Another local business man and engineer will be appearing on Forged in Fire, a History Channel series that features modern-day blacksmiths.

Joe Nipper of Hawthorne Forge LLC will appear on Forged in Fire tonight. The show airs on the History Channel at 8 p.m. CDT.

Hawthorne Forge, LLC will be hosting a watch party at Hub’s Pub and Grill in Bonne Terre. Nipper said the show starts at 8 p.m., so they will probably get there around 7 p.m. and eat dinner so the group can be ready to watch the show. The party is open to the public and will be on the outside patio.

Nipper and his wife Jackie live in Desloge with their four children. Nipper and John Wigger started Hawthorne Forge, LLC in 2016. Wigger appeared on Forged in Fire in November of 2018.

“This is a pretty big deal for us,” said Nipper. “It’s kind of hasn’t really hit me yet, maybe once I see myself on television it may hit me."

Nipper described himself as a reserved and quiet person who isn’t used to being the center of attention so the television thing is a big step for him. Nipper said he traveled to Connecticut in early 2018 to begin filming and the process took over a year from start to finish.

In each episode of Forged in Fire, four blacksmiths are given a specialized weapon to make and they have three hours to rough out the blade. After three hours, the judges examine the rough weapons and eliminate one competitor.

The remaining three are then given another three hours to finish their weapon. At that time, the weapons have to have a specified handle, be sharp, and have all the required features. At this time, the weapons are judged by use, such as cutting a fish in half, and another competitor is eliminated.

The remaining two competitors are sent back to their home shops with a camera crew and given one week to make a different specified weapon. Once this process is completed, the two competitors return to the show and the weapons are judge and tested. The winner receives a $10,000 prize.

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Matt McFarland is a reporter for the Daily Journal. He can be reached at 573-518-3616, or at mmcfarland@dailyjournalonline.com.


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