Ruining surface at every strike

Hi, I just entered the forums (wrote the introduction post a minute ago) and there’s this thing that has been bothering me for a while. Every time I heat up a piece of iron and start striking I end up engraving the piece with my hammer, I tried to pay extra attention to the striking angle and I tried to change the hammer as well, but no matter what I do the piece always ends being engraved with really deep scars. (Ps: I use a ww1 artillery shell as an anvil, but the surface is quite flat, so I think that’s not the problem)
To solve this problem I was thinking about taking a flat iron plate and put it on top of the piece when I hammer it, you guys think that will work? Or mabye you have another solution? All help is very mutch appreciated.

What type of hammer are you using? If it’s just a regular sledge hammer or a ball peen hammer that you haven’t modified then you can have that kind of problem. You want to have the faces and all the edges of your hammers to have a radius ground and polished into it. If you start with a proper rounding hammer design it helps avoid the sharp dents in the first place. Your idea about using a separate piece to serve as your striking face does work, but you should also look at flatter hammers which can be used as a hammer or to be struck.

Thanks for the help, i’ll give it a go and see of that does the trick.

Welcome @Tiltherd! First off, I gotta see your anvil. You have to post a photo of the artillery shell used as an anvil!

I think a flat iron plate would work, there should not be any engravings in or deep scars in your piece while hammering it. Be sure to brush the scale off as you work it if you have lots of scale on the hot iron.

Also like @Asterisck says, you’ll want to grind down the edges of your hammer and round them off a little and the face of the hammer pretty well polished.

Yeah post a pic of your anvil! I just bought one off Amazon. It sucked! The surface is baby soft, dents with every strike and get this, the anvil has Auto body filler!! Yup, Bondo…the anvil I made for 10$ is leaps and bounds better than this garbage.! It is a 100 pound anvil.