New to Blacksmithing? Start here

New folks should visit the ABANA website so they can look up their closest affiliate (chapter). Personally, I am happy to answer a new person whenever I can help, but let me say this again: The VERY BEST way to get questions about blacksmithing answered is to get into a group that does what you want to do. There are over 60 "clubs" around the USA and Canada organized primarily to educate folks about blacksmithing. ABANA, the Artist Blacksmith Association of North America at

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has a list of the whereabouts of most of them. These clubs have various meeting schedules and conferences. The members range from "never lit a fire" to real professionals. Many have education programs. All of them welcome and look forward to meeting new members. Many of the members have been upgrading their equipment and therefore have things to sell, trade, etc.. Many of the groups also have newsletters containing "how-to" articles. For instance, our group, The Guild of Metalsmiths, has an index of about 750 how-to articles from our newsletter! Some other countries have similar organizations. So, to the folks who are new to blacksmithing: Find your closest ABANA affiliate, check out their website if they have one, and join the group. Get to a few meetings and introduce yourself. Tell folks about your interests and go from there.

Finally, when you post a message with a question in it: Tell us in general where you live like "west central Wisconsin" (me). Who knows--- you may live a mile from me or some other person who can help.

Pete Stanaitis


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