Forging tongs must be of high quality and be able to securely grip a range of different sized and shaped objects.
Cheaper tongs can lead to dropped and ruined materials and even serious burns, so steer clear of any tongs that appear flimsy or cheaply made. It’s just not worth it.
Here’s a quick look at my top two recommendations:
Best Overall Tongs Set – Sunluway Tongs Set – Blade, v-bit, and flat tongs give you precise control regardless of the size and shape of your project, allowing for incredible versatility as you practice your skills.
Best Individual All-Purpose Tongs – Picard Wolf’s Jaws – Provides a secure grip on a wide range of shapes and sizes. Sturdy and well-made to last for a lifetime.
Best Forging Tongs Set: Sunluway Knife-Making Tongs
This Sunluway knife-making tongs set is a favorite of both beginner and expert blacksmiths.
It offers three integral tools ideal for a wide range of forging projects.
The set includes one of each of the following:
- V-bit blade tongs (15.63 inches).
- Blade tongs (14.84 inches).
- Flat tongs (16.53 inches).
All three of these tools are professional-grade steel, making them heavy-duty and durable.
Although they’re built to be tough, they’re also lightweight and easy to handle.
While many beginners will be happy with these as an initial set, more experienced blacksmiths may decide to reshape their pieces a little bit.
Overall, they make for a great starter set.
- Easy to use.
- Sturdy, reliable, and durable.
- Great basic set for beginners.
- Some may need reshaping.
- Experienced users may prefer longer tongs.
Best Value Forging Tongs: Ken’s Custom Iron DIY Blacksmith Tongs
Ken’s Custom Iron Blacksmith Tongs rank high in value.
For an affordable price, you can get your hands on five types of DIY tong blanks that you can shape to suit your project needs. The set includes the following:
- Bolt tongs.
- Flat jaw tongs.
- Slot jaw tongs.
- V-bit tongs.
- Scroll tongs.
Each pair of tongs includes a rivet and assembly instructions, so you can customize these tools how you like.
You can even draw out the handle to adjust the length if you prefer a longer reach.
The instructions are clearly written and super easy to follow, making this a great project for a beginner blacksmith.
- Excellent value.
- Makes for a great first blacksmith project.
- Customize each piece to suit your needs.
- High-quality steel.
- Tongs are not ready for immediate use.
- Require additional tools to forge.
More to Choose From
Two options don’t give you a lot to choose from. Below are four more forging tools that you might like.
The Picard Hammer Blacksmiths’ Tongs is a high-quality, basic tool that any blacksmith can use on a daily basis.
It’s well made, tough and reliable, with tons of testing to back up its functionality.
The flat closure allows users to secure a wider range of materials with ranging thickness, offering a firmer grasp over straight, flat jaw tongs.
It’s a great tool to keep handy in your workshop, though some users may find the length too short.
Picard also offers high-quality wolf’s jaw style tongs, which are excellent for gripping a wide range of shapes, materials, and sizes.
The jagged teeth make it especially easy to grab round objects without slipping.
The steel construction is made to be durable and reliable, and these tongs deliver on both fronts.
They offer a great mid-range length, allowing users to get a good grip while also safely retrieving hot items from the forge.
Some users, especially beginners, may benefit from adding an S hook to them to improve the grip and avoid squeezing too hard for long periods of forging.
These 18-inch steel bolt tongs are made for both blacksmiths and bladesmiths, so whether you’re making your own tools or participating in knife making, this is a handy and versatile tongs to have on hand.
The V-bit style offers a slip-resistant grip, allowing you to hold on tight when it counts.
Perfectly balanced and lightweight, these tongs are easy to handle and squeeze, which is especially helpful during long forging sessions.
If you want a reliable tool, you can trust that these ones won’t budge, even on railroad spikes and round pieces.
They feel good in the hand and help you create your best work.
This list ends with one more Picard piece: the flat-nosed tongs.
At over 16 inches long, these tongs are great for beginners and fall right into that sweet-spot range we’ll talk about below.
Made from high-quality, proven, tested steel, you can trust this tool to handle tough jobs in the workshop.
This flat-nosed design has proven to be especially useful in holding and forging knife blanks.
They’re good and sturdy, ensuring your product doesn’t wobble as you work. You can be confident that these tongs will quickly become a staple in your workspace.
Blacksmith Forging Tongs Buyer’s Guide
Like most blacksmithing tools, forging tongs don’t come cheap.
That’s why it’s critical to your budget that you learn a little bit about the product before jumping into a purchase. This buyer’s guide will help you do just that.
There are so many different types of forging tongs, and to go over each and every one of them would be considered tedious.
The most common types are:
- Wolf’s Jaw
- Round Nosed
- Flat Nosed
- Flat Jawed
- Straight Lipped
Blacksmithing tongs are categorized by their jaw type. Many of them are considered multi-purpose or all-purpose tongs, but several do their best work for specific tasks.
Sets Vs. Individuals
You can purchase blacksmith tongs either individually or in sets. Both of them have their benefits, so which should you consider?
If you’re a beginner, a tong set is a great way to get you started. A good set of tongs allows you to practice working with different kinds. Plus, sets often cost less per tongs.
On the flip side, purchasing a set gives you less wiggle room concerning customization.
More experienced blacksmiths frequently handcraft or purchase customized tools to suit their style.
Over time, as you develop your skills and style, you may find yourself purchasing individual tongs custom made for you.
One question that new blacksmiths often ask is this: are accessories for your tongs really necessary?
While some professionals do not find accessories necessary, many amateurs and hobbyists – and even some professionals – find them useful.
Here are a few accessories you might consider:
- S hook.
- Rein rings.
- C hook.
- Chain links.
These various accessories serve as supporting pieces for long forging sessions where it might become difficult to hold your tongs down.
Overall, accessories are excellent for beginners, even if you grow out of them later on as your skills improve.
If you’re new to the world of blacksmithing, you may have quite a few questions about tools like forging tongs.
Since this craft takes a lot of skill, knowledge, and practice, it’s crucial that you start with the right tools (check here to be sure you have the basics).
Below are some frequently asked questions, along with helpful answers. Read on to learn a little bit more about blacksmith tongs.
How Long Should Blacksmith Tongs Be?
The ideal length for a blacksmith’s tongs can be anywhere from 15 inches to 36 inches.
Oftentimes, since blacksmith tongs are commonly made to order, the length depends entirely on personal preference.
However, as a beginner, you may not have a preference yet.
I recommend choosing a pair between 15 and 20 inches. Keep in mind that longer tongs will keep your hands further from the fire, but they are heavier.
On the other hand, shorter tongs are closer to the fire but weigh less.
What Are Wolf Jaw Tongs Used For?
Since wolf jaw tongs have multiple sets of variously sized teeth, they are best used to grip round objects.
They also do very well holding square pieces that may falter within other tong styles.
However, wolf jaw tongs are considered very versatile and are often used across the board by many blacksmiths.
Which Tongs Are Best for Knife Making?
Knife-making is a specialized sector of blacksmithing and is, therefore, performed best with specialized tools.
One of the best types of tongs for knife making is box jaw tongs. They make it easier to clamp down on flat bar stock.
You may also prefer to use flat-nosed tongs, as their long, flat design gives you a solid grip on flat pieces. These can be very helpful during the knife-making process.
If you’re still having a hard time deciding on what’s best for you, I’ll try and narrow it down for you.
If you want to start your collection of tongs off right, go for the Sunluway Set.
You’ll have a good variety of tongs to grip practically any size project and you’ll have what you need to experiment with knife making should you want to (and you will one day).
If you’d rather start with just one awesome pair of tongs, get the Picard Wolf’s Jaws.
The secure and versatile grip is perfect for any number of forging needs, and many blacksmiths say if they had to use only one pair of tongs, they would choose these over the other styles.
Last update on 2021-04-15 at 07:49 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API