Anvil mounting methods?

Randy Bill
Posts: 11
Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2014 5:14 am
Location: Tracy, MN

Anvil mounting methods?

Unread post by Randy Bill » Thu Jul 31, 2014 7:58 pm

What methods are considered best for bedding and attaching an anvil to it's base? Also, how much should the base weigh in relation to an 85# anvil? I require a "movable" unit on a dirt floor.

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Darryl Ponder
Posts: 325
Joined: Sun Feb 10, 2013 12:10 pm
Location: Minnetonka, MN

Re: Anvil mounting methods?

Unread post by Darryl Ponder » Thu Jul 31, 2014 9:33 pm

Randy,

I use a plywood base for my ~125 lb. anvil. See figure #22 here: http://www.anvilfire.com/iForge/tutor.p ... vil-stands. Here is what it looks like on the Anvilfire website:
detail_2b.jpg
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Mine looks very similar, but I have added some embellishments for tool holders, I added wheels so I can move it around my garage and added a tube and chain structure to clamp the anvil to the base and reduce ringing. I have had it on dirt and can move it around, but it moves much better on concrete!
Here is my stand. This design may not take any awards for beauty, but it works very well and is easy to build.
20140801_095938.jpg
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20140801_100140.jpg
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I use the tubing around the perimeter to mount tool holders and a small shelf. I also insert a smaller piece of tubing into the structure to use as a handle to move the anvil around the garage. Used to have two handles, but one got used on a project and I haven't replaced it. Hi hi.

Regards,

Darryl

Martin Pansch
Posts: 312
Joined: Thu Feb 14, 2013 10:44 am
Location: Young America, MN

Re: Anvil mounting methods?

Unread post by Martin Pansch » Thu Jul 31, 2014 9:48 pm

Good question. I could write an article on the subject. Well, actually I already have. I'll try to recap and tailor it to you and throw in a little extra.

You don't always need to strap an anvil down but in your case I would. An 85 pounder is a little light to be sitting free unless you are just making little stuff and not working the horn or heel too much. For a movable stand for a light weight anvil on a dirt floor I would probably recommend something either like what Larry Wasmund or Bob Brown have. Of maybe a combo.
Larry Wasmund's anvil stand rear.jpg
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The chain around the waist and to a turn buckle lets you tighten it down. The stand itself is a wooden box. You could fill the stand with sand if you want for extra weight. It would keep it from "walking" in use and would make the whole thing less top heavy but the sand wouldn't really help add rebound.
Bob Brown's anvil stand inset.jpg
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Bob has a stand made with 2 x 10 (or maybe 2x12s) sandwiched vertically. Staggering them gives some nooks for tool storage. He routed out the shape of the base into the top. He just sets the anvil in and the inlet keeps the anvil from sliding off. Having solid wood from anvil to floor might help give you a little more rebound. If you have a solid wood stump you can use that though I always have a tough time getting a nice square cut.

There is no formula I know of that dictates how heavy your stand should be given a certain weight of anvil. IT is just mass unless it does something to help your anvil, like providing solid mass from anvil to ground.
Jim Moenck's anvil stand fastening.jpg
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Jim Moenck used a similar chain method for strapping down the anvil. If you are using dimensional lumber don't sink a lag bolt into the end grain as it will eventually loosen and pull free. I have seen some folks drill a 2" or so hole in the side of a stand like this and put a chunk of 2" round tube in it to use like a big washer (hole drilled through it and a nut on the inside of the tube) and run a long bolt up to connect with the chain. Jim's stand is steel which removes considerations like end grain.

All these stands benefit by having a 2-wheeler in the shop to move it around, especially if you make your stand solid and heavy.
Pansch Anvil Stand side high.jpg
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Here is one of my stands. I welded a few bolts on either side of the anvil just inside the arc of the feet. I have a couple pieces of channel I drilled holes to match the bolts and use lock nuts to bolt it down. Since the bolts are inside the curve of the feet the channel overlaps the feet and it holds it down tight. I found this helped quiet my anvil's ring a bit.

Other things you can do to bed the anvil down if you have ringing issues is to use a silicon caulk or a few layers of tar paper or shingles under the anvil before cinching down the anvil. I have only used the silicon myself. It might have quieted it down a little but not significantly for me. Maybe I did something wrong?

If you get really bored you can read the article I wrote for the Metalsmith a few years ago about anvil stands:
Anvil Stands 11Jun2012.doc
(1000.5 KiB) Downloaded 2126 times
[edit: Oops! I posted a not-quite-finished version of the article. Updated now.]

Good luck
Last edited by Martin Pansch on Fri Aug 01, 2014 6:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Randy Bill
Posts: 11
Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2014 5:14 am
Location: Tracy, MN

Re: Anvil mounting methods?

Unread post by Randy Bill » Fri Aug 01, 2014 8:14 am

Thanks gents. I swear, I'll put wheels on anything so was very happy to see the "W" word in your replies. I'll try over-engineering a super heavy duty two wheeled cart, steel wheels and all that. Yay!
Why is this new guy who just posted looking for a rail source to make an anvil wanting ideas for a stand for an 85# anvil? After twenty-six years of looking, I found an anvil only four miles from the farm. I'd seen it before; the most poorly cast piece of ASO I'd ever seen but since I wasn't getting any closer to finding an anvil.... WAY too small for the shop that had it (they wear out 300# anvils) and they'd bought it years prior from "some guy" in case they needed it. They didn't; one side had nearly invisible lettering reading AY- UDDEN, under that, AN ACTU IN , under that ROOKLYN N , left heel under horn numbered 189132. You guessed it; the rest, as they say, is history. Furniture refinisher (acetone) removed the rock-hard 1/8" thick grime, steel wool and oil (no abrasives!) revealed light use, no abuse, and a gorgeous patina still blue in areas. So, I need a stand.

Martin Pansch
Posts: 312
Joined: Thu Feb 14, 2013 10:44 am
Location: Young America, MN

Re: Anvil mounting methods?

Unread post by Martin Pansch » Fri Aug 01, 2014 8:56 am

Glad to hear you found one. Even at its small size you will like it more than a railroad track anvil.

From the markings you can make out sounds like a Hay Budden, made in Brooklyn, NY. Far from a cast iron POS these are considered by many to be one if the best American made brands. Sorry to hear it is in rough shape. That can be fixed but it takes some work...

Randy Bill
Posts: 11
Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2014 5:14 am
Location: Tracy, MN

Re: Anvil mounting methods?

Unread post by Randy Bill » Fri Aug 01, 2014 1:43 pm

Martin, I must apologize. My remarks regarding the condition of my find were an ill-fated attempt at humor and were tongue-in-cheek. I'd only recently learned what a Hay-Budden anvil even was and only two days ago purchased the one described. I had only THOUGHT it was a cast "POS" all those years; my closer inspection two days ago revealed what it really was. The lettering I described became much clearer after my careful cleaning. To clarify this anvil's condition: it is in near-perfect condition, again, little use and no abuse. The serial number dates it to 1911. Sorry I'm unable to download your article on anvil stands; it requires "Office", don't have it. Regret I won't be posting images; the resizing procedure required isn't my cup of tea.

Martin Pansch
Posts: 312
Joined: Thu Feb 14, 2013 10:44 am
Location: Young America, MN

Re: Anvil mounting methods?

Unread post by Martin Pansch » Fri Aug 01, 2014 6:37 pm

Randy,

Sorry about that. If I hadn't been lazy in my reading and actually finished the last line I would have picked up on the good condition of the anvil.

No Office? How do you function man?!?! ;)

How if your PDF situation?
Anvil Stands 11Jun2012.pdf
(589.09 KiB) Downloaded 403 times
I could give you a walk through of resizing if you have either Windows Live Photo Gallery or Paint. It is relatively easy. If you have some other program you use on photo I am afraid I will be no help.

Martin

Martin

Randy Bill
Posts: 11
Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2014 5:14 am
Location: Tracy, MN

Re: Anvil mounting methods?

Unread post by Randy Bill » Sat Aug 02, 2014 4:16 am

Martin, guess my PDF situation is okay as your article downloaded immediately after clicking on the last attachment; thanks. Understand that I'm computer illiterate and only began online access a few months ago. I'm connected via a Verizon "Jetpack" (MiFi) so speed is super-fast but data is expensive. No videos! Heck, we didn't get electricity until 1938 so are doing pretty good considering.
I like the idea of securely clamping the anvil to it's stand. Just HAS to increase mass doesn't it? Also seeing more on caulking to the base. I've got lots of lead (really) so may attempt bedding with that.
Am appreciating all the help...

Martin Pansch
Posts: 312
Joined: Thu Feb 14, 2013 10:44 am
Location: Young America, MN

Re: Anvil mounting methods?

Unread post by Martin Pansch » Sat Aug 02, 2014 12:35 pm

Lead would probably work. I am sure Theophilis Presbyter would approve. I generally avoid dealing with lead if I can get away with it.

Are you talking just plopping a sheet of it down and putting the anvil on top or doing something more molten? I probably don't need to mention it but be safe if playing with liquid metal (try to avoid breathing the fumes).

I don't know if the repeated beating would make the anvil seat better into it or just deform it to the point of loosening things up. If all the blows were coming straight down on it I would think better seating but with working the horn, heel, etc I just don't know. I suppose the thickness of the lead would make a difference too. If you do it let us know how it works out for you.

Securely clamping the anvil to a solid stand should help but I couldn't say how much. That gap, tiny as it might be, between the stand and anvil is going to steal some of the efficiency of the extra mass. This is one of the reasons you can't just reface an anvil by putting new tool steel on top and welding around the perimeter.

Electricity is nice but given the choice nothing beats indoor plumbing in my estimation. ;)

Randy Bill
Posts: 11
Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2014 5:14 am
Location: Tracy, MN

Re: Anvil mounting methods?

Unread post by Randy Bill » Sun Aug 03, 2014 7:08 am

Yes, the thought of the lead just squishing out now seems obvious. Point taken, I'll deep-six that plan. Just my desire to overcomplicate. Saw references to a marine caulk and had visions of the stuff being tough to remove. So, how about plain old silicone; it never sticks anyway when you want it to.
I've started on a steel base for the subject anvil but have a VERY big Ash log felled last year that is going to get converted into bases for ASO's and other equipment. We're a long way away from anywhere but if someone needs some sections they are most welcome to some, free. About twelve feet of this log is 18" or greater dia.

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