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Mike Williamson's Book Review: The Book of Blacksmithing

•, Mike Williamson
 I've known Mike Cardiff for a couple of decades, and can vouch for his competencies as a smith. He moves surely, wastes no effort, and turns out functional tools, blades and accoutrements in short order. I helped him find a publisher for this work, and am very glad to see it in print.

I'm quite impressed by the outcome. Mike's writing style is simple, clear and straightforward, and the illustrations by his brother are likewise very easy to understand and follow. This slim but surprisingly dense book first addresses safety, setup of a smith including choices of forge types, anvils and tools. It then does a detailed breakdown of various types of hammers, tongs, punches and chisels, shaping tools, and accessories like drills and grinders. Each major tool is accorded a description on how to select and use it, across a panoply of striking, gripping, bending, punching and abrading tools.

He covers buying and scrounging material for different purposes, and finding tools, or items that can be converted into tools, from various sources.

1 Comments in Response to

Comment by Ed Price
Entered on:

And don't forget about thermite. With thermite you can make blocks of many different kinds of steel simply by adding small amounts of different kinds of powdered metals and materials to the thermite mix. Actually, the numbers of different kinds of steels with different properties might be endless.

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