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  • March 23, 2023
  • Online live streaming via Zoom
  • 28


  • FREE
    March 23, 2023
  • March 23, 2023
  • March 23, 2023

Registration is closed

Level I core skills 

DATE : March 23, 2023 @ 5pm Pacific Coast Time

LOCATION: Online live streaming via Zoom - Login and password will be provided once you have registered.

EXPERIENCE: Is for the advancing student that has progress through much of the level one curriculum or instructors that teach level one.  

CONTACT FOR MORE INFO: Victoria Ritter 916-947-1388 or email

INSTRUCTORS: Mark Aspery, Becky Schimpff, Victoria Ritter

PRICING:  FREE for instructors; $10/CBA members; $25/non-members

REGISTRATION: Register here (online). Registration will be opened soon.

  •  50 participants maximum
  •  Registration cutoff date is March 21st, 2023
  •  Instructions for Zoom access to this meeting will be sent to all registrants.

Level 1 Gate Latch:

The CBA Level 1 Gate Latch is a bit more tricky than you might first expect and well worth exploring no matter your skill level.

In this Zoom session we’ll do a deep dive into the latch and associated tooling. Then we’ll move on to forging a gimlet, the wood-boring tool necessary to install your gate latch staple.

Some highlights:

Barb: Forge-welding the barb seems like it should be easy. However, it’s actually quite challenging to get sufficient mass into the barb. The barb tends to end up too skinny to hold the latch in place. We’ve worked out a sneaky but ingenious way to add material to create a meaty barb that will keep your farm animals (and other loved ones, as relevant) well secured.

Forging to Dimension: The gate latch is a project that requires forging to dimension and forging to dimension requires math (though not a higher degree). If math is something that makes you sweaty, don’t worry! We’ve figured out all the math for you. And once you see how to do it, you can figure it out for yourself for other projects.

Tenons: The latch requires forging a tenon on each end of a single bar. These tenons are surprisingly fussy. We’ve worked out tooling that we promise will make getting these right significantly easier!

Bending: The latch and staples require some finicky bending to get the correct shape. There’s a right way to approach these bends so that they work out! And we have some suggested tooling to help!

Gimlet: This is a hand-held tool used for making holes in wood. We’ll show you how to create it by forging, twisting and filing.

No matter your skill level, we promise this session on the Level 1 Gate Latch will provide you with concrete tips and techniques to improve your blacksmithing.

“Don’t just smith, smith better.”

California Blacksmith Association

5505 Santa Cruz Ave.

Richmond, CA  94804

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