The ringing sound of a hammer and anvil at work is a gossamer sort of music — sharp but delicate, piercing but brief. Perhaps you agree and could likewise wax poetic in pages of exalting prose. Of course, superheated metal isn’t the sort of thing a writer interacts with on the regular…unless they happen to play Old School RuneScape.

Even in the Kingdom of Misthalin and the Northern Kharidian Desert (the stomping grounds of the F2P Old School RuneScape player), there are anvils aplenty and many molten gobs of metals to be smithed. If you should find yourself with an abundance of ores (or the coin to obtain them) and a powerful need to set a hammer and anvil to singing, allow us to offer you some guidance. What follows is the definitive OSRS Smithing Guide for F2P. 

Like the metal you’re soon to work, what you make of it is up to you. 

Looking for more OSRS tips and tricks? Click to view all our RuneScape guides.

OSRS F2P Smithing Guide: Prep Work

OSRS Fishing Guide 4
Mitch Gentry / High Ground Gaming

Like any artisan, you must prepare yourself in body and mind before setting to work. Fortunately, the tools of the trade for Smithing are relatively straightforward. You can buy tools in bulk or piecemeal, but if you plan to make it to the very end of the F2P Smithing journey, you should consider planning ahead.

Items: Tools of the Trade

The following list shows what you’ll need to go the distance:

  • A hammer (non-negotiable; available for 1gp at any General Store)
  • Energy potions for run energy
  • Dwarven Stouts for smithing Rune platebodies at Level 98 Smithing

Quests: The Knight’s Sword

Luckily for you, F2P OSRS players even have the benefit of a quest-based skill boost that can kickstart your quest for metalworking supremacy. No matter which path you choose as far as purchasing goes, you’ll want to complete the quest “The Knight’s Sword” before beginning for that sweet Smithing XP reward. It will drop you off at Level 29 on completion. The rest of the journey is yours and yours alone. 

To undertake The Knight’s Sword quest, you’ll need the following:

  • Level 10 Mining
  • A redberry pie
  • A pickaxe
  • 2-4 iron bars (2 to complete the quest, 4 to get a blurite sword)
  • 1-2 blurite ore (obtainable during the quest; 1 to complete the quest, 2 to get a blurite sword)

Find the squire in the courtyard of the White Knights’ Castle in Falador to start the quest. Once you’ve completed it, you’re almost ready to begin. Now it’s time to talk numbers and effective speed for a few different Smithing routes. Any listed prices for items are based on purchasing them from the Grand Exchange. But of course, you could mine them yourself. As we discussed in The Ultimate OSRS F2P Fishing Guide: life is about the journey, not the destination. 

That said, let’s talk about the XP involved in sourcing your own ores.

Mining Your Ore (Slower):

ItemMining LevelAmountMining XPTotal
Copper Ore12,263 (445 w/ Knight’s Sword)17.539,602
Tin Ore12,263 (445 w/ Knight’s Sword)17.539,602
Iron Ore1516,510 (w/ Rings of Forging)35577,850
Coal301,173,8005058,690,000
Mithril Ore5575,615806,049,200
Adamantite Ore70118,7209511,278,400
Runite Ore8516,3851252,048,125
Total Mining XP78,722,779

The total XP possible for mining your own ores is six times the amount of XP needed to reach Level 99 Mining (13,034,431 XP achieves Level 99 in any skill). Using this process, you could hit 99 in Mining along the way and max two skills for your trouble. The real cost here is time, but even if you source a decent number of your ores from the GE with the money made selling your smithed weapons and armor, a max level cap in Mining is still within reach.

Of course, if money is no object (due perhaps to a 99 in another skill that mints money), you could buy your bars….

Buying Your Ore (Faster):

ItemAmount RequiredCostTotal Cost
Bronze Bars2,263 (445 w/ The Knight’s Sword)133300,979 GP
Iron Bars2,590128331,520 GP
Steel Bars13,9203925,456,640 GP
Mithril Bars75,61560245,520,230 GP
Adamant Bars118,7201881223,312,320 GP
Rune Bars16,38512,397203,124,845 GP
Total Overall478,046,534 GP

Time to Get Smithing

OSRS Smithing Guide 3
Mitch Gentry / High Ground Gaming

Regardless of how you get the bars, each one is worth the same amount of XP when used. From here on out, there are a few different approaches you can take when smithing items: Maximum Convenience, Maximum Profit, and Maximum Experience.

Maximum Convenience Smithing

Always smith the highest level item you can. That’s it. Really. You won’t maximize your gold per hour, but you won’t have to check market prices and make any decisions. It’s just click-click-click all the way to 99. 

But perhaps you need some extra coin to finance all this fun and frivolity. We submit for your consideration the Maximum Profit way to level Smithing.

Maximum Profit Smithing

Focus on smithing ores into bars. Regardless of the ores involved, the resulting bar will always be worth a bit more than any items you create with the bar itself. Make sure to use the Rings of Forging when smithing Iron to prevent any bars from failing due to ore impurity. Then sell your bars and make some bank. 

Profit, however, always comes at a cost — in this instance, that cost is time. Let’s say you want to get to Level 99 as fast as possible. It’s time to discuss the Maximum Experience route. 

Maximum Experience Smithing

What follows is the ideal F2P Smithing Guide for OSRS. This guide offers the highest XP per hour and gets you to 99 as fast as possible. When you’re committing to hundreds of hours in pursuit of a goal, any hours you can shave off will add up in a hurry. In this route, we focus on platebodies, which consume five bars at once and thus provide the most XP in a single shot. 

Start the party by completing The Knight’s Sword quest, then follow this item progression:

ItemLevel Range
Bronze Platebody29-33
Iron Platebody33-48
Steel Platebody48-68
Mithril Platebody68-88
Adamant Platebody88-98
Rune Platebody98-99

Smithing Rune at Level 98 requires consuming a dwarven stout to boost your effective Smithing level by 1 for 1 minute at a time. Some napkin math shows you’ll need to smith 3,277 Rune platebodies to reach 99, and a single inventory yields 5 platebodies. Assuming 1 minute per trip, that’s 656 dwarven stouts needed, costing a total of ~44,608gp depending on the GE price. Not too steep for the XP efficiency that comes with smithing Rune platebodies. 

And, depending on where you Smith, you may be able to squeeze in a few more platebodies per minute. 

Best Locations for Smithing

OSRS Smithing Guide 2
Mitch Gentry / High Ground Gaming

Depending on your objective, you’ll be considering either furnaces (for bars) or anvils (for items) when Smithing. 

For Smithing Bars

  • Edgeville Furnace is the closest to a bank, located slightly east of the bank itself.
  • Falador Furnace (from the western Falador bank) is another popular spot. It’s a little further to travel, but it might be a nice change of scenery.

For Smithing Items

  • The anvils in western Varrock are the best anvils, full stop. They’re the closest anvils to a bank, thus providing the fastest XP.
  • If you’re running ore up from the mine south of Varrock, you might also consider the two anvils close to the eastern bank. The route is a bit further, but it might offer a nice circuit from the mine.

Smithing Guide OSRS F2P Wrap-up

So you’ve reached Level 99 Smithing. Congratulations! That’s a huge accomplishment, especially for a F2P player. We didn’t want to discourage you at the beginning, but as you’ve no doubt discovered by now, the Smithing grind is one of the longest and hardest in RuneScape. Perhaps second only to Runecrafting. 

Seriously though, Runecrafting is nuts. 

Take a moment to savor your accomplishment. Then get right back to smithing. There’s money in them there hills, just waiting for an enterprising Smith to turn some metal into coin. Thanks for following along with our F2P Smithing guide for OSRS, and best of RNG with your future skilling!

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