Only two weeks now until International Peening Day on April 1st so, in preparation, I thought I’d offer some instruction on making a simple and lightweight peening bench. While the best support for a peening anvil or jig is probably a solid block set into the ground, a bench is a useful piece of kit. It takes up little space and can be easily taken to festivals or to a friend’s house for a pleasant afternoon’s peening.
It’s important that the anvil or jig sits on a post to carry the force of the hammer blows to the ground. Rather than a large log this can be a 4″x3″ or similar post which is then stabilised by adding the seat.
The seat rails are simply screwed into the seat and slide into a carved housing on either side of the post. Hazel sticks make effective back legs and knock out for transportation.
The exact dimensions of the bench will depend on your body. Adjust the seat height so you are sitting comfortably with your thighs parallel to the ground. The height of the top of the post is set to position the working surface of your jig or anvil in line with the top of your thighs so the blade can be supported by your legs while peening. I use a short flat anvil and a specially made extra-tall narrow anvil so my post has two levels, make yours to fit your equipment.
That’s it, get hammering!