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J.D. Crawford




Location: Toronto
Joined: 25 Dec 2006

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PostPosted: Fri 07 May, 2010 7:29 am    Post subject: Early 'Crusader' Sword Project         Reply with quote

Hello fellow sword enthusiasts.

I'd like to show something that fellow forumite Dan Dickinson has been working on for me.

The basic idea was to represent a sword from the early crusader era. During this period swords of type X and XI still dominated, but some swords showed signs of what one might call an 'evolution' toward XII. These are long-bladed cavalry swords with a profile tapir approaching that of of an XII, but still a short grip (less than 4"), usually a wide straight guard, typically a Brazil Nut pommel, and a narrow fuller of variable length, sometimes dwindling in width toward the tip of the sword. These swords are often hard to classify in Oakeshott's typology, but Oakeshott himself most often puts them in the Xa category (see 'Records').

Examples of the type I refer to can be seen here:

http://www.dibatavia.com/crusadorsword.html
http://www.myArmoury.com/feature_spotx.html (for example Xa.4)

Dan and I had the idea to put such a sword together from several components that we had between the two of us, but the work and artistry are entirely attributed to Dan. Dan re-shaped the steel hilt furniture, re-shaped the tang (which was originally a 1.5 hander), hot-peened everything together, and composed a new grip/wrap according to my specifications.

I think he did a beautiful job.

Here are some development pictures Dan took - I'll take some more when I get my hands on the sword.



 Attachment: 51.12 KB
sgrip.JPG
Detailed Grip with cord/leather wrap.
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Scott S.




Location: Central North Carolina
Joined: 28 May 2009
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PostPosted: Fri 07 May, 2010 3:28 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Absolutely gorgeous!

I particularly love the elegant simplicity of early Medieval swords and now I must add a brazil nut pommel sword to my collection! I think the whole package looks great together (although I cannot speak to the authenticity of the blade for that era. I am curious to know!) That's just the perfect brazil nut pommel shape in my opinion. What really attracts me to it is how high and well defined the center line is. I just looked back at the brazil nut pommel thread started in late '08
http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=15023
and I like yours more than the majority of those. I do also really like the slightly flared cross and the grip looks top notch. It seems to me that brazil nut pommels are under-represented in the reproduction market, particularly sub-$500.

Yes, please post at least a full-length pic of it when you can.

(Pardon the over-use of the phrase "brazil nut pommel." Oh, what the hell, "Brazil nut pommel FTW!"
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J.D. Crawford




Location: Toronto
Joined: 25 Dec 2006

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PostPosted: Sat 08 May, 2010 3:29 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks Scott. The pommel comes from an older model A&A St. Maurice, with the embelishments removed. So I suppose credit for this shape must be shared between Dan, A&A, and the historical person who made the original sword.

I agree that Brazil Nuts are under-represented, especially in mass production swords, considering they were in use for about 300 years and likely the most popular European form for at least 100 years. My guess is that the market for them is low because most people expect swords to look like what they have seen in movies and popular art.
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Tim Lison




Location: Chicago, Illinois
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PostPosted: Sat 08 May, 2010 7:52 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Well done! I like this sword a lot. I can't wait to see a full length shot! What components did you use to put this together? They look just perfect. I like the choice of cross a lot. Great work Dan! Color me jealous J.D.!
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J.D. Crawford




Location: Toronto
Joined: 25 Dec 2006

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PostPosted: Sat 08 May, 2010 12:13 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Tim, its funny how this came together. I had a blade from Windlass 'sword of Tiberias' hanging around that was intended for another project that didn't work out. At one point I also had an older A&A St. Maurice, which I traded to Dan. I knew he was going to use the A&A blade for another project and wanted to unload the pommel. It hit me while looking at the Xa section of 'Records' that these components could be a good match. Dan also liked the idea so I sent him the Windlass blade and a cross. It turned out that he had a cross that was a better fit (not sure where that came from) so we went with that combination. The original plan was for something like 'Records' Xa6, but with this cross I think it came out more like Xa12. Regards, JD

PS - knowing some of your collection, I can hardly believe that you're jealous, but thanks just the same!
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J.D. Crawford




Location: Toronto
Joined: 25 Dec 2006

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PostPosted: Wed 19 May, 2010 11:04 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Yee-hah, its raining Brazil nuts in Canada. Look what just arrived in my mail! Thanks again Dan, your work definitely makes the whole greater than the sum of the parts. The grip work is right on par with Albion. It's too sunny today for outdoor shots, but here are a few indoor pictures:

[Edit: here are some better photos]



 Attachment: 99.47 KB
Custom BN.jpg



Last edited by J.D. Crawford on Mon 24 May, 2010 5:49 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Tim Lison




Location: Chicago, Illinois
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PostPosted: Wed 19 May, 2010 11:07 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Love the group shot! Looks good with it's buddies.
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J.D. Crawford




Location: Toronto
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PostPosted: Wed 19 May, 2010 11:39 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks Tim. One more to go, then I'll post the whole family on your thread. You're to blame for this BN obsession!

I just spent half an hour with this sword. The conversion from 1.5 hand to a short grip has pushed the PoB quite down the blade, but overall its quite light for its size and handles very well as long as one sticks to fluid motion. The point control is also surprisingly better than average for cutting swords of this type. I have never had the pleasure of owning an original 'Tinker' blade, but there's something about this one that reminds me of his work.
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Dan Dickinson
Industry Professional



Location: Michigan
Joined: 03 Oct 2004

Posts: 967

PostPosted: Sun 30 May, 2010 2:09 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'm glad you like it J.D.
Your comment about my grip work is high praise indeed Eek!
It was a fun project and I kinda miss having it around Happy

Thanks,
Dan
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J.D. Crawford




Location: Toronto
Joined: 25 Dec 2006

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PostPosted: Mon 21 Feb, 2011 8:55 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Just to finish this off:

I found a scabbard that fits and matches this sword perfectly (see below). In keeping with the mix-and match theme of this project, it comes from a Valiant Signature sword (the Valiant sword itself will be used for another project). I really like the combo.

In case you are thinking of doing something like this, the whole project (sword parts, Dan's work) + (50% of the Valiant scabbard-sword combination) cost about as much as an entry level Albion next generation sword, not including shipping between several sites and some local taxes.

-JD



 Attachment: 37.61 KB
Crusader Sword - Scabbard.JPG

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Tim Lison




Location: Chicago, Illinois
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PostPosted: Mon 21 Feb, 2011 9:28 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Looking good JD! Nice match on grip and scabbard color. 1 project down and 1 million to go, right...? Wink
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