Darryl Nelson's Bobcat

Bill Epps

snail made of rebar

Snail made from rebar
Forged by Lewis Riggleman
Rams Head Forge, San Antonio, Fl.

Collection of forged animal head hooks by Brian Brazeal
Collection of forged blacksmith animal heads from the Murray County
Antique Tractor and Implement Show - 2009 Sulphur, Oklahoma.
Cathi Borthwick, Flag Forge, Flagstaff, Arizona
And my personal favorite, a moose head hook done by
Cathi Borthwick of Flag Forge in Flagstaff, Arizona.
from Red Mountain Ironworks
Ubiquitous frog on a stick

How to Hold Animals in a Vise while Carving

This is a holder for stock when doing the working/carving of animal heads. I first saw it at Frank Turley's Blacksmith School when I was there. I've since made my own because I ultimately want to be able to carve a variety of animal heads.

Notice how the arm is offset from the center of the block. That's because the arm is positioned against one jaw of the vice and the stock being used to make the animal head is stuck between the arm and the opposing vice jaw to hold it securely. Centering the arm on the block would only lead to decreasing the size of the stock you can work with. The arm also serves a secondary purpose of giving you a handhold to occasionally dunk the tool in your quench tank as it will get hot working.

Jig for holding railroad spike for carving
Another version with
better lateral support

Fold Forming a Cowboy Hat

I saw this demonstration at the New Mexico Artist Blacksmith Association's Spring Conference. It was presented by Randy McDaniel. The pictures of the jig that he brought with him and used in the demonstration are pictured here. I intend to replicate it and start making some cowboy hats. I'll probably make several versions, including one that can be used as a business card holder.

Guess I need more practice

    Gee Mom, look what else I've found!

"Many years ago when I was imprisoned in North Vietnam, there was an attempt to rescue the POWs, unfortunately, the prison had been evacuated. But the brave men who took on that mission and risked their lives in an effort to rescue us prisoners of war were genuine American heroes. Because the mission failed did not in any way diminish their courage and willingness to help their fellow Americans who were held captive. Mr. Spicer should know that story." - John McCain

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