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Forged Fireplace Crane, and Firescreens by Dan Nauman

Posted by bighornforge on February 26, 2014


                                                 Custom made fireplace crane.  The lever allows the chef to adjust the height of the pot.

                                                                   Fireplace crane. Private residence, West Bend, WI.    

Here are selected forged, and fabricated fireplace screens, and one forged fireplace crane, designed and created by Dan Nauman.

Art Deco Fire Screen.

Fire Screen. Mild steel.  Gilders Paste (TM) finish.  Private residence, Lake Geneva, WI.

                                                   Arts and Crafts Fire screen.

Art Deco Fire screen.

Fire screen.  Mild steel.  Gilders Paste (TM) finish.  Private residence, LakeGeneva, WI.

Firescreen Bali 1

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Forged Lighting and Candlesticks by Dan Nauman

Posted by bighornforge on February 26, 2014


Made for the "Captain Frederick Pabst Mansion", Milwaukee WI

Made for the “Captain Frederick Pabst Mansion”, Milwaukee WI

Selected forged lighting, designewd and created by Dan Nauman.  However, the Pabst chandelier above, and the two wall sconces below, are reproductions of work originally made for the mansion, but removed by former owners over the years. The originals were made by Austiran born master blacksmith, Cyril Colnik (1871-1958).

Wall Sconce.  To match the elk antler chandelier. Pabst Mansion, Milwaukee, WI.

Wall Sconce. To match the elk antler chandelier.
“Pabst Mansion”, Milwaukee, WI.

Wall Sconce.  "Pabst Mansion", Milwukee, WI.

Wall Sconce. “Pabst Mansion”, Milwukee, WI.

Candlestick.  Based on motifs from the Pabst Mnsion Chandelier.  Artist's collection.

Candlestick. Based on motifs from the Pabst Mansion Chandelier. Artist’s collection.

Candlestick.    Made using the same processes as the candlesick above, French repousse', and forged pieces.

Candlestick. Made using the same processes as the candlesick above, French repousse’, and forged pieces.

Altar Candlesticks. "Holy Family Catholic Community", Fond du Lac, WI

Altar Candlesticks. “Holy Family Catholic Community”, Fond du Lac, WI

Pascal Candlstick.  Showing how the candle lifts for processions.  "Holy Family Catholic Community", Fond du Lac, WI

Pascal Candlstick. Showing how the candle lifts for processions. “Holy Family Catholic Community”, Fond du Lac, WI

Chandelier.  Mild steel and blown glass.  "Herman Uihlein Mansion". (Owner of "Schlitz Brewing Co.")  Whitefish Bay, WI.

Chandelier. Mild steel and blown glass. “Herman Uihlein Mansion”. (Owner of “Schlitz Brewing Co.”) Whitefish Bay, WI.

Chandelier.  Mild steel, and copper.  Natural finish.  "Bjorklunden Lodge", Baileys Harbor, WI.

Chandelier. Mild steel, and copper. Natural finish. “Bjorklunden Lodge”, Baileys Harbor, WI.

Bjorklunden Lodge chandelier detail.

Bjorklunden Lodge chandelier detail.

Chandelier and Pot rack.  Mild steel.  Gilders Paste (TM) finish.  Private residence, Elkhart Lake, WI.

Chandelier and Pot rack. Mild steel. Gilders Paste (TM) finish. Private residence, Elkhart Lake, WI.

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Forged Firetools by Dan Nauman

Posted by bighornforge on February 26, 2014


Ribbon Handled Firetools

Ribbon Handled Firetools.  Mild steel. natural finish.  Private residence, Eagle, WI.

These are firetools sets designed and created by Dan Nauman for private collections.

Arts + Crafts Inspired Firtools.  Steel, micah and copper.

Arts + Crafts Inspired Firtools. Steel, micah and copper.  Private residence, Mequon, WI.

                                                                              

Mild Steel, natural finish.  Private residence, Illinois.

Mild Steel, natural finish. Private residence, Illinois.

 

Four piece set, with a seemingly clay-like feel. Mild steel, natural finish.

Four piece set, with a seemingly clay-like feel.
Mild steel, natural finish.  Private residence, Waukeshs, WI.

  

This set has an Old World Germany flavor.  Mild steel, natural finish.

This set has an Old World Germany flavor. Mild steel, natural finish.  Private residence, Waukesha, WI.

                                                                             

Made with Mule Deer antlers.  Mild steel, natural finish.  Private residence, River Hills, WI.

Made with Mule Deer antlers. Mild steel, natural finish. Private residence, River Hills, WI.

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Bighorn Forge Receives Two Awards for Metalwork

Posted by bighornforge on March 26, 2013


Bronze rail

Bighorn Forge received two awards last week at the “National Ornamental and Miscellaneous Metals Association” (NOMMA) convention “Metalfab 2013”, which was held in Albuquerque, NM.

During this annual international convention, a “Top Job” contest is held, where many categories of forged, as well as fabricated works are voted upon by the NOMMA members.

Bighorn Forge received a gold medal (first place) in the “Exterior Railings, Forged” division for the above railing.  This railing, designed and executed by Dan Nauman, was made for the “Lynden Sculpture Garden” in Milwaukee, WI.  It is made of silicon bronze, and measures 54″ x 25′.  The 4″ rings on the 3/4″ square balusters were all slit, opened, and refined hot using a coal fire.

Bronze rail 1Bronze rail 2

The top and bottom motifs were cross peened; and the rivet sockets applied with a ball tool under a power hammer.  The rivets were all hand-made from a 3/8″ round bar.  There is no finish, allowing for an eventual verdigris patina.  Since these images were taken, the bronze has already started to oxidize nicely, as seen below.

Rail verdigis 1

Bighorn Forge also received a bronze medal (third place) in the “Driveway Gates, Forged” division for the gate below.

Lynd Ent Full View Hor GL

This gate, also designed and executed by Dan Nauman, was made for the “Lynden Sculpture Garden” main entrance.  It is made entirely of mild steel, and measures 14′ x 26′, with a monochrome powder-coat finish.  Many of the bars were forged into an octagonal cross section.  The lower portion of the piers are made of pipe that was torch cut and then forged to shape.

Lynden Entrance Gate Mast GLLynd Ent Gate W to E Hori GL

I extend my gratitude to NOMMA for sponsoring “Metalfab 2013”, and this contest.  They are a fine organization, who helps promote the business of metalwork, and also publishes a quality magazine, “Fabricator”.

Bighorn News release

…Dan Nauman

“After twenty years, you may think you’re a master blacksmith.  Twenty years later, you’ll realize that you’re just crossing the threshold.”  ….Blacksmith Francis Whitaker

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More Forms For Cleveland Driveway Gate Restoration

Posted by bighornforge on February 8, 2013


Rosette #2 unpainted

The form above, 1-1/2″ x 5″ x 5″, was made of 18 gauge mild steel.  There are 64 of these to be made for the continuing two driveway gate restorations in Cleveland, Ohio.  Below, you will see the machine stamped fragment (on the right), and this piece on the left, both painted black for better comparison.

Rosette #2 Repro and Original

There is about 4-1/2 hours needed to complete this form, including the small husk in the center of the rosette.  Below is another, more simple rosette.  Though a  composite of three pieces, since the features are less demanding, the total time it takes to make the entire composite (below) is about 45 minutes.

Rosette #1 Repro and Original

Again, the machine stamped original is on the right, the hand-made version is on the left.  There are 50 sets of these per gate.  I had two helpers on the latter rosettes…Mackenzie Martin, an intern we had here last spring, and also Jeremiah Backhaus, an apprentice currently working here at the studio.  Mackenzie made the bottom piece, Jeremiah the second in the stack, and I made the ball husks. Again…all are of 18 gauge mild steel.

Below is a shot of a bunch ready to be shipped to Cleveland.

Rosettes #1 and #2

Since I have been working on this project for almost a year now, and am about at the midpoint, I have changed and adapted the studio to better suit me for this task, i.e. a dedicated repousse’ station, complete with three vises, two stakes, and a dedicated tool stand, with an integral high intensity lamp.  Perhaps I will photograph this station to show in a later post.

…Dan Nauman

“A peacock that rests on his feathers is just another turkey”…Dolly Parton.

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Kitchen Chandelier

Posted by bighornforge on January 26, 2013


This kitchen chandelier was installed this past week.  It is 24″ x 32″ x 17″, mild steel, with a Gilders Paste black finish, with bronze highlights.  All the oak leaves were hand cut, filed, veined, and formed.  The acorns were made with a top and bottom die, filed, and formed.

Oak Chand 1

The candle cups and bobeches were hand cut, filed and shaped through the French Repousse’ process.  The bundles of leaves and acorns were initially gas welded together, then forge welded.  Final filing to fit the radius of the pipe, and then brazed onto the pipe.

oak chand 2

Hanging this chandelier was a trick, as the log it hangs from is irregular…as logs are.  The chain is also hand-made, so there was slight variations in the length.  Careful measuring, and some tweaking of the mounting hooks leveled things out. 

This chandelier was made with the help of one of our interns from 2012, Mackenzie Martin, a graduate from the “American College of the Building Arts” in Charleston, SC.  Thank you, Mackenzie for your help.

…Dan Nauman

“The heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament shows his handiwork.”…Psalm 19.

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Recent Repousse’ Forms for Cleveland Driveway Gate

Posted by bighornforge on November 30, 2012


Leaf #12

Here are a few more additions to the driveway gate restoration in Cleveland, Ohio.  The above leaf (or husk), is 3″ x 12″ x 2-1/2″, of 18 gauge mild steel.  There are two, and they are mounted high on the gate piers.

Leaf #12 two

The image above shows the two husks together.  The husk on the left was the first piece made.  The first piece made of any form offers a learning curve, and this one was no different.  As the gates original ornament was machine stamped, I must reproduce them the best I can by hand.  The most difficult aspect is getting the volume that the machine stamped piece achieves. Thus, I sometimes need to alter the look of the piece to accommodate the hand-made aspects, getting as close to the original form as possible to achieve the basic feel of the leaf or husk.

Since a machine can apply pressure and shape much of the piece often in one step, some veins made by hand cannot be achieved without much difficulty, and sometimes it is not practical at all to attempt an exact replica.  However, in this case, I learned on the first piece…after folding it into the final husk form… that I could likely reproduce the machine stamping in all aspects.

If you look closely at the two reproductions above, you will notice how some of the veins do not relate to each other as they terminate. Below, you will see the original husk, and the second reproduction, and how the second piece relates almost exactly to the original.

Leaf #12 original stampingLeaf #12

This aspect of reproduction is challenging, though rewarding when one learns from the process of recreating.  It expands the knowledge base, and adds confidence.  Below is a bird’s-eye view of this form.

Leaf #12 Birds Eye

To achieve this form, all the veins and shoulders were drawn in when the piece was in a semi-finished primary shape.  Then, the main center veins were applied, but stopped short of the center, so they wouldn’t be destroyed when folding into the final husk shape.  After the final shape had been established and planished, then the center veins were connected and finished…unlike the first piece.

Since these pieces are elevated roughly 14 feet from grade, these two pieces appear identical by the audience.

Leaf Composite #3

Shown above are four rosettes, 8″ in diameter, and full of volume.  These will be mounted back to back, i.e. counterclockwise/clockwise,  on opposing faces of the gate.  There are four of these pieces per gate.  Here again, several pieces were made before the process was established to provide the best representation of the original machine stamped form, as seen below.

Leaf Composite #3 original stamping

In this case, it was apparent that the exact shape could not be achieved by hand.  The form was revised to achieve the primary visual aspects of the original, as applied by hand using the hand rendered repousse’ process.

The next phase of this restoration will be to reproduce the remaining rosettes, and there are a lot of them.  There are 50 more composite rosettes per gate, of which there are three elements each, comprising 150 pieces total.  There are also an additional 32 composite rosettes, of which there are two elements each, or 64 pieces total.

Finally there are two fine ribbon forms, of which I am saving for last, as there will be quite the learning curve on these forms.

I will keep you updated, as this project continues.

…Dan Nauman

“Temper is the one thing you can’t get rid of by losing it.”….Jack Nicholson

Posted in Bighorn Forge/Nauman Ironwork, Decorative ironwork, Repousse' | Tagged: | 1 Comment »

Prototype Leaf for an Edgar Brandt Gate Restoration

Posted by bighornforge on August 10, 2012


This is a prototype for a restoration project in Cleveland, Ohio. The original pieces were stamped. This piece was formed by hand using the French repousse’ process. It is made of 18 gauge, and is 16″w x 11-1/2″ h. Four pieces of this form are needed. 510 various pieces, all made by hand using the same process, are needed for the entire restoration.

There are two sets of identical gates, made by French master smith, Edgar Brandt.

…Dan Nauman

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Arts and Crafts Inspired Firetools

Posted by bighornforge on April 17, 2012


This set of firetools was inspired by the Arts and Crafts style. Though a newer home, the client’s home speaks of this style. The dimensions were dictated by the client’s request to have 30″ long tools. Thus, the stand has a height of 43″, and is 10″ wide. Bee’s wax finish.

This is the most intricate set of firetools I have made to date. There are 70 plus individual pieces, and about as many rivets.

The materials used are mild steel, copper and micah. Several elements were cut using small chisels, then refined by filing. The processes used to make this set are in keeping with the A+C era as well, i.e. forging, forge welding, riveting, chisel cutting, and filing.

The elements which utilize micah are intended to give off a warm glow when backlit by the fire.

Images by George Lottermoser of “Lottermoser and Associates.”

…Dan Nauman

“Say to wisdom, “You are my sister”, and call insight your intimate friend.”….Proverbs 7:4

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Driveway Gates, Garden and Pool Gates

Posted by bighornforge on March 7, 2012


Here are some images of driveway gates, garden, and pool gates I have made in the past.

Main Entrance Driveway Gate, "Lynden Sculpture Garden", Milwaukee, WI

Pool Gate, Mequon, WI

Exit Driveway Gate, "Lynden Sculpture Garden", Milwaukee, WI

Garden Gate, Cedarburg, WI

Driveway Gate, Port Washington, WI (Photo by George Lottermoser)

…Dan Nauman

“A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.”…Provebs 17:22

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