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Aaron Schneiker




Location: Davis Junction, IL
Joined: 23 Nov 2005
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PostPosted: Fri 09 Oct, 2009 9:26 am    Post subject: Inlay Material on Viking Hilt         Reply with quote

I would like to add some inlay work to a Viking sword hilt. I really do not like the look of the "red/yellow" metals in these inlays, so I wanted to stay away from copper, bronze, etc... Ideally I would like to have a lined pattern of alternating iron/silver. Silver is quite pricey and I was wondering if tin would be a historically plausible substitute? That would give me that nice "white" metal look to contrast the "black" metal look of the iron. Appreciate any help here. Also, if anyone has any historic examples that use tin for an inlay material I would like to see them.

Thanks,
-Aaron
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Doug Lester




Location: Decatur, IL
Joined: 12 Dec 2007

Posts: 166

PostPosted: Fri 09 Oct, 2009 10:43 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I remember that traces of tin were found as inlays on the hilts of some Viking age swords. I don't know if they used something like a leaded pewter but I thiink that I'd avoid that alloy because of the lead toxisity.
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Paul Hansen




Location: The Netherlands
Joined: 17 Mar 2005
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PostPosted: Fri 09 Oct, 2009 2:21 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I don't know what the current silver price is, but last time I bought some silver wire, I was pleasantly surprised. Maybe it's worth a second look?
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Michael Pikula
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Location: Madison, WI
Joined: 07 Jun 2008

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PostPosted: Fri 09 Oct, 2009 4:10 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I picked up 2 feet or 18guage half hard sterling silver square wire for $8, I think that is very reasonable.
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Ben Potter
Industry Professional



Location: Altadena, CA
Joined: 29 Sep 2008

Posts: 342

PostPosted: Fri 09 Oct, 2009 5:50 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I would go for the silver as it isn't that expensive, compared with how much time and effort you will be putting in to the inlay work you might as well use the best.

That said, you could also use some of the non toxic silver solder used in copper pipe pluming.

Good luck with your project.

Ben Potter Bladesmith

It's not that I would trade my lot
For any other man's,
Nor that I will be ashamed
Of my work torn hands-

For I have chosen the path I tread
Knowing it would be steep,
And I will take the joys thereof
And the consequences reap.
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Perry L. Goss




Location: Missouri
Joined: 15 May 2004
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Posts: 109

PostPosted: Fri 09 Oct, 2009 6:48 pm    Post subject: inlay material         Reply with quote

Aaron:

Just one supplier here. Have used them before, very speedy delivery. That is a good suggestion too about silver solder. In a pinch, hate to say it but have used it too!

http://ccsilver.com/silver/swire/round.html#round


Thanks.

Scottish: Ballentine, Black, Cameron, Chisholm, Cunningham, Crawford, Grant, Jaffray, MacFarlane, MacGillivray, MacKay-Reay/Strathnaver, Munro, Robertson, Sinclair, Wallace

Irish/Welsh: Bodkin, Mendenhall, Hackworth

Swiss: Goss von Rothenfluh, Naff von Zurich und Solland von Appenzel
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Ben Potter
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Location: Altadena, CA
Joined: 29 Sep 2008

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PostPosted: Sat 10 Oct, 2009 9:40 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I get my silver from Otto Frei They have good customer service.
Ben Potter Bladesmith

It's not that I would trade my lot
For any other man's,
Nor that I will be ashamed
Of my work torn hands-

For I have chosen the path I tread
Knowing it would be steep,
And I will take the joys thereof
And the consequences reap.
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Peter Remling





Joined: 28 May 2004

Posts: 50

PostPosted: Sun 11 Oct, 2009 6:11 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

You might also try Ivory. Thin pieces of ivory are easy to work with and can be picked up on Ebay. While new ivory is banned, these pieces generally come from old piano (key laminates) and are perfect for small inlay projects.
Even pertrified mammoth tusk can be picked up for very reasonable prices if you only want a small sliver/splinters for inlaying.
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Ben Potter
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Location: Altadena, CA
Joined: 29 Sep 2008

Posts: 342

PostPosted: Mon 12 Oct, 2009 7:38 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Peter Remling wrote:
You might also try Ivory. Thin pieces of ivory are easy to work with and can be picked up on Ebay. While new ivory is banned, these pieces generally come from old piano (key laminates) and are perfect for small inlay projects.
Even pertrified mammoth tusk can be picked up for very reasonable prices if you only want a small sliver/splinters for inlaying.


How do you inlay bone/ivory into a guard? Or did I miss something?

Ben Potter Bladesmith

It's not that I would trade my lot
For any other man's,
Nor that I will be ashamed
Of my work torn hands-

For I have chosen the path I tread
Knowing it would be steep,
And I will take the joys thereof
And the consequences reap.
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Peter Remling





Joined: 28 May 2004

Posts: 50

PostPosted: Mon 12 Oct, 2009 9:44 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Ben Potter wrote:
Peter Remling wrote:
You might also try Ivory. Thin pieces of ivory are easy to work with and can be picked up on Ebay. While new ivory is banned, these pieces generally come from old piano (key laminates) and are perfect for small inlay projects.
Even pertrified mammoth tusk can be picked up for very reasonable prices if you only want a small sliver/splinters for inlaying.


How do you inlay bone/ivory into a guard? Or did I miss something?


Ben, not really sure of your question. Are you asking how to inlay something or if there are any references to inlaying in guards?

If we are talking how to, it;s the same as you would if inlaying bone or ivory into wood. Cut out the desired shape then carve or scribe out the same shape into the guard, glue/epoxy the piece into it's setting and file sand the surface to match the surrounding. If you are talking about having an overhanging lip to retain the piece like you could with a soft metal or liquid that's going to harden then no, it would just have the adhesive unless you were making a layered (sandwiched) guard,.

If it was referenced pieces I can add some at a later time.
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Aaron Schneiker




Location: Davis Junction, IL
Joined: 23 Nov 2005
Reading list: 4 books

Posts: 52

PostPosted: Tue 13 Oct, 2009 7:37 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks for the input. I think i'll spring for the silver to do the final project. In the mean time, I have a bunch of tin wire that I got for free that I am going to practice with so I don't waste any of the silver. Another question, what is the best way to get a good undercut in steel for the inlay? I am able to get a clean square groove cut in, but I am having trouble getting a good undercut to hold the wire.
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Ben Potter
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Location: Altadena, CA
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Posts: 342

PostPosted: Tue 13 Oct, 2009 9:14 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Quote:

If we are talking how to, it;s the same as you would if inlaying bone or ivory into wood. Cut out the desired shape then carve or scribe out the same shape into the guard, glue/epoxy the piece into it's setting and file sand the surface to match the surrounding. If you are talking about having an overhanging lip to retain the piece like you could with a soft metal or liquid that's going to harden then no, it would just have the adhesive unless you were making a layered (sandwiched) guard,.

If it was referenced pieces I can add some at a later time.


Thanks, I had never thought of inlaying bone into metals. Do you know of any historical examples of this?[/quote]

Ben Potter Bladesmith

It's not that I would trade my lot
For any other man's,
Nor that I will be ashamed
Of my work torn hands-

For I have chosen the path I tread
Knowing it would be steep,
And I will take the joys thereof
And the consequences reap.
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Peter Remling





Joined: 28 May 2004

Posts: 50

PostPosted: Wed 14 Oct, 2009 7:01 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

There are several text references but I'm having difficulty finding pics of historic pieces. We do know they used narwhale horns and walrus tusk for cups and inlaying in other metal goods (plates, platters and goblets) and that they did use other metals and stones to inlay in guards and pommels so it doesn't take much to believe they would also use walrus tusk or even elephant tusk, if they traded for it.

Here's a piece of modern eye candy

http://i301.photobucket.com/albums/nn46/remli...yinlay.jpg
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Elling Polden




Location: Bergen, Norway
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PostPosted: Wed 14 Oct, 2009 7:24 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The Walros tusks mostly came from greenland, and so would appear in the late viking age/ early medevial period.
Most innlays that I've heard of where silver, or failing that, bronze. Remember that in this period, cost was a pluss. Tin or lead innlays on a sword would be a bit like a gangsta with bling made out of plastic.

I know there are lead jewlery and beltmounts from the medevial period, but I can't recall seeing tin or pewter.

"this [fight] looks curious, almost like a game. See, they are looking around them before they fall, to find a dry spot to fall on, or they are falling on their shields. Can you see blood on their cloths and weapons? No. This must be trickery."
-Reidar Sendeman, from King Sverre's Saga, 1201
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Ben Potter
Industry Professional



Location: Altadena, CA
Joined: 29 Sep 2008

Posts: 342

PostPosted: Wed 14 Oct, 2009 9:52 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Aaron Schneiker wrote:
Thanks for the input. I think i'll spring for the silver to do the final project. In the mean time, I have a bunch of tin wire that I got for free that I am going to practice with so I don't waste any of the silver. Another question, what is the best way to get a good undercut in steel for the inlay? I am able to get a clean square groove cut in, but I am having trouble getting a good undercut to hold the wire.


A V-graver or knife graver is the best thing I've found.

this might help some:

Norse inlay tutorial

Let me know if you have any questions.

Ben Potter Bladesmith

It's not that I would trade my lot
For any other man's,
Nor that I will be ashamed
Of my work torn hands-

For I have chosen the path I tread
Knowing it would be steep,
And I will take the joys thereof
And the consequences reap.
View user's profile Send private message Visit poster's website


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