Weekly Blacksmith Classes

Weekly Blacksmith Classes - Brown County Forge

Terran Marks teaches weekly blacksmith classes at Brown County Forge.

The classes come in two formats:

  • Beginners Class – This class focuses on five fundamental blacksmithing skills: drawing out, scrolling, quenching, bending, and twisting. The class is project-based meaning each student starts with a fresh piece of metal and forges it into a finished piece.
  • Knife Making Class – This class is also project-based, but it’s more specific that the Beginners Class. Each student takes a standard railroad spike and turns it into a functional knife.

When Are Weekly Blacksmith Classes?

The Beginners Class currently starts at 10 AM on Saturdays and wraps up between 12 and 1 PM.

The Knife Making Class begins at 2 PM on Saturdays and ends by 6 PM.

These are the set class times each week.

However, time during the week is available for private lessons/special appointments.

Terran would be happy to set up a class time Monday-Friday with you.

Classes run from early March through mid-December. (February in Indiana is usually just too darn cold.)

How Much Do Classes Cost?

The Beginners Class is $120 per person for the single session.

The Knife Making Class is $220 per person for the single session.

Can Beginners Take Either Class?

Yes! Absolutely.

Both classes are set up for complete beginners. No prior experience is required.

Out of the 581 student projects coming out of the shop, 98% of them were made by beginners.

Rustic and Rugged - Brown County Forge

How Old Do You Have to Be?

For safety reasons, the minimum age is 14 for both classes.

A parent or guardian must be present during the class. However, they are not required to participate.

How Dangerous is Blacksmithing?

On a scale from sitting on the couch to jumping out of an airplane:

Blacksmithing is less dangerous than using chainsaws.

It’s also not as dangerous as driving a car.

The biggest difference between driving a car and blacksmithing is the variability of other people.

In blacksmithing, at least at Brown County Forge, your environment is carefully controlled.

Terran takes great care in mitigating risks in the shop and explaining what can happen.

Where Can I Find Out More About Weekly Blacksmith Classes?

The Classes Page has more information and available dates.

Seymour Indiana Student Project

Seymour Indiana - Blacksmith Classes - Brown County Forge

Jeremy from Seymour, Indiana Forges a Fire Poker

Seymour Indiana is just under an hour from Brown County Forge.

Jeremy made the trip west for the 10 AM Beginners Class at the shop to forge his own fire poker.

In the 2-3 hour Beginners Class, students have the option to make one of three items:

  • A traditional “J” hook.
  • A bartop bottle opener.
  • A fire poker with a twist in the handle.

Beginner Blacksmithing Classes - Indiana - Brown County Forge

The decision about what to make usually comes down to what they would find useful.

The goal of every project and product that comes out of the shop is that it look good and be useful.

Jeremy opted for the fire poker so he could use it when he goes camping with his family.

Hammering It Out

Seymour Indiana - Blacksmith Classes - Brown County Forge

To forge the fire poker, we need to get the steel very hot: over 1500 degrees Fahrenheit.

The glowing yellow-orange you see in the photo is the steel’s color straight out of the forge.

Now we have about 15 seconds to hammer on it before it gets too cold again.

We do 30-40 heats per project in the Beginners Class.

The Blacksmith Equipment We Use

Having the right equipment definitely makes it easier to blacksmith.

Jeremy used one of our 70 pound NC Tool Company anvils as his work surface.

Some benefits of this lighter anvil:

  • You can work steel up to 1 inch thick.
  • It’s easy to move around by yourself.
  • It costs a lot less than larger anvils. (A 70 lb, anvil like this will run you about $280.)

Other tools Jeremy used:

  • A Majestic Knifemaker Economy Forge – This is a two-burner forge made by a company based in Ohio.
  • Centaur Forge V-bit Bolt tongs for holding on to the fire poker while he forges it.
  • Vaughan 2.5 pound blacksmith’s hammer. A very solid hammer that has held up for almost a decade of steady use.

Was the Gentleman from Seymour Indiana Successful?


Jeremy came away with a great fire poker that he forged on his own.

He was proud of what he was able to accomplish with no prior experience.

I think this gift from his wife was a success!