Ontario Blacksmith Courses

2024 schedule is now up

Email me for Course Availability
Or Gift Certificates
Pricing per student

  Courses are Available
With Restrictions Due to Covid-19

I am slowly opening up courses. I have implemented a number of precautions to keep everyone safe and to respect Social Distancing.
I now take 4 students at a time
Masks are required when directly teaching or demonstrating
6 foot distance maintained while working
Limited tool access
Subject to change

With the changes consider the calendar below (bottom of page) as only a guideline. I will still be running courses on the weekends listed but the type of course may change. So If interested in a time slot email me and I can see if it is open so I could change the course if needed.

Basic Blacksmithing Intermediate Pattern Welding Propane Forge Knife Making Organics

                                    Blacksmith Class at Joeseph
                                    Schneider Haus Museum

David has been teaching introductory blacksmithing classes at his workshop in Ontario since 1993. He recently has taught blacksmithing at Fleming College's Haliburton School of the Arts Campus. David is a graduate of Ontario's University of Waterloo Engineering program and has his work in private collections in Canada, the United States, Ireland and Germany. David no longer uses blacksmithing coal as his primary heat source. He now prefers the modern convenience of a propane blacksmith forge to teach his blacksmithing courses. This allows the students to concentrate on the historical techinques without having to master working with the coal fire. He does explain the coal forge in detail for those students that are interested .

"I invite you to take a look at my current blacksmith course offerings! You will find basic blacksmithing as well as intermediate to advanced blacksmithing class listings. If you don't see something that fits your schedule let me know and we will see what we can arrange. All classes are taught at my workshop in Cargill."

In times past the art of the blacksmith was a cherished secret passed down only from master to apprentice. After the skills of blacksmithing nearly disappeared in the mid 20th century in North America, many smiths have opted for openness about the craft. This means that many more people have opportunity to learn these skills in blacksmith classes.

I offer several courses / classes at my blacksmith shop in Bruce County ( 1.5 hours north of Kitchener, Ontario). I work with a maximum of 4 students and each student has their own work station but share a forge.

The blacksmithing classes are designed to take the student, in a single weekend, from an interest in artistic blacksmithing to actually producing small useful projects.

At the end of the course the student will have been given the information to set up a basic home shop, including suppliers and equipment required.
I provide all the required tools and related safety equipment, as well as snacks and drinks. The student should bring leather boots or shoes, and a lunch.

Basic Blacksmithing Class

Regular Price $650.00 CND
Includes HST
Members Price $600.00 CND
Includes HST

Maximum 4 students.
This course is designed for those with an interest in blacksmithing but have no previous experience. 18 hours of instruction and supervision.

Friday night 6 pm to 9 pm
We cover safety, introduction to tools large and small, proper hammer technique, and the first project of a Tool Hook.
Techniques: drawing out, curling, notching, curving, hot cutting.

Saturday 9 am to 5 pm
Consists of a series of projects with techniques building upon each other. Projects include Coal Rake, Leaf Hook, Finials, and Tongs. Techniques include: Pointing, Flattening, Shepherd's Crook, Hot Reverse Twisting, Pointing Flat Bar,  Pattern Punching, Offsetting , Shouldering, Through Punching, Leaves

Sunday 9 am to 5 pm
Starts with a discussion of alloy steels and follows with making a Cold Chisel from high carbon steel, Finishing Tongs,  Discuss Setting up a Personal Workshop, Several Hours are set aside for working on a Personal Project.

All materials are provided (personal projects may require additional expense) . Projects and techniques may vary depending on student interest and capabilities. I also provide water as needed through out the days.
Lunch is not provided.

There are several Bed and Breakfasts located nearby.

Silver Creek B&B
Ruby Huygen
17 Younge St. S Walkerton
Website: http://www.bbcanada.com/3316.html
About 15 minutes south of my workshop.

Dates for 2023
Dec. 8,9,10

Dates for 2024
Jan. 5,6,7
Feb. 2,3,4
Mar. 15,16,17
Apr. 12,13,14
May 24,25,26
June 21,22,23
July 19,20,21
Aug. 30,31,Sept. 1
Sept. 13,14,15
Nov. 8,9,10
Dec. 5,6,7

Please call or email for motels and campgrounds.

David Teaching a Basic Blacksmith Course On Site
at Joseph Schneider Haus Museum, Kitchener Ontario

                                                        Schneider Haus
                                                        course / class
                                                        on site in

David Teaching A Junior Blacksmith Course at
Joseph Schneider Haus, Kitchener Ontario

                                                        class on site in
                                                        Joseph Schneider
                                                        Haus Museum

Past Student Comments:

First let me say, from my perspective, that David's course was very informative, well developed, and an overall excellent course.  He covered the fundamentals as to what is needed to set up a shop including safety, tools, resources, and references, and provided 2+ days of great hands-on instruction.  After I got home and reviewed all the items that I made during the course with my family, I was amazed at how much we covered and accomplished in the short time there.  ......
Secondly, I selected David's course for a couple of basic reasons, I liked what he was offering, the size and scope of the classes, and it was within about a 5 to 6 hour drive of where I live.  I did pass up other courses which were closer to where I live because of the course content. I have only great things to say about the course and David has been great in responding to follow up questions/support after the course.
G. Thomas

I want to thank you for the great class. It was an experience I will never forget.  I really enjoyed myself and working with a master craftsman was great.  I am getting the emails and hope to continue that.
I will probably get a small gas forge at some point in the near future.  I have a small anvil for now.and will get a couple of hammers.
Dave thanks again for a great time. I learned a lot.
L. Covert

We have been a bit remiss in letting you know how much both Christopher and I enjoyed your Basic Blacksmithing class. Although we both had some experience the techniques and projects added to our skill level quite quickly, this is allowing us to explore a variety of different techniques.

As a father it was fun to me to watch my son learn at his pace and I was surprised by his skill and intuitive insight of how he could move the metal. He is already talking about  for his next break from college.

Certainly the drive from the USA was well worth what we gained, I could not have picked a better class for us to attend!Thanks and hope things are well!

R. Taddiken

Hi David,
I have been meaning to get this email out all week, but getting back to work after having the summer off was difficult.  I wanted to thank-you again for the basic blacksmithing course.  It was amazing.  After having read over several books, including your own,  it was a pleasure to finally get a chance to try it out.  Your course is well laid out, building skill as the projects increase in complexity.  Your background does you credit, and I thank your for getting into the material science of what we were doing.
I plan to continue my education and hope to take the intermediate course in the near future. (probably next summer)  In the mean time I plan to build a gas forge and pick up some tools.  I would like to get started this fall. 


Intermediate Blacksmithing Class

Regular Price $650.00 CND
Includes HST
Members Price $600.00 CND
Includes HST

Fri. 6 pm to 9 pm
Sat. and Sun.9 am to 5 pm

This blacksmithing course is less project oriented and more technique oriented. It is also 18 hours of supervision / instruction.

Techniques include: 2D Punch Work, 3 D Punchwork, Forge Welding, Splitting, Upsetting, Design Discussion, Introduction to Air Hammer use, Mortise and Tennon, Through Punching, Scrolls, Hot Wraping, Wedge  Joint, Hinges, Forging Pipe.

Again a couple of hours are set aside on Sunday for a personal project.
This course provides the student with a series of blacksmithing skills that they can take home and directly translate to the work that they are doing there. Techniques primarily revolve around the artistic nature of the craft with traditional joinery highlighted. Depending on student interest techniques taught may follow other lines of discussion. Maximum enrolement 4 students.

Dates for Intermediate Blacksmith Course

Dates for 2024
Apr. 26,27,28

Other dates can be
arranged upon inquiry


                                                        course with
                                                        student using
                                                        air hammer on
Emily at the air hammer.

Past Students Comments
Hi David,
Just getting home and wanted to say thanks again for such an amazing course- I had a blast this weekend!
You create such a positive learning environment; really laid-back yet perfectly structured into steps that we were able to work through. My head is still spinning from everything we covered!
Thanks once again for taking the time to fire up and fix my forge- I really appreciate it. Now I have no excuses to not do my homework (which would be: practice, practice and more practice...and finishing my pot rack!).
I also wanted to say thanks for being so attentive to our 'personal blacksmithing aspirations' and giving us pointers/insights throughout the weekend to steer us in the right direction and get the 'wheels turning'.
You are an awesome teacher! I will definitely be sending questions your way as the brain continues to digest the information.
Many thanks and see you again in the future!

Pattern Welding Knife Making Blacksmith Course

Regular Price $850.00 CND
Includes HST
Members Price $800.00 CND
Includes HST

Fri. 6 pm to 9 pm
Sat. and Sun.9 am to 5 pm

This course is designed for the individual who has some skill at forge welding, and wants to explore the area of damascus knives. This course runs with a max. of 2 people.

The course covers the basics of Knife Formation, Cable Damascus, Odd Pattern Stuff (Chainsaw Chain etc.), Making the Billet, Secure Welds, Pattern Generation, Alloys, Etching Solutions. Grinding techniques are mentioned but are not the focus unless there is time.

 This course stresses the billet process and depending on time and aptitude the completion of a knife is secondary.

Dates For
Pattern Welding (Damascus Steel)

Dates for 2024
Mar. 1,2,3

Other dates can be
arranged upon inquiry

For added Details on Knife Making Courses Click on
Bladesmithing and Knife Making Courses

                                                        Damascus Knife
                                                        made in Pattern
Pattern Welded Dagger.

                                                      Blacksmith Classes
                                                      | Two Damascus or
                                                      Pattern Wellded
Two Pattern Welded Nickel Damascus Knives.
Comment After a Recent Custom Pattern Welding Course

I just wanted to send you a note to once again say thanks for a great experience. My brother and I had a lot of fun and learned a tremendous amount from you in a short time. You provided excellent instruction in a comfortable and often humorous way which also allowed us to excel and push ourselves. I definitely want to try this again. It would be fun to experiment with different metals, shapes and patterns.

Once again thanks,

E. Sheffield, Toronto

Propane Blacksmith Forge Workshop

Scheduled at Mutual Convenience

One Day Only
Sat. 9 am to 5 pm

This one day workshop is limited to 2 people. Each of you will build a complete working atmospheric gas forge! (Blower forge is also possible for extra cost.)

You will learn about burner construction and dynamics, shells and insulation, hazards of propane, and general construction techniques! The course fee includes all materials for the forge construction, and hose and regulator. You will have to provide a propane tank at home.

Since many of the materials I have to buy out of town I require the full course fee 1 month in advance. (Don't worry if you miss the course you still get a gas forge just not the knowledge.)
Also See
Gas Forge Construction Manual

Course Dates :

By Appointment Only

Week Long Courses

  (For Specialty Courses or Week Long Courses Please Contact Me)

I am willing to design a a week long program specific to your interests or needs for a time slot that is mutually convenient.

This is intensive and usually hot in the summer. If you want to jump start a career or boost a hobby this may be for you.

Questions about possible course content please direct to me.

                                                        blower propane
                                                        blacksmith gas
                                                        forge you build
                                                        on the one day
                                                        Forge Making
                                                        Course on forge
Blower Forge shown.
Atmospheric Propane Forge is also possible to build.

                                                      |Haliburton School
                                                      of the Arts
                                                      Summer, instructed
                                                      by David

Previous Garden Gate Course Halburton School of Arts and Design

Basic Knife Making Course

Regular Price $650.00 CND
Includes HST
Members Price $600.00 CND
Includes HST

Fri. 6 pm to 9 pm
Sat. and Sun.9 am to 5 pm

Knives are a fundamental tool in our lives whether it be inHand forged knife
                                              created in Introductory
                                              Knife Making Course our kitchens, workshops, or on hunting trips. I have had many requests for a knife making work shop and have usually suggested people do some blacksmithing first. There is a need for hammer control and an appreciation for the narrow temperature range that the tool steel must be worked at and these things do require time to grasp.

It is recommended that you have some past forging experience, but I will try to accommodate those that have no experience as well. This course will concentrate on blade formation and heat treating, with less emphasis on grinding. Some grinding will be involved but it will not be the main focus. I hope each student will be able to complete 2 knives at least to the point that they can finish them at home. This will of course depend on experience and ability.

One Knife will be a Romano-British or "Blacksmith Knife". The second will be slab handle, full tang. The students have choice of what style of knives they make. These projects may change without notice.

Dates for Basic Knife Making Course

Dates for 2024
Jan. 19,20,21
Feb. 16,17,18
May 10,11,12
June 7,8,9
July 5,6,7
Aug. 2,3,4
Oct. 25,26,27
Nov. 22,23,24

For added Details on Knife Making Courses Click on
Bladesmithing and Knife Making Courses


Advanced Knife Making

Regular Price $650.00
Including HST
Members Price $600.00
Including HST

Friday 6 pm to 9 pm
Sat. and Sun. 9 am to 5 pm

This course is limted to two people and
is dedicated to the production of two complete
integral bolster knives.
This includes forging, primary grinding
primary sanding, heat treating,
secondary sanding, scale wood handles, 
finish sanding.
Prequiste - You must have some previous
experience with forging hot metal and knife making. 

Dates for 2024
To Be Arranged at Mutual Convenience

For added Details on Knife Making Courses Click on
Bladesmithing and Knife Making Courses

New For 2024
Forged Jewellery Course
Maximum of 2 people on this course.

Regular Price $650
Including HST
Members Price $600
Including HST

Friday 6 pm to 9 pm
Sat. and Sun. 9 am to 5 pm

This course is designed around small scale forge work suitable for jewellery. Focus will be on working with ferrous and non ferrous such as bronze and copper using forged design elements.

Projects may include ear rings, brooches, pendents, bracelets and others.

Techniques may include drawing out, doming, curling, riveting, casting, cutting. polishing, punching etc. Possibility of welding or brazing/soldering depending on students ability and time restraints.

Dates for 2024
To Be Arranged at Mutual Convenience

Leaf shawl pin brooch*
Forged Copper Brooch
                                            with forged steel centre.

Organics Blacksmithing Course

Regular Price $650.00 CND
Includes HST
Members Price $600.00 CND
Includes HST

Max 4 students

Fri. 6 pm to 9 pm
Sat. and Sun.9 am to 5 pm

This course is a specialty course on creating organic forms. Flowers, leaves, tendrils etc. It will be a combination of hand work and power hammer work. Although the power hammer work will be directly related to the hand work it will be on larger stock.

The goal of this course is to show you some basic hand tecniques to create Floral Forms and then scale the process up to power hammer techniques.

Topics Discussed
Punching Petals
Plain leaves
Folded leaves
Long Leaves
Short Leaves
Calla Lily Flowers
Bark Pattern
Grape Vine
Free Form Forging

Dates for Organics Course

Dates for 2024
Mar. 29,30,31
Aug. 16,17,18

Other dates can be
arranged upon request.

Blacksmith hand
                                            forged flower
Hand Forged Stylized Flower

Flower Inspiration

Blacksmith Class
                                              Forged Rose Detail

Forged Copper Rose Detail

One Day Specialty Blacksmithing Classes | Courses!

For $350.00 per day I will teach specific techniques and while the student is
practicing I will be working on my own projects. Times to be arranged
at our mutual convenience. Additional material charges possible.
Specialty Courses Might be
  • Axes
  • Spear Heads
  • Advanced or Specialty Flowers
  • Tool Making
  • Hand Hammer Making
  • Jewellery
  • Copper or Bronze Work (additional charges for material)
  • Sculptural
  • And Others Inquire by email and I will see if it is possible.

For $550.00 per day I will work on your particular project with your help.

Other dates may be arranged for 2 or more people.

Members Log In Here! 

Blacksmith logo

Artist Blacksmith
David Robertson

R.R. #2
Cargill, Ontario,
Canada, N0G1J0
519 366 2334


Learn How to Make Your Own Gas Forge Here!

Cover image Gas Forge
                                          Construction Manual

For blacksmithing classes deposits and final payments I now accept Pay Pal and email funds transfers as well as the usual cash, cheque or Visa.

Items can be paid for by Pay Pal or Visa or Master card over the phone. Please contact me for availability of courses.