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Alan Schiff
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Location: Las Vegas
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PostPosted: Tue 06 Jan, 2009 1:18 pm    Post subject: Help peening a sword         Reply with quote

Hello all! I've been working on my first project for about a month now, and I've finally finished getting the guard, pommel, and handle all done. This morning I clamped it in my vise and started to peen the end of the tang, but I've come across a problem. Apparently I left more tang on the end than was necessary, and now there is a space between the peen and the back of the pommel. The space is about 1/8 of an inch long.

My question to you who know more on the subject than I do, is what should I do now? Should I continue to peen the end down until it meets the pommel? Or should I cut the peen away and start over with a shorter piece of the tang protruding from the pommel? Or is there something else I could do?

Thanks in advance for any advice, it's really appreciated.
Alan
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Tue 06 Jan, 2009 1:33 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

File it down a bit (that takes it down slowly--if you accidentally take off too much in cutting, you can't put it back). As you peen it (cold) it gets harder and more brittle. If you keep going to bridge that gap there's a good chance the edges of the peen will start to split. Judging how much tang to leave exposed for peening can be tough...
-Sean

"Everywhere I have searched for peace and nowhere found it, except in a corner with a book"- Thomas a Kempis (d. 1471)
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Arne Focke
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PostPosted: Tue 06 Jan, 2009 1:36 pm    Post subject: Re: Help peening a sword         Reply with quote

Alan Schiff wrote:
Should I continue to peen the end down until it meets the pommel? Or should I cut the peen away and start over with a shorter piece of the tang protruding from the pommel?


Both should work. But when working it farther down there is a risk that the "mushroom" might break at the edges.

If you have the feeling there is enough metal left after you cut off the old peen, i would go for that solution.

If necessary you could shorten the grip for 2mm or even a little more(see i have problems thinking in inches Wink), that wouldn't change it much and you would have the amount of metal you needed.

So schön und inhaltsreich der Beruf eines Archäologen ist, so hart ist auch seine Arbeit, die keinen Achtstundentag kennt! (Wolfgang Kimmig in: Die Heuneburg an der oberen Donau, Stuttgart 1983)
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Alan Schiff
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Location: Las Vegas
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PostPosted: Tue 06 Jan, 2009 1:43 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks for the replies. Filing it sounds like the best solution to me, then. I definitely don't want the edges of the peen to crack, so I guess I'll remove the current peen and start over.
Thanks again,
Alan
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James Arlen Gillaspie
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Location: upstate NY
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PostPosted: Tue 06 Jan, 2009 1:53 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Many real swords have a sort of 'button' that is between the pommel and the peened over tang. I think this helps preserve tang length that might be needed later if the weapon needs to be disassembled and reassembled for any reason.
jamesarlen.com
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Alan Schiff
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Location: Las Vegas
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PostPosted: Tue 06 Jan, 2009 2:51 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

So I sanded the peen away, as well as some of the tang, and did the peen over again, and it worked. Now the sword is finished, and the fittings are nice and tight.
I actually thought about using a peen block/button, but had decided against it because of aesthetic reasons.

Thanks again to everyone who replied, it was very helpful.
Alan
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Tue 06 Jan, 2009 6:14 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Congratulations! That first peen is a daunting one. Yours certainly turned out better than mine!
-Sean

"Everywhere I have searched for peace and nowhere found it, except in a corner with a book"- Thomas a Kempis (d. 1471)
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Alan Schiff
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Location: Las Vegas
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PostPosted: Wed 07 Jan, 2009 9:42 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks Sean. Now that I know what I'm doing, it should be easier in the future, if I decide to do another project. Once again, thanks to everyone who replied.

Alan
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Chris Fields




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PostPosted: Wed 07 Jan, 2009 9:53 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

pics!?! =)

Another option you could of done is to add some heat to that peen, get it a dull red and that will take away the worry of it splitting.
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Alan Schiff
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Location: Las Vegas
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PostPosted: Wed 07 Jan, 2009 10:06 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Chris, I thought about hot-peening it, but faced two problems: 1. I don't have a torch right now, and 2. I was worried that if I heated the tang, it would burn the wood of the handle (put on before the pommel). I have a small forge, which I haven't used yet, but since the handle had to go on before the pommel, I couldn't think of a way to heat it in the forge.

Pics coming as soon as I can figure out how to post them.

Thanks,
Alan
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Alan Schiff
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Location: Las Vegas
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PostPosted: Wed 07 Jan, 2009 12:07 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Let's see if the pics work now.
Here are the stats for the finished product:
Overall length: 38 1/8 inches
Blade length: 32 1/4 inches
Hilt overall: 5 7/8 inches
Grip: 4 inches
Blade width at base: 1 7/8 inches
Width before tip: 1 inch
Width at flare: 2 1/4 inches
Weight: 3lbs 2oz
Center of Gravity: 6 inches from guard

A little heavier and not as well balanced as I would have liked. Not too slow in the hand, but not really fast either.

Whole sword


Close up of hilt


A look at the peen
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Luka Borscak




Location: Croatia
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PostPosted: Wed 07 Jan, 2009 3:19 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I actually like how this fantasy blade shape goes with historical fittings. Nice work. Happy I thought about ordering an Orcrist but I have no means to make or put together a hilt somebody else doing is not cheap so it doesn't pays off. Worried
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Alan Schiff
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Location: Las Vegas
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PostPosted: Wed 07 Jan, 2009 4:46 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks! I really like how it came out, looks-wise. I wasn't sure about doing it myself either, and my metal-working skills are nonexistent. The pommel came from the moat sale as well, and the guard is from another sword I was getting rid of anyway. All I had to do was widen the slot in the guard (I used a file) and drill a larger hole in the pommel. Except for those two little things, there was no metalwork involved. The grip is sandwiched poplar covered in green leather.
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