Fireside bellows are my love and focus,
however I have other interests including a couple of ‘bellows-related’ projects…

Small fireside bellows with field forge bellows

Big and Small

Finished a rebuild of a small fireside bellows and could not resist photographing them with the partially finished Field Forge bellows that were another Winter/Lockdown project…

REBUILD 2020/21
Small bellows delivered just before Christmas 2020 “air only blows out the hole, not the nozzle…”
Found problem: glue pushed into a hole in the wood where nozzle attached – enough to fill the nozzle!

Thank you so much – they look amazing! D&C – Owners

Medieval Field Forge Bellows

A friend who is a blacksmith and participates in medieval reenactments, asked for some field forge bellows – that set me off on an interesting journey of research. As it turned out, a shortish journey as there is not a lot of information available.

These bellows need to behave differently to the fireside bellows. A steady stream of air is required to keep the forge at an ideal heat, so forge bellows have double ‘lungs’. They are also much bigger! Full forge bellows can be around 6 feet in length, with a number of panels, so are not portable like those used in the field. I decided around 1 metre by roughly 60cm would produce more than enough air while being possible to transport. I am partway through this 2020/21 Lockdown/Winter project (and only worked on between commissions for fireside bellows). [March 2021]

1500’s Woodcut Plans
Inside Back – 3 Valves
Middle – between the two ‘lungs’

Have found an economical half a cow (not literally!) to provide a single piece of leather to enclose the lungs of the bellows, so some wrestling with that, and a lot of tacks ahead of me. Have no idea that all the calculations will result in effective bellows until the ‘lungs’ are enclosed. [Mid 2021]

2021 became busier (hooray!) so the field forge bellows gathered dust for a while.

Bellows finished! AND, they work perfectly!! Phew! [Summer 2022] Currently with my blacksmith friend who is making a suitable stand for them.

FINISHED! Blacksmith has added the forged nozzle and built a strong frame that can be dismantled for transporting to reenactments. It has been quite a journey… [2023]