Event Reports 2008
NAFBAE Reading Branch at The Forge, Stoneleigh
Hands-On Shoemaking Clinic with the 'Welsh Team'
The hands-on shoemaking clinic hosted by the NAFBAE Reading Branch at The Forge, Stoneleigh on 14th February 2009 saw 15 farriers and apprentices get the chance to hone their skills under the watchful eye of winning Welsh Team members Billy Crothers AWCF, Andy Martin AWCF, Grant Moon AWCF and Nigel Brown AWCF. Two farriers had made the journey especially from Germany!
A warm-up session allowed attendees 1 hour and 10 minutes to make two shoes of their choice. During this time the clinicians assessed the work being carried out.
A demonstration by Grant Moon making two three-quarter fullered shoes in 25 minutes out of gas ensued. The making of these shoes illustrated the need for a methodical approach to working - knowing what you are wanting to achieve at each stage and completing the same for each shoe at each stage. Both of these shoes were finished in just 18 minutes. Commentary provided by Billy reaffirmed the need for a rhythm and a system in shoemaking and that each farrier should find their own individual way of working which uses heats efficiently and allows the shoemaker to work within their limits.
Following Grant's demonstration all farriers and apprentices were encouraged to find their own way of working. Loosely divided into four groups each group was then encouraged to work on and make shoes they would like to practise. Fire welding, masselot clips and french hinds were all highlighted as areas to explore.
The day had kicked off with a hearty breakfast courtesy of Cliff Barnes and Chris Linssner which was followed up with a great lunch and afternoon tea and cakes! A 'well-rounded' (!) and educational day was had by all who attended.