April 2014 CAC BOA Meeting

The Central Arkansas Chapter of the Blacksmith Organization of Arkansas (CACBOA) met on Saturday, April 12, 2014 at the forge of Thurston Fox, in Mayflower, Arkansas.

The demonstration was a combination of “how to make a basket twist” and “how not to weld”. Fortunately only one of the pre-welded twisting blanks broke, and we had some spares. Everyone got a chance to try their hand at making a basket twist, and every single one turned out better than the demonstrator’s.  To add insult to injury, at only his second meeting with us, Tim Huddleston turned out a perfect basket twist in just two heats – one for twisting and one for un-twisting, and the result didn’t need a single tweak with pliers at the end. Tim is no longer welcome at our forge! (just kidding – Tim has ninja welding skills, and I’m going to need some help making a coal forge soon.  Tim is therefore my favorite member at the moment!) Tim’s son Layne also showed up all of us “seasoned” blacksmiths. After lunch, they turned their twists into a coal rake and a poker for their own coal forge.  Great job!

Thanks also to Tim for taking these great pictures. Like I said – an artist.  I do think there may be a problem with his camera, though.  All of us look really wide.  I think he may have had the macro lens on.

While eating lunch (chili, hamburgers and hotdogs provided by Jane Fox), we had a lively discussion of the chemistry of rust, the economics of repairing an anvil, and the physics of iron formation in the heart of a star.  Come to CACBOA meetings and get a free education!

During the business meeting, we discussed with anticipation the upcoming Nathan Robertson hammer class, the recent changes to the BOA web page, and the possibility of having a long-term project dedicated toward walking us through the creation of the ABANA grill.

The trade item this month was “a gender-appropriate gift for your significant other”.  We had a heart hook, three roses, and a snail.  The snail was very nice, but it does beg the question whether we should have said “a species-appropriate gift…”

Our next meeting will be at the forge of Herman Ginger (who is not a dentist) in Pine Bluff.  The trade item will be a pair of tongs.  The demonstration will be on forge welding or whatever Herman needs help getting done in his shop…


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