Introduction: Making an Anvil Stand That Rolls Like a Dolly

This instructable documents the build process of one of my projects that I documented with still pictures,
before I got started making YouTube videos ( Never the less, I still think many of you will find it interesting or informative, so I’m just going to add some text to each picture to explain what you’re looking at. Anyways - here it goes!

Step 1: What It Looks Like

SO… What you’re looking at here is an Anvil stand that I made for my 232 pound Peter Wright blacksmiths anvil. This instructable documents the build process.

Step 2: Should I Use a Tree Stump?

I had been looking for a tree stump for the anvil and it turned out that my Son-in-Law had recently cut
down the Oak tree in front of his house. Unfortunately it wasn't a large enough diameter (tape measure) to fit the base of the Anvil (white template). Around this time, a HUGE oak tree collapsed in the backyard of a good friend of mine, and while I considered sourcing a section of tree stump from him, the piece I needed would have been SO large and heavy as to make it impractical to lift and transport. So… I ended up just making my own anvil stand to the dimensions that I needed.

Step 3: It Really Needs to Be MOBILE.

I have limited workspace, so I wanted the stand to be mobile, and allow me to move the anvil around as needed. If you look in the lower left side of the anvil, you will see some casters that are mounted to the back. To facilitate moving the stand and anvil around, you will see a base plate and threaded pipe socket in the lower left, as well as an Eye-Bolt above it near the top edge. In the lower right you can see a pair of 4-foot steel pipes that slide thru the eye-bolts, and thread into the pipe sockets. These pipes serve as removable Dolly Handles, and allow me to lean the stand and anvil back onto the casters, and literally move the anvil around like it was on a dolly.

Step 4: Measurements; Buying and Cutting Lumber

So to start out, I made some calculations, and then headed to my local Home Depot to buy some lumber. I purchased a couple 8-foot long, 4"x10" beams, and cut each beam into four 23" lengths. These eight pieces of wood will be the main body of the Anvil Stand. Their 23” length would place the top striking surface of the anvil at the height of my knuckles if I was standing next to it. This is the traditional working height of a blacksmithing anvil.

Step 5: Measure Well. Reduce Waste.

These 3 chunks of wood were all that was left over after cutting the beams to length. I love it when I use my building materials efficiently and without much waste.

Step 6: Test Fit

I pre-drill the wood pieces and assemble them for a "test-fit". I notice right away that one beam is 1/16th of an inch narrower than its counterpart, so I will need to take that into consideration and shim it out from the inside.

Step 7: Glue-laminate, and Bolt Together

Each set of four sections are glued and bolted together with Lag Screws, and threaded rods.

Step 8: Choose a Nice Stain

While the glue is curing, I go ahead and apply a nice stain to the visible outer faces.

Step 9: Glue and Bolt the Two Halves Together

Once the stain is dried, the two sections are glued, shimmed internally, assembled, then bolted together and the glue allowed to cure under pressure.

Step 10: Top Edge Protection, and Dolly Poles

This is a view of the top face of the anvil stand. Here you can see the 1/8th-inch shim inserted into the middle of the stand before final assembly. This photo also shows the test-fit of the top edge bracket that I cut to fit and welded. This top face will be covered by a piece of galvanized steel sheet to protect the wood from burning. Note also the two removable poles, which will be used together with casters to allow the anvil and stand to be moved around like a dolly.

Step 11: Measure Well. Reduce Waste.

This is what was left over from when I made the top bracket for the Anvil Stand. I love it when I can use building materials efficiently and without much waste.

Step 12: Galvanized Steel Top Plate

Completed Anvil Stand with galvanized steel sheet top plate. I actually weighed all of the components as I added them. Without the poles (and the glue) the stand weighs just under 150 pounds.

Step 13: Casters

This view shows the edge of one of the four casters mounted on the back, as well as the center strap - which is really there more for looks than for any additional structural support.

Step 14: Mounting the Anvil

My Peter Wright Anvil being lowered into place after being cleaned in a vinegar bath, and painted with clear-coat.

Step 15: Need a Better Way to Secure the Anvil.

The anvil is in position, but after using some black electrical tape as a visual aid, I realize that my planned method of securing the anvil with steel straps will be less than ideal.

Step 16: Custom Mounting Brackets for the Win!

I therefore decided to weld together some angle-iron L-profile stock into a Z pattern, and placed a custom bracket on the front edge (seen on the right in this image) and the rear edge (seen on the left) of the anvil’s base.

Step 17:

Here is the anvil mounted to the anvil stand. The mobile anvil stand works as desired, and all I have to do is slide in the steel pipes and use them to move the anvil and stand around like a dolly.

I’m pretty happy with how it turned out, and I’ve shared my ideas with other blacksmiths who are integrating some of my ideas into their anvil stand designs. Now THAT is pretty cool.