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The Artist-Blacksmith's Association of North America (ABANA)
is dedicated to perpetuating the noble art of blacksmithing. A blacksmith is one who shapes and forges iron with hammer and anvil. ABANA encourages and facilitates the training of blacksmiths; disseminates information about sources of material and equipment; exposes the art of blacksmithing to the public; serves as a center of information about blacksmithing for the general public, architects, interior designers, and other interested parties.

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Boy Scout Metalworking Merit Badge


Boy Scout Metalwork Merit Badge Requirements

Blacksmiths interested in applying to become merit badge counselors should contact your local scout office or a troop near you. You will fill out form 28-501S Adult Application and 34405, Merit Badge Counselor Information. Depending on the troop, the modest application fee of $7 may be absorbed by the individual troop. In most cases the $7 adult application fee is waived for those signing on solely as merit badge counselors. The troop committee reviews and then approves the application and submits the application and information into their local council. If you have specific questions concerning the Metalwork Merit Badge please contact:
ABANA member Drew Hagemann .
For general information visit the Boy Scouts of America website: www.scouting.org

REQUIREMENTS FOR THE BOY SCOUTS OF AMERICA METALWORK MERIT BADGE

1. Learning about shop safety. Read the safety rules listed in Chapter Two. Describe to your counselor how to be safe while working with metal. Since this merit badge offers four options, show your counselor which additional safety rules apply to you and discuss them with your counselor.

2. Understanding some of the basic concepts. Do the following:

  1. Define the term native metal.
  2. Define the term malleable.
  3. Define the term metallurgy.
  4. Define the term alloy.
  5. Name two nonferrous alloys used by pre-Iron Age metal workers, and name the metals that are combined to form these alloys.
  6. Explain the term ferrous, and name three ferrous alloys used by modern metal workers.
  7. Describe how to work harden a metal.
  8. Describe how to anneal a nonferrous and a ferrous metal.
  9. Explain how the element iron can be converted into steel.

3. Learning some of the basic metalworking skills. Do the following:

  1. Learning about spring-back. Put a 45-degree bend in a small piece of 26- or 28-gage sheet brass or sheet copper. Note the amount of effort that is required to overcome the yield point.
  2. Learning about work hardening. Work-harden another piece of the same sheet brass or sheet copper, and then put a 45-degree bend in it. Note the amount of effort that is required to overcome the yield point.
  3. Learning about annealing. Soften the bent, work-hardened piece you just made by annealing it, and then do your best to remove the 45-degree bend. Note the amount of effort that is required to overcome the yield point.
  4. Learning about rivets. Join two small pieces of scrap metal together, using a hammered rivet. Repeat the process using a pop rivet.
  5. Learning about soldering and brazing. Using a flat lock seam, join two pieces of scrap metal together using either lead-free solder or silver solder.
  6. Learning about tempering steel. Make a temper color index from a flat piece of steel. Using hand tools, make and temper a center punch. Use medium carbon or high carbon steel.
  7. Obtaining hands-on practice. Using 'tin' cans, learn to use the basic metalworking tools and techniques by making at least two tasteful objects that require cutting, bending and edging.

4. Learning more about metalworking. Do ONE of the following:

  1. Visit with an experienced metalworker. Visit an experienced Sheet Metal Mechanic, Tinsmith, Coppersmith, Silversmith, Jeweler, Founder, or Blacksmith at his or her workshop. Ask permission to see the tools used and to examine examples of the work made at the shop. Inquire about the level of education required to become an apprentice craftsman.
  2. Learn about some of the other metalworking occupations. If you have (or your counselor has) access to the Internet, explore metal working occupations by conducting an Internet search. With your counselor's help and guidance, find at least five metalworking-related Web sites. Print a copy of the Web pages and discuss them with your counselor.

    When conducting your search, use keywords such as metallurgy, metal work, spinning metal, metal fabrication, steel fabrication, aluminum fabrication, casting metal, pattern making, welding, forge welding, blacksmith, art metal, Artist Blacksmith Association of North America, farrier, brazing, goldsmith, machinist, or sheet metal mechanic.

5. Applying what you've learned. After completing the first three requirements, complete at least ONE of the options listed below.

A. Option 1 - Sheet Metal Mechanic / Tinsmith

1. Learning about the basic tools. Name, and describe the use of, the basic sheet metalworking tools.

2. Learning about the design process. Make a reasonably accurate, hand-drawn sketch of TWO tasteful objects that you would like to make from sheet metal. Place each component's dimensions on your sketch.

3. Learning some of the basic skills. Using patterns either provided by your counselor or made by you, make at least TWO tasteful objects out of 24- or 26-gage sheet metal. Use a metal that is appropriate for your object's ultimate use or purpose.

a) Both of your objects must be constructed using cutting, bending, edging, and either soldering or brazing.

b) One of your objects must also include at least one riveted component.

c) If you do not make your objects from zinc-plated sheet steel or tin-plated sheet steel, preserve your work from oxidation

B. Option 2 -Silversmith

1. Learning about the basic tools. Name, and describe the use of, the basic tools used by a Silversmith.

2. Learning about the design process. Make a reasonably accurate hand-drawn sketch of TWO tasteful objects that you would like to make from sheet silver. Place each component's dimensions on your sketch.

3. Learning some of the basic skills. Using patterns either provided by your counselor or made by you, make at least TWO tasteful objects, using 18- or 20-gage sheet copper. If you already have prior silversmithing experience, you may substitute sterling silver, nickel silver, or lead-free pewter at your discretion.

a) At least one of your objects must include a sawed component that you have made yourself.

b) At least one of your objects must include a sunk part that you have made yourself.

c) Both of your objects must include a soldered joint.

d) Clean and polish your objects.

C. Option 3 - Founder

1. Learning about the basic tools. Name, and describe the use of, the basic parts of a two-piece mold. Name at least three different types of molds.

2. Learning about the design process. Make a reasonably accurate hand-rendered sketch of TWO tasteful objects that you would like to cast in metal. Place height, width and length dimensions on the sketch.

3. Learning some of the basic skills. Do the following:

a) Learning to make molds. Make a mold using a pattern that you have made yourself. Place the pouring gate and vents yourself. Do not use copyrighted materials as patterns.

b) Learning to cast molten metal. Make a casting using a mold provided by your counselor and make a casting using the mold that you have made. Use lead-free pewter when casting each mold.

c) Remove all evidence of gates, vents, and parting-line flash from your castings.

D. Option 4 - Blacksmith

1. Learning about the basic tools. Name, and tell the use of, the basic tools used by a Blacksmith.

2. Learning about the design process. Make a reasonably accurate hand-drawn sketch of TWO tasteful objects that you would like to hot forge. Place each component?s dimensions on your sketch.

3. Learning some of the basic skills. Using low-carbon steel at least ¼-inch thick, perform the following exercises:

a. Learn to draw out by forging a taper.

b. Learn to use the horn of the anvil by forging a U-shaped bend.

c. Learn how to twist steel by placing a decorative twist in a piece of square steel.

d. Learn to use the edge of the anvil to bend metal by forging an L-shaped bend.

4. Applying what you've learned. Using low carbon steel at least ¼-inch thick, make at least TWO tasteful objects that require hot forging.

a) Include a decorative twist in at least one of your objects.

b) Include a hammer-riveted joint in at least one of your objects.

5) Preserve your work from oxidation.