A power hammer is a tool that uses electricity and a revolving belt to apply intense, repeated force to shape pieces of hot metal. They’ve been used by blacksmiths, metalworkers, and manufacturers since the late 1880’s. Shortly after its opening, The Foundery purchased a power hammer to use for its classes and open hours. This power hammer has been on a full-circle journey from 1965 to present-day.
The Foundery’s Power Hammer, the “100 Pound Little Giant,” was originally sold in 1965 to a Baltimore City-owned bus depot called Central Automotive Repair Shop (CARS). This former warehouse on 101 W. Dickman Street is now the current location of City Garage, the building that holds The Foundery.
In 2008 CARS closed its doors and the city of Baltimore sold the power hammer in an auction to Jason Roberts of Jason Roberts Metalworks in Philadelphia. Mr. Roberts used it for seven years, after which he sold it to a hobbyist blacksmith in Clinton, New Jersey.
Foundery instructor Sam Salvati heard about the traveling power hammer and tracked down it down. He bought it on behalf of The Foundery and completed a 21 hour rental-van adventure to New Jersey to retrieve it.
Now it sits back in its original home in 101 W. Dickman Street in The Foundery. It still has its original “City of Baltimore” sticker, which is now preserved with a clear coat of spray paint. It runs just as well as it did in 1965, and you can come in to learn how to use it with one of our blacksmithing classes!