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In general, favour items that use more bars to achieve faster experience rates. GP/XP for individual items can be found here.

Levels 1-29

The Knight's Sword is a free-to-play quest that gives 12,725 Smithing experience upon completion. This reward would elevate a level 1 smith to level 29 immediately. It is strongly recommended that people do this quest before training Smithing. For ironmen to obtain the iron bars, head to the trees located in level 18 Wilderness next to the bears west of the Graveyard of Shadows.

Levels 1-15

If questing isn't your thing and you'd prefer straight smithing, bronze bars provide 6.2 experience upon creation of a bar in the forge. Every bar of bronze used in the process of forging weapons or armour will grant you 12.5 experience.

Efficient training

Levels 29-33 - bronze platebodies

Forge bronze platebodies to level 33.

  • Experience needed - 6,216

Buying bars

  • Bronze bars needed - 500
  • Bronze bars cost = 96,500
  • Bronze platebodies = 1,400
    • Total profit = -95,100 (-179 each)

Buying ores

  • Tin & Copper ores needed - 335 each
  • Tin ores cost = 15,745
  • Copper ores cost = 14,405
    • Total ore cost = 30,150
  • Bronze platebodies = 938
    • Total profit = -29,212 (-436 each)

Level 33-48 - iron platebodies

Iron platebodies are the fastest experience after bronze platebodies, giving twice as much experience at 125 per.

  • Experience needed - 64,767

Buying bars

  • Iron bars needed - 2,595
  • Iron bars cost = 799,260
  • Iron platebodies = 76,812
    • Total profit = -722,448 (-1,392 each)

Buying ores

  • Iron ores needed (assuming 50% success rate) - 3,460
  • Iron ores cost = 633,180
  • Iron platebodies = 51,208
    • Total profit = -581,972 (-1,682 each)

Level 48-68 - steel platebodies

Steel platebodies provide the highest experience per item at 187.5 XP per and should be forged until level 68.

  • Experience needed - 522, 018

Buying bars

  • Steel bars needed - 13,925
  • Steel bars cost = 7,338,475
  • Steel platebodies = 2,701,450
    • Total profit = -4,637,025 (-1,665 each)

Buying ores

  • Iron ore needed - 9,494
  • Iron ores cost = 1,737,585
  • Coal needed - 18,990
  • Coal cost = 3,304,260
  • Steel platebodies = 1,842,030,.
    • Total profit = -3,199,815 (-1,685 each)

Level 68-88 - mithril platebodies

Mithril platebodies overtake steel platebodies in terms most experience provided at level 68 with 250 XP. They are the fastest experience to level 88. You can expect xp rates of 150k - 176k xp p/hr depending on focus.

  • Experience needed - 3,780,744

Buying bars

  • Mithril bars needed - 75,615
  • Mithril bars cost = 57,845,475
  • Mithril platebodies = 42,495,630
    • Total profit = -15,349,845 (-1,015 each)

Buying ores

  • Mithril ores needed - 47,260
  • Mithril ores cost = 8,837,620
  • Coal needed - 189,040
  • Coal cost = 32,892,960
    • Total ore cost = 41,730,580
  • Mithril platebodies = 26,560,120
    • Total profit = -15,170,460 (-1,605 each)

Level 88-99 - adamant platebodies

Adamant platebodies are the fastest and cheapest method to reach 99 Smithing in free-to-play at 312.5 XP each. This provides around 215,000 xp/hour with use of energy potions.

  • Experience needed - 8,648,655

Buying bars

  • Adamant bars needed - 138,380
  • Adamantite bars cost = 287,415,260
  • Adamant platebodies = 262,285,452
    • Total profit = -25,129,808 (-908 each)

Buying ores

  • Adamantite ores needed - 86,490
  • Adamantite ores cost = 105,690,780
  • Coal needed - 518,940
  • Coal cost = 90,295,560
    • Total ore cost = 195,986,340
  • Adamant platebodies = 163,933,146
    • Total profit = -32,053,194 (-1,853 each)

Level 99+

After level 99, rune armour becomes available to smith which will provide the best experience and turn a profit if the items are sold on the Grand Exchange. This is due to their high alch prices and popularity with free-to-play player-killers.

Levels 50-99+

Superheating ores while training mining, then dropping the bars will give you experience in Smithing at a relatively low cost. Superheating ores off the Grand Exchange is generally expensive and other methods of training are faster.