Rusty Anvil Rendezvous
Our HABA meeting for June will be at Traders Village on Saturday June 21. Bring yourself and your gear, demonstrate the art, and make stuff for the next HABA sale! If Saturday is not enough we can be there on Sunday! Frank Walters ( 713-896-7566, cell 281-731-0337 ) will be leading the event and has demonstrated there many times.
As a group project we are making/bringing stanchions (forged please) for our rope barricades. Rope height : 36", Rope diameter : 1". Show your stuff, bring several, make more !
When & Where :
Saturday & Sunday, June 21 and 22, 2003 :
Traders Village is in north west Houston on Eldridge near Hwy 290: 979 N. Eldridge, Houston, Texas.
South of 290 on Eldridge.
The schedule looks like this:
Power and water on site, and we are under cover(shade)
We want as many smiths as we can get, please bring items to sell, and something for the HABA sales Table.
If you don"t want to demonstrate, come out and answer questions from onlookers.
Directions to Event
Traders Village is in north west Houston on Eldridge near Hwy 290 : 979 N. Eldridge .
What to Bring
Bring safety glasses with side shields. This is a requirement!
Might be very hot or wet so dress appropriately for the day and the work.
If you do not have a forge and tools, please come anyway. There will be plenty of room at some forge during the workshop and someone to lend you a hand if you need it.
You do not have to be a member to attend our meetings! Bring a Guest!
Bring your Membership Dues if you want to work at a forge and are not a current Member !
ABOUT THE EVENT
Rusty Anvil Rendezvous is our regular get together with a theme and purpose. First, we love to meet and make stuff. Second, we will be practicing the art of demonstrating blacksmith methods to the public. If you are reading this you already know that hammer and anvil skills are improved with practice, and watching the really good ones goes a long way in our education. HABA represents a collection of experienced and novice blacksmiths. Some do it for the fun of it as a hobby. Others like to make items people will buy. And the professionals will do comission work.
Blacksmithing is a bit of a lost art for what was once an essential technical trade and skill. Yet it has been rebirthing during the past 20 years due to the contributions of great people and organiztions such as ABANA that tells us about those great people and their art and craft. HABA is an Affiliate of ABANA and some of our members such as Dave Koenig are very active in this worldwide organization.
So what is "demonstrating" ?
Demonstrating is showing the public how ironworking is performed. It is an educational opportunity coming and going.
It can be done as a one man show, or a a group event. Team work is effective when you can help by taking turns between the forge and the public interface. Do your homework and educate the public.
It can be done recklessly or professionally with safe practices. Obviously, we must not be reckless because someone can get hurt. The blacksmith must know how to practice and perform his work safely for himself and those around him.
Several links on this website provide useful information about demonstrating. One of these is from ABANA with guidelines for how to demonstrate. A good summary of shop safety can be found at the Appalachian Blacksmiths Association site. Refresh yourself on these good tips. Keep Safety first and last for yourself and the rest of us.
HABA events are special and a lot of effort goes into them. Here are some suggestions from experienced members:
Frank Walters likes to have a sign next to his anvil warning the public not to be too helpful in picking up his tools and metal off the ground because they may still be hot enough to injure. A shade canopy is very important outside to help you see the fire color properly.
Dave Koenig reminds us that coke fuel can pop and explode, sending hot fuels in all directions. So use coal, not coke in public! Also, don't forge weld in public for same reasons. Wear appropriate cotton clothing and leather boots.The more you share, the more you learn!
James Porter reminds us that hammers and anvils can chip, also sending out projectiles. Inspect your tools for damage! Wear eye protection when hammering and grinding.
Reynolds Cushman points out that good hammer technique is important to protect your elbows and hands from overstrains. Keep your work area clean and free from litter.
Larry Hoff reminds us to use good practice in lifting our heavy anvils. Get help with those heavy loads and protect your back, feet, and hands. Wear a hat when working outside in the direct sun.
Charlie Heathcock plans ahead and uses the proper tool for the job. Be helpful and friendly to your coworkers and public. Be sure to compliment your wife since she may sell more than you do!
Jim Wheeler says we should keep it simple.
David Bailey takes great notes and sketches when he attends demos, then learns from them in his shop.
Steve Green learns a lot by voluteering to assist the demonstrator whenever possible.
Lee Oates is always entertaining and engages the audience with stories and conversation. Make your demo fun!
Richard Boswell reminds us that you need to drink plenty of non alcoholic fluids and don't overheat yourself. Have a first-aid kit handy and know how to use it, especially burn treatments. Also, be polite and thank your hosts, and practice good work ethics.
Les Cook recommends a good barricade to keep the public at a safe distance. Think ahead and bring the tools and equipment you will need. And because of insurance requirements, you need a current HABA Membership to work at the forge and anvil in public as a HABA Demonstrator.
Have you got a favorite tip to share, or perhaps a photo of a good demonstrator (including yourself) ? Please send a note to your webmaster Richard Boswell.
Here are some photos of HABA members demonstrating for the love of their art:
Some relevent on-line links for your viewing....
IronFest is an exceptional bi-annual event in Texas recently completed. Many HABA members were present. Reynolds Cushman sent in an excellent report titled
An Interview with a British classically trained Blacksmith
that is now located at HABA Interviews.
Our HABA meeting for June was on the longest day of the year in the full Summer heat at Traders Village on Saturday June 21. Members brought their gear, demonstrated the art, and made stuff for the next HABA sale! Frank Walters did a great job of organizing us and getting us in. Dave Koenig was presented a special edition, engraved hammer made by Bill Bastas to replace one he lost at a demo last Fall.
As a group project we are making/bringing stanchions (forged please) for our rope barricades. Rope height : 36", Rope diameter : 1". James Porter made a great pair that worked well, using a disk for the base (see photo).
Here are some photos from the event! Click on the thumbnail to view the original.
Notes about this Website This website is Under Development and will continue to evolve for HABA Members.
This website is Under Development and will continue to evolve for HABA Members.
ABANA Hammer's Blow
ABANA Anvil's Ring
ABANA Demonstrator Guideline
Four States Iron Munchers
River Bluff Forge Council
Mississippi Forge Council
Alabama Forge Council
Florida Artist Blacksmith Association
North Carolina ABANA
Central Virginia Blacksmith Guild
Appalachian Area Chapter of ABANA
National Ornamental & Miscellaneous Metals Association
American Bladesmith Society
The Guild of Metalsmiths
Forge and Anvil
LAMA Electric Welding
The Blacksmith Anvil
Romancing the Hammer
What is blacksmithing...