Red Hot Forging Tips from Over the Years

Wisdom shared from the archives of 35 years of American Farriers Journal

 In the 35 years since the first issue of American Farriers Journal was published, there have been many advances in farriery and hoof care. During the coming months, we want to look back over the years and recall some of the tips and advice that have been appeared in this magazine’s pages.

We’ll start out 2010 by looking back at some of the advice on and about forging.

1. “You want tongs that give you a great grip, work smoothly and are sized right for the job. If your tongs don’t grip properly, the steel you’re working on will waffle in the grip.”

— John McNerney, Platteville, Colo., 2008 

2. “There are only five basic marks that can be made with a hammer while forging. They are a flat hammer mark or a straight down hit; a left mark or the hammer tilted to the left; a right mark or tilted to the right; a tilted forward or toe mark; and a tilted back or heel mark. Everything is a combination of these five marks.”

— Michael Chisham, Petaluma, Calif., 2008

3. “When you’re pulling clips, you don’t want a really light hammer, and you don’t need a big, heavy hammer because you have to have control. My preference is to use a hammer that’s about the same weight as my rounding hammer. That way you develop a sixth sense about swinging your hammer and you have more control.”

— Chip Hunt, Brazil, Ind., 2007

4. “If you punch your…

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