5 Interesting & Unique Rebar Project Ideas for Blacksmiths (With Videos)
Blacksmiths are masters at turning simple pieces of metal into functional tools and unique works of art. One type of metal that many blacksmiths experiment with is rebar. While controversial in the blacksmithing world due to its lower quality steel content, the end result of forged rebar can take on a very industrial, modern look.
If you are interested in using rebar in your next blacksmithing project, keep in mind that your options for projects are more limited because rebar is known to snap during the forging process when making certain items.
Simple tools and decorative pieces are the best projects to stick to when working with rebar.
Below are a few rebar YouTube tutorials for a variety of items that will help you succeed in forging with this unconventional material.
What Tools Do I Need for These Rebar Projects?
The basic tools required for the following projects include an anvil or other heavy metal work surface, a forge or heat source of some kind, hammers, and tongs. A press is also recommended to flatten out metal evenly and efficiently. A grinder is nice to have on hand if you want to give your projects a more finished, smooth look.
A few cutting tools that are necessary for some of the projects listed below are a bandsaw and a cut-off wheel. Depending on your desired outcome for these projects, more or less tools may be required. Most of these projects can be completed with the most basic tools, so feel free to experiment with the equipment you already have on hand.
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List of Rebar Blacksmith Projects Ideas (With Videos & Advice)
1) Rebar Dagger
A dagger can make a great gift or item to sell at local art fairs. To make a dagger from rebar of any size, begin by heating and flattening out one end with a heavy hammer. Create a taper at the end to create a pointed-blade shape. Once the blade end of the dagger is formed into the desired shape, heat the other end of the rebar and create a small taper. Hammer the taper in on itself at a 45 degree angle and continuously rotate the bar to create a decorative end for the dagger.
In the original tutorial, the blacksmith places a large nut on the end of the rebar and works the metal back towards the nut to create the end. This is optional, but is an easy trick for making a decorative handle. The last step in making the dagger is to grind the blade down to polish and sharpen it.
2) Rebar Fork
A fork is a functional and easy project for blacksmiths new to working with rebar. To begin, heat one end of the rebar and flatten it out using a hammer. Cut the rebar and make the fork tines using a cut-off wheel. Once the tines are cut, use a grinder to smooth out the edges of the fork and its tines. Polish the fork down to the desired look and coat it with beeswax for a protective finish.
3) Rebar Chisel
Another easy and functional tool that you can make from rebar is a chisel. Begin by heating the rebar and forging the point of the chisel. Grind down the the unworked end of the rebar and the chisel end to smooth and sharpen it. Reheat the rebar to get rid of any brittle parts of the metal so it will withstand regular use. For the full, in-depth tutorial, check out this link.
4) Rebar Snake
If you want to make something simple and creative, a rebar snake is the perfect project for you! To begin, heat one end of ⅜ inch rebar and create a small, rounded taper for the tail using a hammer. On the other end of the rebar, make a flat taper for the head.
To create the curved shape of the body, heat the rebar and make incremental curves by wrapping the bar around an anvil or other curved surface. The curves can be placed wherever you like, so this project is a nice free-form project for beginner blacksmiths.
5) Rebar Cross Pendant
Pendants are great small projects that are easily sellable online or at local fairs. Start with a ⅜ inch piece of rebar and cut into it using a bandsaw. For a detailed visual tutorial of the series of cuts required to make the pendant, check out the original video here.
After the cuts have been made, the next step is to split the rebar and flatten it with a hammer into the shape of a cross. Grind down the edges of the rebar for a smooth, finished look. The last step is to loop a piece of leather cord or other material through the center hole to make a wearable pendant.