Dollywood blacksmith shows off ornamental metal works

Dollywood blacksmith shows off ornamental metal works

Posted:
John Fuller is a master blacksmith, which means he's very good at what he does. John Fuller is a master blacksmith, which means he's very good at what he does.
Fire screens at the Pigeon Forge LeConte Center are examples of Fuller's latest creations. Fire screens at the Pigeon Forge LeConte Center are examples of Fuller's latest creations.
"Most of the people who come through here watch me demonstrate and have a few basic questions like, 'How hot is that?' and that sort of thing," said John Fuller. "Most of the people who come through here watch me demonstrate and have a few basic questions like, 'How hot is that?' and that sort of thing," said John Fuller.
Blacksmiths, Fuller points out, do ornamental metal works. Garden items, traditional spoons and forks and knife making are examples. Blacksmiths, Fuller points out, do ornamental metal works. Garden items, traditional spoons and forks and knife making are examples.

By GENE PATTERSON
6 News Anchor/Reporter

PIGEON FORGE (WATE) - If you're ever around a blacksmith, don't ask him or her about horseshoes.

John Fuller is a master blacksmith, which means he's very good at what he does.  His works adorn private homes and public places. Fire screens at the Pigeon Forge LeConte Center are examples of Fuller's latest creations.

"That was a big undertaking. Those fireplaces were like four feet high, eight feet long. They wanted some vine work with leaves and they wanted mountain scenes throughout the whole thing," said Fuller.

He started 30 years ago but for the past 22 years, Fuller has been at Dollywood, giving demonstrations to crowds from all over the world.

"Most of the people who come through here watch me demonstrate and have a few basic questions like, 'How hot is that?' and that sort of thing. A lot of the people come through to have something made. They come onto the park and say 'I need this duplicated.'"

On this day, I was the only one there to ask questions and the first one, it turns out, is a dumb one. I asked about making horseshoes.

"That's a completely different trade. A guy that makes horseshoes is called a Ferrier," Fuller said.

Blacksmiths, Fuller points out, do ornamental metal works. Garden items, traditional spoons and forks and knife making are examples.

Fuller demonstrated how to make a knife from a high carbon railroad switch plate spike.

Working in temperatures over 2,000 degrees, he heats the metal, making it malleable. Using a machine forge and a good old fashioned hammer, he starts to shape the spike.

Then using a high speed sander, he continues the process. About two hours later, he has a nearly finished product.

"It's something that took a long time to get it right, tempering the metal and everything, but we've got it figured out and we make a lot of them," he said.

It's a beautiful piece of work made in Tennessee.

Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WATE. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.