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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Nov, 2010 7:27 am    Post subject: English sword, 1450-1460         Reply with quote

I want to make a sword appropriate for Sir John Roddam, a Lancastrian knight who died at the battle of Towton. I've collected some spare bits and think I might have what I need for this project. I'm somewhat hesitant about the proportions of the pommel. My first impression is that it looks slightly oversized (although the balance is fine). I'll be reducing it slightly to clean up some rust and clumsy faceting, but I'm not sure that will reduce the visual impact. The problem might lie in the grip length, which I would describe as a longish single-hand. Shortening it might create greater harmony. What say you? Overall, does this marriage seem reasonable for the period? The nearest historical analog is one of the Castillon swords.

The last photo below shows the pommel behind the tang, the others show it in front to help us gauge the effect of distance to the lens since I can't just slip the pommel onto the tang to aid in my crude proof of concept. Ideas, opinions and criticisms are welcome. Big Grin



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-Sean

"Everywhere I have searched for peace and nowhere found it, except in a corner with a book"- Thomas a Kempis (d. 1471)
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Nov, 2010 7:31 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Here's the Castillon sword I mentioned. It's a bit longer than my concept--more longsword than single-hand sword. You can see that my pommel is fatter and shorter.


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-Sean

"Everywhere I have searched for peace and nowhere found it, except in a corner with a book"- Thomas a Kempis (d. 1471)
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Nov, 2010 7:42 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

shorter grip:


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-Sean

"Everywhere I have searched for peace and nowhere found it, except in a corner with a book"- Thomas a Kempis (d. 1471)
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Thomas R.




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PostPosted: Thu 04 Nov, 2010 8:26 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi Sean,

I think your pommel looks a bit too "knobby" because it's a bit shorter than the castillons pommel. It also looks like your pommel is about 2 or 3 mm wider than the blade? Can that be? The combination of pommel, guard and handle-length looks good on the castillon. You should not aim, for a too short handle on your reproduction. As your pommels form means to be hold with the left hand, perhaps it's just not suited for a single handed weapon? I think it seems more appropriate for an one and a half grip.

Best regards,
Thomas

http://maerenundlobebaeren.tumblr.com/
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Scott Hrouda




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PostPosted: Thu 04 Nov, 2010 8:31 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Purely from an aesthetics point of view, the first mockup with the longer grip is more pleasing to the eye than the second mockup of a shorter grip.

I do not have the experience or knowledge to comment on the overall historical accuracy of the piece or blade harmonics.

With that said: I like it! Happy

...and that, my liege, is how we know the Earth to be banana shaped. - Sir Bedevere
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Nov, 2010 8:39 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

All good points. And, yes, the pommel is broader than the blade, which is the main reason it looks out of balance to me.
-Sean

"Everywhere I have searched for peace and nowhere found it, except in a corner with a book"- Thomas a Kempis (d. 1471)
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Chris Lampe




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PostPosted: Thu 04 Nov, 2010 11:09 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I also cannot speak to the historical accuracy of your piece but I can say from an aesthetic point of view, the pommel is just a bit on the large size for the rest of the sword. I would say it's literally a handful of percentage points too large but it's not so large as to really throw the look of the sword out of balance. I've seen many antique swords that were far more disproportional than your mock-up.

I often do mock-ups of a sword I've been planning for some time and recently found that I like doing a 2-dimensional mock-up out of paper. This allows me to easily change sizes and proportions to suit my tastes. I'm not yet sure how this will translate into a 3-dimensional object though. I also take photographs and use MS paint to enlarge or shrink specific parts and then past them back in. It's a quick and easy way to get a rough idea how something will look.

I would probably decide on a specific size for the pommel and then go about figuring out a way to make that happen. If you are good with a grinder, you could probably resize this one yourself.

I agree with others that the longer grip looks far better and more proportional.

In this image I've reduced the pommel to 95% of it's original size

In the second image it's at 90%.



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Last edited by Chris Lampe on Thu 04 Nov, 2010 11:24 am; edited 3 times in total
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Roger Hooper




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PostPosted: Thu 04 Nov, 2010 11:15 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Have you got to the point where you are considering how the blade and the pommel go together harmonically? Perhaps grinding down the pommel will improve (or throw off) the swords balance.
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Nov, 2010 12:45 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Roger Hooper wrote:
Have you got to the point where you are considering how the blade and the pommel go together harmonically? Perhaps grinding down the pommel will improve (or throw off) the swords balance.


Only in the most basic sense. It's tough to get much sense of where the POB will land, but it looks like it would be 3-4" below the guard--about close to the guard as I'd want to go. The problem of moving the pommel out is that it starts to overwhelm the blade. This thing might present too many problems to fool with, but I have other options.

-Sean

"Everywhere I have searched for peace and nowhere found it, except in a corner with a book"- Thomas a Kempis (d. 1471)
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JG Elmslie
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Nov, 2010 3:32 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

the pommel/hilt proportions also look about right for wallace collection #a465, which has the very similar pommel, and similar dimensions...

and which is likely english in origin, I recall. I also recall from effigy/imagry that it seems rain-chapes were'nt particularly popular on english swords, going by effigies,compared to german fashions. not sure if that will be influential on your work.
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Fri 05 Nov, 2010 11:31 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I was saving this blade and pommel for another project but it looks like I won't be able to get the A&A guard I wanted for that one. I like this marriage and think it's right for the period. The German/Austrian artwork is ca. 1452-1463. Not an exact match, of course, but the proportions and general styles seem right (Type T pommel, Style 2 cross, broad hand-and-a-half blade, etc.) I'd probably use a short chappe, though it does seem that this is more German than English (I wonder why....).


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-Sean

"Everywhere I have searched for peace and nowhere found it, except in a corner with a book"- Thomas a Kempis (d. 1471)
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