Costs of Forge Equipment in 1938

the bellows and forge hearth

Bellows like these in Reuben's smithy cost:

140s for the 18 inch diameter model,
160s for 20 inch or
170s for 22 inch. (140 shillings = £7.)

Anvils were sold by weight, 72s per cwt (hundredweight), starting at half a cwt and going up to 2 cwt.

extract from Marples' tool catalogue, 1938

Weights & Measures

  • 112 pounds
  • lb = a hundredweight cwt

  • 14 lb = a stone st
  • 2 stones = 1 quarter
  • 8 stones = 1 cwt
  • 20 shillings s or /- = a pound £.
  • 12 pennies d = a shilling s or /-
  • 4 farthings
    or 2 half pennies (ha'pence) = a penny d

Costs of shoeing in 1950

John Gate recalls:"Reuben charged us 10s 6d - half a guinea - to shoe a horse in the 1950s, and 5 shillings for a remove."

Distances measured with chains

chains for measuring

22 yards = a chain

10 chains = a furlong (the length of a "fur" or furrow)

8 furlongs = a mile

The chains are very light so they are easy to use. Each section is joined to the next with a swivel to stop it tangling. The chains were used to measure jobs done, ready for payment:

  • lengths of roadside verges trimmed
  • ditches cleaned out
  • turnip stitches weeded
  • crops planted
  • field areas sown
  • Even the length of a cricket pitch
  • is still the same as these chains.