hide results

    Smithing Guide by Matty_G33

    Version: 1.5DG | Updated: 08/15/12 | Search Guide | Bookmark Guide

                                   THE ELDER SCROLLS V: SKYRIM
                                          SMITHING GUIDE
                                   ....  .. ..        ..        ..   .  ...       
      .....   .......   ... ....ZO7I7$$ZO8DND8OI:..,.........=,.7+~:=++7$+:+IZ    
                        .....  ..+D887I7IIIII77$?IIII$7II.                         
                                     By Matty_G33 of GameFAQs
    If all of these numbers are on one line, then this guide should be formatted
    correctly. Otherwise, let me know right away.
    Version History
    1.0 - 28th November, 2011
    -Full guide up.
    1.2 - 8th December, 2011
    -Added tables regarding weapon/armor qualities and materials.
    -Added a section regarding what weapons can't be crafted or upgraded.
    -Made a small list of some places with rare ore.
    -Other misc. information altered or added.
    1.3 - 31st December, 2011
    -Added a small section on how to overkill Smithing itself.
    -Added an ASCII image at the top. Thanks GlassGiant.com for making things
    simple with a generator.
    -Added Gloombound Mine to the list of ore locations. This one favors Ebony, as
    10+ emails and GameFAQ's PM's combined have said.
    1.4 - 14th April, 2012
    -Minor changes made all around, namely the FAQ's section.
    -Major changes in the mods section.
    -Grinding Iron Daggers is no longer recommended as of Patch 1.5. Check Section
    3.2 for more info.
    1.5DG - 15th August, 2012
    -Removed modding section; didn't think it was necessary. A comprehensive mod
    list that links elsewhere takes it place.
    -Added in content for Dawnguard, the first major DLC. Sorry it took so long,
    PC users had to wait after all.
    To do
    -Tidy up and correct Dawnguard information if wrong
    -Add recipes in for the sake of completion
    Table of Contents
    PROTIP - Type in the prefix number on the left with the Find feature on your
    browser (Ctrl + F) to reach that section faster.
    1.0 - Introduction
    1.1 - What is Smithing?
    2.0 - Smithing Basics
    2.1 - Weapon & Armor Quality List
    2.2 - Facilities/Equipment
    2.3 - Skill Perks
     2.3.1 - 'Light' Branch
     2.3.2 - 'Heavy' Branch
     2.3.3 - Other Perks
    2.4 - What you can't upgrade
    2.5 - What Dawnguard Adds
    3.0 - Smithing Tips & Tricks
    3.1 - Ore, Ingots, Whatnot
    3.2 - Raising Smithing Faster
    3.3 - Light vs Heavy: The Two Perk Branches
    3.4 - Maximizing Smithing
    4.0 - FAQ
    4.1 - Closing
    4.2 - Credits, Legal, Useful Links, Etc
    Welcome to my Smithing Guide. It has been quite some time since I last wrote
    a guide for GameFAQs, and felt like doing another one again.
    In Skyrim, Smithing itself is rather easy to pick up, but it's also a skill
    that screams "grind, grind, grind!". After all, you can get the best, top-tier
    equipment and can improvise gear to make combat less tougher. The perks for
    Smithing are divided into two sides, with one having a focus on materials that
    make Light Armor while the other focuses on Heavy Armors, with a perk that
    allows enchanted gear to be improvised in between the two.
    The guide, assuming I've got enough motivation, is not always complete and will
    be updated with more information overtime. Of course, I don't always want to
    rip out content from other websites without permission, and check below to see
    how you can contribute, if you want to.
    It is also worth noting that this guide was written with the PC version in
    mind, but other than different button layouts and the lack of mod installation,
    this shouldn't be much different to the 360 or PS3 versions of Skyrim.
    In Skyrim, Smithing is obviously the crafting skill of the Combat category,
    and lets you create weaponry and armor, as well as improve them. This skill
    replaces Armorer from the previous games, which was responsible for how
    effective you were at repairing equipment - Skyrim does not have a repairing
    system and has the more-or-less tedious Smithing to take it's place.
    This skill should be highly considered to any player using ANY kind of weapon
    or armor. The benefits of Smithing include:
    -Upgrading your gear; you cannot find higher qualiity armor of the same kind
    as loot (IE - you will never find Superior quality Leather Armor on a dead
    -The possibility of obtaining some of the best gear many levels earlier
    before finding them as random loot.
    -In the end, making whatever stuff YOU want to have on demand, if you have
    the minerals and leather to make it.
    The only real backdraw is that this might make some players unsatisfied. After
    all, you just put things together to eventually create draconic and demonic
    Smithing is simple. Go to any piece of blacksmith equipment in the game, and
    then create or upgrade your items from there, provided you have the right
    items. There is no minigame at all, if you have the equipment for an Iron
    Dagger, then you'll instantly create one and use up what it took to make it.
    When upgrading equipment, your Smithing skill depends on how powerful the
    upgrade will be. Magic stuff can't be upgraded unless you have the right perk.
    Any upgraded equipment will have a suffix added on to the end of the weapon.
    The following quality types, their bonuses, and the skill required are:
    | -Quality     |  Armor | Weapon | W/O Perk Req | With Perk Req* |
    | -Normal      |  None  |  None  |     None     |      None      |
    | -Fine        |  +2    |   +1   |     None     |      None      |
    | -Superior    |  +6    |   +3   |     ~30      |       22       |
    | -Exquisite   |  +10   |   +5   |     ~60      |      ~40       |
    | -Flawless    |  +13   |   +7   |     ~100     |      ~55       |
    | -Epic        |  +17   |   +8   |      150     |       74       |
    | -Legendary   |  +20** |   +10**|      196     |      ~90       |
    Credit to plenty of the information on the table is given towards the site
    'The Unofficial Elder Scrolls Pages', linked below in Section 4.2. 
    *Having a perk for a particular weapon/armor material requires a lower number
    than normal to hit a better quality.
    **Legendary gear can be upgraded even further for more ridiculous bonuses.
    Initially, all players will have access to Hide, Studded, Leather, Iron, and
    Jewelery categories. Because these do not have any perks for upgrading them
    better, these are only really useful for the start of the game until a better
    item from a different material can be crafted.
    It is worth noting that there is an in-game Smithing tutorial in the first
    village in the game - talk to Alvor, the local blacksmith. The smiths in
    Whiterun and Falkreath can also teach you.
    It's worth noting what materials are better than which. If you have played
    The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion, then you should know what to expect, with
    relatively minor changes.
    There are other kinds of armor and weapons, such as Forsworn Armor, Ancient
    Nord Swords and Skyforge Steel, but I'll mentioning only relevant materials
    that aren't that unique.
    Level found references to the random loot lists, such as chests and higher
    leveled enemies. These are rough estimations. Keep in mind that you can always
    find particular materials lower than your own level; being Lv27+ for example
    doesn't mean all non-special weapons wielded by NPC's are Glass. Also, some
    NPC's can have set weapon/armor types before you can even find them naturally.
    Every succeeding quality essentially adds one more point of base damage and
    weight. However, upgrading them will show a bigger gap in damage between types
    if your Smithing is good enough.
    Keep in mind that a 'Longbow' and a 'Hunting Bow' are essentially Iron and
    Steel Bows, respectively.
    | -Material  |  Level Found |
    | -Iron      |      Lv1     |
    | -Steel     |      Lv2     |
    | -Orcish    |      Lv5~    |
    | -Dwarven   |      Lv12*   |
    | -Elven     |      Lv20~   |
    | -Glass     |      Lv27    |
    | -Ebony     |      Lv35~   |
    | -Daedric   |      Lv45~   |
    | -Dragonbone|      N/A**   |
    Furthermore, it is worth noting that while each progressing material have their
    bows stronger, they take longer to draw all the way back, with Daedric taking
    twice as longer to do so in comparison to a Longbow.
    *You can still find random Dwarven weapons in Dwemer ruins I believe.
    **Dragonbone weapons are part of the Dawnguard DLC, and can only be crafted.
    They remain an exception to the rule of thumb regarding bows above; Dragonbone
    Bows draw as fast as Dwarven ones.
    Light Armor
    | -Material          | Level Found | Perk? |
    | -Hide              |     Lv1     |  No   |
    | -Fur               |     LV1     |  No   |
    | -Studded           |     Lv1     |  No   |
    | -Leather           |     Lv1*    |  No   |
    | -Elven             |     Lv12~   |  Yes  |
    | -Scaled            |     Lv20~   |  Yes  |
    | -Elven Gilded      |     Lv27~   |  Yes  |
    | -Glass             |     Lv35~   |  Yes  |
    | -Dragonscale       |     Lv45~   |  Yes  |
    *Leather Armor can be crafted any time during the game, but you can find it
    as leveled loot later on.
    Heavy Armor
    | -Material          | Level Found | Perk? |
    | -Iron              |     Lv1     |  No   |
    | -Banded Iron       |     Lv1     |  No   |
    | -Steel             |     Lv5     |  Yes  |
    | -Dwarven           |     Lv12*   |  Yes  |
    | -Steel Plate       |     Lv18    |  Yes  |
    | -Orcish            |     Lv25~** |  Yes  |
    | -Ebony             |     Lv30~   |  Yes  |
    | -Dragonplate       |     Lv40~   |  Yes  |
    | -Daedric           |     Lv50~   |  Yes  |
    *You can still find random Dwarven armor pieces hanging about in Dwemer ruins.
    **Random pieces of Orcish Armor can be found laying around Orc Strongholds,
    though it may count as stealing; there is no real way to launder it either
    unless your pickpocket skill is good; place it on a Guard, then kill them
    and it will remove the stolen tag.
    Looking at these charts, you will realize you can get better weapons and armor
    a LOT more earlier if you raise Smithing very quickly.
    Unlike Enchanting and Alchemy, Smithing uses more than one piece of equipment
    to work at. NPC's will not complain if you use their facilities - provided
    no hostiles are around, you are free to use any and all of them at any time
    you like.
    If an NPC is on any one of these, you merely need to activate the piece of
    equipment and they will stop using it.
    Here is a rundown of what you'll be using.
    Tanning Rack
    Uses: Creating Leather and Leather Strips
    Involved Items: Animal Pelts
    Rarity: Common
    Without buying your crafting items from a merchant, the tanning rack by far is
    by far one of the most important assets you'll use - practically everything
    needs Leather Strips, and Light Armors need Leather itself.
    Unlike Oblivion, Skyrim gives you a reason to carry animal pelts with you, and
    this is obviously why. Anything that's at least a Fox's size* will do, bigger
    animals give off more leather. Keep in mind that when making leather, the
    result may be heavier than what you had before.
    *Goat pelts can be used to make leather, but you'll need multiple pelts, which
    leaves them less reliable for making leather. Plus attacking ones in towns
    puts on a rather small bounty.
    Uses: Creating Ingots
    Involved Items: Ore and scrap Dwemer metal
    Rarity: Rare
    If you've got any ore, you can use it to smelt them into ingots. It usually
    takes two pieces of ore to make one piece, although only one to make Iron
    Dwarven Metal Ingots on the other hand, are made from spare parts found in
    Dwemer ruins.
    These aren't plentiful around Skyrim, although they're usually found outside
    mining areas more often than actually being inside holds.
    Uses: Creating Weapons and Armor
    Rarity: Common
    This is where you'll be making all of your items. There isn't much to say about
    this workstation, it's hard to miss.
    Using a forge is the best way to get skill increases for Smithing.
    Additionally, there is the rare Anvil, which functions the same as a forge,
    only a lot less bigger, rather uncommon and easily overlooked.
    Uses: Tempering weapons
    Rarity: Common
    Upgrade your weapons here. Upgrading only costs about one ingot of whatever
    your weapon is made of.
    Using this makes some progress towards the skill, but not a lot.
    Uses: Tempering armor
    Rarity: Common
    Upgrade your armors here. Like grindstones, you only need one material of what
    your armor is made out of to upgrade.
    Using this makes some little progress towards the skill as well.
    Chopping Block
    Uses: Obtaining firewood
    Rarity: Semi-common
    With a Woodcutter's Axe, you can obtain firewood. It's uses are not only to
    sell to NPC's for gold, tempering a Longbow requires one piece and in the
    Dawnguard DLC, is used to make arrows and crossbow bolts.
    Uses: Same as a forge; allows special items to be crafted later
    Rarity: One-of-a-kind
    Initially, there is nothing special about the Skyforge, up in Whiterun. But,
    if you complete the Companions' questline, you can create Nord Hero weapons
    and Ancient Nord Armor. The former are lightweight Skyforge Steel essentially,
    while the latter is merely lighter Iron Armor.
    2.3 - SKILL PERKS
    Smithing's tree of perks is relatively simple. All of the perks besides
    Arcane Blacksmith are essentially 'able to create X series of armors and items,
    and can improve them twice as much'.
    The tree is fairly straight forward. On the left are your Light Armor related
    perks (including one Heavy Armor recipie too), and on the right are your
    Heavy Armor perks, both of them meeting up together at the final perk. Down
    the center lies the perk to upgrade magic equipment.
    Here's the rundown of perks, with their prerequisites and what major materials
    take part in making them, as well as some advice about them. Note that all
    items pretty much need Leather Strips, like I said before in the guide.
    By 'improving them twice as much', this lowers the amount of skill you need to
    get the next best quality for the material the perk covers.
    For example, if I had 40 Skill and Elven Smithing, and tried to upgrade an
    Elven Sword, it would go up to Exquisite, and trying to improve a Dwarven Sword
    at the same time would only go up to Superior.
    And now we start off with the initial perk you can obtain at any time:
    Steel Smithing
    Armor Type: Heavy
    Prerequisite: None
    Primary Materials: Steel Ingots, Iron Ingots
    Note: Iron Ore and Corundum Ore are both needed to make your own Steel Ingots.
    Compulsory to get other perks. Steel weapons aren't found too far away early
    on either, with around 22 Smithing you can quickly get Superior quality, which
    does add a small, although significant difference near the start of the game.
    Skyforge Steel weapons, needless to say, are also augmented by the perk.
    There are two styles of Steel Armor, one has pauldrons and one doesn't. There
    are also boots and gauntlets with Imperial and Nordic designs, as well as a
    helmet with horns and another without them. All of these still count towards
    the 'Matching Set' perk if you mix and match.
    Additionally, Steel Ingots cost as much as one piece of Corundum Ore.
    Dawnguard always allows double-improvement of the new crossbows with this perk.
    However, you'll still need to side with the Dawnguard themselves if you want
    to actually craft one and the bolts to go with them.
    Because this perk allows double-improvement of some gear, even if it is mostly
    all low-tier, taking only this perk is more than a viable option; use Steel
    or Wolf Armor (latter is a little lighter), Skyforge Steel or Dawnguard
    weaponry, and Crossbows will be the strongest ranged means of attack.
    2.3.1 - 'LIGHT' BRANCH
    A branch with one less perk, this side is probably a lot more well-balanced
    than the other, only it is in favor of Light Armor, aside from that one perk.
    Elven Smithing
    Armor Type: Light
    Prerequisite: 30 Skill, Steel Smithing
    Primary Materials: Refined Moonstone, Quicksilver Ingots
    Secondary: Iron Ingots
    Elven weapons are slightly more powerful than their Dwarven counterparts, but
    are encountered a little later in the game and are more expensive to create.
    Still, if you can track down Moonstone and Quicksilver ore early on, you can
    get that advantage over them.
    Elven Armor is the lightest set of any armor in the game, and offers alright
    protection. Thalmor soldiers typically wear Elven Armor as well, but do note
    that they have 'Elven Light Armor' instead; this variant is as strong as
    Leather Armor, so don't be mistaken.
    Quicksilver, by the way, is used to make Elven weapons, as well as the 'Gilded'
    variant of the main piece of armor. This is slightly more protective than
    Scaled, but it isn't affected by the Matching Set perk for Elven gear.
    In Dawnguard, this perk is very handy for utilizing Auriel's Bow. Aside from
    double-improvement, you also have to give 20 Elven Arrows to the appropriate
    NPC's to make Sunhallowed and Bloodcursed Arrows. By the time you get there,
    you can also get Ancient Falmer Armor, as strong as Glass but double-improved
    with this perk.
    Advanced Armors
    Armor Type: Light & Heavy
    Prerequisite: 50 Skill, Elven Smithing
    Primary Materials: Corundum Ingots, Steel Ingots
    Secondary: Iron Ingots
    This one is funny, since it doesn't offer any new weapons to make and that it
    offers you a set of Heavy Armor in the skill branch that provides Light. All of
    these armors are made with Corundum, which is a lot more cheaper than the likes
    of Moonstone, Quicksilver, and Malachite. Neither set contains a new shield.
    Scaled Armor fits in between Elven and Glass armors for protection, but not by
    a whole lot. That being said, it is certainly a lot more cheaper to craft in
    comparison to both armors. It is essentially just less-revealing Hide/Studded
    Armor, cosmetically.
    Steel Plate on the other hand is nearly as good as Orcish Armor, but is more
    heavier. Still, for a Light Armor user this may be useful if you have any
    followers with you who prefer this type of armor, and players who use Heavy
    and take this side might want to take up this new set.
    Despite Scaled Armor having an alternative look, Scaled Horn Armor, you can't
    craft it (and it has the same amount of protection) or temper it if you're
    lucky enough to find it.
    In Dawnguard, almost all the new armors are augmented by this perk.
    Glass Smithing
    Armor Type: Light
    Prereqisite: 70 Skill, Advanced Armors
    Primary Materials: Refined Malachite
    Secondary: Refined Moonstone
    The best weapon type you'll ever get in the Light Armor Smithing branch. And so
    it happens that a Malachite mine happens to be en route of the main quest.
    Glass Armor is significantly sturdier than Scaled.
    When you can get this perk, your Smithing ability will be good enough to get
    Epic quality weaponry - causing a big jump in weapon power and a significant
    armor increase. It may not be Ebony or Daedric, but Glass is certainly not a
    bad quality of weaponry to kill/murder with.
    2.3.2 - 'HEAVY' BRANCH
    This bit guarantees the best armor and weapons, but it starts off very slowly.
    Dwarven Smithing
    Armor Type: Heavy
    Prerequisite: 30 Skill, Steel Smithing
    Primary Materials: Dwarven Metal Ingots, Steel Ingots
    Secondary: Iron Ingots
    This one is pretty safe if you're a Heavy armor user. By the time you get this
    perk (naturally, not intentionally boosting the skill that is), you'll already
    encounter Dwemer-made weaponry and gear. Not that's a bad thing, because the
    stuff will last you well until Ebony equipment if you're sticking to this side
    of the tree.
    Do keep in mind however, that Dwarven Armor is nearly as heavy as Daedric
    Armor. The body piece of the armor weights about 45 units whilst Orcish merely
    weights 35 and offers more protection! Weapons however, are fine in that
    Dwemer metal isn't hard to come by either, just collect plenty of scraps and
    ingots inside Dwemer ruins themselves. There's even a storage room without
    any enemies near the eastern border of Skyrim.
    In the Dawnguard DLC, players who side with the Dawnguard are able to find
    schematics to craft a Dwarven Crossbow and matching bolts. By the time you can
    craft one, you will also have access to all the elemental bolts, having a very
    powerful ranged weapon in your hands.
    Orcish Smithing
    Armor Type: Heavy
    Prequisite: 50 Skill, Dwarven Smithing
    Primary Material: Orichalcum Ingots
    Secondary: Iron Ingots
    This is the perk I'm a bit funny about. Orcish weapons are actually weaker than
    Dwarven ones, only the armor is stronger. Of course these differences are
    slight, but still, that's kind of iffy especially considering Orichalcum Ingots
    aren't as easy to obtain whilst Dwarven Metal is easier to obtain.
    Still, Orcish weapons will be cheaper and more commonplace as random loot and
    items in shops, and Orcish Armor is significantly lighter too; pretty much
    outright superior when compared to Dwarven.
    Ebony Smithing
    Armor Type: Heavy
    Prequisite: 80 Skill, Orcish Smithing
    Primary Materials: Ebony Ingots
    80 Smithing is quite far away from 50, isn't it? Still, when you get this perk
    you'll be able to make Ebony Armor become Epic, and money shouldn't be so much
    of a problem at this point.
    Though if you don't think you're ready for an upgrade, or don't like the looks,
    you may as well raise Smithing up until 90, it shouldn't be hard if you're up
    here already.
    Daedric Smithing
    Armor Type: Heavy
    Prequisite: 90 Skill, Ebony Smithing
    Primary Materials: Ebony Ingots, Daedra Hearts
    Yes, even you can forge demonic equipment that is top notch. Though Daedra
    Hearts aren't easy to obtain, it's worth it. At least you don't need them to
    temper. Now that would be painful.
    This is the best Heavy Armor you can get your hands on, but also the heaviest.
    The main piece weights 50 units alone!
    Daedric is a bit funny on weapon quality, as the Maces and War Axes actually do
    the same amount of damage as an Ebony one would, and those are lighter and
    don't require a Daedra Heart to make.
    Daedric Bows also have the slowest draw speed of any bow in the game.
    Dragonbone weapons from the Dawnguard DLC have ousted Daedric in damage, but
    Daedric still remains a few units lighter than those, so don't panic if you
    have some already made, they aren't entirely outclassed by these new weapons.
    2.3.3 - OTHER PERKS
    Perks not aligned to either side.
    Arcane Blacksmith
    Prequisite: 60 Skill, Steel Smithing
    This perk allows you to enchant magical armor. Why is this good? Because when
    you find a good piece of armor with an enchantment you like, it's just really
    It's also ideal for improving any enchanted weapons you already own. Get this
    perk ASAP.
    Dragon Armor
    Armor Type: Light and Heavy
    Prequisite: 100 Skill, either Glass Smithing OR Daedric Smithing
    Primary Materials: Dragon Scales (Armors), Dragon Bones (Heavy and Weapons)
    Secondary: Iron Ingot (Dragonscale Armor), Ebony Ingot (Dragonbone Weapons)
    Note: You cannot go to the skill on the opposite side after this one, despite
    the circle-like appearance of the tree.
    Dragon scales and bones may be heavy, but they are certainly more plentiful
    than Ebony Ingots, Daedra Hearts, and Malachite, making gear made underneath
    this perk outstanding stat-wise. By the time you get here, you also have 100
    Dragonplate (Heavy) is slightly less protective than Daedric, but the exact
    difference in armor rating is very tiny, and it weighs less, so it is pretty
    much on par.
    Dragonscale (Light) on the other hand is only slightly better than Glass, but
    again the materials are easier to obtain. This is the armor you will be going
    for if you picked the right-hand side whilst using Light Armor.
    Dawnguard adds in a complete set of Dragonbone weapons. These are stronger
    and easier to craft than Daedric weapons, the only backdraw being significantly
    heavier. But that's it.
    There are a few odd items which lack tempering recipies. Only mods on the PC
    version can assign these to some; the only way it's possible for console users
    would be through official patches, but that sounds unlikely, knowing Bethesda.
    Can't be Tempered
    -Silver Sword
    -Silver Greatsword
    This is an odd situation; especially since Silver Ingots are present in the
    -Skyforge Steel Dagger
    -Nord Hero Bow
    -Supple Ancient Nord Bow
    -Ancient Nord Helmet
    -Falmer Supple Bow
    -Honed Falmer Sword
    -Honed Falmer War Axe
    -Studded Imperial Armor
    -Shield of Solitude
    -Shield of Ysgramor
    -Ebony Blade
    -Masque of Clavicus Vile
    -Dragon Priest Dagger
    -Drainblood Battleaxe
    -Drainheart Sword
    -Drainspell Bow
    -The Woodsman's Friend
    All of these do not have tempering recipies in the regular game.
    Can't be double-improved
    Noteworthy items that aren't augmented by any Smithing perk.
    -Thieves Guild Armor
    -Nightingale Armor and Weapons
    -Guild Master Armor
    -Shrouded Armor
    These free armors gotten from joining the more notorious factions can only
    get basic improvements; the main reason why to wear these armors are the
    enchantments. After all, if you're joining either one, it is likely you haven't
    built your character to withstand head-to-head combat.
    -Mace of Molag Bal
    -Mehrunes Razor
    Funny enough, these Daedric artifacts don't have a perk assigned to them,
    yet Savior's Hide and Ebony Mail do (both are tied to Ebony Smithing).
    ---Dawnguard Items---
    -Dawnguard Rune Shield
    -Aetherial Crown
    -Aetherial Shield
    Even though suitable perks for improvement would be obvious when you see the
    item yourself, they don't get that much better.
    Bethesda's first major DLC for the game, Dawnguard, which costs $20 USD ($25
    USD for Australia/New Zealand), introduces a few new things to Smithing.
    Arrow Smithing
    At any time after installing the DLC, you can craft arrows in bundles of 24.
    The types you can craft depend on your current Smithing perks; for example,
    Ebony Smithing allows you to craft Ebony Arrows. Simple as that.
    All recipes require both the main ingot for the arrow type and one piece of
    Firewood. However, Daedric Arrows require a Daedra Heat to go alongside an
    Ebony Ingot and Firewood.
    Crossbows & Bolts
    The DLC's major feature, alongside the Vampire Lord transformation, is the
    Dawnguard's specialty; the Crossbow, a weapon formerly only found in-game in
    Morrowind. They run on bolts rather than arrows.
    Considering this is a Smithing guide, I'm not going to go into detail about
    how it performs; they are a different style when compared to bows, ore for
    Fighters than Thieves to say the least.
    There are some catches for crafting these. After all, it is regarded as a
    'Dawnguard specialty' for a reason; initially you won't be able to craft a
    crossbow and the bolts for it. For either side you pick, you still get a
    complementary one and 45 bolts, though.
    If you refuse the Vampire Lord power from Lord Harkon, you will get a quest
    from Isran that involves recruiting his former friends. One of them in
    particuar is Sorine Jurard, a Breton fascinated by Dwemer weaponry.
    Once that quest is complete, she'll teach you how to make crossbow bolts if
    you talk to her again. Sorine also has her own line of sidequests, all named
    'Ancient Technology'. All of these lead to improvising crossbows, and are
    radiant quests, so the location of the schematics for each one are all random.
    If you can't make them because you lack the perks, Sorine will also sell any
    of the bolts and crossbows you have 'unlocked' in her quests.
    During Ancient Technology, you will first find the Enhanced Crossbow schematics
    on the first quest, while the next three have you collecting some for the three
    different elemental bolts. After that, the next schematics will be those of
    the Dwarven Crossbow, while the final one will be its enhanced variant.
    This gives a total of six quests.
    The tables below show what crossbows and bolts you can craft:
    | -Crossbow Type     | Perk    | Damage Equivalent To | Notes                |
    | -Crossbow          | Steel   | Elven Bow + Arrows*  | None                 |
    | -Enhanced Crossbow | Steel   | Same as above        | Ignores 50% of Armor |
    | -Dwarven Crossbow  | Dwarven | Ebony Bow + Arrows*  | None                 |
    | -Enhanced Dwarven  | Dwarven | Same as above        | Ignores 50% of Armor |
    Both regular and enhanced crossbows can be crafted after the first Ancient
    Technology quest. Dwarven regular and enhanced however have their own
    separate quests.
    *With matching bolt type
    | -Bolt Type                       | Crafting Requirements
    | -Steel Bolt                      | Sided with Dawnguard         |
    | -Dwarven Bolt                    | 5th Ancient Technology Quest*|
    | -Exploding Steel Bolt, Fire      | Ancient Technology Quest**   |
    | -Exploding Steel Bolt, Ice       | See Above                    |
    | -Exploding Steel Bolt, Shock     | See Above                    |
    | -Exploding Dwarven Bolt, Fire    | 5th Ancient Technlogy Quest  |
    | -Exploding Dwarven Bolt, Ice     | See Above                    |
    | -Exploding Dwarven Bolt, Shock   | See Above                    |
    Bolts are made in lots of 10, with the main ingot + firewood and the matching
    perk. Elemental bolts require Fire, Frost, or Void Salts alongside 10 bolts
    of the same kind already made.
    *Dwarven bolt crafting access is gotten when you can craft Dwarven Crossbows.
    There is no need for more quests for exploding bolts. Regular Dwarven bolts
    can be salvaged from defeated Dwarven Spheres.
    **Each Steel exploding bolt has its own radiant quest.
    Dragonbone Weapons
    Those with the Dragon Armor perk can now make official Dragonbone weapons.
    Slightly better than Daedric in damage and easier to make, at the cost of
    being heavier; which also drains more Stamina with every power attack.
    There is a full set; no weapon type is missed out on and there are appropriate
    arrows for bow users. Speaking of which, the Dragonbone Bow draws faster than
    a Daedric one.
    Needless to say, there isn't a whole lot to say about these. After all, they
    are merely more weapons crafted with Ebony Ingots and Dragon Bones.
    You can craft a Shellbug helmet, which is as tough as a Dragonplate helmet,
    but lighter. Hack out the Shellbug chitin by using a pickaxe on them.
    Dawnguard, Vampire, and both old and new Falmer armors are all augmented by
    the Advanced Armors perk. 'Ancient Falmer Armor' is an exception, being
    double-tempered by Elven Smithing instead.
    Bone Hawk Amulets can also be crafted. It's mere jewelery, though.
    This part here focuses on advice for Smithing in general.
    -Enchantments and potions that boost Smithing temporarily raise the skill, if
    you were wondering. So this means that you can achieve a better quality than
    what you currently can at whatever your skill is at. You can sometimes find
    Blacksmith Potions/Draught/Elixir's in dungeons, or make them yourself. Like-
    wise with enchanted gear that boosts the skill.
    --Alvor, the smith in Riverwood, has two Blacksmith potions in his house's
    basement, to your right when you go down the stairs. Taking them counts as
    -Fortifying smithing with said items past 'Legendary' quality DOES have an
    affect. Additionally, you may already upgrade Legendary gear itself.
    -The best way to fortify Smithing is to make an 'enchanted suit'. The items
    that can be enchanted with the skill are:
    --The main armor piece or clothing on the body
    --Gloves and Gauntlets
    I suggest having 5/5 Enchanter and the 'Insightful Enchanter' perks while using
    Grand and Black Souls for maximum efficiency, as well as a high Enchanting
    skill, obviously. At 4/5 Enchanter, Insightful and 70 Enchanting though, you
    can make equipment that fortifies Smithing by 20% per piece.
    Thanks to Roeguard for pointing this out.
    -You can combo this up with Alchemy if you really wanted to - this will make
    things even more insane. I personally don't do this, but for those interested,
    check out section 3.5.
    -There is a unique item called the 'Notched Pickaxe'. When held, this fortifies
    your Smithing by 5, as well as causing little Shock Damage to your enemies.
    This pickaxe is found at the VERY top of the Throat of the World, which also
    happens to be next to some veins of Ebony and Malachite.
    --This is a reference to Minecraft, and it's creator's internet alias, Notch.
    --You can disenchant this and put it on more weapons, but remember that the
    Smithing bonus is fixed - dual-wielding won't do anything as with using strong
    souls, though the electrical enchant can be boosted.
    -A GameFAQs user, AirborneGaming, mentioned that with 90 Conjuration, you can
    get a quest at the College of Winterhold, with a Sigil Stone as a reward. This
    is used to upgrade the Atronach Forge underneath the college (you may have
    seen it during the main questline).
    What this has to do with Smithing is that you can upgrade Ebony equipment up
    to Daedric - though the example recipie I was given sounds a bit more demanding
    than the actual crafting recipie for Daedric Armor:
    --Smithing - 1x Daedra Heart, 5x Ebony Ingots, 3x Leather Strips
    --Atronach Forge - 1x Ebony Armor, 1x Daedra Heart, 1x Black Soul Gem, 1x
    Centurion Core
    It's probably easier to get Daedric Smithing whilst sticking with Dwavern,
    Steel Plate, or Orcish Armors to save up Ebony Ingots. However, this still may
    be handy for the odd Necromancer/Battlemage who already have Ebony and do not
    want to use up more of it. Still, 90 Conjuration is a bit late and you can
    probably find Daedric as random loot by then, provided you aren't intentionally
    raising it over and over.
    --The armor probably won't keep it's upgrades this way, as it is a new piece
    of armor with the old one destroyed.
    While Ore isn't important, Ingots are, and Ore helps you make Ingots. You will
    want as much of it as possible, especially for free, to save you from buying
    Obtaining Ore
    To obtain Ore, you must find a pickaxe, and then a vein in a cave, mine, maybe
    even a dungeon. You can either press E to mine automatically and you'll
    pretty much get two pieces of ore from it, but you can do it manually by
    attacking the vein with the pickaxe in your hand - this may make dual-wielding
    with the Elemental Fury shout a lot more faster than automatic.
    It also appears that you can get up to three pieces of ore by mining manually.
    Do not worry if the message saying you got ore only appears once after
    exhausting a vein, you'll definitely have three in your inventory.
    Rare Ore Locations
    Because Skyrim is huge, I can't just list all of the major places you'll find
    certain ore. My advice is to look up this on the internet further, or for more
    fun, explore to find what you desire. I will though, list some areas:
    -Iron: This is actually everywhere. You may not notice it, though.
    -Steel: Just a reminder, you need both Iron and Corundum ore to make Steel
    -Dwarven Metal: Simply raid any Dwemer ruin and go salvage some parts. To
    identify which pieces can be smelted down to Dwarven Metal Ingots, the rule of
    thumb is that if it doesn't start with 'Dwarven', it can be melted down.
    Dwarven Scrap Metal for example can't be smelted, yet BENT Dwarven Scrap Metal
    -Malachite: Check the mine at Kynesgrove, south of Windhelm. Additionally, the
    ingots on the cart near the entrance do respawn as well as the chunk of ore,
    but do note guards patrol near here - just wait for them to move and steal them
    before they turn around.
    -Moonstone: Not easy to come by. Mzulft, a Dwemer ruin, has plenty of veins,
    but can only be accessed during and after a quest from the College of
    Winterhold. The nearby Stony Creek Cave however, has two easy veins near it's
    end - that's about 2-3 ingots worth, though.
    -Quicksilver: Dawnstar has a good sized Quicksilver mine.
    -Ebony: South of the Orc Stronghold Narzulbur, lies Gloombound Mine. The Orc
    NPC's will complain when you get in there, but you can mine in peace, with
    plenty of Ebony veins in there. Additionally, Redbelly Mine at Shor's Stone and
    the very top of the Throat of the World have a few veins, but not much.
    -Orichalcum: You'll be looking for Bilegulch Mine - at least nine veins in
    there. It's north of Glenmoril Cave, which is west of Falkreath. Keep in
    mind that this mine is occupied by Orc Bandits, and the leader is inside the
    mine itself.
    -Corundum: Darkwater Crossing has a few veins you can mine out, but the best
    place is Knifepoint Ridge, which has a mine with a LOT of Corundum. You will
    have to do Boethiah's Daedric quest to get entry, however, and that is a Lv30
    quest. On the other hand, Corundum ore is easy to get by from shopkeepers.
    -Soul Gems: Yes, even Soul Gems can be mined; there are plenty of Geode veins
    in Blackreach. Supposedly some of these are level-dependent, so you can only
    grab Grand and Black Soul Gems when in the mid-30's or so.
    You can mine the veins again after 30 in-game days if the mine is labelled as
    'cleared'. Otherwise it'll only take ten days.
    Additionally, Dwemer Spiders can carry all sorts of ore, so check all of their
    broken bodies and loot what you can.
    It's also worth mentioning that there is a spell that affects ore - Transmute.
    This rare Alteration spell is only found within two dungeons (one of them
    being Halted Stream Camp), and will turn any Iron Ore into Silver Ore, and
    Silver into Gold. This is an Adept spell, so it's pretty costly, but anyone
    should be able to cast it (if you're worried, then just keep using Detect Life
    in town to quickly raise Alteration).
    The latter transmutation is prioritized over the former, so if you want only
    silver, drop all the silver ore you currently have before making another one.
    Useful for mass producing jewelery or completing sidequests (like Madesi's),
    though you might want to skip if you plan to use Iron Ingots as they only
    require one piece of Ore each to make, whereas everything else needs two.
    Smithing is easy to raise, but it can seem tedious. Here's some tips on how
    to make things go faster if you're impatient.
    -The first no-brainer is the Warrior Stone, as it gives a 20% bonus to raising
    all Combat skills, including Smithing (but not Archery).
    --The Lover Stone, found in the Reach, gives a permanent Lover's Comfort bonus.
    This in turn however, doesn't allow for any rested bonuses to be obtained.
    --Players with the Dawnguard DLC can obtain the Aetherial Crown. This item can
    allow you to retain your previous Standing Stone power, whilst allowing you
    to have a second Standing Stone power. With the Warrior and Lover Stones, the
    effects should stack.
    -Resting in a bed gives you a bonus to raising skills, though the bonus depends
    on your situation.
    --Resting in a bed you don't own gives a 5% boost (Rested).
    --Resting in a bed you own gives a 10% boost (Well Rested).
    --Resting in the same area with your spouse gives 15% (Lover's Comfort).
    --Werewolves cannot get any Rested bonuses.
    Sleeping in a bed at an inn (for a few gold) counts as a bed you own. Examples
    of beds you don't own namely include random sleeping bags at various camps.
    -You can get a permanent 15% faster increase to Smithing (as well as a 25% 
    armor bonus wearing Dwarven Armor) at the end of a specific quest, which is
    given by a female Argonian near the docks at Riften. She wears a helmet, and
    may be inside some of the nearby buildings.
    --As of 1.3, Ancient Knowledge actually buffs tempering instead and applies a
    general 25% armor bonus instead. PC users can download the Unofficial Skyrim
    Patch to fix this.
    -As of Update 1.5, Bethesda has made it so that the speed of raising Smithing
    depends on the value of the items you make. What this means now is that Leather
    Bracer and Iron Dagger grinding is now OBSCURE. You'll want to make expensive
    things to quickly raise Smithing now.
    --It might be a good idea to find the Transmute spell and turn your Iron Ore
    into Gold, so you can make expensive jewelry more easily. Run into a place with
    loads of Iron Ore veins, and have the Adept Alteration perk if you want it, to
    cast the spell more often.
    -The best place to smith in my opinion, would be in Whiterun. Breezehome, a
    house you can buy for 5k gold, is right next to Warmaiden's, which has the
    full set of facilities (including Smelting!) and materials you can buy. Very,
    very convenient location, not to mention it's smack right in the middle of
    the game map.
    --Not to mention that you can sell what you make to the two NPC's that work
    at Warmaiden's, with their own bartering gold each.
    -Some quest givers in the form of blacksmiths may give you a skill increase.
    -Four books can increase your Smithing ability by one. The Smithing ones can
    usually be found near facilities in dungeons. The names of these books are:
    --Cherim's Heart
    --Heavy Armor Forging
    --Light Armor Forging
    --The Armorer's Challenge
    -The Oghma Infinium gives +5 to Smithing if you choose 'The Path of Might',
    alongside other Combat Skills. This is obtained from the quest 'Discernining
    the Transmundane', you should be part of the way in this quest if you are
    progressing through the main quest.
    --It might be a wise idea to save this book until later because it will be
    destroyed when you use it. Its effect is best when a group of skills (Combat,
    Magic, or Stealth) are all at very high levels but not at 100, because it gives
    +5 to all related skills regardless; you can save a bit of grinding and even
    level up twice after reading it.
    There is some debate on what branch would be ideal to take, if you're only
    going in one direction. Most people do.
    Taking the left:
    +Many Light Armor choices
    +Has an advantage over the right initially; Elven Smithing only requires 30 in
    Smithing, and is superior to Dwarven and Orcish Smithing.
    +Gets access to two types of Heavy Armor on the way, ideal for followers.
    +One perk less away from the Dragon Armor perk.
    +With Dawnguard, it gets access to the best weapon quality.
    +-Speaking of which, many armors in the DLC benefit off Advanced Armors.
    +Those who plan to use Auriel's Bow can make Elven Arrows in bulk for
    Sunhallowed and Bloodcursed Arrows.
    -Without Dawnguard, Glass is the next best weapon quality.
    -Advanced Armors causes a big gap between Elven and Glass Smithing when it
    comes to newer weapon qualities, and offers no new shields.
    Taking the right:
    +Many Heavy Armor choices
    +Access to Ebony and Daedric weapons, very strong makes of armor and weapons.
    +At the end, Dragonscale Armor covers Light Armor, ideal for followers who
    expertise in it.
    +Some Daedric Artifacts benefit off Ebony Smithing.
    +Dawnguard owners can double-improve Dwarven Crossbows.
    -Incredibly dull start;
    --Dwarven is rather low quality and quite heavy to carry.
    --Orcish weapons are actually worse, and it requires 50 Smithing.
    -With Dawnguard, it isn't exclusive to the strongest weapon material.
    Some will call this exploiting, others will call this overkill. If you want to
    get the most out of Smithing, then just follow along with this section. If not,
    then don't bother and just enjoy the game as it is.
    This essentially involves using Alchemy and Enchanting to get the best out of
    Smithing itself, to say the least.
    What you might want
    Use this as a checklist before attempting to do anything here. You don't have
    to max out everything here, but it helps!
    -100 Smithing
    --Smithing Perks: Arcane Blacksmith may be handy, the others are up to you, it
    depends what type of material you want to temper.
    --All the materials you need for the equipment you want to upgrade
    -100 Alchemy
    --Alchemy Perks: 5/5 Alchemist, Benefactor
    --Ingredients fortifying Enchanting and Smithing:
    ---Enchanting: Blue Buttergly Wing, Hagraven Claw, Snowberries, Spriggan Sap
    ---Smithing: Blisterwort, Glowing Mushroom, Sabre Cat Tooth, Spriggan Sap
    --Optional: Fortify Restoration potions. Supposedly this buffs enchantments
    on your apparel; take them off, drink the potion, and put them on again.
    -100 Enchanting
    --Enchanting Perks: 5/5 Enchanter, Insightful Enchanter, maybe Extra Effect
    --Fortify Alchemy and Fortify Smithing effects learned
    --Filled up Grand Soul and Black Soul Gems, Azura's Star/The Black Star
    can also be used as they are essentially refillable Grand Soul Gems.
    -Various clothing, necklaces, and rings to enchant with.
    -A good place to do all of this is at Windhelm, with the house and the Alchemy
    Lab and Enchanting Table bought, a Smithy isn't very far away either. The next
    best place MAY be Whiterun, but you'll have to run from the gates to
    Dragonsreach between Enchantments, Potions, and Smithing.
    While it may be unintentional or not, the Restoration perk Necromage (requires
    the Regeneration perk and 70 Restoration) also happens to buff Restoration
    spells on the player if they have vampirism. This is because they are flagged
    as 'undead'.
    Like the above with Fortify Restoration potions, this will also buff the
    enchantments on your clothing.
    Step 1 - Alchemy Suit
    An 'Alchemy Suit' should be made to further boost the strength of potions.
    The Fortify Alchemy Effect can be put on to these slots:
    Proceed to make and wear the suit, and then make a Fortify Enchanting potion.
    Then make an even more effective enchanting suit for Alchemy, thus making a
    more effective Fortify Enchanting potion - although this will use up a LOT
    of souls if you keep making even stronger suits. Go as far as you want to,
    nobody's stopping you.
    If you have the Extra Effect perk, then you can save up more Soul Gems - simply
    add Fortify Smithing to the same ring, necklace, and gauntlets/bracers/gloves.
    Step 2 - Blacksmithing Suit and Potion
    After you're pleased with how strong your Alchemy Suit is, make another Fortify
    Enchanting potion. But this time, we will use this potion to make a powerful
    Fortify Smithing suit. You can put the effect on:
    Importantly, also make a Fortify Smithing potion or two while still having your
    Alchemy Suit on, this should be obvious.
    Step 3 - Upgrading Time
    Make sure that you have all the stuff you need to upgrade your gear through
    the grindstone and/or workbench. Wear your Blacksmithing Suit, drink the
    potion, and watch as you upgrade your gear to ridiculous heights.
    You could equip the Notched Pickaxe or any item with it's enchantment, but I
    don't think it'll do a big difference.
    Doing this, you can pretty much make almost any type of armor, even Hide, hit
    the armor cap, 567, with some perks, and pretty much any weapon becomes
    ridiculously strong - apparently there's no damage cap for weapons.
    4.0 - FAQ
    Feel free to send a private message over GameFAQs regarding any questions not
    listed here.
    Q. Does the Lunar Forge do anything special?
    A. Nope. Just disenchant the nearby weapons with the 'Silent Moons Enchant' if
    you want to put it on a weapon.
    Q. How can I get things like Leather and Iron armors/weapons to Legendary?
    A. Use plenty of equipment and potions that fortify smithing. Same with pretty
    much anything that isn't boosted by a perk, or ones you haven't got yet. So
    yes, you can create even Fur and Hide armors that hit the armor cap (567) with
    some dedication and perks.
    Q. Are the new recipies for the Skyforge worth going for alone?
    A. Practically no, unless you manage to complete the questline at a low level.
    Nord Hero equipment is only as good as Elven gear but light as iron.
    Q. What is the name of the quest with the Smith and Dwarven Armor upgrades
    you keep talking about?
    A. The quest's name is 'Unfathomable Depths', vaguely named after the quest
    Q. What's an easy way to acquire Daedra Hearts?
    A. Go to Alchemists around the game, and complete 'Pieces of the Past' for a
    possible (slow) respawning supply. Just as well Daedric gear doesn't need
    hearts upgrade. Keep in mind that these hearts are expensive, although coin in
    Skyrim isn't that hard to obtain.
    Q. Can I help contribute?
    A. Go ahead, though do make sure it's relevant.
    Q. Is Smithing even necessary?
    A. Not all, but further in the game, it can make your life a whole lot easier
    by increasing the raw damage output significantly, especially in synergy with
    damage-increasing perks from the combat skills.
    Q. Is there a max damage cap?
    A. There isn't one, but the maximum amount of unarmed damage you can do is 68,
    not including using Necromage + Vampirism to boost worn enchantments.
    Q. What level do you think would be good enough for 'end-game' status?
    A. Probably around Lv35 or so, at least for me when I got Smithing up to 100
    around there. The only 'challenge' for me on Adept would be Mages spamming
    spells to quickly remove a lot of my health, which is funny since Destruction
    is actually fairly weak for the player during the late-game.
    Q. After getting the Dragon Armor perk, can I get Daedric/Glass Smithing
    without going up the other branch for it?
    A. As I said earlier when talking about Dragon Armor itself, no. You will have
    to work your way up the other side, contray to what the shape of the Smithing
    constellation looking like a circle.
    Q. Which is better, Dragonplate or Daedric?
    A. Pick them based on looks. However, while Dragonplate is slightly weaker,
    the difference in armor rating is quite trivial, and it is lighter.
    Q. Do some non-generic weapons benefit from perks as well?
    A. Not all of them, but many do.
    Q. What version of the game is better?
    A. Arguably PC. While there are some obvious signs of console porting here
    and there, The Elder Scrolls series is famous for it's modding scene, which
    for even Morrowind and Oblivion are STILL going active today. Mods can fix a
    ton of things, and offer new challenges and surprises.
    Q. What perks are commonly used in mods?
    A. Really depends on the mod, but Steel Smithing and Advanced Armors are the
    usual picks for low to mid-range armors.
    4.1 - CLOSING
    And this concludes the guide. I hope that this guide was helpful to you, and
    will encourage you to do more Smithing. Now go play Skyrim and make the best
    equipment you can!
    Yep, we're on to that section now.
    Feel free to link to this guide anywhere, as well as print it off for reference
    should you need it. Just don't go around selling it in real life or hosting it
    off another webiste without asking.
    If you want to contribute, fling me a message here at GameFAQs. I personally
    prefer this over email.
    GameFAQs's PC Skyrim Board - for some information, mainly regarding limits.
    Bethesda Softworks - Making an enjoyable game.
    UESP - Providing a wealth of information on the series, as well as some
    reference for this guide - especially with the quality/skill table.
    Microsoft - Making Windows 7 and more importantly, Notepad!
    GlassGiant.com - Picture to ASCII Converter.
    Useful Links
    -The Unofficial Elder Scrolls Pages
    This is probably the largest wiki dedicated to the Elder Scrolls series. There
    is a lot of useful information gameplay wise, as well as a lot of lore if you
    are interested in that.
    -Skyrim Nexus
    Probably the best place to check for Skyrim mods.
    -This Mod List
    The link below is a mod list I wrote out for some people on another forum.
    Like every other forum link on a guide on the internet, in the future it may
    go missing; better check it as soon as possible, maybe even archive it.
    The End
    You read through all of this? Have a fishy stick!

    View in: