Modern Blacksmithing Rational Horse Shoeing and Wagon Making

with rules, tables, recipes, etc., useful to manufactures, blacksmiths, machinists, well-drillers, engineers, liverymen, horse-shoers, farmers, wagon-makers, mechanics, amateurs and all others who have occasion to perform the work for which this book is primarily intended. by J.G. Homstrom 1901

How to Make a Chisel

A chisel for hot cutting, see Figure 5, No.4. This chisel is made of 1 square tool steel. Punch a hole 1 1/8 x x about three inches from the end, the eye should be narrow in order to leave material enough on the sides to give it strength. When eye is finished, forge down below it, not on the head-end, with top and bottom fullers, like cut. This gives the chisel a better shape. Now dress down the edge, then heat to a low cherry red, and harden, brighten it and when the color is brown cool off.


Use same sized steel as above referred to, make it like NO.5, Figure 5. To distinguish it from the hot cutting chisel, and to give it more strength, in hardening this chisel, draw the temper until it is blue. This is the right temper for all kinds of cold chisels.


One might think that anybody knows how to make a set hammer, if every smith knows it, I don't know, but I do know that there are thousands of smiths who have never had a set hammer nor know its use. To make one: Take a piece of tool steel 1 x 1 inches, punch a hole about two inches from the end, the hole to be 1 x 3/8. Now cut off enough for head. Make the face perfectly square and level, with sharp corners, harden and cool off when the temper turns from brown to blue. This is a very important little tool and for cutting steel it is a good deal better than the chisel. Plow steel of every kind is easier cut with this hammer than any other way. In cutting with the set hammer hold the steel so that your inner side of the set hammer will be over the outside edge of the anvil. Let the helper strike on the outside corner of the set hammer and it will cut easy. The steel to be cut should be just a little hot, not enough to be noticed. If the steel is red hot the set hammer cannot cut it. The heat must be what is called blue heat. I would not be without the set hammer for money, and still I often meet smiths who have never seen this use made of the set hammer. Plow points, corn shovels, and seeder shovels are quicker cut with this tool than any other way with the exception of shears.