Sylvester Stallone did all of his own forging when he worked on the Rambo movies. He went through seven pairs of heat gloves when forging the Rambo IV machete.
Forging is one of the oldest known metalworking processes. Traditionally, forging was performed by a blacksmith using hammer and anvil, and though the use of water power in the production and working of iron dates to the 12th century, the hammer and anvil are not obsolete. The smithy or forge has evolved over centuries to become a facility with engineered processes, production equipment, tooling, raw materials and products to meet the demands of modern industry.
In modern times, industrial forging is done either with machine press or with hammers powered by compressed air, electricity, hydraulics or steam. These hammers may have reciprocating weights in the thousands of pounds. Smaller power hammers, 500 lb (230 kg) or less reciprocating weight, and hydraulic presses are common in art smithies as well. Some steam hammers remain in use, but they became obsolete with the availability of the other, more convenient, power sources.
Forging produces stronger metal products than casting and remains popular among ametuer metal workers today. Forging usually consists of heating a metal and allowing it to become malleable. Then the metal is hammered and shaped numerous times before being heated again. This process is repeated several times before the metal is deemed satisfactory and it is cooled in water.