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  • Pass-N-Gas
    replied
    All of this talk of old time blacksmith techniques makes me want to sell the welding machines, I could then buy a bellows get a bed coals and beat on things with a hammer

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  • Pro-Fab
    replied
    My primary source of income is custom gates and Custom fence. As a designer/ Weldor/ Business Owner, blacksmiths have appreciated my outsourcing very much. It is not to say that I can not do what they do, however, it maybe too timeconsuming and cut proffits. Not to mention if I were to do everybit of work myself my prices would be throug hthe roof and my market would be so slinder that my bank account would follow. As a business owner you need to work most efficiently (ie most profitably) while still working under strict ethics to provide the consumer with a product that they are very happy with and payed the RIGHT price for... not the cheapest, not the most expensive but the right price for the right work. You can play up your prices and call down on discounts but in the end the right price is the right price.

    Out sourcing to the black smith is creating what we call business networking. the more work you throw there way the better bang for your buck. this means your quality of work goes up, the price in bulk goes down and you get return customers as do the black smiths in you. outsourcing is a very efficient way to maximize proffits and minimize expenses. Just remember your ethics when dealing with others yourself.
    Last edited by Pro-Fab; 03-09-2010, 11:20 PM.

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  • billybee60
    replied
    smooth72

    Check out ABANA.org. There are about 5,000 members and chapters all over the US and other countries as well. The international conference is in Memphis starting June 2nd. There is a gallery and three days of demonstrations.

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  • smooth72
    replied
    Thanks for the comments. I love the look of the true blacksmith work, I just can not do it or do I have the patients. I hope their will alway be someone out there keeping that art of blacksmith alive.

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  • billybee60
    replied
    Gate

    Very nice job on the gate. I am coming from the blacksmith side and there are very few people that are willing to pay for the hand forged artisitic approach. When we get that kind of job it is the greatest because the design is usually a one off thing that follows a client specified theme. My experience has been that most of that type of work comes through clients seeing my work and architects doing high end designs. On the other hand the gate shows an interesting design approach and demonstrates what can be done to make the cost more reasonable for a customer that wants something special bit can't afford the high end price.
    Thanks for sharing!

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  • smooth72
    replied
    I have caught more things on fire welding than I ever have welding, probably because my welds are bad and I have to grind so much.

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  • Jack Olsen
    replied
    My jig was mostly wood. I wouldn't recommend mixing wood and welding on a regular basis, but I had no fire problems welding on it.

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  • Matt_in_Brooklyn
    replied
    Originally posted by smooth72 View Post
    Pros I am sure would laugh at me I screwed the outside part of the frame down to my wood work bench and squared it, before I welded it. Just soaked the table with some water and and with a fire extinguisher just tacked it up. Stayed square and gave my work bench some personality.
    I won't laugh, that's how I plan on doing mine!

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  • smooth72
    replied
    Pros I am sure would laugh at me I screwed the outside part of the frame down to my wood work bench and squared it, before I welded it. Just soaked the table with some water and and with a fire extinguisher on hand, just tacked it up. Stayed square and gave my work bench some personality.
    Last edited by smooth72; 02-22-2010, 02:32 PM.

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  • Jim-TX
    replied
    I can appreciate hand forged work as much as anyone. I wish that I had the talent to do it. It is a true art.

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  • Daniel
    replied
    Originally posted by smooth72 View Post
    Here is my first thing to weld. Being a poor welder adds to rustic look. Got my stuff from King, great company to work with.
    That's a very nice looking gate. Who cares what it's made of. As long as it's strong and doesn't cost a fortune. Oh yes and it's got to be square

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  • Jack Olsen
    replied
    At least in a city, most people buy wrought iron to prevent trespassing and burglary. The factor driving that initial decision is money, and from there it shouldn't come as a surprise that most property owners continue to let cost dictate their choices.

    So, what gets put together is rarely beautiful -- which irritates anyone who's aware of how great wrought iron can look.

    And an even smaller subset of the population is irritated by the fact that 'wrought iron' is almost never made of wrought iron any more. It's decorative steel.

    Lots of old-world forms of craftsmanship have disappeared because they aren't what people are willing to pay for any more. Then again, we've all got to make compromises based on what we have the time, money and energy for.

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  • smooth72
    replied
    Here is my first thing to weld. Being a poor welder adds to rustic look. Got my stuff from King, great company to work with.

    Leave a comment:


  • Jim-TX
    replied
    99% of the people buy by price.

    99% of the people don't care where it's made.

    99% of the people don't know the difference between hand forged and King's.

    I buy from King's and tell my customers that I don't forge the stuff myself. 99% don't care.

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  • chrisgay@sbcglo
    replied
    Man speak truth

    Originally posted by wroughtnharv View Post
    Most people look at ironwork the way that older women look at cars. They're more interested in it being functional and not making their butt look bigger.

    There is the price thing. And then there's something else. What it takes to make a great weldor isn't what it takes to have a real creative imagination.

    Welding is about self discipline. It takes a lot of practice and self discipline to be a really good weldor. A really good weldor can catch a puddle and concentrate on it start to finish.

    The really creative type craftsman can't. The puddle moves about a quarter of an inch and their mind has left the shop and is off figuring out how to make something else.

    Compare King stuff to real ironwork sometime. What King is missing is the soul of the work.
    My bud is a blacksmith, and the idea of King's is sacreligious.
    I am not a blacksmith, but I do plenty of ornamental metalwork. I feel I do creative, quality work and the idea of King's never enters the equation. Well, there was that one railing that was spec'd out of King's parts by another designer and I gladly busted it out... so fast because we didn't have to think about it. Ironically (or not), there was money made because we weren't hand-crafting every [email protected] piece of hardware, or engineering on the fly.

    What I'm trying to say is that maintaining that "soul" is often a slippery slope. Now I find the soul in a journey to become a better weldor, because I've really developed an appreciation for it. I no longer care what the customer's railing looks like, as long as it's made well with pride and diligence. There is a place for King's and the like, but you have to understand that place and how it fits into your directive.

    I've been doing this long enough that I no longer care about the style... I just like to weld.

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