Archive for September, 2012

Hello Mr. Wright

Sunday, September 30th, 2012

The newest addition to my collection: a 250 Lb. Peter Wright!

Happy doesn’t even begin to describe it… I’ve been searching for an anvil like this since the beginning.

The guy I bought it from also had a small portable forge available.  It’s a fair bit larger than my first little rivet forge, and much smaller (and lighter) than my large forge.  It’s complete with a small hand-crank blower that’s in good running order too.  The other things I picked up were two nice post vices, both in good working order, complete with their springs and mounting brackets (which my first one was missing).

All in all, well worth the drive to Guelph and back.

A rock and a hard place

Friday, September 14th, 2012

Far… Too… Much… Stone…..

So apparently, building a dry stone wall involves moving a substantial mountain of heavy rocks by hand.  Who knew?


My class mates and I just spent two days having a crash-course in building a dry stone wall; with instructors Dean McLellan and Evan Oxland.

I’m tired, my hands are wrecked, and it’ll take a week to clean the mud off of my boots (we got rained-on the second day).  But despite all that, I’m thrilled.  I learned a tremendous amount in a very short span of time.

Photo by Dean McLellan

Photo by Dean McLellan Stonework

Doing physical work with a new group of people is also a great way to start building friendships too.  Hey, it works for the military – where you get very close to people, very quickly.  But the most important part, is that I’ve now helped to construct something that should still be standing generations from now.  And that’s awesome!


Monday, September 10th, 2012

And so it begins… my life as a student!

The School of Restoration Arts at Willowbank

The School of Restoration Arts at Willowbank

I must say, I’m a little bit apprehensive, as it’s been so many years since I was last in school.  When I was first looking into Willowbank, I was told that I was their ‘typical‘ student – an adult looking at starting a second career.  However, when meeting my class mates today, I realized that I probably have 10 years on the majority of them.  Well, at least there are a couple of others who are in my age group.

We’ve been given our schedule for the first term, and have a number of interesting courses coming up.  We’ll be jumping right in this first week with a dry stone walling course.  Sounds like my idea of fun!

While not directly blacksmith-related, I’ll be blogging a bit about my school experiences.  And so I’ve added a new category for those posts entitled “Student Life”.