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Mike Arledge




Location: Indianapolis, IN
Joined: 05 Feb 2006
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PostPosted: Fri 31 Aug, 2007 4:41 pm    Post subject: Review: Albion Squireline Clontarf (Yes you read that right)         Reply with quote

Stats:

Weight: 2 lbs 8.5 ounces
Overall Length: 36 inches
Grip: 3 and 7/8 inches
Blade Length: 30 and 3/8 inches from guard
Point of Balance: approx. 6 inches from guard
Center or Percussion: approx. 19.5 inches from guard
Distal Taper
At Crossguard -.5 cm
At COP - .3 cm


Initial Impressions:
Type X to the max, perfect proportions, beautiful Viking recreation

This sword is one of 3 special swords being offered by Albion in conjunction with Jim Adelson of www.viking-shield.com. From my understanding Jim is the only vendor for these pieces. They are not even on Albion’s website.

Appearance:
I always wanted to own the Next Gen Clontarf, but got the funds too late in the game before it sold out. I was just about to pull the trigger on a Huskarl, but then I visited Viking-shield and saw 3 unannounced Albion Squireline Viking swords offering the same furnishing as the original Next Gen Clontarf, Gotland and Vinland. This Squireline version of the Clontarf is just as good looking as the original version. The only real difference is the grip and the edge geometry from the secondary beveling. A note on that. I owned an original Squireline Viking and found the beveling back then a bit too obvious. This sword has almost a seamless secondary bevel that is visually almost part of the blade and edge geometry. Only in certain lights/angles can you see that the bevel is there. If you liked the Clontarf design and didn’t have the money for the original, or can’t find one in the secondary market, this is a steal! I really like everything about it. I would have to say it is the most bang for the buck I have come across in a Viking sword for under $500.

Handling:
I am a big fan of Viking blades. I feel I have a good understanding of how they should handle. This sword handles perfectly. It has a threatening blade presence that makes the sword feel alive in your hand, as if you quit paying attention for one moment and it will attack on its own. Its fluid and swift. Even for its size, it comes in almost half of a pound lighter than similar sized Viking blades. Its honestly better than anything I have handled before in a Viking blade in this price range. It makes me truly wonder what a Next Gen Huskarl or Jarl must move like! I cannot emphasize enough how exciting it was to own this after being slightly disappointed with the other Squireline models. I think the cost difference explains that Albion seems to have put more into this piece.

What you should expect:
This sword costs $505 sharpened and shipped. This is a step up in price from the run of the mill Albion Squireline offerings. Its worth every penny. Not only are you getting the intricate and historically influenced hilt, but you are getting a blade that outperforms anything I have seen in the sub $500 market. It makes me wonder if Albion is trying to find a larger middle ground between the cost of the Next Gen line and the Squireline. With many of the Next Gen Viking models coming in at $1200, they are likely getting out of reach of most collectors. At $500 this is a steal and a hell of a find. My hat is off to Jim and Albion for making these offerings possible!

Mike J Arledge

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Mike Arledge




Location: Indianapolis, IN
Joined: 05 Feb 2006
Reading list: 8 books

Posts: 434

PostPosted: Fri 31 Aug, 2007 4:53 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Two other things to add that I forgot to move from my notes to the review.

Another thing that irritated me about the original Squireline Viking I owned was that the hilt castings had some remainder traces on them that were not removed before shipping. I can't stress enough how good this casting is on what appears to me to be a more difficult mold to work with.

Second is to add that the grip might not for everyone as it is not a good as Next Gen models. It can come close to feeling slick in the classic Viking grip. I think with gloves you would see no problems, but some might feel it is slick.

Mike J Arledge

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Bill Grandy
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PostPosted: Fri 31 Aug, 2007 5:05 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Wow, that's a great find, Mike! I hadn't realized these were in existence. Thanks for posting the review!
Virginia Academy of Fencing Historical Swordsmanship
--German Longsword & Italian Rapier in the DC Area--


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B. Stark
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Location: ORYGUN
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PostPosted: Fri 31 Aug, 2007 6:00 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Mike, this is quite a find! I usually wander over to Viking Shield just to peruse but this is a pleasant surprise. I've alwaysed wanted a Vinland and a Clontarf (Ive' owned both) again but since the cancellation I had always been hoping to find one in the Classifieds. No dice of late (I think Mike Luke had the last Vinland for sale). Well this kinda fixes that. Excellent.
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Are we at last brought to such humiliating and debasing degradation, that we cannot be trusted with arms for our defense?

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Mike Arledge




Location: Indianapolis, IN
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Reading list: 8 books

Posts: 434

PostPosted: Fri 31 Aug, 2007 6:01 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Yes, my head almost exploded when I found this. I know Jim is excited about them.
Mike J Arledge

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Tony Brass





Joined: 15 Oct 2006

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PostPosted: Fri 31 Aug, 2007 7:34 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Great report. This looks like a great sword, thanks for passing on the info. The price point is just right also. There is something about the blade presence of viking swords that I love, and you must see to appreciate.
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Craig Peters




PostPosted: Fri 31 Aug, 2007 7:55 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Cool. As a Canadian, I found the Vinland quite appealing (though I also like its hilt furniture, and not just its name). The fact that there are still some available, even in Squire Line form, is good news.
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Martin Whalen





Joined: 20 Mar 2007

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PostPosted: Fri 31 Aug, 2007 10:25 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Wow, that is one sexy sword right there. The price is great to, I noticed how superb the edge is, how did they do that??!!

::Droooooool:: How long will these be available? I might have to start saving, that is one sweet viking blade.

Luceo Non Uro.
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Patrik Erik Lars Lindblom




Location: Göteborg Sweden
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PostPosted: Sat 01 Sep, 2007 3:32 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Big Grin This is great news Big Grin
Thanks Mike for the review and congrats to Jim Adelsen who i will guess have make the hard work to make this possible. Cool

working link
http://www.viking-shield.com/

Frid o Fröjd!
Patrik
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Mike Arledge




Location: Indianapolis, IN
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PostPosted: Sat 01 Sep, 2007 6:15 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I wonder if Howie or anyone from Albion has more info they can drop us about these 3 offerings, or perhaps anything similar to be on the lookout for?
Mike J Arledge

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Hugo Voisine





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PostPosted: Sat 01 Sep, 2007 6:41 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Like a Squire Line Knightly sword with Next Gen Knight fittings ? Wink
« Que dites-vous ?... C'est inutile ?... Je le sais !
Mais on ne se bat pas dans l'espoir du succès !
Oh ! non, c'est bien plus beau lorsque c'est inutile ! »
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Mike Arledge




Location: Indianapolis, IN
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PostPosted: Sat 01 Sep, 2007 6:56 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hugo,

That is exactly what I was hoping to hear Cool

Mike J Arledge

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Steven McIntyre




Location: Coquitlam, BC, Canada
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PostPosted: Sat 01 Sep, 2007 10:34 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I actually e-mailed Viking Shield a couple days before you posted the review, and asked why these werent on the Albion site. Jim replied that these are a Viking Shield exclusive through Albion, so I don't believe there will be similar offering for other Squireline blades(atleast not yet).
~PER ARDUA~
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Mike Arledge




Location: Indianapolis, IN
Joined: 05 Feb 2006
Reading list: 8 books

Posts: 434

PostPosted: Sun 02 Sep, 2007 7:15 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Steven McIntyre wrote:
I actually e-mailed Viking Shield a couple days before you posted the review, and asked why these werent on the Albion site. Jim replied that these are a Viking Shield exclusive through Albion, so I don't believe there will be similar offering for other Squireline blades(atleast not yet).


Well, perhaps, perhaps not. Given how unannounced and unheralded these were through Vikign Shield, it does make you wonder if there are any other surprises on the horizon.

Here's for hoping there are some more ideas like this on the way.

Mike J Arledge

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William Swiger




Location: Reston, VA
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PostPosted: Thu 27 Dec, 2012 11:05 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I have 2 of the SL viking swords from Viking Shield and really like them. I also have one of the discontinued NG vikings and honestly there are only slight differences. Very good value.
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Scott Woodruff





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PostPosted: Thu 27 Dec, 2012 11:30 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I just visited Viking Shield for the first time an hour ago or so and was quite confused by these SL Viking swords. Then I hop over to myArmoury and see this. Now that is what I call synchronicity! What a gem, I have got to get one. How is it that they still have them in stock? I would expect a deal like this to go quick.
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William M




Location: Buckinghamshire , England
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PostPosted: Fri 28 Dec, 2012 6:54 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

You can also get these squire line viking swords from Albion Europe.
I used to own the SL Vinland. It was a really nice blade but was far too much of a wrist breaker for me so it had to go.

Linky: http://www.albion-europe.com/swords/swords-by...iking.aspx
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Scott Woodruff





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PostPosted: Fri 28 Dec, 2012 8:41 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

A wrist-breaker, really? Surprising, but as I plan on grinding mine until the mass and pivot point match the NG version it does not really matter to me. I would love to hear any other observations you may have.
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William M




Location: Buckinghamshire , England
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PostPosted: Fri 28 Dec, 2012 12:28 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hey I don't want to hijack your thread so I'll post a link to the thread where I talked about the sl vinland.
Just quickly though, I think the problem I had was that as the type X is already a very hefty blade type and with the squire line having less grinding and more weight than the next gen version, it made the sword too heavy for me. Looks awesome though! Happy

Linky: http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t...highlight=
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William Swiger




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PostPosted: Fri 28 Dec, 2012 2:01 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I have this sword and it took awhile to get used to the pommel and guard but I can now use it without any problems. The weight is good for me and does not feel heavy in hand.

I read William's thread and can see where he did not like the feel of the sword. I have had the same experience with a few other swords in the past and passed them on.
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