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Master Blacksmith - Specialising and hunting for unique Plans

Friday 1st February 2019 • by fendor
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In this guide fendor shares his knowledge on the elaborate and far-ranging nature of becoming a master blacksmith in Classic WoW. This guide assumes you already have the knowledge to reach a high skill level in Blacksmithing and are now interested in different specialisations such as weapon or armorsmithing, where to find special trainers, and how to hunt down unique and hard-to-find Plans to bolster your range of craftable goods.
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Blacksmithing is non-optimal for warriors. You should choose alchemy+herbalism if you want something useful for raiding. Or even better, don't learn any profession aside first aid, they will all be a time sink. A money sink. And you could also risk having fun and we don't like you having fun.
When Classic releases you will hear a lot of people saying things like this. Blacksmithing is one of those professions that get always discarded because "it will slow you down!" or "there is no useful items for the end-game crafted with blacksmithing, so why bother?".

In my opinion these arguments have one thing in common: they take it for granted that you have to be efficient in WoW; that you have to level fast, that you have to rush to the end-game, that you have to 'beat' it. Everyone will have their self-imposed objective at the end of the day, but even after killing Kel'Thuzad at the end of Naxxramas, there's no game screen telling you "Congratulations, you won!" or anything like that.

You have to play in a way in which you will have fun: and I will show you why blacksmithing is one of the most enjoyable professions that Classic will have to offer. Blacksmithing is not a means to an end, it's a journey in itself and will take you far across Azeroth searching for plans and resources to improve your trade. In vanilla, smithies were well known on their servers for their particular niche crafts and the profession goes well beyond reaching 300 skill level.
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Trainers in Classic are scattered all over Azeroth, and not all of them have the same level of expertise - like a real RPG should be! Some cities are missing trainers, and some trainers can only be found out in the wilds. Some offer you standard Plans whilst others only offer particular ones you may be interested in.

Apprentices (up to 75)

Every capital city has an apprentice:
Aside from these, there's also one apprentice trainer in some of the starting zones, out in the wild:

Bear in mind that there are no blacksmithing trainers in Teldrassil because... well I guess it's a tree, there's not much ore there or something. If you want to have your Night Elf learn blacksmithing, you will have to travel all the way to Darkshore to https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=6299
Journeyman (up to 150)

Again, aside from Darnassus, every capital city has a journeyman:
Just a few of these are instead are scattered around the world space:
Expert (up to 225)

Now we start coming short of trainers that can teach skill caps and standard Plans:
Artisan (up to 300)

Once you have reached Artisan things diverge a little bit:

Sticking only to these trainers will not benefit you much. In fact, even the most skilled trainer won't teach you anything past 275 skill level if you don't have a specialisation - so it's time to take a look at your next step.
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This is where the fun begins. There is no best path to choose so make a decision and stick to it! Before planning out what specialisation you want to take it might be worth jumping to the hunting for plans section to have a look at what items you want to eventually be able to craft. This section will describe the actual process of gaining a blacksmithing specialisation.

NB: As of 1.9 they did introduce a way of switching your smithing spec by spending a bunch of Image and finding https://classic.wowhead.com/object=177226 in North Eastern Tanaris. Just remember though that you will build yourself a reputation around what you can craft and it's best to stick with one mastery branch from the beginning for that reason.
Weaponsmithing

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The quest that starts it all is https://classic.wowhead.com/quest=5284 for Alliance and https://classic.wowhead.com/quest=5302 for the horde. Completing this will grant you the weaponsmithing specialization (which is waaaaay easier than becoming an armorsmith by the way).

The quest requires level 40 and at least 200 blacksmithing skill and the following items to be turned in - you could simply buy them from AH, as per all the item in the following quests, but a real blacksmith would never do that ;-)


Doing a little breakdown on materials (thanks to Wowwiki for this) you will need:

(Weaponsmithing) Master Axesmithing

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The quest to become Axesmith is acceptable only AFTER becoming a weaponsmith since this is a further specialization. Head to https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=11192 and accept https://classic.wowhead.com/quest=5306. Just head in LBRS, kill https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=9236 and loot https://classic.wowhead.com/item=13352. Once completed you will receive your first axesmith recipe, https://classic.wowhead.com/item=12821.
(Weaponsmithing) Master Hammersmithing

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The quest to become Hammersmith is acceptable only AFTER becoming a weaponsmith since this is a further specialization. Head to https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=11191 and accept https://classic.wowhead.com/quest=5305. Head to Stratholme living side, and before arriving to https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=10997 you will find https://classic.wowhead.com/object=176325 on the ground: looting them will spawn https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=11120 that will drop the required https://classic.wowhead.com/item=13351. Once completed you will receive your first hammersmith recipe, https://classic.wowhead.com/item=12824.
(Weaponsmithing) Master Swordsmithing

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The quest to become Swordsmith is acceptable only AFTER becoming a weaponsmith since this is a further specialization. Head to https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=11193 and accept https://classic.wowhead.com/quest=5307. Head to Stratholme undead side, and near the first ziggurat in the gauntlet, you will find https://classic.wowhead.com/object=176327 on the ground: looting them will spawn https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=11121 that will drop the required https://classic.wowhead.com/item=13350. Once completed you will receive your first swordsmith recipe, https://classic.wowhead.com/item=12825.
Armorsmithing

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This one will be a lot harder, more time-consuming and costly (if you decide to follow the dark AH path), and only real men will succeed! Everything, again, starts from a simple quest: https://classic.wowhead.com/quest=5301 for Horde and https://classic.wowhead.com/quest=5283 for Alliance. Completing the quest will reward you the Armorsmithing specialization, and it only requires:


That's all. Just turn in these items and you are done.... Where do you train these recipes you said? Well, this is the hard part. You see, only one person in the whole Azeroth knows the secrets of the Ornate Mithril, and he will not teach them to the first person that he meets, right? If you want to learn the required recipes like a real blacksmith would do and not just run to the AH, bear with me a little longer:


Whichever path you chose, now you are ready to hunt the appropriate Plans!
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Here we are, to the juicy part. I will not list EVERY recipe you can find (it would be silly to even try) but instead highlight the ones that are most profitable/interesting/funny. Everything from here on is highly subjective, every comment/correction/addition is gladly welcome in the comments!
Notable drops

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Finding plans from world drops feels great but it's tough. The drop rates for these kind of plans are often below 0.1% and to find one means having immeasurable luck! For others you may need to band together with friends or dungeon groups to have a shot at finding them.
https://classic.wowhead.com/item=6046 is a world drop from mob between levels 30-50. It's an awesome "enchant" that can make you a lot of money, since applying this to a weapon will make it immune to disarm. The recipe can go for quite a lot of gold on the AH, since there's not really a mob to aim for to get it.
https://classic.wowhead.com/item=7989 is a world drop from mob between levels 40-50. It's a great recipe for 2 reasons: it's awesome to level up blacksmithing with a little number of https://classic.wowhead.com/item=3860 AND it's always good to have a little speed boost when mounted :-)
https://classic.wowhead.com/item=22222 dropped by https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=15263 in AQ40 (so probably not available as soon as Classic release). It has a cool proc with a pop-up a spell-shield, very handy.
https://classic.wowhead.com/item=22220 dropped by https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=15340 in AQ20 (so probably not available as soon as Classic release). A cool proc, useful probably for hunters, that steals mana from the enemy.
https://classic.wowhead.com/item=22389 is a world drop (world bosses, raid trash) that requires Master Swordsmith to be learned, and it's a good sword for casters.
https://classic.wowhead.com/item=12728 is a world drop (world bosses, raid trash) that requires Armorsmithing to be learned, it's really rare and a good money-maker for the cool proc.
https://classic.wowhead.com/item=22390 is a world drop (world bosses, raid trash) that requires Master Hammersmith to be crafted.
https://classic.wowhead.com/item=12838 is the sole reason why a lot of people decide to go down the Axesmith path, since it's needed to craft it. It's probably one of the most iconic weapons of the game, and for a reason: in the first day of Vanilla it was one of the strongest weapons in the game! The plans are dropped by https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=9596, a rare mob found in the lowest part of LBRS. Since it's not always available AND the droprate is not very high, it can requires more than 50 runs to see one, so stick at it!
https://classic.wowhead.com/item=12720 is a world drop (world bosses, raid trash) that requires Armorsmithing to be learned, it's really rare and a huge money-maker, since these gauntlets make you IMMUNE to disarm. I think there's nothing more to say :-)
https://classic.wowhead.com/item=22388 is a world drop (world bosses, raid trash) that requires Armorsmithing to be learned, it's really rare and a huge money-maker, since the stats on the leggings are awesome.
https://classic.wowhead.com/item=12717 is a world drop (world bosses, raid trash) that requires Armorsmithing to be learned, it's really rare and a huge money-maker, since it's one of the best DPS plate helms in game.
I put this group at the end, since it has not really use (the stats of the items are not really anything) but being able to craft it was a sort of status quo because the recipes were damn rare! I'm talking about the Runic Plate "set" that is composed of:

Notable quests

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Blacksmithing is a profession with a very high number of quests. Some of them take place in instances that aren't guaranteed to be in Classic on release so bear that in mind. A nice bonus of quests is that you're much more likely to find these Plans than you are with a world drop :smile:
Technically it's a mining quest, but no blacksmith is complete without this one: after reaching 230 in mining, you must go to https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=9037 in BRD, in the seven dwarves chamber. BEFORE starting the event you can complete https://classic.wowhead.com/quest=4083 by just turning in 2 x https://classic.wowhead.com/item=7910, 20 x https://classic.wowhead.com/item=3577 and 10 x https://classic.wowhead.com/item=6037. After that, you can talk to the spectral dwarf and he will teach you how to create https://classic.wowhead.com/item=11371. These are used on a ton of high-end recipes, so make good use of it. Just one important note: every time you want to smelt https://classic.wowhead.com/item=11370 you will have to come back in BRD, at The Black Forge (before the bridge to Molten Core there's a path on the left: the forge is at the end) and, to craft any item that has even a single https://classic.wowhead.com/item=11371 in it, you will need to go to The Black Anvil, near https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=9017. This is why you will quickly become acquainted with BRD :-)
In LBRS there's a secret quest, that will start once you find some human remains
SpoilerShow
They are in the lowest part of the instance: there will be an opening on the right that leads to a lava river: you will find the remains there
Remember to take the gauntlets near the remains, or you will have to travel back later. After finding them you can head to https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=10637 in Everlook: it will give you https://classic.wowhead.com/item=12699 and a pair of https://classic.wowhead.com/item=12631 in exchange for 6 x https://classic.wowhead.com/item=12655, 2 x https://classic.wowhead.com/item=7078 and 4 x https://classic.wowhead.com/item=7910
https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=10918 in Winterspring also has a cool quest for blacksmiths: after listening to his tale it will give you https://classic.wowhead.com/quest=5127. Head then to UBRS and look for https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=10899. Kill him, use https://classic.wowhead.com/item=12848 on his corpse and get the nearby https://classic.wowhead.com/item=12806. In exchange, you will receive https://classic.wowhead.com/item=12696 (and some greenies also)
Killing the Twilight Hammer NPCs in Silithus will often drop https://classic.wowhead.com/item=20404. You can turn them in in Cenarion Hold for reputation with the Cenarion Circle OR you can go to https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=15194 and complete https://classic.wowhead.com/quest=8323 (the repeatable version is https://classic.wowhead.com/quest=8324). After 24 hours from completion you will receive a mail in-game: it will have some random goodies attached. If you are VERY lucky you can get one of these 3 plans. This is the ONLY way to get them:

With a minimum requirement of 265 in Blacksmithing, https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=14567 in Gadgetzan will offer you 7 quests; all of them requires you to turn in some https://classic.wowhead.com/item=12359:

Only for Armorsmiths - During various dungeon run you could be lucky and get a drop of a piece of one of the volumes of Advanced Armorsmithing. There are three of them and each one is split into two parts, so you have a total of six halves to find:

There's also a sort of legendary quest: if you talk to https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=12944 in the Grim Guzzler in BRD while having a https://classic.wowhead.com/item=17203 in your inventory (these are only dropped by https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=11988 in Molten Core) it will offer you https://classic.wowhead.com/quest=7604. In exchange for that ingot, you will earn https://classic.wowhead.com/item=18592. After many Molten Core run you will be able to craft your https://classic.wowhead.com/item=17193, an exceptional weapon. But to make it legendary it will probably require you a ton of Ragnaros kills...

Notable vendors

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Another aspect of blacksmithing mastery is farming reputation with often obscure and less well known factions. If you dedicate your time to levelling up rep with these guys they can reward you with some truly wonderful stuff and reside inside instances like Blackrock Depths.

Every respectable Blacksmith should increase his reputation with The Thorium Brotherhood to access https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=12944. He resides in the Grim Guzzler in BRD, and when talking to him you will be able to see only the items you can buy with your current level of reputation. He has a ton of recipes for blacksmiths:

https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=15176 in Cenarion Hold, Silithus. It will be probably added only when AQ releases, and he will have 5 recipes to sell:

https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=15471. This will also be added with AQ, and it's a vendor you will have to earn! In fact, it's found inside AQ 20, but you can't buy anything from him as soon as he appears. He will come, with some guards, to help you before the fight with https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=15341. IF HE SURVIVES the whole fight, he will be available for some minutes as a vendor, and you will be able to access 2 recipes (in limited supply, so one blacksmith per run):

https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=14921 in Yojamba Isle, North-Western STV. Will be added only when ZG releases, and he will have 6 recipes to sell:

https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=11557 is found in Timbermaw Hold, and you can farm Timbermaw Hold reputation to buy the 2 recipes he sells:

There are 3 Argent Dawn Quartermaster that sell blacksmithing recipes, and they are https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=10856, https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=10857 and https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=11536; they will sell 2 of them, and they will require reputation with Argent Dawn:

https://classic.wowhead.com/npc=11278 is another vendor you will have to unlock in order to buy these recipes:


This vendor is actually a ghost, so you will need a special trinket to see him (he resides in Caer Darrow, in the blacksmith near Scholomance). In order to obtain the trinket you will need to start https://classic.wowhead.com/quest=5382. Finishing the whole chain will let you have https://classic.wowhead.com/item=13544. Equipping it will let you see all the ghosts in Caer Darrow.
And that's it! I hope this guide was informative for you and that you choose blacksmithing as one your professions in Classic. I'm convinced it will be your favourite. Any comments, ideas, feedback etc. just reply to this thread!

   teeblingJpyNymis
Ish-ne-alo por-ah (May the days ahead be guided by the elders of long ago)
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Bookmarked for my endgame hunter :) Great job on this fendor.

I think that I will be taking Armorsmithing personally so that I can make some nice mail pieces and explore the world a bit which goes along with the hunter playstyle.

I already crafted Sulfuras back in late WOTLK by solo farming MC on my paladin so I’ve experienced that already (even if it wasn’t as epic and didn’t require huge amounts of cooperation etc).

   fendor
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This is awesome! I swear if I wasn't playing a Warlock I'd be excited about trying out Blacksmithing.

Onwards, sons of perdition!
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Mulgore
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Nymis wrote:
2 weeks ago
This is awesome! I swear if I wasn't playing a Warlock I'd be excited about trying out Blacksmithing.
That was the whole point :-) Thank you very much!

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Dammit fendor, this does not help my doubts about levelling professions! AAAAIII wanna do everything!
Maybe I should level TWO warriors? :biggrin:

Excellently written!

   fendor
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