Anvil stand

After being inspired by Ries Nemi’sUrban Stump” anvil stand, I set out to make my own. Now that it’s finished, I think I’ll call mine a “steel-belted stump” as most of the effort went into the steel parts. A few nice features: besides being very compact and solid, it is also flexible. The size can be changed to accommodate a different anvil simply by changing the wood; I find it much easier to adjust the length of a 2×4 than a real tree stump! This flexibility was immediately useful because as soon as I finished the stand to support my 150lb Peter Wright, I found a 200lb Trenton, so the stand needed to be changed from a square to a rectangle to accommodate the larger base.

Stock used was 3/16 flat, 3/16 1-1/2 angle and 1/2 rod & the photos tell the story.

A year later I happened upon a 275lb RIDGID/Peddinghaus that had never been used and was about 100 years newer than the Trenton, so time to revisit the stand. Because the new anvil was a bit larger the stand needed to be expanded a bit and a new set of “seatbelts” made. Due to the upsetting block on the back, the new belts had to cross on the ends, so the stand’s corners had to be swapped to put the tabs in the correct orientation–another benefit of the stand’s flexibility. In retrospect I could have saved some bending grief if I’d cut the tabs off and changed the angle a bit.

The Trenton anvil is an example of the American pattern of anvil while the Peddinghaus follows the German pattern. The different patterns or styles represent the evolution of anvils and the cultural differences in how they’re used.

Arbor press bolster plate

I’ve had it in mind to make a bolster plate for an old Famco #3 arbor press, so I’d been keeping my eyes open for some appropriate steel stock. I was therefore pleased when I found some 9″ x 3/4″ thick cut-outs in the surplus bin at one of the local steel suppliers. Of course the stock sat around for a while, but recently I set out to make the bolster plate. My initial thought was to weld the two disks together, but bolting them seemed to me a better solution. With the disks securely bolted together, I rough-sawed the slots, then cleaned them up in the mill. The edge and top didn’t really need to be done, but why not? Besides, it gave me an opportunity to use the little face mill I’d made the arbor for (though the resulting surface finish did leave a bit to be desired). Regardless, the old arbor press is now as good as new!

Mill arbor

Some time back I got a small face mill in a box of other tools at an auction.  Since the taper shank was incorrect for my milling machine, a new arbor would be required.  I had a chunk of tool steel that was about the right size, so with a little lathe and mill work I made a new arbor.  In retrospect I should have planned the drive lugs a little differently as the welds don’t look all that great, but the arbor is serviceable.