A blacksmith is a metalsmith who creates objects from wrought iron or steel by forging the metal, using tools to hammer, bend, and cut (cf. whitesmith). Blacksmiths produce objects such as gates, grilles, railings, light fixtures, furniture, sculpture, tools, agricultural implements, decorative and religious items, cooking utensils and weapons.
While there are many people who work with metal such as farriers, wheelwrights, and armorers, the blacksmith had a general knowledge of how to make and repair many things, from the most complex of weapons and armor to simple things like nails or lengths of chain.
Forging is the process in which metal is shaped by hammering. Forging is different from machining in that material is not removed by it; rather the iron is hammered into shape. Even punching and cutting operations (except when trimming waste) by smiths will usually re-arrange metal around the hole, rather than drilling it out as swarf.
There are seven basic operations or techniques em...