Donna and Joe have finished their assignment in India. Occasionally they still travel somewhere.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Blacksmiths at work

These guys are cutting steel bars into small pieces to make grills to cover windows. The pieces will be welded together next. They are on the side walk in front of their shop. There was an older man, possibly their boss standing around and scowling at them. I asked if I could take their picture and he grunted and scowled at me, but they were happy to have their picture taken and pose for me any way I wanted.

The bars they are cutting are about a centimeter square in cross section and they mostly cut them with a single blow. One holds the piece to be cut on an anvil with a pair of pliers. With his other hand he holds a wedge against the piece to be cut. The wedge has a loosely connected handle to isolate his hand from the vibration of the blow. The other smashes the wedge with a hammer severing the bar.

I did not see any kind of a measurement instrument. They were cutting quite a few short pieces completely by the calibrated eyeball measuring of one against the previous one, just line up the wedge by eye and whack it. Maybe the boss is scowling because he knows most of the pieces will be the wrong length.

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