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To Preserve and Promote the Art and Craft of Blacksmithing Through Education.

Welcome to HABAIRON.ORG, the website of the Houston Area Blacksmith's Association, the Internet resource of choice for the blacksmith in and around Houston, Texas. We have the technology!

June 4, 2016
"Spring is Buzzing"
Hummingbird & Flower
Matt Pohorelsky
HABA Magnolia Depot Shop

The HABA May meeting will be held at our forge in Magnolia, TX. Matt Pohorelsky will demonstrate making a hummingbird and flower sculpture he learned last year at the Bluebonnet Demo & Workshop 2016. Using a wide variety of basic forging techniques (upsetting, isolation, drawing, tapering, punching, splitting, spreading, twisting, etc.).


  • Saturday 3/20/2016
    • 8:30 AM - Sign In and setup
    • 9:00 AM - Discussion and demonstrations
    • 12:00 PM - Lunch at your option
    • 1:00 PM - Demonstrations continue
    • 3:00 PM - Close of meeting

Safety glasses are a requirement! Hearing protection is recommended.

Directions to HABA Magnolia Depot Shop, 426 Melton Street Magnolia, TX 77353

The Shop is located in the south corner of the yard for The Depot which is managed by the Magnolia Historical Society, Inc.

From Tomball head NW on TX-249 N/Tomball Pkwy for 5.3 mi. Continue onto Farm to Market Rd 1774 for 4.8 mi. When you arrive to Magnolia, turn right onto Buddy Riley Blvd at the stop light. Cross the RR track and take the 1st right onto Melton St. The Depot is next to the Community Center on this corner.

From Conroe or Spring on I-45 take FM 1488 west to Magnolia for 18 mi, and turn left on to Melton St. Proceed 0.3 mi to The Depot at Butler.

Google Maps Link

See the meeting flyer.

April 15 - 17, 2016
Cajun Connection
Wine Rack & Courting Candle
Hosted By:
EJ McCann
3 Nail Forge in Kinder, LA

The HABA April meeting will be held at EJ McCann's 3 Nail Forge in Kinder, LA. EJ will host us at his shop that boasts 20 x 40 shop floor with 10 anvils, a 25 lb Little Giant hammer, a 65 lb treadle hammer and coal and gas forges. He will be able to provide a camping & RV area with water, shower and electricity. He is also going to treat us to some good Cajun cooking on Friday and Saturday nights (gumbo, red beans and rice, etc.).


EJ will demonstrate making a table top wine rack. We are also inviting attendees to come ready to demo something that they have been working on. EJ has some forges and anvils and you can bring your own equipment. And it does not need to necessarily be straight blacksmithing. Any metal work such as copper smithing or other materials and/or specific techniques. No pressure if you don't have anything you want to demo but the door is open. At the very least we will all share what knowledge we have.

We will also have Gary Jameson demonstrating a courting candle holder. The courting candle holder is a device that holds a candle in such a way that amount of time it will burn can be adjusted. This was used in the old days to time that amount of time a suiter could be in the company of a woman he was courting. When the candle went out it was time to go home.

Gary's biographical sketch in his own words:

I was able to jump head first into all things blacksmithing in the mid 1970's after completing a sculpture/drawing degree, two years in the Peace Corps in Turkey and a few more years recruiting for the Peace Corps. Once back in Illinois, I was mentored by a small town farm blacksmith who shared the fundamentals as well as a great love for ironwork. I soon began doing demonstrations at fairs, festivals and centennials and was eventually asked to teach a summer blacksmith class at the junior college.

From this class a group was formed that is now one of the oldest ABANA affiliates, The Illinois Valley Blacksmith Association (illinoisblacksmith.org). My work has been accepted into the Illinois Artisan Program, a state agency that promotes fine craft in the state. I have continually maintained a one person shop doing one of a kind commission work. I have taught workshops on an ongoing basis with some time out to teach art and in one instance blacksmithing at the university level.

I attended my first ABANA conference in 1976 at the Carbondale campus of Southern Illinois University. In my early years of learning, I sought out illustrations and photos of early colonial ironwork and then attempted to reproduce them by trying to figure out how they were forged. These items included fireplace devices and tools, kitchen utensils, handles and hinges and many types of lighting devices. This process helped immensely to become familiar with all fundamental forging processes and led me to devising my own colonial variations. My work interest ranges from the very traditional to the very contemporary.


  • Friday 4/15/2016
    • Arrive any time on Friday – free forging
    • 6:30 PM - Dinner
  • Saturday 4/16/2016
    • 9:00 AM - Start of Meeting
    • 9:30 AM - Demonstrations
    • 12:00 PM - Lunch
    • 1:00 PM - Demonstrations continue
    • 5:00 PM - Close of meeting
    • 6:30 PM - Dinner
  • Sunday 4/17/2016
    • Sunday free forging and tear down

Safety glasses are a requirement! Hearing protection is recommended.


22890 TV Tower Road, Kinder, LA 70648

From Houston take I10 east past Lake Charles, LA. Turn north on Highway 383, exit 43. After 10 miles turn right on TV Tower Road. EJ will be 1.25 miles down the road, the second driveway on your left after passing Tate Road. EJ will have HABA signs at exit 43, one on TV Tower Road and 383 and one on the entrance to his driveway. If you get lost call EJ at 337-377-3945.

Google Maps Link

See the meeting flyer.

March 19, 2016
"You're Terminated!"
Finials, Feet, and Scroll Nibs
Presented By:
Dana Flanders
Ziwa Forge in Simonton,TX

Dana Flanders will show, discuss, and demonstrate various ways to terminate a bar. Thinking creatively about design and executing these classic blacksmithing opportunities effectively will enhance our work. Sets (square, round, flat bar) of relatively small-scale exercises will provide a platform for demonstrating a wide variety of basic forging techniques (upsetting, isolation, drawing, tapering, punching, splitting, spreading, twisting, etc.).


  • Saturday 3/20/2016
    • 8:30 AM - Sign In and setup
    • 9:00 AM - Discussion and demonstrations
    • 12:00 PM - Lunch at your option
    • 1:00 PM - Demonstrations continue
    • 3:00 PM - Close of meeting

We won't be able to set up member forges at this meeting. Safety glasses are a requirement! Hearing protection is recommended. Plan to bring a lunch or eat at restaurants in Simonton or Fulshear.


Ziwa Forge, 9510 FM 1489, Simonton, TX

Heading south on FM 1489 from I10 (about 9 miles), the shop is on the right, in the same fenced area as a two-story red metal building, just a few hundred yards south of the center of Simonton, which is at the junction of FM 1489 and FM1093. If you need to get in touch with Dana, call 713-569-8422.

Google Maps Link

See the meeting flyer.

February 20, 2016
6th Annual Combo Demo
Hosted By:
Alan and Jeff Lee
Steephollow Forgeworks in Bryan,TX

The HABA February meeting will be held in conjunction with the 6th Annual Combo Demo at Steephollow Forgeworks in Bryan,TX. Alan and Jeff Lee host this "Forge Fest" each year. This is a one day mini blacksmithing conference, free of charge, and open to the public. This is a celebration of Blacksmithing, a combined meeting of all the clubs in Texas and Louisiana, will feature "up and comers" and old reliable smiths. This year they are welcoming members of the Mississippi Forge council and they will do a demo.

This one-day event FREE-OF-CHARGE will also include an iron smelt, tailgating, vendors, live music, food, art displays, live and silent auctions. Come early or stay late. Artists are welcome to display, sell, or promote their work. The public is invited to come see what Blacksmithing is all about. Blacksmithing is not dead it's ALIVE at Steephollow Forgeworks.

This year's COMPETITION ITEM is a "vessel". Start now to create your masterpiece. This friendly competition is always incredible for its varied entries. The winner will be crowned "the best of the best" (for one year).

An IRON SMELT led by Tom Walker from Louisiana will begin on Friday with the construction of the furnace. The smelt will be scheduled to be finished by 4pm Saturday. If you would like to be involved, just let us know.

Day long CLASSES with Lyle Wynn and Stan Bryant will be offered from Monday (2/15) thru Friday (2/19). Monday is a beginner class but Tuesday thru Friday will be hammer making classes. Make a hammer or the tools to make the hammer. All classes are $135/day. The hammer classes are going fast. Reserve your spot today thru Steepforge.com or call 979-776-2864.

It is a once a year rendezvous of all the blacksmithing groups in Texas and Louisiana with demonstrations, vendors, art displays, auction, iron smelt, tailgating, food, and music. The Combo-Demo is only possible because of the generous support of the blacksmithing community at large. Volunteers are always needed. Auction and donations help pay for the whole thing.


  • James Johnson with Anyang Hammers will have one of his hammers available for a test drive. He is also a Chili Forge dealer. Find him at AnyangUSA.net
  • Richard Epting- knife maker. Eptingknives.com.
  • For all of you looking for old blacksmithing equipment, Richard "Stringbean" Lowery will be bringing a trailer load to the Combo-Demo February 20th. Said he's bringing 15 leg vices, a large forge, fire pots, and odds and ends.
  • And More


Demonstrations will be from 9:30-11:30am and 1-4pm. a number of demonstrators have been booked including:

  • Stan Bryant- Mississippi Forge Council- making a Flatter
  • John Rigoni- HABA, BABA, ABANA- making a colonial axe
  • Will Frary- NTBA, HABA, Balcones, ABANA- Making a rose. Making a poppy from a bolt from the Battleship Texas
  • John McGee- HABA, ABANA. Making tongs
  • Gerald Franklin- Saltfork Craftsmen, ABANA. Making a bootjack from an old rasp
  • Jeff Lee-HABA, Balcones, LAMA, ABANA. TBA
  • Alan Lee- HABA, Balcones, LAMA, ABANA TBA

Action will be constant following the side by side Demo format.


The auction of donated iron artwork at 11:30am is what covers the expenses and is only possible because of the generous donation from the group members of:

  • HABA
  • Balcones Forge
  • NTBA
  • Goliad Blacksmiths
  • LAMA

Please consider donating your latest creation and don't forget your checkbook.


  • Saturday 2/20
    • 8:00 AM - Sign In
    • 9:00 AM - Greetings and demonstrations
    • 11:30 AM - Auction
    • 12:00 PM - Lunch - Lunch tickets can be purchased at the door
    • 1:00 PM - Demonstrations
    • 4:00 PM - Iron bloom pulled from the furnace
    • 5:00 PM - Close of meeting


SteepHollow Forgeworks, 7286 Mesco Dr., Bryan, TX 77808

From Houston take 290 west. Turn right (North) on State Highway 6. Exit to FM 1179 and go right. Mesco Drive will be about 2.5 miles down the road.

Google Maps Link

See the meeting flyer.

January 23, 2016
Making Forged Jewelry
Daniel Riffe
Daniel's Forge, 13521 Oakwood Drive, Needville, TX 77461

Daniel will demonstrate forged jewelry making. He will take us through making a variety of items: rings, bracelets, pendants, etc. There will also be some brazing techniques shown. In addition, there seems to be a competition in the air between Daniel and his father Chris on who can make a drift from 1 1/4" round faster – Daniel using his hand hammer and Chris using his Anyang 33 power hammer. We will see if this happens.

Samples of Daniel's Work:


  • Saturday 1/23
    • 8:00 AM - Sign In and set-up
    • 8:30 AM - HABA meeting and announcements
    • 9:00 AM - Daniel discusses and demonstrates
    • 12:00 PM - Lunch at your option
    • 1:00 PM - Demonstrations continue
    • 4:00 PM - Conclude


Daniel Riffe's Forge, 13521 Oakwood Drive, Needville, TX 77461

From Hwy 288: Go south on Hwy 288 to 1462 and go west towards Rosharon. Pass through Rosharon and turn right on 762. Go past Brazos Bend State Park. The road will sharply turn left and then right again. At the next sharp left go straight onto Peters Road. Take Peters Road to Rawlings Road and turn right. Turn left onto Oakwood Drive.

From Hwy 59: Take Hwy 59 south to Hwy 36 and go south. Turn left onto FM 1994. Turn right onto 762. At the sharp right turn, turn left onto Peters Road. Take Peters Road to Rawlings Road and turn right. Turn left onto Oakwood Drive.

If you need help with directions, call (281) 974-0296.

Google Maps Link

What to Bring:

Bring a folding chair for your own comfort and a lunch.

See the meeting flyer.

January 16, 2016
Forging Poppies for the Ypres War Memorial
John Rigoni
John Rigoni’s Shop, Spring, TX

The British group, B.A.B.A. wants all smiths who are able, to help them forge out 2,000 poppies that will be part of a war memorial for all soldiers fallen during WWI. This will coincide with their Belgium conference in Sept. 2016. John Rigoni will have a number of poppy blanks and stock for the stems. There will be a short demo and then be ready to forge. The petals can be forged under crowning dies on the power hammer or if you prefer, on the anvil with a cross pien hammer. For an in depth tutorial on forging these, refer to the video below:

Video demonstration for forging the poppy flowers



  • Saturday 1/16
    • 9:00 AM - John demonstrates, group work
    • 12:00 PM - Lunch at your option
    • 4:00 PM - Conclude


Spring Cypress Self Storage, 4305 Spring Cypress Rd., Spring, TX 77388, Gate entry code is 0341*

Look for a series of white metal buildings to the left of Spring Guns and Ammo. The shop is the third building on the left as you drive in.

Any questions feel free to call John Rigoni at 281.235.2866.

Google Maps Link

What to Bring:

Safety glasses are a requirement! Hearing protection and gloves are recommended.
A cross peen hammer if you have one.
Plan to bring a lunch or eat at restaurants nearby.

See the meeting flyer.

HABA Controlled Hand Forging at ABNC

HABA will be holding a Blacksmithing meeting at Armand Bayou on the 2nd Saturday of each month. The focus of the meetings will be to have a group of interested members work their way through the controlled hand forging progression as a means of learning the basics of forging iron. The progression starts with the basic techniques for moving metal and shaping it. It eventually leads into advanced techniques. Along the way, participants will create various artifacts that are of use both in pioneer societies as well as the modern world. Please see our Armand Bayou Monthly Meeting Flyer for details.

To participate in the meetings one must be a member of HABA which only costs $20.00 per year. The public is welcome to observe without charge and we will have displays of items made by members.

The meetings will take place in front of the hay barn next to the wood working shop. We usually have some good shade and there is plenty of room for working. We will have at least 3 anvils, a leg vice or two and two forges. So if you don't have all the equipment we can share these.

Armand Bayou requests that we limit vehicle traffic between the hours of 9 AM and 4 PM. So if you are bringing something that needs to be transported be sure to arrive before 9 AM. Another reason to arrive before 9 AM is to be able to enter the area without paying the Armand Bayou entry fee of $4.00 per person.

Details of each upcoming meeting will be announced in the HABA Update email. If you want to be put on the list send an email to pmforging@gmail.com.


  • 8 - 9 AM - setup
  • 9:00 AM - Work through the lesson for the day.
  • 12:00 - Lunch
  • 1:00 - Continue the lesson of the day or work on individual projects
  • 4 - 5 PM - tear down

On Bay Area Boulevard 7 miles east of I-45, approximately 25 miles southeast of downtown Houston, 30 miles northwest of Galveston, and on the southeast boundary of Pasadena.ABNC is the neighbor of NASA/Johnson Space Center, University of Houston Clear Lake and the Lunar Planetary Institute, the Bayport Industrial complex and is surrounded by significant residential development.

General Meeting Information:

  • Safety glasses are a requirement! Hearing protection and gloves are recommended.
  • Bring a chair to sit in.
  • You do not have to be a member to attend our meetings! Bring a Guest!
  • Minors are welcome but must be accompanied by a responsible adult.
  • Bring your Membership Dues if you want to swing a hammer and are not a current Member!
For more information email Pete Farrell at pmforging@gmail.com

HABA Update is a great email service to our members and friends

Board Member Pete Farrell is our Communications & Event Coordinator, and has been publishing a routine update by email to our members and interested friends called The HABA Update. This includes rpeorts of current and future activities of HABA and our regional friends.

Contact Pete at pmforging@gmail.comto be added to this distribution if you are not already receiving this.

A link to this Update and our Facebook page hosted by Dana Flanders is included in the link list on top left of our main page.

HABA Calendar for 2016 is Online

It's the annual clean-up and revise season here in the web shop. If something seems put away too good please let your web feller know. The 2015 meeting schedule and topics are announced on our HABA 2016 Calendar page which will be updated as often as possible. We hope you can attend and contribute to each meeting demonstration.

This front page of meetings announcement was trimmed back in December, and the complete listing for all of 2015 is still available at HABA 2015. Each of these sites contain links to each summary, photos, and announcement page we published for your convenience.

Please Join and be a part of HABA today to receive the current Newsletter ! Contact Pat Bossart (832-656-4836) for the latest information. To receive your Family Membership Card or to update your records please send Pat an email with a Membership Application.

Family Membership for are still only $20. Special offers are available for the 3 and 5 year Memberships. See the HABA Membership page and ask Pat about these for this year!

Thanks for your continued support!

HABA Events Calendar for 2016
Please visit our Calendar for details.

Notes about this Website

This website is Under Development and will continue to evolve for HABA Members.

The use any of the material from this site is at your own risk. All persons associated with this material disclaim any responsibility or liability for damages or injuries resulting from the use or application of this information. They assume no responsibility or liability for the accuracy, fitness, proper design, safety or safe use of any information presented here.

The webmaker's speller-checker does not always work and your tolerance for those items not caught and fixed has been and will continue to be appreciated!

Please send all feedback/correction/omission/suggestions to your webfeller, Pete Farrell.


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