Was anyone a "Blacksmith" before being a "Bladesmith"?

Dec 13, 2008
Im curious, did anyone start out blacksmithing before making the the leap to blades. We (I) were blacksmiths for several years before ever trying to make a blade of any kind. Other than tools anyway. Anyone else?
I was a blacksmith first. I made a charcoal forge out of a brake drum and forged hinges, tools, hardware etc. for a bit before trying knives. I still do both. I love ornamental work.
I wouldn't call myself a blacksmith but I got into blacksmithing first. got an anvil, took some classes etc. if you want to forge blades it definitely helps. but I never really built up a great amount of blacksmithing skill, just basics so I end up using stock removal most of the time.
Blacksmith first, bladesmith second, Damascus 'smith third....I'm hoping to add silversmith, goldsmith, and gunsmith before I die :)

Blacksmith for about 15 yrs before getting into hawks and knives. Still do a little on occasion.
Well, I wouldn't call myself either, but I did apprentice with a blacksmith in GA when I got out of high school. Didn't know what to do with myself, so that's where I ended up.

It was a lot of pounding on mild steel before I was ever given the nod to try and make a knife. I'd bet I made something on the order of ten thousand hooks and several hundred dinner triangles before the smith thought I had enough hammer control to be trusted unsupervised!
I mostly forged railings (and some tomahawks and knives)for about 20 + years, gradually making more and more tomahawks and knives, now it's all hawks and knives.
It's sort of funny, I got started with stock removal because that was my only option here at 12 years old. I figured SOME day I'd get into forging but didn't know how or when.

When the time came that I did have my first forge (22) I had no interest in forging blades. NONE. I just wanted to forge damascus. I was perfectly content with stock removal blade making.

Then shortly after I started to get a feel for moving hot steel.... under a hand hammer, twisting, the press, the power hammer, I simply fell in love with it.

Now, it is hands down my favorite part of making a knife, and it has pushed me into the blacksmithing world much further than I ever expected.

Oddly, even though the two crafts have things in common.... there is a STRONG delineation between the two worlds. Many blacksmiths have no idea who the big knife makers are and vice versa.

When there is so much that can be learned from one to the other... it's great to see when folks from the two worlds unite. A MOST PRIME example was Ms Tom Ferry ( http://www.tomferryknives.com/ ) meeting up with Dave Lisch ( http://davidlisch.com/classes.html ). Dave is now a Js and will be an Ms before long, and Tom is deeply rooted in blacksmithing now. All so very cool!!! :cool: :thumbup:
i am a goldsmith and silversmith , as well as basic gem cutting , since i am a gem dealer , i try to improve my craft by learning more everyday . i had also done silk screening as well as graphic design and i am also a photographer .

a lot of my project and craft is done with my father who is a great wood smith and also great knowledge of electrical set up .

aside i am a product production manager , meaning i help people with product in their mind to make it possible . ranging from leather , silver , jewelery , tee shirt , fashion , wood work , metal work , plastic , and so on :)

sharpen your knowledge
Several blacksmithing classes at Turley Forge in Santa Fe, NM, three semesters at welding schools, then after 25 years or so of this and that in iron, a friend asked me to make him a knife....
Welder, silversmith, a little gold, pretty much anything metal except blacksmithing....

I've wanted to make knives all my life, but I've always loved GOOD knives and never dreamed that was feasible in a garage operation. When I found this forum I was thrilled.