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Shawn Shaw




Location: Boston, MA USA
Joined: 07 Jan 2006

Posts: 115

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2010 5:18 am    Post subject: Making Flanges on Viking Spearhead         Reply with quote

Hello Folks-

I am planning on making several spears and, in my research, I ran across a fairly typical (it seems) design of viking spearhead that includes flanges, or wings, that stick off of the socket of the spearhead. I could see how these might be formed if they occured between the socket and the blade but they appear to be jut directly off the socket.

The socket, as far as I can tell, should get flattened out and rolled around a mandrel to form the shape to accept the haft. In that process, I'm not sure how these flanges could be added or even if there is going to be enough material to make substantial flanges. I suppose they could be welded on at the end but I am not sure this would have been done by smiths at the time.

Some images of what I'm talking about can be found near the top of the page, here: http://www.hurstwic.org/history/articles/manu..._spear.htm

Does anyone have any ideas how these flanges would be added?

Thanks,
Shawn
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Jan H.





Joined: 12 Oct 2007

Posts: 14

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2010 5:34 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

As far as I can tell the flanges/wings had to be welded or formed on the spearhead at some stage before the final forming and closing of the socket. Otherwise the thin walls of the socket would have been destroyed in the process.

That is probably not much help. I can think of some ways how to form the flanges, but I am not sure at how well they would work. Especially as the historical examples are very well executed in the transition between the wing and the socket.
There has to be a simplistic approach to the solution of this problem.
Anybody else?

Greetings,
Jan
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Shawn Shaw




Location: Boston, MA USA
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Posts: 115

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2010 7:10 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Is it possible the flanges were made as a single flat piece, comprising both flanges, that was then welded to the socket? I'm not sure the socket would stand up to that kind of treatment but it might have worked, perhaps? I can't tell from the pictures I've seen wheter the flanges jut off the center of the socket or are more to one side or the other. Anyone else?
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Shawn Shaw




Location: Boston, MA USA
Joined: 07 Jan 2006

Posts: 115

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2010 8:41 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Not to be the only one posting in my own thread...but I came across some interesting images. Disregarding the decoration on the socket, you can see the flange from several angles. How this guy can sell these for $60 is beyond me, it looks like a lot of work to make them.


Anyway, the flanges do appear to project from the center (approximately) of the socket outward. The shape of the metal at the base does look sort of like someone might have opened them up with a chisel at some point before the socket was formed/during forming but hard to tell.

http://therionarms.com/reenact/therionarms_c913.html
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Jan H.





Joined: 12 Oct 2007

Posts: 14

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2010 8:59 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

This spearhead is a nice one!

Still, I am quite sure that the wings have modern/industrial welds at the base. For one thing the welds cover the artistic carvings in the socket. There are still some remainings from welding drops visibly in the surroundings of the welds and the weld itself build a thickened base around the base of the wings.

However, you got me interested in this. I would love to get any opinion from metalworkers who might have a clue how it was done in the past.
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Matthew Fedele




Location: Auburn, NY USA
Joined: 21 Jul 2005

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PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2010 11:37 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

One way would be to make two slits hot, file a shelf on the wings, peen it over, then roll the cone. I wouldn't discount brazing them on either.
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Timo Nieminen




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PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2010 11:38 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Shawn Shaw wrote:
Not to be the only one posting in my own thread...but I came across some interesting images. Disregarding the decoration on the socket, you can see the flange from several angles. How this guy can sell these for $60 is beyond me, it looks like a lot of work to make them.


Given that these are mass-produced, possibly with specialised equipment, I don't think these are interesting from the point of view of traditional manufacture. (This is the Hanwei/CAS viking "thrusting" spearhead. Quotes because their "throwing" spearhead is also a thrusting spearhead, judging by the size and socket size.)

See how the central ridge on the blade appears to be a continuation of the socket? That's because it is; the socket and ridge are a continuous hollow cone. Must be a cheap and easy method of modern manufacture, but I suspect rather unhistorical - not so easy to do on a forged spearhead.
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William R. Short




Location: New England
Joined: 14 May 2007

Posts: 24

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2010 1:10 pm    Post subject: Re: Making Flanges on Viking Spearhead         Reply with quote

Shawn Shaw wrote:
Some images of what I'm talking about can be found near the top of the page, here: http://www.hurstwic.org/history/articles/manu..._spear.htm

Does anyone have any ideas how these flanges would be added?


Thanks for your interest in our work on the Hurstwic site.

The flanges are clearly welded on in the historical spearheads I've examined. There isn't any discussion of that in the Hurstwic article, but it is discussed in my Viking weapons book.

Best regards,
William Short
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Bruno Giordan





Joined: 28 Sep 2005

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PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2010 1:15 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Shawn Shaw wrote:
Is it possible the flanges were made as a single flat piece, comprising both flanges, that was then welded to the socket? I'm not sure the socket would stand up to that kind of treatment but it might have worked, perhaps? I can't tell from the pictures I've seen wheter the flanges jut off the center of the socket or are more to one side or the other. Anyone else?


Hm. I have developed several ideas I think the best would be starting with a rolled cilinder into which a solid tube is inserted in the last part.

Before rolling it flanges are atatcked by riveting them and forge welding then as well.

After this you put the tube plus solid bar intot he forge and forfge weld the bar inside.

Then you put the roll on a mandrel and rotating the tube you make the cone , much in th eway armorers make with sheets.

Finally you shape the bar into the lance.
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G Ezell
Industry Professional



Location: North Alabama
Joined: 22 Dec 2003

Posts: 232

PostPosted: Sun 10 Jan, 2010 5:15 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

http://forums.dfoggknives.com/index.php?showt...omsearch=1
The last post shows a step by step from Ypey.
Somewhere on Fogg's forum there was a long discussion on methods of attaching the flanges, but I'm having trouble finding it now... Sad

" I have found that it is very often the case that if you state some absolute rule of history, there will be an example, however extremely unusual, to break it."
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Shawn Shaw




Location: Boston, MA USA
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PostPosted: Mon 11 Jan, 2010 6:44 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

That sequence of drawings is pretty helpful. The poster says "got it almost right". I wonder what the mistakes are.

For one, I would think it might be easier to peen the tabs over if the flanges were inserted into the slots before the socket was closed. It would also make it easier because you could forge weld the flange to the inside of the socket while working on a relatively flat surface, rather than trying to forge weld a flange onto the outside of a hollow cone.


Alternatively, what if those tabs were more wedge shaped and were driven intot he wood of the haft at the end? I suspect that might weaken the shaft too much, though with the flanges near the bottom of the socket you would have almost the full width of the haft to work with.

Finally, it seems like you would want to at least have the flanges rough shaped before putting them on....much less awkward to get the curves shown in the diagram that way, I think.

Maybe an experiment sort of thing. Very cool prospects.
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Jeroen Zuiderwijk
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Location: Netherlands
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PostPosted: Mon 11 Jan, 2010 7:18 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

The wings were attached using flanges that wrap around the socked, either on one or both sides. These were either welded or brazed on. There's some pictures out there that clearly show the lip in the corrosion pattern of these spearheads.

N.b. were winged spearheads still around during Viking times? I thought they were earlier then that, though I could be wrong.

Jeroen Zuiderwijk
- Bronze age living history in the Netherlands
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