Sunday, March 14, 2010

Aspery Prep!

I am really excited about my summer blacksmithing adventures!  I signed up for a class with my favorite master smith, Mark Aspery at Touchstone in June, so I am in the process now of making it through his first book. 

Having met Mark once at last year's BGOV Hammer-in, I know how serious a smith he is and so I want to be prepared to make the most of my week with him!  His book is called "Mastering the Fundamentals of Blacksmithing" ( and it is truly an incredible resource.

I have been going "back to basics" in this book and it has been very fun.  I actually understand the beginning chapters now since I have a little more experience and have been focusing on the tapers section first.  It is definitely an area that develops skill as you do it. 

I love one of the stories in the book, which talks about how Mark learned tapers when he was given his first job as a fledgling smith to make 1000 (yes, I did not mistype this) tapered points from 3/4" bar to use for mooring boats.  I have probably made less than 50 real tapers (well, probably more if you include hooks, but my point is still valid) in the entire two years I have been a blacksmith, so I can't imagine how much one can learn doing 1000 of them! 

Just scratching the surface here in terms of where I hope to go, but really enjoying it.  Thanks, Mark!!