Dimensions of an anvil?

Ernie, or anyone else that might care to chip in --

Where could I find the basic dimensions of a given-sized anvil? I keep mulling around the possibility of making a 4" wide (thick?) anvil, and I've done a lot of studying of the pictures and description Ernie has provided (many thanks!!) -- from which I think I *might* be able to guess about how tall, long, etc. to make it ... but I wouldn't mind having somewhat more exact dimensions to work with. I realize that probably the dimensions can vary considerably depending on personal preference ... but I'd love to know what the personal preference of some knowledgeable people might be!

What I'd really like to know is any or all of the following, for a 4" anvil:

How tall should it be? How long should the flat top be? How long should the horn be? What is the largest diameter of the horn? How wide is the narrowest part of the body (ie, where it tapers in from the horn and from the heel)? How wide is the base (where it tapers back out)? Approximately how far in from the end of the heel should the hardie hole be located? Are there any other dimensions that would be helpful / critical for making an anvil?

TIA for any input. If you have a favorite anvil and go to the trouble to measure it to answer these questions, a triple TIA!!!


Reply to
Andrew H. Wakefield
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Oops -- I just looked again at Ernie's picture of the rough-cut anvil, and realized that there were some dimensions on it -- 13-1/2" tall and 31" long. Is that correct? In the picture, it doesn't look like the anvil is that much longer than it is tall??

Meanwhile, I also remembered one other dimension I'd like to know -- how thick should the heel be at the end -- or should it taper all the way down to a sharp edge?

Reply to
Andrew H. Wakefield

Got to the Metalworking.com dropbox.

formatting link
scroll down to Anvil_pattern.gif

I scaled the pattern for 4" thick steel plate. It didn't take long to add the dimensions, but it was a pain to get my CAD program to export it as an image file. I hope those are enough dimensions for you.

Reply to
Ernie Leimkuhler

I'm not Page, but I saved his post.


------------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: Thu, 23 May 1996 09:52:54 -0500 (CDT) From: Page Thomas Subject: Re: Weight of anvils

One can estimate the weight of a standard anvil by its dimensions.

10lb anvil. face is 6 x 2; horn, 3 1/2"; hgt., 4"; base, 3 1/2"

100lb. face, 14 x 3 3/8; horn, 9 3/4"; waist, 5"; heal, 13/16; drop, 13/16, hh, 7/8

125lb face, 15 1/2x3 1/2; horn 10 1/2; waist, 5 1/4; heal, 7/8; dp, 7/8; hh, 15/16

160lb face, 17 1/2x4; horn, 11 1/2; waist, 5 1/2; heal, 15/16; drop, 15/16; hh, 1"

200lb face 19x4 1/4; horn, 12; waist, 6; heal, 1, drop, 1; hh, 1 1/16

225lb face, 19 1/2x4 1/2; horn, 12 1/2; waist, 6 1/2; heal, drop, 1 1/16, hh,

1 1/16

900lb face 28 x 8 horn, 19"; height, 18; base 19x16; hh 2"

A farrier's anvil will usually have a longer horn and shorter face, but other dimensions are close.

One should be able to estimate the weight of their anvil, + - 25 lbs.


Andrew H. Wakefield wrote:

Reply to
Steve Smith

Ernie, you are great! Thanks so much for taking the time to post this.

One question about design: I've noticed that on some anvils, the horn seems to be more of a regular cone -- in other words, the slope on all sides is a straight line -- whereas in the design you have posted, and what I am more used to thinking of as an anvil shape, the taper curves along the sides and bottom (but is straight along the top, of course). Any thoughts about the advantages or disadvantages of one design vs. the other?

Thanks again,


Reply to

Thanks, Steve! This information, along with Ernie's posted drawings w/ dimensions, will be most helpful.

Now, if I can just find the time actually to MAKE the anvil, rather than just thinking about it ...

Reply to

The anvils with a more conical horn and pyramidal heel are of German and eastern European design. They like their anvils chunky and solid.

The more graceful American Pattern anvils like the Trenton, Columbia and Hay Budden anvils are a more evolved design, based on more working surface per lb. , and what actually gets used.

The curved horn with more mass in the middle of it's length is based on the fact that most American anvils for a long time were used for working horse shoes. A straight conical horn doesn't work as well for this.

Check out a current Centaur forge catalog to see how far Farriers anvils have evolved away from blacksmiths anvils.

Brooks anvils are made in England and personally I think they look like cartoon anvils best dropped on a coyote's head.

All anvils will work for beating on hot steel. The niceties of the design just make for a more productive and enjoyable experiance.

Reply to
Ernie Leimkuhler

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