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Jojo Zerach





Joined: 26 Dec 2009

Posts: 288

PostPosted: Sat 26 Dec, 2009 2:17 pm    Post subject: Is Hanwei's Scottish Broadsword historicaly accurate?         Reply with quote

I was wondering if anyone here has or has handled the Scottish basket hilt Broadsword made by Hanwei. ( http://www.casiberia.com/product_details.asp?id=SH2002 )
Is this sword reasonably close to any originals? I've seen originals with very similar baskets/pommels, but not with a blade like this Hanwei has.
Also, Hanwei says the sword's blade thickness tapers from .18" to .08" around the tip, is this relatively accurate thickness/distal taper for this type of sword? (I think it is, although I'm not sure...)
Thanks for any information!
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Christopher Gregg




Location: Louisville, KY
Joined: 14 Nov 2007
Reading list: 2 books

Posts: 673

PostPosted: Sun 27 Dec, 2009 7:31 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Jojo, I personally think the Hanwei is not bad - for the price. The blade is probably closer to the spirit of an original than any other reproduction baskethilt on the production market today, but I've never seen one with its exact profile. It's thinner and more flexible than the Cold Steel sword, as well as the Windlass baskethilt's, too. It is a pretty good cutter. I will say the sheath is too thick - original sheaths made with wooden cores are like about one fifth the thickness at least, maybe thinner.

As far as the basket is concerned, its construction/geometry is as good as I've seen in a production sword of this price category. Only the pommel is a bit plain - needs a bit of fluting, scoring, well, something. Only VERY early baskethilts have simple, plain pommels, and even a lot of those have more flair than the Hanwei. I will say that the Hanwei's material choice IS inaccurate - it's stainless WTF?! , but that was their choice, and it at least makes it low maintenance. Hope my opinion helps.

BTW, use the search function to find recent discussions of "Claymore". Several of us discuss this sword, along with other related topics you might find useful.

Christopher Gregg

'S Rioghal Mo Dhream!
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David Wilson




Location: In a van down by the river
Joined: 23 Aug 2003

Posts: 798

PostPosted: Mon 28 Dec, 2009 5:33 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Is it historically accurate? Fairly. The odd fullering does throw me off a bit, as I haven't seen anything quite like it, either in person or in several books. Then again there was some variety in terms of blade configurations, number and length of fullers, etc. So, I'm not prepared to say it's "wrong".

Most Claidheamh Mor blades I've seen have quite a bit of distal taper, one or two looked "paper thin" near the tip. This also varies a bit, from maker to maker, of course, so again I can't say it's "right" or "wrong".

The biggest historical throw-off here is the "Andrea Ferara" stamp. Don't get me wrong, a lot of Scottish blades were stamped with the spurious mark of Ferara (or one of it's many variant spellings), but not with laser etchers (I didn't think they had lasers back then... Razz ).... the stamp is pretty obviously laser-etched....

The basket is of decent size. Many were actually smaller than this, but it's not so outrageously large as to be inaccurate (Not all historical basket hilts were extra-restrictive. Some were fairly comfortable, and a few -- a very few -- were pretty close in size to the old Windlass "Culloden" hilt, which is large enough to drive a truck through).

It's true that most historic scabbards were thinner. They also had the stitching on the side AWAY from the frog hook (Hanwei likes showing off their stitching, I guess?).

Basket hilted broadswords tended to be both lighter (some by more than 1 pound) and better balanced than the Hanwei (then again, there are exceptions to this, too -- so again I can't say "wrong"). But it's one of the better weighted and balanced reproductions in the lower-price ranges.

Pommel is a bit plain -- but then again....

In conclusion, is the Hanwei broadsword historically accurate? Again, fairly. Trade-offs are inevitable in the lower-price range. But for the price, it's not bad. I'd say it's better than most other lesser-priced makers.

David K. Wilson, Jr.
Laird of Glencoe

Now available on Amazon: Franklin Posner's "Suburban Vampire: A Tale of the Human Condition -- With Vampires" https://www.amazon.com/dp/B072N7Y591
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Jojo Zerach





Joined: 26 Dec 2009

Posts: 288

PostPosted: Wed 30 Dec, 2009 2:22 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

OK, thanks for your replies!
At least it seems to be reasonably close!

How were some of the originals so light though, were they just smaller overall or thinner? (I couldn't imagine a blade being to much thinner than this one making a particularly durable weapon!)

Either way I'm glad it's within the historical range, I heard people complaining the basket on this sword is to small, and others were upset that it was to large, lol!
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David Wilson




Location: In a van down by the river
Joined: 23 Aug 2003

Posts: 798

PostPosted: Wed 30 Dec, 2009 5:02 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Jojo Zerach wrote:
OK, thanks for your replies!
At least it seems to be reasonably close!

How were some of the originals so light though, were they just smaller overall or thinner? (I couldn't imagine a blade being to much thinner than this one making a particularly durable weapon!)

Either way I'm glad it's within the historical range, I heard people complaining the basket on this sword is to small, and others were upset that it was to large, lol!


Sometimes, Claidheamh Mor blades really were quite thin, and featured a high degree of distal taper (this doesn't mean they weren't durable. I've seen the blade of a claymore dating from the early 1700's (one of those that was "paper thin" near the tip) bent double (not almost double, but totally double) and spring right back to true. Now that's a well-made blade!). The basket bars were usually made of thinner material as well. Blade width and profile taper varied a bit too.

David K. Wilson, Jr.
Laird of Glencoe

Now available on Amazon: Franklin Posner's "Suburban Vampire: A Tale of the Human Condition -- With Vampires" https://www.amazon.com/dp/B072N7Y591
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Henrik Bjoern Boegh




Location: Aust Agder, Norway
Joined: 03 Mar 2004

Posts: 386

PostPosted: Thu 31 Dec, 2009 3:17 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I once handled Paul MacDonald's training sword, which is one of these. He had ground off a huge amount of metal from both blade and hilt and obviously that's what you need to do to make this sword light enough and balanced like originals.

Cheers,
Henrik

Constant and true.
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