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KEEPING THE HOME FIRES BURNING. Author Chris Gregory spends plenty of time practicing his craft in front of his coke and propane forges in his farrier workshop.
I have been fortunate enough to visit a lot of farriers’ shops, so I have an idea or two about what makes for a good one.
First, understand that it is important to set up a shop, or at least a workplace, as soon as you can after you begin your farrier career. For too many of us, that means facing the reality of finances (or the lack thereof) and the fact that the space has to be shared with the wife’s car, or worse, her horse. Do it anyway.
There is no doubt that it is easier to practice your craft at the end of a workday if you don’t have to pull your gear from your rig again. I know how it feels to want to get ready for a contest or a certification test, then talk yourself out of it when the day is done because your only anvil and forge are in the truck. The good intentions are there, but sometimes the willpower isn’t.
That’s why buying another forge and anvil is a necessity for the farrier who is trying to improve his or her skills. And going to the expense of creating a permanent set-up will help you get past the willpower problem and make the extra practice more convenient. It will also allow you to…