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Peter Lyon
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PostPosted: Tue 17 Aug, 2010 1:11 am    Post subject: Al's Type XVIII         Reply with quote

Here is a type XVIII which I have just completed for Al Muckart. The grip core is bare wood, as Al is going to finish the grip as well as making a scabbard. This has worked well all round, as unusually Al is local to me and I was able to show him the sword during construction and get feedback. It has taken a while, I started work on it in January around my other full-time commitments, but we are both very happy with the results. In particular I am still amazed at how light a sword like this can be, by paying attention to the details in order to reduce the weight where ever possible.

It is not copied from any particular original, rather it incorporates features from a number of swords that Al likes. It is a fairly big sword, but thanks to the light weight and balance point, it is very handy.

The numbers:
Blade length 955mm (37.6")
Overall 1280mm (50.4")
Cross is 235mm wide (9.25")
Weight without grip covering is 1322 grams (2 pound 14.6 ouces) so finished weight should be right on 3 pounds
Balance 88mm (3.5") from the front of the grip
CoP 575mm (22.6") from front of grip, 380mm (15") from tip



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Peter Lyon
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PostPosted: Tue 17 Aug, 2010 1:13 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

It is only the second fish tail pommel I have made, but I really like them!
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Luka Borscak




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PostPosted: Tue 17 Aug, 2010 2:12 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

It really is light for the size! Very beautiful sword, I love the hollow grind!
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Al Muckart




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PostPosted: Tue 17 Aug, 2010 2:32 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

What can I say? This is my first commissioned custom sword, and I love it. It absolutely won't be my last, though the WAF of additional swords seems to be inversely proportional to the time since the last acquisition.

I got onto Peter's waiting list shortly before he became involved with Weta working on the LoTR films and got very busy professionally but I'm very glad I always said yes when he periodically got in touch to say that he was still very busy and did I want to stay on the list! I don't regret the wait one bit, and I'm hopefully down for another one when he gets time in another few years.

I'm fortunate to know Peter and to live in the same city as him while this sword was in progress. Seeing not just progress pictures but having him come by with the in-progress sword itself -- then having him take it away again -- was a special kind of torture, but it's been a real pleasure to be able to be able to sit down and discuss little details of it's design with him. He's a very patient, receptive and educated maker who took my rough ideas and brought them to life and having that level of involvement makes handling the final object, and seeing the ideas brought into reality so well, extra special. It's also quite special that Peter was willing to deliver the sword to me technically unfinished and have me put my own leatherwork on what is very much a Peter Lyon sword but I think that's the perk of living in the same city where he can see my work and have some faith that I won't butcher the project Big Grin

All I really knew when we started discussing the design was that I wanted a hollow-ground type XVIIIb longsword with a fishtail pommel with the sort of long graceful proportions seen in the Bayerisches sword and others of it's ilk, but without being a clone of any particular sword. This sword brings together various elements, some from other swords -- for example the fishtail pommel is based very closely on a sword from Records -- and others that just seemed like good ideas, like the shaping of the tips of the quillons, which I've never seen on another sword but which Peter has executed brilliantly.

Unfortunately the weather has been apalling since I got the sword and I don't have a big enough light box to fit the whole thing in so I don't have any pictures yet that really do it justice but here's a few I do have. The blade is deeply hollow ground with a spine 8mm thick at the cross and near 6mm up by the point but as you can see from Peter's stats above it is a light weapon that handles very well.



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Comparison with my Albion Knight. The XVIIIb is a big sword but only a few ounces heavier than the Knight.

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Here you can get some idea of the complex deeply ground lines of the pommel.

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One of the progress pictures I got from Peter at regular points while he was working on the sword. This is one of the better pictures I have available of the quillions

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This is the temporary experimental chappe / rain guard I made based on one of the finds from Dordrecht. When I've built the scabbard and can properly form the chappe to it I'll make a more ornate one. The leather is a heavy pit tanned goat, from Pergamena

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A good shot of the pommel. The bit of leather wrapped around it was a brief test of what I plan to cover the grip with. It's pit tanned goat bookbinding leather from Pergamena and it's about as good a leather for this job as you'll get for any money.

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Julien M




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PostPosted: Tue 17 Aug, 2010 2:59 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi Peter,

I didn't see you thread here and commented on Al's one.

This is superb work and as said on the other thread I had already found your interpretation of the Wallace fishtail to be splendid (the wallace one is a personal favourite of mine...and I'll give a go at that hilt very soon to fit it on a albion kingmaker blade).

I fancy the guard details so much that I almost think it's a pity to partially cover it with a rainguard shape Happy

Given the sheer size of the pommel (thumbnails below) on the wallace original sword, there is a good chance that it is partially hollowed to preserve the balance of the all sword. Have you hollowed yours as well, or tweaked the size (I plan to make mine thinner)?

Anyway, Bravo and lloking forward to see the final piece with leather and scabbard.

Cheers,

Julien




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Neil Gagel




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PostPosted: Tue 17 Aug, 2010 5:33 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Absolutely beautiful sword. I love the hollow grind and the fishtail.
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Jean Thibodeau




PostPosted: Tue 17 Aug, 2010 6:20 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Superb sword and notice the fishtails on the ends of the guard. Big Grin Cool

The hollow ground is very dramatic and the center ridge is almost more like a thick spine on a much thinner blade sort of reminding me of both the grind of the Albion Swante and this sword by Del Tin Sword of Marquardo Von Randeck:

http://www.kultofathena.com/product.asp?item=...on+Randeck

A totally different style of sword but the reinforced central ridge has the same design function of the deep hollow grind but is different in being a very flat grind with a pronounced ridge versus a deep but gradual hollow grind.

This should mean a light sword relative to it's maximum thickness at the ridge near the guard.

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Matthew Stagmer
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PostPosted: Tue 17 Aug, 2010 7:07 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

That is a great example of skilled grinding. Both the blade and the fittings. Nice and clean. Beautiful work Peter.
Matthew Stagmer
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Jeremy V. Krause




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PostPosted: Tue 17 Aug, 2010 10:14 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

This sword gives a very elegant impression. It's looong and sleek!!
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Peter Lyon
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PostPosted: Tue 17 Aug, 2010 11:33 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Julien M wrote:
Given the sheer size of the pommel (thumbnails below) on the wallace original sword, there is a good chance that it is partially hollowed to preserve the balance of the all sword. Have you hollowed yours as well, or tweaked the size (I plan to make mine thinner)?
Julien




The Wallace pommel might have a hollow core, it is thick enough and the faces flat enough to do it, though forge welding a hollow shell like that would be very challenging, and then to finish it without thin spots. The fishtail I made would not allow that, the tips are too thin and the grinds too deep. Al's pommel ended up weighing about 360 grams (13 ounces) and is fairly large. One thing I like about fishtails is that they can appear large yet be light, unlike wheel pommels for example (unless hollowed).

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Joe Fults




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PostPosted: Tue 17 Aug, 2010 6:13 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Looks very nice and I can't wait to see everything all finished up!
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Tim Lison




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PostPosted: Wed 18 Aug, 2010 7:50 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

This sword is gorgeous! I am curious about the ends of the quillons, are there any historical examples that have the fishtail shape like this one or is it a bit of creative license? Make sure to post up some finished pics as soon as you have them Al!
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Julien M




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PostPosted: Wed 18 Aug, 2010 8:58 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi Tim,

The Albion Burgundian quillons are shaped in a similar way...here is a quote from the Albion's website: [The guard shares some elements of design with the pommel, in the cutouts and ridges that define the shape. This is unusual in Medieval swords where the guard is normally quite distinct from the pommel in character. Sometimes there are exceptions...]

So I guess there must be some historical ground to this (though I have no pictural examples at hand)...if anyone as a pict of museum/period art example, I'd love to see that.

Cheers,

J
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Al Muckart




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PostPosted: Wed 18 Aug, 2010 3:12 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Julien, now that you mention it you're right, I think the Burgundian quillons were one of the things we looked at so my original statement about them probably isn't correct. The design discussions for this one were well over a year ago so I don't fully recall all the things we looked at. I originally brought Peter pictures of that sword as an example of a style of fishtail I'm not particularly fond of. Neither of us have actually handled a Burgundian though, so I don't know what if any similarity in execution there is between the two swords.
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Al Muckart




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PostPosted: Wed 18 Aug, 2010 3:13 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

We're having a rare day of sunshine today so I put the sword under the skylight and took some more pictures. Sorry about the wrinkly background, it's all I had lying around.

I did a leather over cord grip wrap last night. I'm not happy with it but it'll do for now until I've got the scabbard done and I pull it off to do the chappe. It's all done with hide glue so it's trivially, if messily, reversible.



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Nathan Robinson
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PostPosted: Wed 18 Aug, 2010 3:16 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

That's a beautiful sword and I think the red color of the grip was a great choice. I'm curious why you aren't happy with your grip? It looks quite good in the photos.

Cheers

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Al Muckart




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PostPosted: Wed 18 Aug, 2010 6:34 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi Nathan,

Nathan Robinson wrote:
That's a beautiful sword and I think the red color of the grip was a great choice.

Thanks. The red just happens to be the colour of the leather sample Pergamena sent me . It works well though and I'll be ordering more for other projects. It was a much brighter red before but darkens up well when wetted and glued. I may leave it red but my original plan was to make the grip black or brown. I think red was quite a difficult colour to do with medieval leathers and I'm unconvinced it was terribly common, but we'll see.

Nathan Robinson wrote:
I'm curious why you aren't happy with your grip? It looks quite good in the photos.


That's because I didn't post any pictures of where it went wrong Big Grin Really though it mostly came out well, I'm pleased with the texture and the crispness of the risers, but it comes much too far up the pommel and the overlap at the pommel end is badly skewed. That might be fixable by wetting it off again and rearranging the fold over but the whole grip cover is about 5mm too far up the grip. I also had trouble forming both the underlying cord wrap and the leather to the concave faces of the upper portion of the grip so there's no cord texture there. I have a Cunning Plan to fix this but it'll need a new bit of leather (which I have and am carefully saving). I got the hide glue consistency and quantity better this time than on the test pieces I did where the glue gelled and built up in a blob behind the overwrap really badly but there's still a bit of a bump up at the top of the grip where surplus glue ended up.

Here's my test piece. The overwrap cord is much finer than I used on the sword but the riser cords are the same. They're really blobby here but came out much sharper on the sword. I now have a nice unique maglite though.



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Nathan Gilleland





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PostPosted: Wed 18 Aug, 2010 8:02 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Love the red color of the grip! Maybe you can tap a new market with custom maglite grip wraps! Laughing Out Loud

It did however make me look at my own dull, boring flashlight with inspiration. Well done!

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Nathan Robinson
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PostPosted: Wed 18 Aug, 2010 9:12 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Al Muckart wrote:
I think red was quite a difficult colour to do with medieval leathers and I'm unconvinced it was terribly common, but we'll see.


It's in a great deal of period art. Further, it was not a difficult color to achieve in fabric. The dye was readily available.

Please allow me to tell you that you're being much too harsh on your skills... a trait we all probably share!

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Eric W. Norenberg





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PostPosted: Wed 18 Aug, 2010 9:39 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Absolutely stunning. The red leather sets off the anodized aluminium very well.

Sorry.

Really, that sword is unbelievable. I know a rain chappe is a very interesting bit of detail, but the pure gothic severity of the sword as it stands is, well, earthly perfection. Congratulations to both craftsmen!!!

Al, thanks for sharing that "in progress" photo showing the tang. I don't recall ever seeing a sword where the spine (and general section) of the blade continued through the grip like that. Can either you or Peter speak to any historical precedence for that?

I think we're all excited to see scabbard, as well.

Best,
Eric
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