What To Know Before Working With Metal

Published On: June 17, 20190 Comments on What To Know Before Working With MetalTags: Last Updated: February 13, 20243.3 min read

There are plenty of craftsmen and handiworkers out there, but it’s hard finding something as intricate and complicated as working with metal. Sure, a carpenter can be an artist with impressive technical skills, and a person working with paper or glass can be a master of their trade.

What To Know Before Working With Metal

But still, working with metal is something else completely. It’s one of the oldest known professions in the world, and although technology has significantly evolved over the years, the intricacy and technicality of the job has never waned. It’s definitely not an easy job, and you have to know what you’re getting into by working with metal. These are some things you need to know before doing any work with metal.

How do you get into it?

If you’re an absolute beginner, it might be best if you started working with an easily formed metal like copper. It’s soft and quite easy to shape, and more importantly you don’t need very expensive tools to mold it. There are also some basics you need to know about metalwork. For starters, plenty of blacksmiths still use coal to this very day to forge the material, because coal can easily heat up and you can control the heat using a long piece of steel. Others use propane or some other gas to generate the heat, to avoid the uncleanliness of the coal and the fact that it’s messy.

The tools

Probably the most important aspect of working with metal is getting the right tools. Naturally, this starts with protective ones; metal can get very hot, and sometimes temperatures can reach up to 1400 degrees Fahrenheit. This means you have to be completely secured from such heat, by getting tools like safety goggles and heavy gloves before even considering any metalwork. You also need excellent welders to make shapes and joints, and finding the best MIG welder under 1000 dollars is pretty easy if you know what you’re doing. MIG welding has been around for over 70 years now, and it’s what you need to get strong and durable joints. You can get a good MIG welder as a start for around 100 to 200 dollars, but there are plenty of options out there and you need to weigh them all against your budget.

What to know before working with metal - grinding

Do your homework

If you want to get into metalwork, then there’s probably something specific in mind that you want to do. Before you get to that, do a ton of research into how others have done the same project like the one you want, because it’ll help you a lot to learn the steps they took, what went wrong, what they needed for the project, etc. It’s also important that you learn if the project you want to do can be done by a beginner such as yourself, because if not, you’ll have to try your hand at something much simpler first. There are plenty of videos, articles, courses, and other resources you can find online that will definitely put you on the right track to get into metalwork, so dive deep into those. And more importantly, try working with something as a start, a small project you can try your tools and workshop in to see what’ll happen.

The Beauty of Metal

There is no doubt that working with metal results in some of the most beautiful designs out there. We’re not just talking about wonderfully grafted stair bannisters or massively aesthetic front gates. Everything from small metal chairs to modern-day artistic sculptures appeal to the artist in each of us. Not to mention your regular handiwork meant for durability and strength. But never think that it’s a craft that can be taken lightly. Do the research, learn the ropes, and watch as your work comes into fruition!

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