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Michael Pikula
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Location: Madison, WI
Joined: 07 Jun 2008

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PostPosted: Mon 23 Mar, 2009 7:48 pm    Post subject: New Work, Pattern welded viking sword         Reply with quote

Hello again, Here is a pattern welded viking sword that I finished up last week. Inspiration for the sword was drawn from the sword on page 52 in Swords of the Viking Age, while not being an exact replica I did find myself looking at images of the sword and trying to get a feel for proportions and possible use. Mr. Peirce stated that "The cutting edges are massively wide and thick....." which is one feature that I was going for in the design of the blade. The blade is made of O1/L6, the fuller has a herring bone pattern in the fuller and points up on both sides of the blade. The fuller is the only section that is pattern welded with L6/O1, the edge is solid L6 and was composed of two pieces, if you look close you can see the welding line where two edges where welded together at the tip. (it is solid, the weld just etched when I etched the blade and didn't feel it needed to be sanded out)

I decided to stick with the same hilt type as the original, however I didn't really follow the exact lines and choose to use twisted silver wire between the pommel. The pommel is a two piece pommel and the rivet head is recessed and ground flat, the tang is peened over on the bottom pommel and then covered with the upper pommel. I used some wrought iron for the fittings and slag deposits can be seen in some areas, Personally I like them and think the grain and slag add character to what must have been a brutal, yet simple weapon of war!

This past weekend I was down in MD at the Fire and Brimstone hammer-in and several of us decided to test the blade out so we chopped through a 2x4 a couple of times and did some test cutting with the blade and it held up very very well. The edge suffered no damage, the surface cleaned up pretty easy with a grey scotch bright pad, the hilt stayed tight, and the blade stayed straight. It may look pretty but it is very capable of actual use in addition to being eye candy.

If you have any questions or comments please feel free. I can take additional pictures if anyone wants a close up of some detail. Also worth mentioning that I am working on a wood core scabbard for this blade… All I have left to do is wrap the wood in leather, I will leave scabbard fittings for someone who can make them better then me! This piece is currently for sale.

Here is some info:

Overall: 35 /16”
Blade: 28 1/2”
Fuller length: 24”
Width at guard: 1 3/4”
Width 2” from tip: 1”
Weight: 2lb. 7oz.
CoP: 18 3/4” from guard
Balancing Point: 5” from guard

Might be worth mentioning that the pattern welded seax from last month is still for sale : http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t...highlight=



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Last edited by Michael Pikula on Wed 25 Mar, 2009 7:23 pm; edited 3 times in total
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Michael Pikula
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Location: Madison, WI
Joined: 07 Jun 2008

Posts: 411

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PostPosted: Tue 24 Mar, 2009 6:39 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Chris Moss was able to get a video of me doing some cutting last weekend so I thought I would post the link in case anyone wanted to take a look. Please don't judge my lack of form too harshly, it's all about the blade, not me!

http://s23.photobucket.com/albums/b370/Social...rin135.flv

http://s23.photobucket.com/albums/b370/Social...rin137.flv
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Jared Smith




Location: Tennessee
Joined: 10 Feb 2005
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PostPosted: Tue 24 Mar, 2009 1:37 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

We'll it looks very good. The video performance appears to affirm successful welding integrity and good heat treat.

Having only looked at text photos of originals, the fullers strike me as more "deep" rather than "shallow" (historical), but, I would still be thrilled had I made it. Also, I would expect it to be stiff in thrust. I can't tell from the photos, but, are the cutting edges homogeneous steel, or multi-layered (non manipulated) pattern welded?

Absence of evidence is not necessarily evidence of absence!
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Michael Pikula
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Location: Madison, WI
Joined: 07 Jun 2008

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PostPosted: Tue 24 Mar, 2009 2:36 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi Jared, the fuller is a little bit more deep then what I think perhaps the standard viking blade could have been, however looking at the information from Swords of the Viking Age and doing proportion equations I don't think that the fuller is terribly off from what the original may be like. When I did my drawing and including about a 2mm thickness at the bottom of the fuller this is how the blade turned out. The Text also said "The cutting edges are massively wide and thick....." so between the size of contact wheels that I have, and all the other factors I don't think I am too off from what the original may be like.

Like always, looking at a picture and several paragraphs is not by any means the best solution for creating an exact replica, I'm just doing the best with what I got.

I haven't tried thrusting with the blade but the thickness of the edges does make the blade pretty stiff but not overly so in my opinion.

The edges are mono L6.
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Jared Smith




Location: Tennessee
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PostPosted: Tue 24 Mar, 2009 4:11 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Michael Pikula wrote:
The Text also said "The cutting edges are massively wide and thick....." so between the size of contact wheels that I have, and all the other factors I don't think I am too off from what the original may be like..


Yes.. I was reading that text last night. The H style pommel is what I think this is. I thought the center of the cross sections looked pretty thick. As one progressed towards 10th-11th century (Q through S pommels in the text photo examples), the appearance of the fullers seemed more deep like what your blades' photos appear to me. Either way, it is historically plausible. A lot of design elements from Viking era swords can be found in migration era examples. The increased management of blade mass distribution (tapers, and fullers) stands out to me as one of the more significant developments in true Viking era.

Absence of evidence is not necessarily evidence of absence!
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