FOR AGE 21+ ONLY Dates: January 9th and 10th, 2016 (Saturday & Sunday / 10am - 6pm each day) AND February 20th and 21st, 2016 (Saturday & Sunday / 10am - 6pm each day) Would you like to hone your basic forging skills by making the simple yet essential articles of hardware (such as hooks, rings, chains, and hinges) that would have been common in any early European town or settlement? This beginning / intermediate level two-day blacksmithing class will focus on traditional techniques for making small utilitarian hardware. Intermediate students will also have the chance to do some forging in wrought iron as well as the opportunity to learn and practice forge welding. I offer a basic and intermediate level class in hardware forging designed to reinforce the common blacksmithing skills of students as they produce small utilitarian hardware. Intermediate students will have the opportunity learn small forge welding and the forging of wrought iron. This will be a wide-ranging class for a moderate number of beginning and intermediate blacksmithing students. We will make simple but essential articles such as hooks, chains, rings, hinges etc., which would have been common in any early European household or encampment. We will survey an archeological text covering artifacts recovered from the Viking town of Hedeby (in northern Germany) as a guide to technique and form for various categories of hardware. Modern mild steel will be used for most projects but intermediate students will also do some forging in wrought iron in order to learn about the unique properties of this historical material. Intermediate students will also have the opportunity to forge weld small chain to gain experience in this technique. Wrought Iron was the forgeable, industrial successor to bloomery iron, which had been produced for many centuries before it. Wrought iron was produced by burning the carbon out of pig iron (similar to cast iron) at intense heat. This process yielded a white hot, pasty mass of slag-soaked, low-carbon iron, which was consolidated into fibrous wrought iron of varying degrees of refinement. It was THE forgeable form of iron for centuries until the introduction of modern Bessemer iron. Student Tool Discounts: The specialized tools for this class will be available to the students at a 15% discount. Class space is very limited! Students will be registered in the order that their payments are received. This class will run if at least 3 students are enrolled by Sunday, January 3rd. Class Set-Up and Safety Considerations: -All necessary tools and materials will be provided for the students. -Students must bring their own safety glasses and wear them at all times in work areas (a few used pairs are usually available at the shop). -Students must wear snugly fitted, long-sleeved work shirts and long pants of cotton or wool (no nylon or polyester allowed) and firm, leather work-shoes. -Hearing protection is required and is provided in the shop in the form of foam ear-plugs. Students who need over-ear protection must provide their own. See you at the forge!
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