For years you have been able to create weapons with your bare hands, using raw steel, in real life. What if we were to tell you there’s now a way to SIMULATE that in-game? Because we just did!
— Crafting publicity blurb
Crafting is an in-game system that allows players to create specific items for use in Team Fortress 2. Crafting was introduced with the WAR! Update on December 17, 2009 Patch. The items that can be created include weapons, cosmetics, and materials that can be used for further crafting, such as Scrap Metal or Class Tokens. Crafting is usually conducted by utilizing unwanted or duplicate items gained through the item drop system. In order to create items, the player must follow blueprints, all of which are initially available to players with a "premium" account. After following a valid blueprint recipe, the player will gain the item specified by the blueprint. If the player attempts to craft an item without the proper ingredients, an item will not be crafted whatsoever. Non-premium users cannot craft Rare or Special items, and tools cannot be crafted under any circumstances.
†When crafting Spine-Chilling Skull 2011, the player will receive a version of the Spine-Chilling Skull 2011 hat that only has one of the three possible styles. The style of the skull cannot be changed to the other styles. Only hats purchased through the Mann Co. Store will have the option of switching between the three styles.
Crafting weapon classifications
In contrast with the weapon slots presented in-game, the crafting system classifies some weapons in different slots. For example, the Spy's Revolver is classified as a secondary weapon despite how in-game, it is equipped in the first item slot. Below is a list of all the usable weapons and slots that the crafting system uses. Note that the table does not include the Stock weapons for the classes, such as the Scattergun, as these are not usable in crafting. However, if one has a stock weapon that has been renamed or described, it can be used to craft into scrap.
Crafting numbers are a cosmetic value attached to any crafted weapon or cosmetic item introduced during the May 5, 2011 Patch, as well as most items added in any later update. This number represents the order that a given item was crafted in; for example, a "Brain Bucket #1" would be the very first Brain Bucket to have ever been crafted. While the craft number goes into the thousands on third-party backpack viewers, #100 is the maximum value displayed in-game. For example, a "Brain Bucket #101" would only appear in-game as "Brain Bucket".
From July 5 to July 9, 2010, players crafting any items in-game had a chance of finding an extremely rare item, the Golden Wrench, of which only 100 were made available. Valve used a list of specified times to help smooth the frequency with which Golden Wrenches were found. When a player crafted an item after one of the times specified, a random drop could occur giving the player their crafted item and a Golden Wrench. When a Golden Wrench was found, it would be announced to all online Team Fortress 2 servers at once in the form of a dialog box in the center of the screen and an accompanying sound bite. This was only available before and leading up to the Engineer Update until all 100 wrenches were found. An announcement was also shown when one of these Golden Wrenches was destroyed.
Smelt, Reclaimed, and Refined Metal blueprints were temporarily disabled due to this event until all of the 100 Golden Wrenches had been acquired in order to stop people from endlessly smelting and re-crafting their Metal until they got one. These blueprints were disabled up until the Mann-Conomy Update, even though the Engineer Update had completed and no more Golden Wrenches could be found.
As of the May 5, 2011 Patch any hat or weapon crafted will display "Crafted by PLAYERNAME" in the description of the item. Additionally, using the Restore button in the backpack will give an option to remove this feature from the item.
Smelting refined or reclaimed metal only partially made from untradable reclaimed or scrap metal will cause all metal produced to be untradable.
Some cases have been reported of players "finding" Scrap Metal. This is most often caused by player losing connection to Steam after clicking the craft button. This means the items are used in the craft recipe, yet the result of the craft remains uncollected until the player dies in a server: giving the "PLAYERNAME has found: METALTYPE" alert.
Untradable metal, and items made with untradable metal, were reverted to tradable due to a glitch until a subsequent patch was released. This behavior was observed during the Scream Fortress Update event with the Voodoo Jujus and Spine-Chilling Skulls crafted using untradable Haunted Metal Scrap. Halloween Hats crafted prior to the November 10, 2010 Patch became tradable after the update, but hats crafted after that have reportedly remained untradable suggesting Valve has fixed the glitch.
When viewing the entire backpack while selecting an item to craft, an empty slot is shown first followed by everything else in proper order, resulting in the rightmost column being displayed on the left side, the bottom-right item being displayed on the top-right of the next page, and the last item in the backpack being inaccessible.
Sometimes, when using a Strange weapon as a crafting ingredient, the result will show "No matching blueprint".
↑ abIf the player uses a Multiple Class weapon with a Class Token, or 3 Multiple Class weapon and chooses to create a Class Token, it will always result in the token of the first class that can equip the weapons those using in crafting (e.g. 3x Pain Train will result in Soldier Token or 3x Freedom Staff will result in Scout token).
↑ abMiscellaneous items cannot be used to create a "Misc. Token".
↑The Batter's Helmet consumed with this blueprint will not retain its properties. This includes level, rarity, applied paint, customized name and customized description. The level will be randomized.
↑ abcThese blueprints require specific items not obtainable through crafting.
↑This blueprint allows the user to craft items in the manner before the Uber Update, by simply placing items in the craft window.
↑Ellis' Cap was not actually changed to be used as a crafting ingredient. Ellis' Cap was updated to be craftable on January 12.