Smithing is notorious for being one of the most difficult skills to level in Runescape. As almost all efficient methods of grinding the skill require bulk amounts of expensive metal bars, gaining smithing experience often means incurring millions of GP in losses, while making very little back for the armors produced. To avoid sacrificing your entire bank value for the sake of earning a smithing skillcape, the training methods included in this guide will offer a variety of price ranges, experience rates, and click intensities that can suit different needs.
Training smithing with burial armor
Burial armor can be smithed at Falador’s Artisans’ Workshop using fully upgraded items of each metal armor set. Turning a normal piece of armor into its burial armor counterpart gives the same amount of experience as smithing the original item, but can be done twice as quickly as the original smith. This can effectively double the experience rates of most armor-based smithing methods, offering the fastest leveling method in the game — up to around 1,200,00 experience per hour if smithing elder rune burial sets as efficiently as possible.
Smithing a piece of armor into burial armor makes the resultant item untradeable, meaning that you can no longer sell it back on the Grand Exchange to cut losses. Finished burial armor sets are eventually sacrificed at a total loss of all pieces. To put this into perspective, leveling from 90 to 99 smithing using elder rune burial sets will cost over 300,000,000 GP in total to complete, making overall cost a major drawback.
Training smithing by forging platebodies
Supplying upgraded armor pieces for others to use in the burial process can turn a considerable profit while earning respectable experience per hour. Platebodies, while less profitable than smithing most other pieces, generally drive the highest experience rates of any type as they use the most metal bars per item smithed. For reference, smithing elder rune platebodies +5 can earn up to 160,000 experience per hour, squeaking out a 400,000 GP profit in the process.
Related: Best skills to level up in RuneScape
Compared to other methods included on this list, the forging process is far more click-intensive to perform efficiently. Smithing advanced items on an anvil often takes quite a while to complete, and the item must be supplied with constant heat from the forge in order to speed up the smithing process. To maintain this method’s experience rates, you will need to dip each platebody back into the forge every 30 seconds.
Training smithing by smelting bars
Where other smiths need metal bars to produce armors, you can produce these bars to supply the demand. While far slower than other methods of experience rates, smelting bars can generate consistent profit as a very low-effort activity. For example, smelting elder rune bars at level 90 can generate up to 10,000,000 GP worth of profit per hour, passively earning a little under 80,000 smithing experience in the process.
Training smithing by making cannonballs
Cannonballs are used as ammunition for the Dwarf multicannon, whose ammo inefficiency places them in constant demand. Able to be smithed as early as level 35, the cannonball-making process can be done almost entirely away from your keyboard, gradually processing an entire inventory of steel bars into balls over the course of almost two full minutes. While only earning 30,000 experience per hour through this lazy method, cannonballing can earn up to 1,500,000 GP profit in that time.
While making cannonballs can offer substantial profits, there are other methods with higher level and activity requirements that can earn much more. You’ll want to join the Bond market, harvest Pale Energy, or do one of several other methods that make good money in Runescape.