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Jeremiah Swanger




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PostPosted: Fri 19 Mar, 2004 10:43 pm    Post subject: Question on an Albion NexGen...         Reply with quote

Does anybody have a reservation for Albion's "Ritter" model? I've heard a bunch of people with orders for Barons, Knights, and the Viking stuff, but I have yet to see anyone talk about a reservation for a Ritter. Seeing as how I seem to be virtually alone in my love for long, sturdy medievel cavalry swords, I was hoping someone else would be able to provide a review of the Ritter when it comes out, because I'm scraping a small percentage of my current and future paychecks to try to get myself one before too long, and I'd love to see what an objective arms collector would think of it...

Anybody wanna fess up? Happy

"Rhaegar fought nobly.
Rhaegar fought valiantly.
Rhaegar fought honorably.
And Rhaegar died."

- G.R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire
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Jason Elrod




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PostPosted: Sat 20 Mar, 2004 5:00 am    Post subject: Me Too . . . Me Too         Reply with quote

I'd love to hear more information about the Ritter too. I have a feeling that this is one of those models with a low reservation #. It wasn't the first design that jumped out at me as a must have. However, after looking at the sketches over and over . . . AND over again, I've come to believe that the Ritter is going to be one of the nicest production pieces of the lot. mmmm. Add a magenta grip to it or go custom w/orange, don't ask me why (orange just feels right), and it would be perfect. Jason like.

I'd love to add one to my collection. The Ritter is now at the top of my Albion list followed by the Landgraf. I was just about to order one when the Beserkr came out which is so unique in the market that I couldn't pass it up. Plus I have a 2 year wait for my Templ Viking, so I'm hoping the Beserkr will make the wait seem a little shorter.

Man, I should have pre-ordered the Ritter. Only that little voice of reason, in this case my loving wife, stopped me from this temptation. Sometimes swordaholics need help. Hello my name is Jason and I'm a swordaholic.
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Bill Grandy
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PostPosted: Sat 20 Mar, 2004 8:06 am    Post subject: Re: Me Too . . . Me Too         Reply with quote

Jason Elrod wrote:
...or go custom w/orange, don't ask me why (orange just feels right), and it would be perfect.


Oh, you would ruin a perfectly good sword with an orange grip Jason, now wouldn't you? (I'm just impressed you aren't thinking bright yellow.) Razz

I think this particular model is one that's not going to jump out in the same way so many of the other NG swords do because the basic design is one we've seen produced, unlike most of the others. MRL had a similar design, I believe, and there's the DT2132. While I'm certain the Albion piece will be in a completely different level, the other swords tend to be more eye catching to collectors at the moment just because no one else produces anything like them.

Meaning that the Ritter and designs like it will be less common, and eventually people will start to re-appreciate it, and you guys should jump on the boat now so you can act snobby later that you had such impeccable taste first. Wink

Oh, and Jason, go for a rhinestone studded plaid grip. It'd look stunning.
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Roger Hooper




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PostPosted: Sat 20 Mar, 2004 8:29 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I don't think type XI replicas/recreations have been big sellers over the past few years. Perhaps the reason is that their COG's are, in general, the furthest down the blade of all types, making them the ultimate offensive cavalry weapon. Many who want that kind of sword may go with a Xa instead, or even go for a Grete Sword.

An orange grip, huh? Most of us seem to go for more muted colors these days, but back then, brighter and even gaudy colors were considered to be just fine.
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Markus Haider




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PostPosted: Sat 20 Mar, 2004 9:32 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The Ritter is still on my shortlist (together with the Beserkr), and might be the next sword after I get my current ordered swords from Albion.
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Jason Elrod




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PostPosted: Sat 20 Mar, 2004 10:13 am    Post subject: LOL         Reply with quote

"Oh, and Jason, go for a rhinestone studded plaid grip. It'd look stunning."

Man, that would look fantastic with my white Elvis Jump suit and fuzzy bunnie slippers. I'll thow on some Dread Zeppelin, turn up the volume, sing off key, and do some cutting in my backyard. My new neighbors will love me.

"Perhaps the reason is that their COG's are, in general, the furthest down the blade of all types, making them the ultimate offensive cavalry weapon"

Good point Roger. I think this has a lot to do with it. Most people seem to want their swords to handle like a race car instead of being designed to handle within their intended historical parameters. I think we've been spoiled by all of the great smiths out there. . . of course I wouldn't have it any other way. What a great time to be a sword collector.

"An orange grip, huh? Most of us seem to go for more muted colors these days, but back then, brighter and even gaudy colors were considered to be just fine."

Orange is my reaction to all of these muted colors. There are just too many blued fittings w/ox blood grip swords out there (Lord knows that I own one). I'm just bored with all the same colors. How many black wrapped or brown wrapped swords do you own? I want to see more light colors, blue, green, and yes Bill, yellow. Yep when I finally order the A&A Two Hander, I'm going for a yellow grip.

Pimp'n it up Baby!!
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Bill Grandy
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PostPosted: Sat 20 Mar, 2004 7:44 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Ha, as much crap as I give you about it Jason, the funny thing is that I actually think a yellow grip would look good. I shocked myself when I saw Albion's new colors and actually thought, "Magenta... that wouldn't look too bad..."

I think some good points have been raised about how most modern collectors want their swords to feel a certain way that isn't always consistent with historical examples. Most modern collectors have not gotten a chance to heft an original, and likewise are making educated (and sometimes not so educated) guesses on how a sword is supposed to handle. Add to the fact that not all swords were used in the same way, or from the same position (e.g. cavalry vs. foot soldier), and this makes it harder for the average sword owner to really understand when a sword feels "different" that it isn't necessarily a matter of good/bad balance, but of what the intended use is.
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Jeremiah Swanger




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PostPosted: Sun 21 Mar, 2004 2:24 am    Post subject: Disgusted...         Reply with quote

Roger Hooper wrote:
I don't think type XI replicas/recreations have been big sellers over the past few years. Perhaps the reason is that their COG's are, in general, the furthest down the blade of all types, making them the ultimate offensive cavalry weapon. Many who want that kind of sword may go with a Xa instead, or even go for a Grete Sword.



Yeah, some crazy Irish guy in Washington started making these real featherweight, totally wussy swords that caught on because they were the extreme opposite of much of the market at the time (just pickin' on ya, Gus) Razz

But, yeah, the typical type XI blade (excluding XIa's... which I don't think ANYONE makes) is completely and unapologetically a cavalry sword. As for the Xa's, it looks to me like the line separating a Xa like Albion's "Templar" and the type XI as Oakeshott described them, is a very blurry one. In fact, if the fuller were a bit more narrow, the Templar could roughly fit into the Type XI category, the way I see it...

As for Grete swords, yeah, I'll concede that they are decent cavalry weapons, though a long-bladed single-handed sword may still be more preferred for this purpose- you have the added security of a nice, wide pommel sandwiching your hand with the cross. Definitely feels more secure to *me* anyway.

But, to each is own. I only pray that enough Ritters will sell to keep them around long enough for me to scarf one up... Worried

"Rhaegar fought nobly.
Rhaegar fought valiantly.
Rhaegar fought honorably.
And Rhaegar died."

- G.R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire
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Roger Hooper




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PostPosted: Sun 21 Mar, 2004 8:04 am    Post subject: Re: Disgusted...         Reply with quote

Quote:
Jeremiah Swanger

Yeah, some crazy Irish guy in Washington started making these real featherweight, totally wussy swords that caught on because they were the extreme opposite of much of the market at the time (just pickin' on ya, Gus) Razz


Actually Gus has made a few type XI's. You'll find a couple of them over at www.leesarmoury.com - including the Mac XI, one of his oldest models. I don't think any of his XI's were that popular cpmpared with his other creations.
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Brian M




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PostPosted: Sun 21 Mar, 2004 8:54 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I believe that the Castellan, Templar, and Ritter/Count are the only NG swords yet to have any components (blade or hilt) finished, but I'm sure things are moving along on schedule.
I confess that I'm not big on the Ritter, since I am prejudiced against "cocked hat" pommels, and the NG Gaddhjalt (which I have) fits my image of a type-XI better than the Ritter. Although I suppose the width-of-fuller is more Xa.
If Albion continues to bring out underrepresented types, who knows, down the road we might see an XIa.

Brian M
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Jeremiah Swanger




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PostPosted: Sun 21 Mar, 2004 9:49 am    Post subject: Re: Disgusted...         Reply with quote

Roger Hooper wrote:
Quote:
Jeremiah Swanger

Yeah, some crazy Irish guy in Washington started making these real featherweight, totally wussy swords that caught on because they were the extreme opposite of much of the market at the time (just pickin' on ya, Gus) Razz


Actually Gus has made a few type XI's. You'll find a couple of them over at www.leesarmoury.com - including the Mac XI, one of his oldest models. I don't think any of his XI's were that popular cpmpared with his other creations.


Ooh, I like! Cool

"Rhaegar fought nobly.
Rhaegar fought valiantly.
Rhaegar fought honorably.
And Rhaegar died."

- G.R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire
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PostPosted: Sun 21 Mar, 2004 9:52 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Brian M wrote:
I believe that the Castellan, Templar, and Ritter/Count are the only NG swords yet to have any components (blade or hilt) finished, but I'm sure things are moving along on schedule.
I confess that I'm not big on the Ritter, since I am prejudiced against "cocked hat" pommels, and the NG Gaddhjalt (which I have) fits my image of a type-XI better than the Ritter. Although I suppose the width-of-fuller is more Xa.
If Albion continues to bring out underrepresented types, who knows, down the road we might see an XIa.

Brian M


I ordered the Castellan. I may have been the only one. Anyone else?? I usually prefer finesse swords, and the Castellan may turn out to be the ultimate example of Finesse. I think it is going to be a great looking, lightning fast, stop on a dime, tougher than it looks kind of sword. I await its creation with high anticipation and gnawing impatience.

I'd love to see someone recreate a type XIa - short, fat XI with a skinny fuller. I think Oakeshott only has one example of an XIa in Records.
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Jeremiah Swanger




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PostPosted: Sun 21 Mar, 2004 9:57 am    Post subject: Hmm...         Reply with quote

Brian M wrote:
I believe that the Castellan, Templar, and Ritter/Count are the only NG swords yet to have any components (blade or hilt) finished, but I'm sure things are moving along on schedule.
I confess that I'm not big on the Ritter, since I am prejudiced against "cocked hat" pommels, and the NG Gaddhjalt (which I have) fits my image of a type-XI better than the Ritter. Although I suppose the width-of-fuller is more Xa.
If Albion continues to bring out underrepresented types, who knows, down the road we might see an XIa.

Brian M


Even though they're both tipped, I still find it a little difficult to mistake either the Gaddhjalt or the Norman for an XI- the blade profile just doesn't quite fit. I still believe, however, that the Templar is cross-dressing as an XI- it is just so very close. The blade profile just screams XI- about the only thing that keeps it in Xa is the width of the fuller. I think it is the most elegant blade of all the long-fullered blades in the line-up, truth be told...

Also, keep in mind that Albion doesn't intend all of their swords to fall neatly into a category- Oakeshott's system is both effective and robust, but even a bunch of historical swords just didn't fall neatly into any of the specified categories. In fact, the first time I saw the Ritter, the first Roman Numeral that popped into my mind was XIII...!

"Rhaegar fought nobly.
Rhaegar fought valiantly.
Rhaegar fought honorably.
And Rhaegar died."

- G.R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire
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Brian M




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PostPosted: Sun 21 Mar, 2004 5:21 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

True, the Ritter kinda says "XIIIb" to me at first glance. But then the design was picked to be a "tweener" that could also be hilted as a XIIIa. I recall that Peter J. said that the sword that was the main inspiration for the Ritter was 4 inches longer.
At first I thought that the blade profile of the Templar was more like the "classic XI" (straight taper and spade point) than the Gaddhjalt (long parabolic point). However, in "TSITAOC," 2 of 4 (possibly 3 of 4?) of the XIs shown in the plates exhibit a parabolic taper to the point. (I don't own "Records" yet.) Thus the Gaddhjalt differs from at least some examples of XIs only in the fuller. Furthermore, both the length of blade (36" vs 33.5") and the hilt form of the Gaddhjalt say "XI" to me more than those of the Templar.

Regards,
Brian M
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Jeremiah Swanger




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PostPosted: Sun 21 Mar, 2004 6:45 pm    Post subject: Actually...         Reply with quote

Brian M wrote:
True, the Ritter kinda says "XIIIb" to me at first glance. But then the design was picked to be a "tweener" that could also be hilted as a XIIIa. I recall that Peter J. said that the sword that was the main inspiration for the Ritter was 4 inches longer.
At first I thought that the blade profile of the Templar was more like the "classic XI" (straight taper and spade point) than the Gaddhjalt (long parabolic point). However, in "TSITAOC," 2 of 4 (possibly 3 of 4?) of the XIs shown in the plates exhibit a parabolic taper to the point. (I don't own "Records" yet.) Thus the Gaddhjalt differs from at least some examples of XIs only in the fuller. Furthermore, both the length of blade (36" vs 33.5") and the hilt form of the Gaddhjalt say "XI" to me more than those of the Templar.

Regards,
Brian M


I'm not sure what it is, but it feels like XIIIa and XIIIb are the only ones recognized in the XIII category- to me, the blade length and grip length of the Ritter (which lies somewhere between 4" and 5" in length, if I remember correctly) would suggest a XIII without an 'a' or 'b' designation. Taken from Bjorn Hellqvist's website-
Quote:
This type has blades with almost parallel edges running to a rounded point, and where the tang is longer than those of the usual single-handed variety.


Either way, I don't think the type really matters in this particular circumstance- the point is that it really is a truely wicked sword of Teutonic origin that probably would have been quite devastating as a cavalry sidearm, and one that I would really like to own as soon as I can finish scraping together the funds. With the exception of Del Tin, the cocked-hat pommel doesn't show up in very many reproductions. This is also the first time I've seen it with a Type 2 cross, which I think is an even better compliment to the pommel than the spatulate variety.

"Rhaegar fought nobly.
Rhaegar fought valiantly.
Rhaegar fought honorably.
And Rhaegar died."

- G.R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire
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PostPosted: Sun 21 Mar, 2004 6:48 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Going by how much I like my Vinland, I don't imagine that anyones really gonna be much dissappointed with any type that's purchased and hey, it's high time more folk started to mount up for some good ole' First Crusade style hack and slash! Happy As I always say, " the Age of Mail will always Prevail!!!" WTF?! Laughing Out Loud You may all cut me down now...
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Brian M




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PostPosted: Sun 21 Mar, 2004 10:59 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Jeremiah, more power to you! Saving the dough I mean. I'm in the same spot.

Information on grip length of Type-XIIIs from TSITAOC:
Type XIII: average of 6 inches (one can assume a range of around 5.5-6.5 inches?)
Type-XIIIa: average of 7.75 inches (range stated to be 6.5-9)
Type-XIIIb: Stated only to be "...of the ordinary, short one-handed length." I take that to mean 4-5 inches, a figure that Oakeshott applies elsewhere in TSITAOC regarding single-handers.
I'm guessing the Ritter will come in around 4.25-4.5, which, if once wants to look at it as some form of XIII, places it squarely in the XIIIb range.
Ironically, way back when I asked Peter some questions about what turned out to be the Ritter/Count blade. (This was before the NG Medieval lineup had been designed.) I asked him what type of XIII he was considering, since I myself was thinking "straight XIII." Peter (loosely paraphrasing here) negatived that by saying if he were to design a "straight XIII" for the NG line it would be an unmistakeable one. I figured he had in mind a particular sword as an inspiration, or perhaps he had some very definite criteria in mind which the Ritter/Count blade didn't suit.
I'm interested in more information about the "straight XIII." Particularly the reasons for the "hand-and-a-quarter" grip length. Was the extra length more for counterbalance (in single-hand usage)? Would one grip or partly grip the typical wheel pommel (for two-hand usage)? Was it just a regional style?

Regards,
Brian M[/quote]
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Jeremiah Swanger




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PostPosted: Mon 22 Mar, 2004 12:46 am    Post subject: Interesting...         Reply with quote

Brian M wrote:
Jeremiah, more power to you! Saving the dough I mean. I'm in the same spot.

Information on grip length of Type-XIIIs from TSITAOC:
Type XIII: average of 6 inches (one can assume a range of around 5.5-6.5 inches?)
Type-XIIIa: average of 7.75 inches (range stated to be 6.5-9)
Type-XIIIb: Stated only to be "...of the ordinary, short one-handed length." I take that to mean 4-5 inches, a figure that Oakeshott applies elsewhere in TSITAOC regarding single-handers.
I'm guessing the Ritter will come in around 4.25-4.5, which, if once wants to look at it as some form of XIII, places it squarely in the XIIIb range.
Ironically, way back when I asked Peter some questions about what turned out to be the Ritter/Count blade. (This was before the NG Medieval lineup had been designed.) I asked him what type of XIII he was considering, since I myself was thinking "straight XIII." Peter (loosely paraphrasing here) negatived that by saying if he were to design a "straight XIII" for the NG line it would be an unmistakeable one. I figured he had in mind a particular sword as an inspiration, or perhaps he had some very definite criteria in mind which the Ritter/Count blade didn't suit.
I'm interested in more information about the "straight XIII." Particularly the reasons for the "hand-and-a-quarter" grip length. Was the extra length more for counterbalance (in single-hand usage)? Would one grip or partly grip the typical wheel pommel (for two-hand usage)? Was it just a regional style?

Regards,
Brian M



Hi Brian,

Thanks for that interesting "insider info" regarding the possible "Sraight XIII", I think that the long-gripped single-handers are very under-represented in the modern reproductions market- especially XIII's and XVIIIa's, both of which sport grips about 5 or 6 inches. I would think the longer grip may be a comfort thing, especially when considering the extra room needed for gloves/gauntlets. I, for one, have a bit of difficulty squeezing my hand onto a 4" grip when wearing my old leather work gloves. This is assuming I'm using the "hammer" grip- palming it like a Viking sword has come pretty naturally to me after a while Laughing Out Loud

Or, it could have been a means of counterweight without having to make a pommel so big it would trash any elegant proportion (a certain famous type XIX comes to mind), in terms of aesthetics. Being associated with social/governmental status, a sword still had to look good, you know...

Though this is largely speculation on my part. I, for one, would like to hear something from the experts on this matter.

"Rhaegar fought nobly.
Rhaegar fought valiantly.
Rhaegar fought honorably.
And Rhaegar died."

- G.R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire
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PostPosted: Mon 22 Mar, 2004 2:27 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Regarding the Ritter:

The intitial idea for this sword was to make something along the line of those swords that show charactersitics of both XIII(b) and XI. We can see these in Illuminations and some originals do survive. Oakeshotts typology allowes for some margin in the classification. Oakeshott himself changed the classification of some swords between publications. Some very similar swords have also been placed in two, or even three different groups.

I have a soft spot for those blades with wide and thin points: they tend to be very good cutters. It is a feature that is interesting to make the most of. To make the blade managable you need to work with distal taper and width, depth and length of fuller. Just where the blade finally ends up regarding the typoligical classification is less an issue to me than making sure it will preform well. I want it to express the character of similar historical blades Ive seen, and these are, as we know, not originally made with the Oakeshott typology in mind....Wink

The grip of the ritter will not be very long, some 4 inches or thereabout. If the grip is too long the width of the pommel will begin to be a problem: you need to grasp it with the pommel close to the heel of the hand or it might start digging into your wrist. It is also possible to grasp it as you would a viking sword of course, with the pommel resting in the base of your hand.
There will also be a version of this blade with long tang, mounted as the Count: a nimble sized war-sword. Something for those who are not comfortable with the sheer size of the other greate swords in the line.

The heft and balance of the Ritter will be pretty close to the Gaddhjalt, I should think. A sword that is primarily meant for use from horse back, but will perform well as long as you use wide swings. A sword for the offensive to be used with a shield. It is not sluggish despite some blade precense (this is helped by a low amount of mass in the point area), but the length of the blade will demand more dedication in the swing to bring it up to speed.
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PostPosted: Mon 22 Mar, 2004 2:46 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Brian M wrote:
...Ironically, way back when I asked Peter some questions about what turned out to be the Ritter/Count blade. (This was before the NG Medieval lineup had been designed.) I asked him what type of XIII he was considering, since I myself was thinking "straight XIII." Peter (loosely paraphrasing here) negatived that by saying if he were to design a "straight XIII" for the NG line it would be an unmistakeable one. I figured he had in mind a particular sword as an inspiration, or perhaps he had some very definite criteria in mind which the Ritter/Count blade didn't suit.
I'm interested in more information about the "straight XIII." Particularly the reasons for the "hand-and-a-quarter" grip length. Was the extra length more for counterbalance (in single-hand usage)? Would one grip or partly grip the typical wheel pommel (for two-hand usage)? Was it just a regional style?

Regards,
Brian M
[/quote]

Brian,
There is still room for a clear cut type XIII in the line of Next generation swords. I do not know yet when we will realize this, nor is there any definite ideas as to what shape it will have. I see no reason to deviate much from the norm as they are both attractive, effective and with a strong character.
The sword I have in mind has a broad and stout blade, not too long (some 80-82 cm/ 32 inches?) and a grip that is some 15 cm/ 6 inches long. The wheel pommel might indeed be grupped, fully or partially, when using two hands. I find the flat shape of the pommel actually helps in determining the direction of the edge.
As to regional style, I cannot say. I would guess these belong quite firmly in the group of german style swords. Id be interested to know more about this as well. Ideas, anyone?
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