  That's a great looking plane and drill, Ulfhedinn. I'm a woodworker
                                  who's been looking at getting into blacksmithing from a toolmaking
                                  side. My intent has been to do the exact same project you are working
                                  on (curses, scooped again!).

                                  Jeff J./(SCA)Geoff B.

                                  --- In medievalsawdust@yahoogroups.com, conradh@... wrote:

                                  > Just getting a website together for them. If you don't mind a few
                                  typos I
                                  > haven't cleaned up yet, the part that shows the joiner's shop tools
                                  is up.
                                  > The URL is www.freewebs.com/ulfhedins/index%2D2.htm
                                  >
                                  > I plan to have another page for the portable smithy, as it comes
                                  together,
                                  > and of course pages for other projects.
                                  >
                                  > Ulfhedinn
                                  >
                                  > >
                                  >
                                  > >> I'm a blacksmith who's getting interested in woodworking, from the
                                  > >> toolmaking side.
                                • conradh@efn.org
                                  ... Thanks for the kind words. Of course, you could say we d both been scooped about 500 years ago by one or more French craftsmen, but that kind of goes with
                                  Message 16 of 17 , Jul 3 4:03 PM
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                                    On Thu, July 3, 2008 2:42 pm, Jeff Johnson wrote:
                                    > That's a great looking plane and drill, Ulfhedinn. I'm a woodworker
                                    > who's been looking at getting into blacksmithing from a toolmaking side. My
                                    > intent has been to do the exact same project you are working on (curses,
                                    > scooped again!).
                                    >

                                    Thanks for the kind words. Of course, you could say we'd both been
                                    scooped about 500 years ago by one or more French craftsmen, but that kind
                                    of goes with replication!

                                    I don't see how the world would be harmed by two good sets of these tools,
                                    either. Especially if we live on opposite sides of the continent or
                                    something like that. OTOH, if you live nearby, perhaps we could
                                    collaborate. I'm a long way from finished on this, and knowing me it
                                    could take years.

                                    Speaking of collaboration, I'd welcome a chance to brainstorm details of
                                    this drawing with someone who shares my interest in it. Some of my
                                    interpretations are guesswork, and someone else might have an very useful
                                    insight I haven't thought of myself.

                                    Also, I've been working from a full-page B&W illo in the Metropolitan
                                    Museum's _Secular Spirit_ book. I know the original was in color; I've
                                    seen a small version on the Net, but haven't been able to find a high-res
                                    copy. If you have or can find such a thing, it might settle several
                                    questions I've had about materials, construction details, etc.

                                    If you go ahead making some of these tools yourself, I'd be glad to share
                                    details of what I've already done, if that would be helpful. A book I
                                    found extremely helpful was Alan Moore and Musaemura Sithole's _How to
                                    Make Carpentry Tools_, Intermediate Technology Publications ltd, London,
                                    1997. The ISBN is 1-85339-406-8 and you can order it online from Powells
                                    Books in Portland.

                                    They also have a companion volume, _Basic Blacksmithing_, by Harries and
                                    Heer. These are some of the best how-tos I've ever read--they include
                                    _all_ the steps in a way most books do not. They are written for village
                                    development teachers in Africa, and they assume that all wood needs to be
                                    sized and squared, and that all metal is scrounged not bought. They
                                    casually mention the use of old motor oil for a quench "if it is available
                                    in your area" and say the same thing about old oil drums. Have you ever
                                    been so far out in the boondocks that they don't have old oil drums? Or
                                    motor vehicles of any kind? Their first illustration of how to make a
                                    bellows shows a goat carcass hung up with a rope, and marked to show where
                                    you cut the skin. The skin is filled with sand and hung up in the sun,
                                    rubbed with vegetable oil and tenderized with a stick. When they say
                                    "basic" they really mean it.

                                    Another useful book is _Wooden Planes and how to Make Them_, by Perch and
                                    Lee, Algrove Publishing, Almonte, Ontario, 2001. ISBN 1-894572-49-1.

                                    Farid ther vel ok heill,

                                    Ulfhedinn
                                  • Jeff Johnson
                                    Ulfhedinn Thanks for the pointers. I ve picked up a couple of plane books and a friend is going to teach me smithing at his place, but I ll pick up the books
                                    Message 17 of 17 , Jul 4 12:19 PM
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                                      Ulfhedinn

                                      Thanks for the pointers. I've picked up a couple of plane books and a
                                      friend is going to teach me smithing at his place, but I'll pick up
                                      the books you mention to help get going. I plan on taking years on
                                      this project as well.

                                      I suspect that you are correct about not being the first to do this
                                      project. And we certainly don't conflict, with me being in Maryland.
                                      As with the Mastermyr chest, it's enticing in it's completeness. I can
                                      help with getting a better image. Here's a link to a place that sells
                                      copies of the image:

                                      http://tiny.cc/93a86

                                      My wife bought me a small poster from this place last year. I might be
                                      able to scan some portions of it for better study.

                                      Regards,

                                      Jeff/Geoff
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