Koolman Forge, based on southern Vancouver Island, opened for business in early 2016.
We produce forged metal work, both for our expanding range of products as well as unique custom designed projects. Smithing, or forging, is the process of heating metal, often steel, and forming it to the desired shape. Our products are mostly worked with hand hammers and tools over the anvil. Some larger pieces are forged using pneumatic or hydraulic versions of the hand tools, but there is no automation in our workshop.
Working primarily in mild steel, we also use copper, bronze, and brass. In addition, we produce tools in high carbon and alloy steels. Through experimentation and experience we have developed a variety of finishes for these materials to suit both indoor and outdoor applications.
Our making relies on the skills of the smith; their training, knowledge and concentration. Traditional techniques and
time-honoured knowledge form the foundation of our process, which we then apply to contemporary designs. This, coupled with some of the most hard wearing and versatile materials available, allow us to create beautiful and long lasting pieces for you to enjoy.
About the Forge
About the Smith - Jake Koolman
I first took up smithing as a hobby in 2003 when I attended an Introduction to Blacksmithing Class run by the Vancouver Island Blacksmith Association. My interest in smithing had grown out of a deep interest in history, particularly medieval history. After attending this course and over the following months I was exposed to the idea that smithing could be taken up as a profession. I never looked back.
In 2005, I moved to the United Kingdom to study blacksmithing at Herefordshire College of Technology. During my time working on a BTEC National Dimploma in Blacksmithing and Metalwork, I discovered the artistic side of smithing and
my passion for it deepened. After completing this course I moved on to Herefordshire College of Art and Design where I studied a BA in Artist Blacksmithing.
While in the UK I worked at a number of forges including Anwick Forge and Mark Lumley Blacksmiths.
Having gained valuable experience I returned to Canada to set up my own business, Koolman Forge. I now split my time between the exciting projects Koolman Forge brings me and working alongside other smiths.