We are honored to have Aram as our Artist in Residence. Aram is the master of the Railroad Spike Knife. He also is the creator of many custom hammers. Their beauty belies their function.
Amanda Kazarian has been with Adams Forge for 6 years and has taken many of the courses offered at the smithy. She instructs beginners courses at Adams Forge on a monthly basis. If you just gotta make a blade, take one of Amanda’s letter opener classes and you’ll learn to forge a blade shape in steel. She completed a course in silversmithing at UCLA extension and has several years of experience in prop fabrication. Her bachelors degree in is Interior Design that she received from the Art Institute, so she’s also our go-to instructor for drawing and design.
Scott "Zapp" Higgins is an aerospace engineer that spends his off hours teaching blacksmithing and is skilled in metalworking, welding, leatherworking, and operating antique steam engines. Zapp is a CBA certified blacksmith and instructor. He regularly volunteers as a blacksmith at the Pioneer Yosemite History Center and the Antique Gas & Steam Engine Museum in Vista, CA.
Zapp has been teaching at Adam's Forge since 2012. His favorite projects are metal art, bottle openers, letter openers, knives, key fobs, leaf amulets, magic wands, rustic cookware, and custom tools. Sign up for one of Zapp's classes if you want to explore blacksmithing and metal.
A long-standing instructor with the forge. Most of our regular instructors started out in Michael's CBA Level 1 Class and he's still teaching it. As a CBA certified instructor Michael can check off your CBA list of projects. Michael has a long list of skills and techniques that he has practiced in many different media over the years. The forge is lucky to have him and his expertise.
Hi, I'm Leif Bennett. I've been interested in blacksmithing since I was a teenager, spending inordinate amounts of time watching the blacksmith at any living history site I happened to be at, and reading every book I could find on the topic. I gradually acquired tools and equipment, and set up my home forge <http://alumnus.caltech.edu/%7Eleif/smith/index.html> around 1995. Without a teacher (and without YouTube), learning was slow. I ran into Lamont demonstrating at a living history event, and he mentioned Adam's Forge. I jumped at the chance to take classes, and did I ever learn things! Now I'm teaching some classes, and continuing to learn as much as I can.
When I'm not blacksmithing, I'm a full-time programmer <http://alumnus.caltech.edu/%7Eleif/resume_l.html> , having worked for large companies like Xerox and Google, small startups, and anything in between. Outside of work <http://alumnus.caltech.edu/%7Eleif/personal.html> , I like to spend time with my wife and three children.
Lamont is a human power hammer. He is the go to man for Team Striking and partners with Michael Horgan teaching the CBA Level 1 classes
Hello fellow blacksmiths and those planning to be blacksmiths. I am Gary and blacksmithing began for me in 1990 when I needed something which I could not find anywhere. Initially, I started making stuff for the home and then working for historical organizations throughout Southern California. Presently, I give regular blacksmithing demonstrations/classes for multiple city and state parks.
Teaching began at Adam’s Forge in 2004. The classes have ranged from the entire CBA Level 1 and 2 programs to dozens of other classes including Skulls, Iron Age Cutlery, Magic Wands, Viking Belt Buckle and Fire Steel, and a two day Bowie knife class.
So please join me at the forge to see what we can make together.
Mark currently owns and operates his own school for blacksmiths. His training as a smith started in the United Kingdom in 1976 after leaving high-school, working for a small fabrication/engineering firm that boasted a blacksmith shop. He has worked for a number of smiths as well as teaching in trade schools over the years.
Mark is a certified journeyman smith with the Worshipful Company of Blacksmiths, (a UK guild started in London in 1324) and currently an Associate of the company (AWCB) Mark is also a certified farrier with the American Farriers Association (AFA). He does maintain that these qualifications and a dollar will only get you a cup of pretty poor tasting coffee, but that the endeavors were priceless.
Mark owns and operates the 'Mark Aspery School of Blacksmithing' traveling the USA teaching classes and giving blacksmith demonstrations. Mark is currently writing a fourth volume to his 'How to' blacksmith book series, The Skills of a Blacksmith Vol IV – Locks , Latches and Hinges. Mark is careful not to call himself a traditional smith, perhaps classical is a more apt phrase.
Mark likes to use classical joinery techniques where budget and design allow. An underlying ethos of Mark's work is 'make the tools before you can begin the job'. At this time Mark does not do any regular commission blacksmithing, just the occasional small job, and states "I am a little out-of-touch with that side of the profession. I think that the single most important event that has improved my blacksmithing has been to teach it – having to know the root of the skill or information."
Mark maintains that he is as much a student of blacksmithing as the next smith, and is ready to learn more – with a subject this vast, how can he say anything else.
You can see more and purchase his excellent books here.
Get a preview of Mark in videos here.
Jay Burnham Kidwell
We don't have a bio from Jay yet but this article, although several years old, gives a pretty good picture of him.