Introduction: The Ultimate Anvil Stand!

I finally decided it was time to build an proper anvil stand. Unfortunately i've come to find out that most floors/surfaces are not truly level. By going with 3 legs you can eliminate wobbling due to an uneven or nonlevel floor. I splayed the legs at 10 degree angles for better stability. This was a very fun build, that only took about a day and a half.

As with most of my instructables, there are a handful of details and tricks in the video that aren't in the image gallery, so if you have the 7:00 to watch the video, I highly encourage you do so!

Tools & products used:

Lincoln Electric 140C Mig welder - http://amzn.to/2fhWbGd

General tools angle finder/miter gauge - http://amzn.to/2fhWbGd

Dewalt 4 1/2 Angle Grinder - http://amzn.to/2fhWbGd

Dewalt Flexvolt Angle Grinder - http://amzn.to/2fhWbGd

Dewalt DW862 Cold Saw - http://amzn.to/2fhWbGd

Sculpt Nouveau Cleaner & Degreaser - http://bit.ly/2lIJQd6

Sculpt Nouveau Copper Plate Patina - http://bit.ly/2mDTdjj

Lacuqer clear coat - http://amzn.to/2mDXF1G

Step 1: Finding the Correct Height

Picture of Finding the Correct Height

Convention has it that the face of the anvil should be at the height of your clenched fist. Getting this measurement was the first step. In my case the top of the anvil should set at 29.5".

Step 2: Crunching the Numbers

Picture of Crunching the Numbers

The next step was to subtract out the height of all the materials. This left me with the total height the legs needed to span, however, I decided to splay the legs at 10 degree for better stability, which necessitated some basic trigonometry.

See, it can actually be useful!

Step 3: Raw Materials

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The raw materials for the build:

2x3 steel tubing

1/2" plate steel

1/4" plate, and a 2x12".

Step 4: Setting the Miter

Picture of Setting the Miter

Using a bevel gauge to set the saw to cut the legs at 10 degrees.

Tools pictured:
General tools angle finder/miter guage - http://amzn.to/2mq4AuP

Dewalt DW862 Cold Saw - http://amzn.to/2etobWb

Step 5: Chop Chop!

Picture of Chop Chop!

Using a cold saw to cut the legs to length at 10 degrees. Loudest tool in the shop hands down!

Tools pictured:
Dewalt DW862 Cold Saw - http://amzn.to/2etobWb

Step 6: Drilling Hole for Fastening Bolt

Picture of Drilling Hole for Fastening Bolt

Here I have everything mocked up in place, I'm drilling through the 2x4 which will also leave a mark on the 1/2" plate. The anvil will be secured with two bolts passing through this hole.

Step 7: Drill!

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Here I'm drilling a 3/8" hole through the 1/2" thick steel plate. The drill press made relatively quick work of this.

Step 8: Test Fit

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Success! I decided to use a wood block for a couple reasons:

1. It will dampen the vibration & ringing of the anvil

2. If I ever go with a taller anvil, I will have a couple inches leeway.

Step 9: Weld the Legs

Picture of Weld the Legs

Pretty much what is sounds like. I put a few tacks around each leg before welding solid to avoid heat warping.

Tools used:

Lincoln Electric 140C Mig welder - http://amzn.to/2fhWbGd

Step 10: Welding in a Tray

Picture of Welding in a Tray

Welding some 1/8"x1" flat stock across the legs where I will be adding a tray. The tray wasn't necessary for strength, but I figure it would be nice to have a place to set my punches and drifts, etc. Also, If I need extra weight, I could umm--put heavy things in it.

Tools pictured:
Lincoln Electric 140C Mig welder - http://amzn.to/2fhWbGd

Step 11: Sand!

Picture of Sand!

So metal anvil stands are great, however there are two fairly common complaints:
1. Not heavy enough unless bolted down
2. Loud! Metal doesn't do a very good job of dampening vibrations

The sand will mitigate these issues.

Step 12: Feet!

Picture of Feet!

The next step was to weld the feet on the bottom of the legs. I had to do this upside down in order to keep the sand in the legs. I also predrilled the feet in case I ever decide to bolt down the stand.

Step 13:

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Alright, here the frame of the anvil stand is complete, I also just blasted it with some copper plate patina, I wanted to do something a bit different and this turned out neat. I'm a big fan of Sculpt Nouveau products and use them quite often in my builds.

Products used:
Sculpt Nouveau Cleaner & Degreaser - http://bit.ly/2lIJQd6

Sculpt Nouveau Copper Plate Patina - http://bit.ly/2mDTdjj

Step 14: Leather Hammer Holders

Picture of Leather Hammer Holders

This was my first foray into leather working, and even without the proper tools, I was very pleased with the results. I look forward to including more leather in my future projects.

Step 15: Installed

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Here you can see the leather handle holsters installed. I drilled out and tapped the frame, punched out the leather with an awl, and bolted them directly to the frame.

Step 16: Close-up!

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Very happy! I didn't intend on the design looking like a Soviet Union propaganda poster--but oh well.

Step 17:

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The natural wood, just didn't jibe with the rest of the stand, so I decided to do the "Shou sugi ban" process on it. This also has the benefit of preventing the wood from moisture and rot--and it's fun to say.

Tools used:
generic propane torch/weed burner - http://amzn.to/2igRlXd

Step 18: All Finished!

Picture of All Finished!

I had a lot of fun with this build, I got to play around with some new metal patinas, experiment with some basic leather working, and use trigonometry!

Thank you for checking out this Instructable! If you'd like to see more projects from me, make sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel ZH Fabrications and check out my website www.zhfabrications.com.

And again, here are the tools I used for this project:

Lincoln Electric 140C Mig welder - http://amzn.to/2fhWbGd

General tools angle finder/miter guage - http://amzn.to/2mq4AuP

Dewalt 4 1/2 Angle Grinder - http://amzn.to/2mq4AuP

Dewalt Flexvolt Angle Grinder - http://amzn.to/2mq4AuP

Dewalt DW862 Cold Saw - http://amzn.to/2mq4AuP

Sculpt Nouveau Cleaner & Degreaser - http://bit.ly/2lIJQd6

Sculpt Nouveau Copper Plate Patina - http://bit.ly/2mDTdjj

Lacuqer clear coat - http://amzn.to/2mDXF1G

Thank you,
Zack

Comments

PeterP149 (author)2017-03-09

AWESOME !!!

Thank you!

ManCrafting (author)2017-03-07

Zach this build makes me want to finish my Anvil stand. I have it to a usable point, but I still need to put tool holders and I'm considering the wood base and clamping the way you did. I had a little different idea, but this may work better.

Go for it Chad! Let me know if you have any questions.

woodbywright (author)2017-03-07

Swxy sweet! love it!

Thanks James!

BernSh (author)2017-03-07

Your savvy with tools and materials was a joy and very instructional to watch. The supporting structures you've made really make it flow. Thank you for putting all that work into the video!

I'm not planning on an anvil anytime soon so the following is just peanut gallery noise:

A second shelf midway up the legs would provide a temporary rest spot for tools you're working with and not ready to holster.

Given the really nice finishes you gave the wood and steel, it seems the screws and bolts got shortchanged. Maybe burnish them with enough flame to darken them without weakening them?

Lastly, (for version2 ;) shorter steel legs and a thicker wooden section under the anvil might help offset at least some of the impact of what force ultimately reaches the floor.

Again, very good build and really great and fun to watch you work. Thanks!!!

ZH Fabrications (author)BernSh2017-03-08

Thank you!

g4ipz (author)2017-03-07

Fabulous construction and instructional video. Top marks.

ZH Fabrications (author)g4ipz2017-03-08

Thank you!

Andrawis (author)2017-03-07

that tree stump you had in your shop -- would have been the perfect fit for the task -- any how nice ideas and good math and good fabrication but not for this application heavy hammering will provide too much vibration as steel will bounce the energy back

ZH Fabrications (author)Andrawis2017-03-08

You actually want the energy to bounce back, people spend a lot of money on special alloy anvils so that "the energy is returned" and the hammer bounces back.

DAYJAY (author)2017-03-07

That is COOL!

ZH Fabrications (author)DAYJAY2017-03-08

Thank you!

pfred2 (author)2017-03-06

I have my anvil on a tree stump. I've heard of people having problems with stumps wobbling around. I have not had that issue. I don't do heavy forging on my anvil though. Don't let anyone tell you that planing a tree stump flat is easy either. I remember when I flattened mine, it was a lot of work. According to your method it is at precisely the right height for me though. I just checked.

ZH Fabrications (author)pfred22017-03-08

Yeah, it sounds like it could be a tricky, especially if your floor isn't absolutely flat.

sconnors (author)pfred22017-03-07

Here's the easiest way I know of to level a stump.

https://www.instructables.com/id/Jig-for-surfacing-with-a-router/

gjp627. (author)sconnors2017-03-08

I've my anvil on a tree stump that is buried in the earth 5 ft deep my late Grandfather showed me how. He was a blacksmith born in 1896, from a long heritage of blacksmiths. I know not of modern blacksmithing, except what I have learned here and through my travels. I find this to be an interesting approach

ZH Fabrications (author)pfred22017-03-07

Hah, yeah--stumps work great, but I don't think the video would have been near as interesting :)

woodewe (author)2017-03-07

Well done! Regarding floor damage, the wood base will dampen some of the energy before it transmits to the floor. Plus the big feet will spread the load over a wide area, assuming no high or sharp points on the feet. On mine, I bonded 1-inch thick rubber pads (cut from horse stall mats) to the feet to keep it from moving. Wish I had thought of filling the tubes with sand before welding on the feet!

texhoma creative design (author)2017-03-07

steel bases with no absorbing factor will eventually damage any floor.

Interesting point that I didn't consider. Transferred energy from the hammer has to go somewhere. I suppose a lot of use would definitely make this obvious.

mike8449 (author)2017-03-07

Great design and beautiful craftsmanship!

ZH Fabrications (author)mike84492017-03-07

Thank you!

mlawing (author)2017-03-06

Nice one, Zack!

ZH Fabrications (author)mlawing2017-03-06

Thank you!

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Bio: My name is Zack, I'm a full time craftsman. I am incredibly fortunate to be able to do what I love full time--turning ideas ... More »
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