Primitive Artist Blacksmiths Block
Primitive Artist Blacksmiths or Personal Swage Block:
The flat back with porosity and shrinks indicates that this block may have been cast in an open faced mold.
This was a primitive process where the pattern was rammed up in the casting floor sand.
Iron filled the mold from a long runner directly from the cupola.
The long flat side may have had another feature or two but was cut out for the feed runner.
This pattern also has design features that indicates that it was probably a personal pattern made by a non-professional.
The narrow lands between the half rounds and bowls, as well as the corners are very weak.
In fact they are broken in several places on a block that shows little use.
The small half round near the V groove on the opposite side is a common error and another very weak point.
Photos courtesy of John Catchings, Catchings Collection.
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