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Dustin Faulkner




Location: BOERNE, TX
Joined: 20 Jul 2008

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Posts: 118

PostPosted: Sun 26 Sep, 2010 9:39 am    Post subject: Question about possible halberd construction         Reply with quote

Hello Everyone:

I wanted to ask you experts for your opinion about a project I want to pursue. I want a halberd with a certain head design. I know a place in my town that does metal art. They cut out designs for decorative metal pieces, fireplaces, target sillohuettes, signs, etc.

I know they could cut a halberd head design for me as one piece. However, I doubt they could do langets. My question to you is this: would it be possible (and still safe) to use a long tang instead of langets? My halberd's head would be one piece including a tang. I would then insert the tang into a pice of red oak or ash and secure the tang with rivets like you do for a knife handle - just a larger application.

I do not know if any historical arms were made like this, but I wanted to ask you if you think this is a practical approach to a minor fabrication issue. I would later sharpen edges and grind the top spike to shape myself. I simply thought using a tang instead of langets is an interesting approach.

Thank you! Big Grin

DUSTIN FAULKNER
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Timo Nieminen




Location: Brisbane, Australia
Joined: 08 May 2009
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Reading list: 1 book

Posts: 1,504

PostPosted: Sun 26 Sep, 2010 1:29 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

It's most certainly possible. Done properly, it's also safe. It's also historical, at least in East Asia. The prime examples of cutting polearms mounted in this way are the naginata/hyupdo/pudao (Japanese, Korean, and Chinese names for the local equivalents of each other) and the bisento/woldo/quandao. (The most common English terms for these weapons is "halberd"!)

A most excellent description of a most excellent DIY mount is at:
http://www.swordforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=96236

Basically, long tang, and reinforce the haft, especially at the top and bottom of the tang. Alternatives to the metal sleeves used with Japanese polearms could be wire wrapping or cord wrapping (soak cord in glue, wrap generously - the "balls" you see on Japanese spears are cord wrappings). Or langets. You could still put some (thin?) langets on the outside.

Chinese bronze "halberds" (ge/ke) were also tanged, but differently. Mounted against the side of the haft, so that there was wood behind the cutting edge/point.

"In addition to being efficient, all pole arms were quite nice to look at." - Cherney Berg, A hideous history of weapons, Collier 1963.
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Frances Perry
Industry Professional



Location: West Yorkshire
Joined: 01 Jan 2006
Reading list: 10 books

Posts: 68

PostPosted: Mon 27 Sep, 2010 1:49 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Have you considered a socket rather than langets?

I had the opportunity to take some pictures of an early 16th century English Bill:

Description:
Head with cutting edge of flattened S-shape; it forks at the top into two triangular spikes; one curves forward and the other is inclined slightly backwards from the vertical. On the rear edge is a short triangular fluke. Tapering socket, completely open down one side except for a ring at the bottom. Modern haft.

Overall length: 2045mm (80 ½”)
Head length: 488mm (19 Ό”)
Weight: 2.3 kg (5 lb. 1oz.)

Found at Horsham, Surrey.

VII.1493

The socket appears to be secured into place by one rivet across the ring at the bottom.



and the flip side showing the rivet through the socket:


“In these modern times, many men are wounded for not having weapons or knowledge of their use.”
- Achille Marozzo, 1536
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