Capital District Blacksmiths' Association
Having Fun, Meeting People & Promoting the Art of Blacksmithing

6/25/17 Monthly Meeting Schedule:UPDATE


2017 CDBA monthly Meeting schedule: 6/25/17 at Normanside/Pat's Forge

Event Date: Jun 25, 2017 12-4
Brian Filson


Pat's Forge
Mill Road, Albany, NY 12209
click here for directions

Posted in the shop is a sign up sheet for you to note when and if you would like to demonstrate some aspect of working with any type of metal. Keep in mind that the demo does not have to be long, it can cover any topic even remotely connected to Blacksmithing.

If you have never demonstrated before, we can help you organize what you want to do before you do it. We are all friends by now and no one needs to feel embarrassed or uncomfortable. Few of us are public speakers. If you have an idea, let us know (Rob: 339-2058 or Elijah: 742-0343 or Jack 439-0232) and we can work with you towards developing a demo.


So far the 2017 calendar schedule looks like this:

Jan. 29, 2017: Mike Cataldo will once again demonstrate in his shop, Aggressive Metalworks, an aspect of the art of blacksmithing. He and his able life assistant will demonstrate forging a blacksmith hammer.

Feb.26: Jack Connell will do a quick demo on making a gouge and a flat chisel for woodworking using various sized discarded garage door springs.

March:26: Rob Gallerani, as is his usual style and sense of adventure, will demonstrate making an aluminum sand casting

****April: 30: Paul Crosby will do a challenging demo making damascus using 20 pieces of a couple of different types of steel creating a damascus billet.

May 21: Colin Ray and Steve Gurzler will demonstrate tong making.(Earlier date as 5/28 is Memorial Day weekend).

June 25: Brian Filson will demonstrate something he does extremely well, how to correctly sharpen a blade to a razor edge.

July 30: open:

August 27: **** SPECIAL MEETING **** Joe Cianfarani and his brother, Remo, will host our group at their forge/shop, "Armando & Sons, Iron Works", in Schenectady. Joe and Remo are carrying on the family tradition of blacksmithing which started in Italy years and generations ago. Joe and Remo do exceptionally high quality wrought iron and aluminum grills, fences, gates, etc. The tools and machines used are, by themselves, incredibly interesting and a must see. For the meeting, J&R have something special planned. This is a "Not To Be Missed" meeting.

Directions: Get off I90 from the Thruway. Take the Broadway ramp and turn right onto Broadway. At the first light, take a right onto Edison St. Then a first left onto Van Guysling Ave. You will see their shop on the right.

September :



December:No meeting



*******The Rest of the year 2017 is wide open and volunteers are needed.********



For any "Open" meeting: Remember, we still can have meetings w/o a demo but it is always more interesting when we do. The list will be posted at each meeting - so sign up(sheet is in the shop).

***Remember, unless otherwise specified, ALL MEETINGS are held at "Pat's Forge", generally on the last Sunday of the month. The forge is the City of Albany's Normanside/Stephen's farm located off Delaware Ave.and under the bridge to the parking lot and then walking up to the first yellow building on the left.


Damascus Demo 4/30 by Paul Crosby


Paul Crosby's terrific demonstration on coal forging multiple layers of steel, to achieve a damascus/pattern welded blank

Event Date: Apr 30, 2017

Paul filled in at the last minute for the original demonstrator who had a sudden date conflict. Typically for Paul, he never hesitated and stepped up to the plate, er, forge and gave a wonderfully informative demo. What made this especially neat was that Paul had never previously made a damascus blank on a coal forge as he does all his damascus, or pattern welding, using propane gas. Paul started with 7 layers of two types of steel, welded them then folded the piece in half for a now 14 layers of steel and forge welded them as well. By folding the 14 again you would then have 28 layers and so on with repeated folds the layers growing exponentially by doubling with each fold. Very clear, organized and understandable steps for the whole process were given each step of the way.

Paul also talked a bit about the history of damascus, where it originated and why, etc. He also brought several samples of damascus which he either made knives from or has finished blanks ready to use.

Wonderful demo. Good job, Paul!


Jim's one day Workshop


Jim's "How To Workshop" is open to 4 members WHO HAVE A FORGE AT HOME.

Event Date: Mar 28, 2017

Jim is offering once again his time and knowledge to help members learn some of the nuances of Blacksmithing. The workshop will be for one day only which will be on the Saturday before the weekend we have our monthly meeting. This translates for next month to be Saturday, April 22, with the monthly meeting being, Sunday, April 30.

Call Jim if you are interested at 439-5439. The first 4 who call and sign up will be the maximum accepted.



Changes within the Club: 3/26/17


New division of Club responsibilities effective today: 3/26/17

Event Date: Mar 26, 2017

Jim Moran has, since CDBA founding, generally been the primary and often sole organizer and front man for the Club. Today Jim discussed the need for other Club members (particularly younger members!) to step forward and shoulder some of the duties that Jim heretofore carried on his own shoulders. Jim correctly feels that the long term Club survival is dependent upon participating members at all levels., the planning level. We had a healthy response to Jim's concerns, as follows:

Although several other members offered to help out (and will regularly), officially the following members will take on the noted duties for the foreseeable future while Jim, Jack, Paul and Mike will continue to help or fill in out as needed.

1). Preparing and providing coffee, etc. for each meeting: Brian Filson and Joe Cianfaranu.

2). Picking up the shop before or after each meeting: Rich Diguilio and Matt Clynes

3). Arranging for demonstrators: Rob Gallerani and Elijah Hammond-Wood

Any questions, call Jack at 439-0232 or e-mail at:


Today's meeting: 3/26/17


Rob's Aluminum Sand Casting

Event Date: Mar 26, 2017

Once again, Rob Gallerani demonstrated his inquisitive and creative mind by demonstrating how to make a sand mold and subsequent casting. He simultaneously cast an aluminum handle to a small throwing knife and in the same mold a finely detailed wood engraving in which he added some real garnet from the Adirondacks. Rob clearly explained all of the steps involved, the costs, the retail material resources and the most common issues which often unexpectedly come up. Terrific demonstration which took over an hour plus but well worth every minute. The finished items were very cool. Nice Job, Rob.


Saratoga NWA Showcase


Northeast Woodworker's Association (NWA) Annual Showcase: 4/1-4/2 from 10-5 each day.

Event Date: Apr 1, 2017 10-5

Following up on my demo last meeting, I will be at the NWA Showcase in the Saratoga Convention Center (attached to the Hilton Hotel) on Saturday from 10-2+-and will have the complete and finished triptych with me - you saw one of the three pieces at my demo. I will have a couple of other carvings there as well as a new one I am working on. Look for me in the Carver's Circle where I will be from 10-2:30+-. Cheers. Jack


Note: email issues


Email issues

Event Date: Mar 16, 2017

All Members:

I have lost all of my CDBA contact email address info. If you want to be on the CDBA master email list, send me an email at: Do not use my old verizon email.

Send your name, phone number and email address. Thanks.

Jack Connell: 439-0232 or


Demo on 2/26


Demo on wood carving tools.

Event Date: Feb 28, 2017

Jack’s Demo on carving tools was well done, simple process with simple spring steel materials. He is an artist is sculpture with wood and stone ,but his tools can be used in any material. I think he should do the same Demo for his woodchuck club.

We had a good turn out and I got a lot of help from Mike Cataldo and friends cleaning out my old shop. Now I need help putting it all away- see you at the next meeting. The Library is up and running. Please take some materials home at the March meeting or I will donate it to the Bethlehem Library or sell it in at a Ashokan Meeting.

Jim Moran


ABANA Membership Drive


ABANA Membership Drive, as noted below.

Event Date: Feb 1, 2017
We are excited to announce our 2017 membership campaign drive and would like to ask for your help in spreading the news. As a gift to a first time member we will award (while supplies last) a copy of Francis Whitaker's book, My Life as an Artist Blacksmith.

ABANA is widely recognized as the preeminent organization of blacksmithing in the world. Visit us online at and like us on Facebook and Twitter. You may join ABANA or renew your membership by following this link:

Thanks for your support.

Eddie Rainey
ABANA President


Mike's Hammer Demo 1/29/17


Aggressive Metalworks does it again!

Event Date: Jan 29, 2017

Mike in his usual and delightful way demonstrated and explained step by step how to forge a blacksmith hammer. As in every demo Mike has done, and there have been many over the years, Mike's knowledge and common sense approach to making any object, made this demo understandable and a treat to watch. He is, as has been said before, a born teacher. His apprentice and able helper, aka, fiance Ashley, did a terrific job as striker and tongs handler.. Mike's mother also made a critical appearance as once again delivered a couple of large bowls of absolutely delicious cookies, of which I had at least three!This meeting had another large turnout, to wit, 37 people with some new prospective members.

Additionally, Jim Moran confirmed that our area has been selected for the 2020 ABANA conference, which will be in the Saratoga area. Help in needed at all venues. Contact Jim (439-5439) for details or to sign up. Jim also discussed setting up actual hands on workshops for members the weekend before the usual meeting at Pat's Forge to help the honing or learning of new skills. Contact Jim for details.

The next meeting will be at Pat's forge on February 26 when I will have a short demo (due to the depth of my skills/knowledge!) on making woodworking tools i.e., gouges and chisels out of garage door spring steel.



ABANA 2020 Conference


2020 Abana Conference in Saratoga

Posted: Jan 14, 2017

Rand Condell said we have been chosen to hold the ABANA 2020 meeting in Saratoga. That is great news, but we now need a lot of people to volunteer to assist at that Conference. It's seems a long way off, but we will be there before we know it. So, we need an honest commitment from a lot of people to help both plan the conference and work during the conference. Blacksmith skills are nice but not that important, a willingness to help is the main skill. Please let me know that you can help.

Thanks Jim Moran 439-5439


Mark Feldman Obituary


Mark's obituary

Event Date: Dec 13, 2016

bituary for Joseph Feldmann

Joseph Feldmann

Joseph Mark Feldmann, also known to his friends as Yvan Wolvesbane and Grok passed away suddenly on December 4,2016. Born February 2, 1958 to late Ed and Myna Feldmann. He had an associates in machining and an associates in construction technology from Hudson Valley Community College. He was a devoted fan of the Grateful Dead and a long-time member of the Society for Creative Anachronism and The Norse Recreation Society (also know as Norseland). He was an avid amateur blacksmith, metal caster, leatherworker, and carver of bone and antler. He was an active member of the Capital District Blacksmiths' Association in Albany NY even after his move to VT. He is survived by his wife of 16 years Maggie Allen, his three brothers Robert, Charles, and William and their spouses, his nieces, nephews and a myriad of friends.

A celebration of his life and reception will be held at 2-5 pm Saturday January 7, 2017 at the Berne NY Volunteer Fire Department, 25 Main Street, Berne, NY. Tie-dye attire is welcome.

In lieu of flowers donations can be made to the ACLU or the Adirondack Folk School


November Meeting


11-27-16 meeting

Posted: Nov 29, 2016

Today's Meeting 11/27/16 at Pat's Forge was another good meeting of fellow enthusiasts.

Today Jim demonstrated forge welding and twisting a basket scroll. He showed two different ways to do this. One was Binding four separate pieces together with wire and forge welding the ends before twisting. A slightly "easier" way, the second, was bending the ends before forge welding.

Paul also demonstrated using a special jig to make a wine glass holder for the top of a wine bottle. He also demonstrated a forge welded fire poker. We had an average turn out, about 25-30 folks, with at least three new faces. Doing both demonstrations at the same time by Paul allowed for plenty of time for the "newbies" to get some one on one anvil time under more experienced smiths.

Remember : there will be no December meeting so as to allow all of us to enjoy the holidays.

The January meeting will be at Mike Cataldo's forge on Patricia Ln. in Guilderland (see specific directions on the web site). Mike and his able assistant, Ashley, will be demonstrating hammer making.

Have a merry holiday and Christmas, Paul


Power Hammer Demo


Todays Power Hammer Demo with Mike Cataldo

Posted: Oct 30, 2016

Today's meeting was held at Aggressive Metalworks in Guilderland, hosted by Mike Cataldo. As expected, Mike gave a spectacular power hammer demonstration. He explained the different types of power hammers, and went into great depth on tooling and dies used with them. Especially useful was his demonstration on the use of a "saddle" which is a simple but clever quick release devise used for holding various type of fullers. He also demonstrated making a ball on the end of a half inch square bar, and demonstrated an angled fullering tool that is used for beveling hatchets and axe heads. We were also entertained with forge welding a 1080 carbon steel plate onto a forged mini anvil Mike made out of a 2"x2" square rod. Mike's generously equipped shop allowed for a lot of open forge opportunities using his many anvils and several folks took advantage. As always, this was a great event at Aggressive Metalworks, and we all thank Mike for his hospitality and sharing his skills at teaching, which are impressive.

Novembers meeting will be on simple and quick forged items that can make a good Christmas gift. If anyone has anything they would like to demonstrate, let Jim or Jack know. See the schedule for what Jim has in mind for November.

Good hammering!

Paul Crosby


Gil's Demo today: 8/28


Forge brazing with copper

Event Date: Aug 28, 2016

Gil introduced us to a simple way to weld different material together where heavy duty strength is not required. The process is actually very simple, whether you are doing lap joints, finger joints or more complicated joints. Using copper electrical wire (14/2, 12/2, etc.) and borax flux, you secure the joints together using regular wire to keep the pieces stable while you wrap a piece of the copper wire around the work piece -the tighter the pieces can be secured first, the better. Then add flux, get the iron orange hot and when the copper seems to disappear, the weld has taken place - in most cases! Very slick and something several of us never saw demonstrated before. Good presentation, and Gil's mechanical drawing class style sketches were very accurate and damn good!



Merli's Fall Festival (+CDBA Sept. Meeting)


Fall Festival honoring the memory and tradition of Joe Merli plus CDBA's September Meeting

Event Date: Sep 24, 2016 10:30-4:00PM
Jim Moran


Canal Street Station Market Co. & Railroad Village
2100 Western Turnpike, Duanesburg, NY 12056
click here for directions

The Merli family and friends are continuing Joe's dream and annual Two Day Fall Festival. CDBA will be there Saturday and Sunday and we will hold our monthly meeting (a short one!) at the site. Additionally, we will have a forge set up and would like to have other members bring their forge, if portable, to likewise set up and demonstrate basic blacksmithing . "Green coal" for new smiths will also be available. So, please plan on attending this two day fun filled Festival . Check out the Festival at: for more event details. See you all there.


Rob's excellent adventure!


Rob Gallerani's Demo on Sunday

Event Date: Aug 1, 2016

What a surprise! Who would ever have expected that a demo on making, of all things, bottle openers, would have us riveted for an hour and a half! Rob is an excellent teacher and clearly explained the physics of how a bottle opener works and why. During the demo, Rob also made several varieties of openers using everything from a railroad spike to various gauges of round stock. The one- handed opener which works by squeezing causing a downward motion to the opener was unique and my favorite, which I just might have to try! Good job Rob - we need you to sign up to share with us more adventures into creative blacksmithing! October, November and January are still open!

Reminder, Gil Bullock will demo "Forge Brazing on August 28. Should be very good demo!


June 26th Meeting


Catalado comes through again!

Event Date: Jun 26, 2016 12-4+-
Mike Cataldo


Pat's Forge
Mill Road, Albany, NY 12209
click here for directions

Mike filled in at the last minute for Ron Gizzi and did a terrific job demonstrating, explaining and teaching methods of punching and drifting holes in metals of various thickness. Terrific clear explanations of each step. Mike is a natural teacher and a terrific stand up comic. Great sense of humor!


May meeting 5/22/16


Memorial Day is the 29th so the May meeting will be on the 22nd.

Event Date: Apr 26, 2016

Note the date!


Paying our dues: 2016 Albany schools


Albany School kids - SCHEDULE FOR 2016 -- Update 4/26/16

Event Date: Mar 15, 2016

Each year, in exchange for using our shop site (City of Albany's Normanside Farm, off Delaware Ave.from Albany/Delmar (under the bride)and all that that entails, we in turn provide a learning experience for the younger Albany school students. Basically, it is lighting a fire, heating a piece of iron and telling the kids about blacksmithing. You can be as creative as you want, as long as the essentials of working with iron are gone over and if you can give it a historical context as well, so much the better.

Here is a list of dates, times and classes:

June 6 - one class first grade, one class second grade 45 kids total - arrive 9:15 *** MIKE CATALDO

June 7- 100 second graders arrive 9:30 *** IRENE PURIFICATO

June 9 - 70 second graders arrive 9:30*** RICH DIGUILIO

June 10 - 46 third graders arrive 9:30 *** ROB GALLERANI

June 13 - 60 third graders arrive 9:30: *** MIKE CATALDO

June 14 - 45 second graders arrive 9:30 *** LEE HARVEY

June 17 - 90 third graders arrive 9:15 *** ROB GALLERANI



Forged In Fire


Forged in Fire

Event Date: May 8, 2016

Anyone interested in appearing on the TV Show- Forged in Fire should contact the Casting Producer at

or 212-564-2607,ext 2466


April meet: Paul Crosbey


Paul and Jim did a terrific job discussing and demonstrating making a knife.

Event Date: Apr 25, 2016

If you missed this meeting you really missed a good one! Jim did the hammering and Paul directed and explained what they were doing - and why - every step of the way. Paul also brought and posted a number of knife and metal related info sheets and discussed the same and which types of steel make the best knives and why. Paul also brought a number of scrap iron pieces, such as flat and round vehicle springs, stainless steel bearings,old files, power hammer bits, etc. and discussed the merits of each and steel types, etc. and which should be used depending on the goal you have in mind. Overall, a terrific meeting. Paul is a natural teacher. Well done, Paul (your helper was ok too!)!!


Help the Adirondack Folk School


The Adirondack Folk School needs help to get through a financial shortfall

Posted: Feb 4, 2016

The Adirondack Folk School in Lake Luzerne, NY is a great resource for classes in Blacksmithing and many other old-time crafts, and it needs our help:

Please read the article below, and consider a donation, they were about $40,000 short on this year's annual operating budget.

FROM THE GLENS Falls post star

Funds Roll In to Help Adirondack Folk School

January 08, 2016 11:30 pm

After word spread about Adirondack Folk School’s financial struggles, donations starting pouring in.

“Every time we turn around, somebody comes in or calls and says, ‘You know, we can’t let the Folk School close,’” said Rand Condell, president of the school’s board.

Along with cash donations of about $3,000 since a Tuesday article in The Post-Star, the Folk School has gotten pledges for $450.

And, Condell, said, the school was gifted a $5,000 matching grant from an anonymous donor in the name of Richard Mandle, an engineer and scientist who was a longtime summer resident of the region.

The donation was not from the Mandle family, but from another family who has had a summer home in Lake Luzerne for five generations.

Since speaking to The Post-Star earlier in the week, Condell said the executive director of the Folk School left, saving the school the cost of that salary.

If Adirondack Folk School raises the additional money to secure the matching grant, Condell is hopeful of its future.

“We are going to update our mailing to the 3,500 members on our list and I think when they know we’re close, they’ll come through,” he said.

“I think we’ll be able to make it,” he said.

To make a donation, call 696-2400; mail them to Adirondack Folk School, P.O. Box 2, 51 Main St., Lake Luzerne, NY 12846; or go to and click the “donate” link at the top of the page.

— Rhonda Triller


Coal Supplier Found


Watervliet Site sells coal at $12 for 40Lb. bag

Event Date: Aug 8, 2015

Paul Crosby found Sipperly Bros on Elm St in Watervliet NY. Call them at 518-210-3024 to get good directions and to make sure they are there. I drove north on 787 till I got to the first red light and turned left to find Elm Street. He said Noah Khoury use his coal, so I assumed it's good, will test soon. I pick up five bags ( $60 ) for the forge. The way things are going ,maybe we should try wood pellets. Jim





Posted: Jun 30, 2015




Dues Paid


We Demonstrated for ten days of the Albany School Classes

Posted: Jun 22, 2015

Thanks to Rob, Irene,and Mark I was able to have a family trip to Alaska and come back to cover only two days of Classes. The Normanskill Farm Association was very appreciative of our efforts and thanks us for our support . Jim Moran


Library Resource at Pat's Forge


We are looking for Blacksmith related books, periodicals, ,etc. to strat a lending library at the forge.

Event Date: May 3, 2015

Last month Pete Schmidt gave Jim a really terrific Blacksmithing book which led Jim to come up with the idea of seeing if there was any interest in establishing a lending library of books, etc. folks would like to share with other members who might not have read that particular tome. Plus, Jim has a load of good magazines from ABANA , Hammer's blow, etc. he would love to share (and get out of his house!). The idea would be to set this up in the back room utilizing a simple sign out sheet following the honor system. So, if interested, and have some material you are tired seeing around the house or shop, bring them to the next meeting and we will see how this whole idea develops.


What I've learned so far: Rob Gallerani


A summary of what I have learned and created since I joined the CDBA

Posted: Dec 8, 2014 5:30pm

I wanted to post some form of update for the work I've been doing. I sadly had to miss last month's class. Luckily Steve Gurzler helped me make some new tongs the month before (thanks Steve!). Also, the welding is something I'm eager to learn more about, hopefully there will be demos again.

I know this is usually for event updates, but I figured it might be nice to see some of the fruits of the group's efforts.

I have always had an interest in the blacksmith craft. Now older, with a home and kids, I figured I had no excuse to not get into it. In high school and college I made a few bucks on the side making chain mail, and I even did a few short lessons with some armor smiths making plate armor. However, it was cold steel and I really wanted the anvil and forge. I have also recently gotten into straight razors, and had seen people forging them online and the amount of forging seemed quite minimal so it might be a good way to start.

When I started looking, I started at schools, but nothing casual, and more importantly, local. I did however find an online news article from All Over Albany

I figured I would look up the group, and sure enough, you guys were still having sessions. I found this site, and signed right up. My first session was in August 2014 and I went with no equipment, no training, and no idea what to expect. I knew at some point I would need an anvil and fire.

My first meeting was a demonstration by Travis Edgington on how to make axes. I was pretty blown away at the quality of the work, with minimal tools. He basically made an axe with fire, anvil, hammer, borax, a spoon, and a file. I was also very impressed with the spread of attendees. Within the first 5 minutes of the meeting, I had already met Mike Catalado who hooked me up with a sweet anvil. Free of charge, so long as I made something good within a year. I just had to pay for the stand.

 photo 20140901_130511_zpsfe1e0c4c.jpgMike also asked me what kind of forge I had, and my answer was "nothing yet!" I could see the worry he had over giving an anvil to some newcomer with not even a forge to his name. He was kind enough to let me know about something called a brake-drum forge. So the next weekend I made a few calls around and found a scrap yard who would sell me an old Ford super-duty brake drum, they seemed confused that I only wanted 1, so if anyone needs a brake-drum, there's a scrap yard way up Hoosick that has just 1. So, with my brake drum I hit up Home Depot for some plumbing supplies, and a trunk full of cinder blocks. I also bought a cheap hair dryer for my bellows. It was about $60 total, plus a few bags of lump charcoal.

The first thing I realized I needed now was some tongs.  photo 20140901_114659_zpsc25c01f1.jpg

This was probably the worst thing I have ever made, but they did work. During all this I also managed to make it into Albany steel, which is less than a mile from my office, so I now find myself running out during lunch to look at their scrap room.

 photo 20140907_163657_zpsd4dd7e23.jpg This is the first razor I made before I melted it. When I went to harden the steel, I had gotten it too thin, and I melted it. Turns out a hair dryer and some fire can get reallllly hot. However, the second came out OK. photo 20140919_194522_zps63545cca.jpg

The scales of this one are made from some oak I had around the house from a mantle I had made over the fireplace. However, when I took it to the next CDBA meeting, I learned a lot about finishing. I realized how bad of a job I had done with the sanding and filing step. So the next razor was going to be much better. It was for my brother. It had Buffalo horn scales and a bone wedge. I was really pleased with this one, and was worried because I wanted to do something a bit crazier for my father.

 photo 20141108_200230_zps5e9fcee2.jpg

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 photo 20141108_200052_zps84a84585.jpg photo 20141122_113746_zps20f2bf98.jpg

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I was very pleased that his came out even better. His had a high carbon blade, but I copper plated it, and made the scales with purple heart. It came out really cool. I got the idea during Mike McCarthy's finishing lesson. Maybe I'll do a class on electroplating. It was the first time I had ever tried it. After all these razors, I really wanted to get back to more forging, and less grinding. So I made an attempt at the wine glass holder. The first one I made was so bad I didn't even take pictures, but the second one came out pretty good. I gave it to my stepmother, and had to have her take a picture of it, as I had forgotten. Clearly her camera is a bit older. photo mms_picture_2_zps87936459.jpgThe glasses hang a little far out, but it works. Great lesson Pete!

The only thing I actually made for myself was a wreath holder. However, I still have tons of techniques I want to learn, and I have lots of practice ahead of me. I hope to try and build a small shed in the back yard and make a real forge. Maybe even start using coal. photo 20141202_080519_zps376de152.jpg

Thanks for taking the time to read this if you did, I just wanted to post some pictures because I have given all of these things away for the holidays, but I couldn't have done any of it without this group. Hope to see you all in January.

-Rob Gallerani


November Meeting on 11/23/14


Forge welding and tong making

Event Date: Nov 23, 2014 12-4
Jim Moran


Pat's Forge
Mill Road, Albany, NY 12209
click here for directions

Jim Moran will start off the meeting demonstrating how to forge weld. As we all know by now, this is not an easy thing for most of us to do. Thus, Jim has volunteered to demonstrate this process once again. The pressure is on Jim to successfully do a clean weld! Following Jim, will be Steve Gurzler who will demonstrate how he makes a set of tongs. Both demonstrators, as we regulars know, are top notch blacksmiths who can do just about anything related to smithing - so, this will be another terrific meet not to be missed.


Today's meeting


Pete Schmidt's demo

Event Date: Oct 26, 2014

Pete did a terrific job today discussing several projects which would make terrific Christmas presents. Primarily, he discussed how to make a wine glass holder and a Christmas wreath door hanger. Both of these are great projects and relatively easy to do. Pete also mentioned a couple of other projects, such as a RR spike bottle opener and the bell Lee Harvey demonstrated a few months ago. Pete, in addition, and this is the best part, helped a green Blacksmith make a wine bottle holder - which turned out terrific. Well done, Pete. Pete is also a talented teacher and we hope he will demonstrate at another meeting in the future.


September Meet @ Mike's


Mike Catalado's Aggressive Metalwork shop hosting of the Sept. meeting

Event Date: Oct 6, 2014

Once again, Mike put on a terrific meeting in his shop. The featured demonstrator was, as previously mentioned, Mike McCarthy. Mike demonstrated a variety of finishing techniques, which often separate the decent blacksmith from the excellent artistic blacksmith. Mike Catalado ended the meeting showing slides from that last Abana Conference. Good turn out and a couple of potential new members attended.


September meeting at Aggressive metalworks/Mike Cataldo's shop


September meeting @ Mike Cataldo's: Aggressive Metal Works Forge, near Crossgates.

Event Date: Sep 28, 2014 12-4PM
Mike McCarthy


Aggressive Metalworks
11 Patricia Lane, Albany, NY 12203
click here for directions

Mike McCarthy has a special treat for us this month: "Finishing Techniques", or how to to do those simple but critical last steps to give your work that more professional look. Mike is at the pinnacle of the skilled artisan blacksmith elite, so this should be a great demo.


Today's meeting w/Travis Edgington


Forging an axe head

Event Date: Aug 24, 2014

Today's demo with Travis was no disappointment. He is one of the few highly skilled artisan blacksmiths in our area, having studied under Bob Cerney and Mike McCarthy, among a few other highly skilled Cooperstown area smiths. Using a bar of wrought iron (recycled from an old bridge or farm implement) Travis skillfully brought us through each carefully explained step of the process of shaping and finishing a colonial style head with a forged welded steel insert/cutting edge. Travis demonstrated a number of techniques which he routinely uses in his work which produce a better and more efficiently created end product, one such technique which was new to many of us, was covering the hot steel totally with flux as a near final step before the final wire brushing. This produces a cleaner piece by essentially melting off any scale which then is cleanly brushed off. A very professional looking piece is the end result. Travis is an excellent teacher and it was a pleasure to watch and learn from him. We hope he will demonstrate again for CDBA in the future.


August meeting on 8/24/14


Forging an ax/tomahawk head

Event Date: Aug 24, 2014 12-4+- Sun.
Travis Edgington


Pat's Forge
Mill Road, Albany, NY 12209
click here for directions

Travis will demonstrate the forging and shaping of an ax head using mild steel with a tool steel insert for the cutting edge which in turn will be forge welded in place. Travis will also demonstrate how the eye is drifted so that a sturdy handle can be applied. This should be an interesting demo and one that several members have requested.


July 27 Special Event


This month's meeting surpassed our already high expectations!

Event Date: Jul 27, 2014

James Arlen Gillaspie ( demonstrated today the shaping of an early helm (helmet) using two strikers (Noah and Abe) while he gave direction for each of their hammer blows, as historical master armourers did. James also gave us a wealth of historical information on how and why certain techniques were used during various historical periods. James, essentially, conducted a class in the history of armour production. It was fascinating and incredibly informative. Although he did not bring any original period historical pieces, as he did during the last two monthly CDBA meetings, he did bring a couple of incredibly beautiful pieces that he made which are part of a full suite of armour he made a few years ago. One of the fascinating aspects of his talk was how the old masters (and James!) understood human anatomy and how the fit, articulation and comfort of every piece of armour was masterfully designed and created.

Thom and Deb Breitenback, generously hosted this month's meeting at Castle Breitenback ( The grounds of which are extraordinary beautiful and the castle itself is a wonder to behold. Thom and Deb at the end of the meeting generously opened their home to the members for them to also enjoy. Check out Thom's website to see the Castle and to view the many talents of this Renaissance man and CDBA member..


Mark Feldman's demo


Metal casting

Event Date: Jun 29, 2014

Mark Feldman 's demo today was a terrific success. Over 25 members attended and were captivated by Mark's easy style of presenting an area most of us have little experience with - metal casting. Mark started off discussing the materials he uses and then quickly got into casting his first piece. This was a small anvil with a hammer, using a soapstone mold made from an old sink. Mark surprised us when he took out the casting and there with raised letters was, "CDBA". Mark then encouraged anyone who was interested to try their own hand in pouring a casting and most everyone ended up with their own CDBA anvil. Mark latter demonstrated sand casting and turned out a highly detailed belt buckle with a dragon on it. A very successful meeting and demo.

A special treat towards the end of the day, planned no doubt so as not to interrupt with today's demonstration, our next month's demonstrator, James Arlen Gillaspie, walked in! Of course, like last month when he also surprised us at the end of the day, he brought along a piece of ancient body armor he was repairing for a client collector. Very special!!

WARNING! DO NOT MISS the July 27th meeting at Breitenback Castle in Altamont. Not only will James be demonstrating his refined and top of the art skill in making and repairing armor but the Castle itself is not to be missed nor is Thom's Blacksmith shop!


June Meeting: June 29th


CDBA's first metal casting demo. will be given by Mark Feldman

Event Date: Jun 29, 2014 12-4+- Sun.


Pat's Forge
Mill Road, Albany, NY 12209
click here for directions

This should be an interesting and fun change of pace for our group as Mark will the first member to demonstrate how to cast metal. For this demo, Mark will use lead free pewter and the participles here would be the same whether casting brass, silver or iron, etc. The use of lead free pewter will be a plus as we won't involuntarily breath in any toxins, other than someone's cologne, etc.! Mark plans on using a soapstone hand-carved mold for one demo and a sand mold for another. He has used wood as well as other creative material for some of his previous mold work. You might have noticed that he usually has a couple of small objects around his neck -he cast those as well. So, be prepared to learn something and to hear, no doubt, some interesting stories.


May 18th Meeting


Terrific Event and Demo : Noah and Abe are two young and talented craftsmen.

Event Date: May 21, 2014

If you missed this meeting, you missed a very very good one and shame on you! Noah clearly demonstrated step by step and measure by measure how he has been making Dutch strap hinges and pintels for a very exacting client who is restoring an early 17th century Dutch farm house. Noah is a clear speaker and a very good teacher so all of the steps and the reasons why he does something a certain way were no mystery. Noah's forge welding of the pintel alone was reason enough for attending as was his simple tip regarding getting the body(strap) and the shaft (pintel) to the same forging heat/color and keeping the shaft facing up so not to burn it away. Paul Crosbey, once again, taped this meeting and might have DVDs again available next meeting as he did of Gil's demo on heat treating from last month.

Noah also brought as a special treat, his long time buddy, Abe Pardee. Abe lives in Connecticut and has been blacksmithing for a number of years. He, like Noah, is an enthusiastic and high energy creative individual. both like trying new things and Abe demonstrated for us how to make a forged and sturdy garden trowel which will last a lifetime from 5/8" stock . The end result was a beautiful spade shaped trowel which, at its' widest, must have been drawn out to around 4". It was a beauty and it was only the 3rd one Abe ever made!

Both of these smiths were a treat to watch and learn from and their collective and individual energy and personalities were like blood transfusions for us older types! Well done guys!

Now, those of you who left right after Noah's demo, missed Abe. Too bad! But those of you who left right after Abe's demo, missed a special and unexpected treat. James Arlen Gillaspie, our July demonstrator at Breitenbach Castle, wandered in carrying with him two 500 year old artifacts he has been repairing for two of his client collectors. He also had with him one of his own creations, a gorgeous fully articulated armor plated gauntlet glove. If you missed James, that was really too bad! What a day, what a meeting!


July 27 Special Event


This special event will cover forging and making body and possibly horse armour.

Event Date: Jul 27, 2014 12PM-4PM
James Arlen Gillaspie


Breitenbach Castle
809 Township Rd., Altamont, NY 12009
click here for directions

Master Armourer, James Arlen Gillaspie excels in the making, repairing, restoring and demonstrating every aspect of ancient and modern armour. His articulated gauntlets and other special sections of armour are fantastic and simply just beautiful as well as functional. His finish work is almost without parallel - just exquisite! This will be a monthly meeting not to be missed. CDBA member Thom Breitenbach has once again generously opened his shop to members and was instrumental in arranging for this demonstrator.


April 27th Meeting


Lee harvey's Bell making demo on April 27th

Event Date: May 13, 2014

Lee's demo on constructing a jingle bell based on a design by Steve Alling and Bill Clemons was, as usual with Lee, very successful and informative. Lee passed out a number of copies of the article with schematics that came from Clemons' article, which I believe originally was in Hammer's Blow. Lee demonstrated and discussed all of the jigs and tools he made to produce these terrific bells and stressed that the material needed to be thick (3/16" or 7 gauge) enough to properly take the pressure required to achieve the proper shape. Doug Deleury brought a number of CNC cut blanks for sale which several members took advantage of as hand cutting or torch cutting these out is a bit tough. We also had a terrific tail gating event where a couple of us were able to cheaply pass on no longer needed blacksmith items to someone who could use them. Keep this in mind for future meetings as you might have something blacksmith related that you would like to sell at a reasonable cost. A side note, on May 4th Lee and his jingle bell won the best of show at the most recent Ashoken weekend seminar in the New Paltz area.

* * Please note that the kitty for coffee, etc. as well as for coal and steel is getting low. We have relied on coffee donations as well as general donations to cover these costs and we do not want to resort to charging dues, etc. Let's continue to keep things simple. So, with that in mind, we are asking that each member and guest, beginning with the May meeting, put in a single dollar bill in the donation can by the coffee pot. This hopefully will be sufficient to cover all costs. Also, anyone who has any shorts of a foot long or so of any kind of steel who would like to donate them to the club, please do. This will also greatly help keeping coasts down as this is around the lengrth we seem to use most.


Fort Klock Hammer In


Fort Klock Annual Hammer In Gathering June 7 & 8, 2014

Event Date: Jun 7, 2014 & June 8 - 10am-4pm

Blacksmiths' Gathering and Hammer-In

June 7 & 8

This Weekend Event will be held in the historic stone 1811 Blacksmith Shop on the grounds of Fort Klock on Saturday the 7th. and Sunday the 8th. of June.

Smiths and spectators welcome, and admission to Hammer-In is FREE

Hammer-In activities planned include smithing demonstrations, hands on instruction for beginners, a pot lunch each day, camping, oh and let's not forget smithing!

For more information, visit


Heat Treating Demo DVD


Heat Treating Demo DVDs

Event Date: Apr 28, 2014

I have DVDs available of Gil Bullock's Heat Treating demonstration from the March 2014 CDBA Meet. I currently have 5 made already, I can make more if there are enough interested. To get your copy, drop me an Email,



Meetup Write-up


Write Up of the ​March 29, 2014 CDBA Meeting by Jack Connell

Event Date: Apr 21, 2014

This meeting had another good turnout which included members, guests, and greenhorns.

Gil’s demo on the various aspects and steps towards hardening and tempering high carbon or tool steel (having at least 0.2% of carbon) was clear and informative. Gil initially demonstrated how steel taken up to the point of being non-magnetic (1500 degrees +-, or dark yellow) when quenched too quickly is as brittle as a candy cane and when lightly tapped will snap in two. To move from this brittle state to a useful one, the steel needs to be "Tempered".

Tempering relaxes the steel and changes the interior crystal size from large, brittle crystals to smaller more relaxed and stable ones. As Gil demonstrated, this tempering is done by taking the above heated steel and quenching the first inch or so (pre-taper the edge, assuming that you are making a chisel) into the water quench (or could be oil, depending on the ultimate use and/or steel type), swirl it around a bit and make sure you have sufficiently cooled this tip. Then withdraw the steel from the quench and quickly, while there is still most of the heat remaining in the shaft, with a file or angle grinder, polish one side of the cooled tip. This polished section is where you will see the various colors slowly moving towards the cooled tip edge, the first color to show and move down to the edge is light straw followed by the other colors. Each color will represent a degree of hardening. Once the wanted color/hardness is at or very close to the cutting edge, immediately quench the whole piece of steel again to stop/arrest the color. Gil used a propane torch to get these colors. This is a simpler, cleaner, easier and more predictable way to control the heat transfer and helps insure that you can see and can stop the color where and when you want it. The color chart and scale (the oxidation color spectrum) that Gil showed is a real good tool to use to compare the color of your work piece edge and thus the needed hardness. Generally, the rule of thumb is that “straw” color will cut stone; “Bronze” will cut steel; “peacock” will cut wood; and the color “purple” will give the high carbon steel a “springiness” and finally, “blue” will keep the steel relatively soft. Keep in mind that there are other methods of tempering, but all have the essential ingredients noted by Gil. We again thank Gil for sharing his knowledge and look forward to him demonstrating again at another monthly meeting in the near future.

Speaking of which, here is an updated monthly meeting schedule. However, as you can see, we still have many gaps and need someone to step forward to demonstrate (can be on anything related to steel – this can mean even steel design / architecture demonstrated on paper) for the months noted. Any volunteers please speak up!

April 27: lee Harvey on bells

May 18; Noah Khoury on Dutch hinges

June 29: ??

July 27: Travis Edginton: Forging an axe head.

August 24: Mark Feldman on casting

September 28: Mike McCarthy at Mike Cataldo's forge: Finishing techniques

October 26: Peter Schmidt on forging a very unique wine glass holder which goes on a wine bottle. This is Pete's own design.

November 23 (or 30th): ??

December 28: ??


Meetup Write-up


Write Up of the ​February 23, 2014 CDBA Meeting by Jack Connell

Event Date: Feb 28, 2014

Once again Mike Cataldo stepped up to the plate and held this month’s meeting at his home shop . We had a good turnout of over 20 people, including one relative neophyte all the way from Oneonta!

Mike started off the meeting with a short informational talk about the August ABANA conference he will be attending. There will be lots of tail-gating and retail sales of blacksmithing goodies and Mike offered to take orders for whatever you need. He will text pictures of what he would buy for you so that you have a chance to approve or not. This discussion was proceeded by a few words from Rand Condell, the Board President at the Adirondack Folk School in Lucerne. Rand shared with us information and printed material on the variety of really fantastic courses offered at the school besides all of the Blacksmithing courses taught by the likes of John Acker, Jonathan Nedbor, Mark Aspery and Joseph Szilaski , etc.

The theme of today’s demo was making animal heads. Mike, as is his usual fashion, explained what he was about to do, why he was doing it that way and what the goal was. He is a terrific teacher. He started off with 2 pieces of ½” stock about 30” long. His plan was to simultaneously make two figures, one of which would have a long tongue, not an easy thing to do if the whole head is one piece! The first character Mike was hammering out had horns – also not easy. Turns out that the tongue belonged to a very a very interesting dragon head which Mike demonstrated and explained his steps from the first blow to the last stroke. The horned figure was a devil figure. Both figures were done well and all of the steps were clearly and patiently explained and shown by Mike.

Of Course, during, before and after, all 20 participants got a chance to catch up on each other’s gossip and consequently with all that was going on one and all had a wonderful experience thanks to the hospitality of Mike and, not to be left out, Rachel who brought the coffee and Mike’s mother, who came out with some great cookies and brownies, unfortunately after most of us had already left! However, some of the remaining few got to eat the share of those departed.

Mark your calendars for our next meeting is at Pat’s Forge at Normanskill Farm in Albany on Sunday, March 30 from 12-4+-. Gil Bullock will be demonstrating how to temper and harden steel – something Gil knows quite a bit about. This will be followed up with the usual green coal opportunity for new members and neophytes to try their hands at forging iron. Keep in mind; these folks get first dibs on the green coal session! See you on the 30th.


February 2014 Meetup


Monster Heads from 1" Square Stock

Event Date: Feb 23, 2014 12pm-4pm
Mike Cataldo


Aggressive Metalworks
11 Patricia Lane, Albany, NY 12203
click here for directions

This month Mike Cataldo will be demonstrating how to make Monster Heads from 1" square stock at his shop, Aggressive Metalworks in Albany. Click the link above for driving directions.

We hope to see you there!


forge burner


looking for people interested in a propane forge burner

Event Date: Feb 5, 2014

I have recently acquired plans for building a very nice and simple naturally aspirated propane forge burner. I will be making at least one for myself. if there is anyone interested, I can make more. I'm not looking for any commitments, I just need to know if anyone might be interested. Please let me know, my email is I can come up with cost and configuration etc. let me know…

Paul Crosby


January 2013 Meetup


Bottle Openers

Event Date: Jan 26, 2014 12pm-4pm
Jim Moran


Pat's Forge
Mill Road, Albany, NY 12209
click here for directions
Happy New Year!

For this meetup we will be making bottle openers. If you've made one already, please bring your design and show us how you made it. Jim Moran will start off with a few easy ones, just to get the show started. If you want to bring a few (non-alcoholic) bottles to open, that would aid the demonstration!

We hope for good weather, but it could be a little cold in the shop so as always, dress appropriately and remember, no synthetic fabrics - only cotton or other natural fabrics near the forge!

We would like to set up a demonstration schedule for the rest of the year. PLEASE give us any ideas you have or items/techniques you would like demonstrated to help us create some great meetups for this year!

December 2013 Meetup


Open Forge Christmas Presents!

Event Date: Dec 29, 2013 12pm-4pm
Irene Purificato


Pat's Forge
Mill Road, Albany, NY 12209
click here for directions

Irene Purificato will be helping you create some one-of-a-kind Christmas presents for your friends and family. It'll be an open forge event where you bring your idea for a Christmas present which you can forge within 15 min. Irene will talk to you about your idea and help you bring it to life!

Remember, the forge is a bit drafty so make sure you dress appropriately.

We hope to see you there!


Coil Spring


Materials- tool steel

Event Date: Nov 28, 2013

I left a large coil spring at Pat's Forge & anyone that would like a piece should help themselves. The coil spring is about four feet long and about 3/8's thick and is great material for fire strikers & all sorts of punches, chisels or tooling. Happy Thanksg


November 2013 Meetup


Folding and Shaping Copper by Lee Harvey

Event Date: Nov 24, 2013 12pm-4pm
Jim Moran


Pat's Forge
Mill Road, Albany, NY 12209
click here for directions

Lee Harvey will demonstrate how to Fold and Shape Copper at this Holiday event. I don't know what he's going to make for us but you are going to want to be there!


October 2013 Meetup


Forging Candle Holders with Jim Moran

Event Date: Oct 27, 2013 12pm-4pm
Jim Moran


Pat's Forge
Mill Road, Albany, NY 12209
click here for directions

This month Jim Moran will be demonstrating how to forge a candle holder. Jim has many designs available but he encourages you to come up with one of your own and there will be a friendly competition!


Canal Street Station Fall Festival


Canal Street Station Village Eighth Annual Fall Festival

Event Date: Sep 28, 2013 10:30-5:00
Steve Gurzler


Canal Street Station Market Co. & Railroad Village
2100 Western Turnpike, Duanesburg, NY 12056
click here for directions

Our annual Fall Festival, on Saturday Sept. 28 10:30 - 5:00 and Sunday Sept. 29 10:30 - 4:00 will include blacksmithing, tinsmithing, early gas engine show, cider pressing, farmers' market, antique car and hot rod show. There will be a chicken BBQ by Barbeque Delights. Old time music on Sunday afternoon by the Loosely Wound String Band. Free admission. Canal Street Station is located at 2100 Western Turnpike, 3 miles east of Duanesburg, next to Joseph J. Merli Mfg. Co. "Just look for the New York Central locomotive". For information call 355-6536


September 2013 Meetup


Forging Gates and Hinges

Event Date: Sep 22, 2013 12pm-4pm
Mike Cataldo


Aggressive Metalworks
11 Patricia Lane, Albany, NY 12203
click here for directions

NOTE: The date for this has been moved up a weekend.

Mike Cataldo is going to show us how to forge gates and hinges.

August Demo Recap


Making Norfolk latches with Michael McCarthy by Paul Crosby

Event Date: Aug 30, 2013 12:30-4pm

This months demo was done by Michael McCarthy from Mohawk Valley Forge. Michael showed how to make door pulls and latches, touched a bit on hammer control, and hammering styles. His teaching style was easy to understand, and he took the time to thoroughly explain each step, and demonstrated the process. I certainly learned a lot, and enjoied spending time with a seasoned blacksmith like Michael McCarthy.

I'm not much of a videographer, but here is some of the video footage from today. If you would like to see more, or have your own copy. please feel free to drop me an email PHC2112@YAHOO.COM.

Paul Crosby


August 2013 Meetup


Forging Norfolk and Suffolk Latches

Event Date: Aug 25, 2013 12pm-4pm
Michael McCarthy


Pat's Forge
Mill Road, Albany, NY 12209
click here for directions

Michael McCarthy will demonstrate how to forge Norfolk and Suffolk latches.

This should be a great meetup and the weather couldn't be more perfect!

We hope to see you there!


July Meeting


Weather Vane

Event Date: Jul 28, 2013 12 to 4 PM
Jim Moran


Pat's Forge
Mill Road, Albany, NY 12209
click here for directions

I will demo a simple method for mounting a weather vane. It would be great if people would come in with a design or two. We can discuss the mechanics from looking a the design. A sheet metal or cardboard is fine.

This will be a short demo ,therefore it would help if someone would request something. Jim


June 2013 Meetup


How to Forge a Knife

Event Date: Jun 30, 2013 12pm-4pm
Charles Flanagan


Pat's Forge
Mill Road, Albany, NY 12209
click here for directions

The June meetup is just around the corner (this Sunday, June 30th) and it's going to be a great one! The weather is supposed to be about 75º and lightly raining, a perfect time to be in the forge!

Charles Flanagan is going to be demoing how to forge a knife at Pat's Forge.
Sunday, June 30th, 12-4pm
Pat’s Forge - Normanskill Farm, Mill Road, Albany, NY 12203
click here for directions

Looking Back...

Saturday June 8th 2013
Hammer making with Nathan Robertson
(submitted by Paul Crosby)

The day started with 10 or so selecting our hammer blanks, and firing up the gas forges. After a brief lesson we were drilling and hot punching our stock. Everyone was helping each other, striking, or holding a flatter, or simply watching the forge for stock ready to be pulled. Doug Delury and Mike Emig were very helpful. Their heavy hitting skills as tandem strikers made shaping our hammers a bit easier. Nathan was fun to work with and full of great ideas, and helpful hints. I especially enjoyed the hardening and heat tempering process. After hardening, and before the final heat treat, we did some clean up and final shaping on Nathan’s Bader belt sanders (very impressive machines). After the tempering and cooling, we picked out our handles. It was a long day, but everyone left with a hammer, and a good experience. I definitely look forward to future opportunities to work with Nathan the next time he’s in town.

PLEASE NOTE: Someone who attended this class left a sledge hammer and a pair of tongs. Both had orange paint on them and the tongs had ISH stamped into the side of them. Please pick them up or email us (when our website is back up).


Anvil for Sale

Event Date: Jun 28, 2013
The seller is not affiliated with the CDBA - please do not contact us in regard to this posting.

I stumbled upon this Craigslist ad for an Anvil up in Bangor, Maine. I know it's a bit of a distance but good quality anvils don't come available very often, I figured I would post it anyway.

$375 - 156 lb Peter Wright Anvil

Future Meetups Schedule

Event Date: Jun 28, 2013

Several club members have suggested that we put out a schedule of meeting dates and topics highlighted for each meeting. Eileen came up with this schedule, which is a great start. We can change or expand on the topics depending on interest, etc. Any suggestions, let Jim know (518-439-5439). The tentative schedule, subject to modification, will be:

  • June 30 - Knife making by Charles Flanagan
  • July 28 - Forging a weathervane: We need a volunteer to do it! Or, Jim will try.
  • August 25 - Forging Norfolk and Suffolk latches by Mike McCarthy (Mohawk Valley Forge)
  • September 29 - Forging gates and hinges by Mike Cataldo (Aggressive Metalworks)
  • October 27 - Forging candle holders by Jim Moran. Everyone should bring an example of their own candle holder fabrication for a friendly competition.
  • November 24 - Open forge: bring your idea for a Christmas present which you can forge within 15 min.
  • December 29 - Folding and shaping copper by Lee Harvey

Any suggestions for next year , let Jim know.


May 2013 Meetup


Hammer Control

Event Date: May 19, 2013 12pm-4pm
Steve Wayne


Pat's Forge
Mill Road, Albany, NY 12209
click here for directions

Normanskill Farm School Program 2013

To sign up, call Jim Moran at (518) 439-5439. Training aids and help can be provided.
School Program Schedule

Fort Klock Hammer-In

Fifth Annual Fort Klock Hammer-in
“A Blacksmiths’ Gathering”
June 8th and 9th, 2013 - Smithing 9 to 5PM

Come one and all to the fifth annual Fort Klock Open Hammer-in! This blacksmithing event will be held in the 1811 smithy on the grounds of Historic Fort Klock in St. Johnsville, NY on Saturday the 8th and Sunday the 9th of June. Come for the day or the weekend!

We’ll have two forges fired up for demonstrations and instruction. If you have a portable forge there is PLENTY of space for you to bring yours and you’re encouraged and welcome to do so! Those wishing to demonstrate or teach please let Steve know ASAP. We are currently seeking skilled demonstrators.

We plan a Pot-Luck Lunch, and we’ll be grilling some sausages.

If you've never tried your hand at blacksmithing but always wanted to do so now is your chance! Make a tool and bring it home with you.

The Fort's colonial buildings will be open for public tours this weekend.

There are open fields for camping with plenty of space for tentage. Folks wishing to camp, or set up on the evening of Friday the 7th are more than welcome to do so, please inform the event co-coordinator Steve Gurzler if you intend to do so.

There is no fee however any and all donations to the Fort would be GREATLY appreciated; there is much to be done here at the Fort including restoration of an 1896 bellows.

Reenactors and musicians welcome.

Event Coordinator
Steve Gurzler
518 877 7148

Fort Klock Historic Restoration
7214 New York Route 5, Saint Johnsville, NY 13452
(518) 568-7779


Each bag varies in quantity, is individually priced and runs anywhere from $10 to $30 per bag - cash only!

April 2013 Meetup


How to Make Tongs

Event Date: Apr 28, 2013 12pm-4pm
Jim Moran


Pat's Forge
Mill Road, Albany, NY 12209
click here for directions


Jim Moran will be demonstrating how to make a pair of tongs.

As always, safety glasses required, cotton only clothing and closed-toed shoes.


Each bag varies in quantity, is individually priced and runs anywhere from $10 to $30 per bag - cash only!

March 2013 Meetup


Chain Making

Event Date: Mar 24, 2013 12pm-4pm
Mike Cataldo


Pat's Forge
Mill Road, Albany, NY 12209
click here for directions


Mike Cataldo will be demonstrating how to forge a chain.

As always, safety glasses required, cotton only clothing and closed-toed shoes.


We have some heat but have not been able to come up with a heating system that can warm the forge to a normal interior temperature so please dress appropriate to the weather.

For Sale

We have a few items for sale - I will try to get more information and post it on the website:
  • A 400 lb anvil - there is a flyer at the Pat's Forge, with more details
  • A rivet forge - is currently at Pat's Forge
  • A 171 lb partially damaged anvil - good starter anvil


We ran out of coal but should have more before the meeting.
Each bag varies in quantity, is individually priced and runs anywhere from $10 to $30 per bag - cash only!

February 2013 Meetup


Math for Blacksmiths - Forging a Rose

Event Date: Feb 24, 2013 12pm-4pm
Jim Moran


Pat's Forge
Mill Road, Albany, NY 12209
click here for directions


Jim Moran will give a short lecture on using math in blacksmithing and then demo how to make a rose. If you want to give it a try, he has a few blanks available for $10 each. This is first come first serve during the meetup. There is no pre-registration and supplies are very limited.

If you wish, you can use the pattern provided below to cut out your own petals ahead of time from sheet metal. During the meetup, you will need a propane torch and needle nose pliers to form the rose shape (only if you are bringing your own petals).
Rose Pattern


We have heat in the forge that is being generously donated by Tom Domery.

As always, safety glasses required, cotton only clothing and closed-toed shoes.

January 2013 Meetup


Introduction to MIG welding - Making a fullering tool

Event Date: Jan 8, 2013 12pm-4pm
Mike Cataldo


Aggressive Metalworks
11 Patricia Lane, Albany, NY 12203
click here for directions


There is no charge for this event.
This month we're meeting at Mike Cataldo's shop, Aggressive Metalworks. Mike is going to give an introduction to MIG welding, show how the machine works and demonstrate welding technique. He will guide and assist you in welding together your own fullering tool based off the one that Jim Moran demonstrated during our October meetup (see photo). Mike will provide the pieces and show you how to weld them together. If you have a welding helmet (or extras), please bring them as we only have a few. After the event we can fire up the forges for some open forge time.

To ensure we have enough supplies for everyone, if you wish to participate and take home a fullering tool (free!):
  • You must RSVP by January 20th to
  • Please let us know whether you want a vise tool or a Hardy tool
  • If you want a Hardy tool, let us know the size of your Hardy hole (1", 3/4", etc)
As always, safety glasses required, cotton only clothing and closed-toed shoes.

November 2012 Meetup

Event Date: Nov 18, 2012 12pm-4pm

November 18th, 2012
In order to work around your holiday festivities, we are having the November meetup a bit earlier than usual. We will update this listing with the location and further details as they become available.

Irene Purificato, following up on member suggestions, will demonstrate and discuss forging chains, chain-mail and related items.


October 2012 Meetup

Event Date: Oct 28, 2012 12pm-4pm

Sunday, October 28th, 12pm-4pm
Pat's Forge - Normanskill Farm
Mill Road
Albany, NY 12203


Jim Moran will demonstrate and discuss how to figure out the size, length and dimensions of stock for a project. He will use a variety of methods to measure out the amount of stock using things like clay, string or other flexible materials and, of all things, math!

Wear warm clothes as the smithy may be a bit chilly. Remember, cotton only! No Polyester or synthetic materials. BYO Safety Glasses if you can, we do have a few pairs available.

Remember, we are looking for ideas for demos and help in planning and coordinating meetings, etc.


Looking to split shop space

Posted: Nov 30, -0001

I am looking to move into a larger shop than my current one. If anybody would be interested in sharing the space (and some of the rent) with me let me know. I am looking in Schenectady, Burnt Hills, and Malta currently. I see this as an opportunity for us to pool our resources and create a great opportunity for us.

Thank you



Phone: 518-860-2473


Fort Klock Blacksmiths’ Gathering and Hammer-In


​Eighth Annual Fort Klock Blacksmiths’ Gathering and Hammer-In June 11th and 12th, 2016 10 AM to 4 PM each day

Posted: Nov 30, -0001 10 Am -5 PM

Eighth Annual

Fort Klock Blacksmiths’ Gathering and Hammer-In

June 11th and 12th, 2016

10 AM to 4 PM each day

7214 St. Hwy. 5 St. Johnsville, New York 13452

Come join us at the eighth annual Fort Klock Blacksmiths’ Gathering and Hammer-in! Once Again, this weekend event will be held in the 1811 Blacksmith Shop on the grounds of Historic Fort Klock. The Hammer-in Starts on Saturday the 11th and ends on Sunday the 12th of June, 2016. Attend for an hour, or make it a weekend. Admission to the Hammer-In is FREE.

The Fort Klock Blacksmith Shop is part of historic Fort Klock, a revolutionary war historic site. The Blacksmith Shop houses 2 stone forges in an early 1800’s stone building still standing on its original site.

Hammer – In activities planned include smithing demonstrations, hands on instruction for beginners, open forge time, a Forging Contest on Saturday Afternoon, Food for Sale and a pot luck lunch each day, camping, and more, smithing!

If you've never tried your hand at blacksmithing but always wanted to do so, now is your chance!

Smiths wishing to demonstrate or teach please let Steve know ASAP. If you have a portable forge set up there is PLENTY of space for set -up and you’re encouraged and welcome to do so! Last year we had 5 additional forges!For those wishing to make a weekend of it, there is plenty of space for camping. Camping is primitive, in the open fields near the smithy. Folks wishing to set up on the evening of Friday the 10th are more than welcome to do so, please inform the event coordinator Steve Gurzler if you plan to arrive on Friday.

The Fort's buildings will be open to the public this weekend for tours of the fortified homestead, colonial dutch tithe barn and outbuildings.The event is free, but there is a materials fee for the smithing contest.

Any and all donations to the Fort would be GREATLY appreciated; there is much to be done here at the Fort to maintain the historic smithy and buildings.

Event CoordinatorSteve Gurzler 518


November Meeting 11/22 /2015


We are not meeting on the last Sunday due to Thanksgiving

Posted: Nov 30, -0001 12 to 4PM

Irene will be making Jewelry and then open forge. Come ,it's the last meeting of the year. Jim


November Meeting 11/22 /2015


We are not meeting on the last Sunday due to Thanksgiving

Posted: Nov 30, -0001 12 to 4 PM

Irene will be making jewelry. And then open forge. Come ,It's the last meeting of the year . Jim


Field of Horrors Event


Blacksmiths Booth, Bring your Forge, sell your products for free

Posted: Nov 30, -0001 6-11pm

We are the Capital Region's most Unique Haunted Attraction

Capital Combat Zone presents Field of Horrors 2015

FOH produced its first Season in 2014 with 3 Attraction’s and with 5 Haunt filled weekends open, over 10,000 people passed through our gates.

2015 brings many new additions to our event including 2 All new Haunted House Attractions, 2 new Tractors for our frightful 11 acre Haunted Hayride, a Vendor - Food Court area and hours of Live Entertainment on our stages. With 6 haunt filled weekends and our new additions, expected attendance for 2015 could be as high as 20,000 Haunt Fans.

Get your Craft and Products in front of our Guests, Come be apart of 2015 Field of Horrors

Vendors with Entertainment Value ie.. DEMOS, pay no Fee, sell your uniqueness with us

insurance is required.

2015 Dates, 9/25,26 - 10/2,3 - 10/9,10,11 - 10/16,17 - 10/22,23,24,25 - 10/29,30,31 Saturday 10/31, Trick or Treating starts at 12-5pm and is free of charge.

Gates are open 6-11pm and Admission is $25

Please contact Christine

Check us out on the web@fieldofhorrors.comand Facebook@facebook/


JUNE Meeting


Cold Forming Copper

Posted: Nov 30, -0001
Lee Harvey


Pat's Forge
Mill Road, Albany, NY 12209
click here for directions

Lee will demo some great ideas for gifts. They looked easy to me until I tried them, I need a lot of help.

I would like to see some of the members show us simple items to make in 15 minutes that we could use to entertain the public and maybe make a buck or two. I'm sure we all have at least one to share. I just got a new heart idea from Bill Scheer of Mystic Seaport ( Bill does not know he gave it to me). Please share , I need fast things the make for the school kids.


Pictures/Videos wanted!


Pictures/Video wanted

Posted: Nov 30, -0001

I am looking for Any pictures or videos of my Damascus demo today. Unfortunately my batteries died in my camera, and I did not get any footage of the demo. Anyone who has any pictures or even better... video, please contact me, or 518-763-7296. Thank you!


Blacksmith(s) wanted


Blacksmith(s) wanted

Posted: Nov 30, -0001 12-4 pm

I am posting this for a friend. The Ten Broeck Mansion is looking for a blacksmith who would be able to volunteer for this. It sounds like great fun:

The Albany County Historical Association at Ten Broeck Mansion is currently planning Living History Day: Digging up History for Sunday, May 3rd, from 12-4 pm. We'd like to invite you to participate, and you'd be welcome to bring artifacts or give demos. We especially welcome family-friendly activities, activities where kids can participate, and demonstrations related to historical living and creating (e.g. blacksmithing if possible, painting, dress/costume, cooking.) The theme is "Digging up History," which connects especially to archeology, planting, and genealogy, but we welcome all sorts of historical activities, especially those related to living history. There will be music, re-enactors, sheep shearing, tours, and more. Please contact me if you're interested at or 518 436 9826. I look forward to your responses!

Here is Ten Broeck Mansion's website:


Meetup Write-up


Write Up of the ​April 27th, 2014 CDBA Meeting by Jack Connell

Posted: Nov 30, -0001

Lee Harvey’s April 27th’s demonstration on constructing a Jingle bell based on a design by Steve Alling and Bill Clemons was, as usual with Lee, very successful and informative. Lee passed out a number of copies of the article with schematics that came from Clemons’ article. Lee demonstrated and discussed all of the jigs and tools he made to produce these terrific bells and stressed that the material needed to be thick (3/16” or 7 Gage) enough to properly take the required shape. Dough Deleury brought a number of laser cut bell blanks for sale which several members took advantage of as hand cutting these out is a bit tough. We also had a terrific tail gating where a couple of us were able to pass on no longer need blacksmith items. Keep this in mind for our next and subsequent meets.

* Our next meeting will be a week early, on May 18, NOT May 25th. This meeting we will have Noah demonstrating forging Dutch hinges. As many of you know, Noah and his dad are full time blacksmiths and are exceptionally talented ones at that.

** I believe that Jim has sent around a reminder that we need instructors to demonstrate to the Albany school kids this June . The schedule and signup sheet will be at the May meeting. This has been a lot of fun for all of us in the past and is THE reason why we are able to use this site as apermant home. Demonstrating for the few weeks that we do each year is the dues we pay to stay here at this terrific site. So, please do your share and sign up.

*** Lastly, please note that the kitty for coffee, etc. as well as for coal and steel is getting low. We have relied on coffee donations as well as general donations to cover these costs and do not want to have to resort to charging dues. We (all of us!) like to keep things loose and informal. So, in lieu of resorting to this drastic measure, we are proposing that beginning with the May meeting, everyone attending (coffee drinkers or not) put a single dollar in the donation can by the coffee. This hopefully will be sufficient. Also, anyone who has short (foot or so) pieces of steel to donate would also be much appreciate as this will also cut down on our material needs, and thus cash flow.

See you May 18th at noon.