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Roger Hooper




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PostPosted: Wed 03 Aug, 2011 11:31 pm    Post subject: Custom Arms and Armor Walloon Sword         Reply with quote

I've been fascinated by Walloon swords for a few years. Some time back I started a thread about them. If you want to see a number of original Walloon swords and some discussion about them, look here

Last autumn I arranged with Arms and Armor for them to recreate a classic Amsterdam Walloon for me. I believe that this is the first time in around 300 years that this particular sword type has been made. It isn't the most ornate of swords, but it definitely has something. It may not be the sword that you would wear to court, but it's one that you would take into battle.

The sword is almost ready - I should receive it in about a week. In the meantime A&A has taken a numboer of photos that I'd like to share with you. It looks like A&A did their usual terrific job.



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Nathan Robinson
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Aug, 2011 12:34 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Oh wow, Roger. That's a nice one. A&A really captured the impression that these swords often present. You're really amassing a nice collection, especially through these recent years. I'm often finding myself envious. Cheers to you.
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E.B. Erickson
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Aug, 2011 2:24 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Now that is a good repro of the Dutch Walloon! It captures the feel of the real thing, and they even went to all the trouble to file the larger circles with little points, just as the originals were. A very nice item for your collection, Roger!
--ElJay
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Scott Kowalski




Location: Oak Lawn, IL USA
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Aug, 2011 5:03 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Craig and team have done it once again. Congratulations to you Roger on a great looking sword. While this sword is later in period then my area of interest it still speaks to me. I could definitely see myself getting a sword like this someday just to have one in my collection.
Chris Landwehr 10/10/49-1/1/09 My Mom
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Jonathan Hopkins




PostPosted: Thu 04 Aug, 2011 7:23 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Wow, Roger, that is perfect! Great idea for a commission and great execution by A&A!
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Tim Lison




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PostPosted: Thu 04 Aug, 2011 7:58 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Wow! That is a pretty sword. I love the detail work on the basket. It must have taken forever to do all those holes! Looks great, congrats!
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Aug, 2011 10:20 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Craig got his zen on for that filework. Beautiful piece overall, too. A++++
-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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Glen A Cleeton




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PostPosted: Thu 04 Aug, 2011 10:21 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

There is something going on there that I would liked to have watched closely while in progress. I am sure it isn't all smoke and mirrors and that there must have been a good amount of layout from the get go.

I am most curious about basic specifications here as to overall weight, length of blade and cog.

Cheers

GC
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Aug, 2011 10:37 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

A quick tally:
2 rings
~86 large holes per ring
8 points per "star" x 2 (the design is on the inside as well!)
~10 strokes of a needle file per point

That's at least 27,520 file strokes, right? Eek!

-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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Karl Knisley




PostPosted: Thu 04 Aug, 2011 10:52 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hello
I`am allso a walloon-ey :-) So I love this sword! Congrats.
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Nathan Robinson
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Aug, 2011 10:57 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

What's the mark on the inside of the forward quillon finial?
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Jonathan Hopkins




PostPosted: Thu 04 Aug, 2011 10:57 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Are we sure they were filed? Also, the inside ring appears to be smaller, so therefore fewer holes?
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Roger Hooper




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PostPosted: Thu 04 Aug, 2011 10:57 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Craig said there are 699 holes in the plates, stars and circles.

Here are the specs he gave me, in inches -

OL - 38.75
BL - 32.125 - the town guard length - cavalry length is around 36 inches.
BW at guard - 1.625
COG - 3.125 - correction - make that 2.625 from the guard
Grip length - 3.188
Weight - just under 3 lbs.


Last edited by Roger Hooper on Tue 09 Aug, 2011 3:38 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Roger Hooper




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PostPosted: Thu 04 Aug, 2011 11:07 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Nathan Robinson wrote:
What's the mark on the inside of the forward quillon finial?


It's called a floret, a little four petalled flower that is stamped only on the thumb ring side of the quillon of just about all Walloons of this type.



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Nathan Robinson
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Aug, 2011 12:23 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Roger Hooper wrote:
Nathan Robinson wrote:
What's the mark on the inside of the forward quillon finial?


It's called a floret, a little four petalled flower that is stamped only on the thumb ring side of the quillon of just about all Walloons of this type.


Neat. I never noticed it. I wonder why it's there. Thanks for showing me something new!

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Craig Johnson
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Aug, 2011 12:51 pm    Post subject: Wallon         Reply with quote

Typed earlier today but had trouble connecting:

Hi Guys

Thank you for the kind words about this sword. It turned out quite well to my mind. The end result was something that I did not quite expect as the last time I handled one that was original was a long time ago and later than the ones we where looking to envision here. I did not remember it being such a sturdy type weapon which makes complete sense but my brain did not wrap around that concept till it was in my hand and we where fine tuning the sword. These where definitely designed to be exceptionally serviceable and rugged with all the attributes one might need to lay about you to and fro. It did make me wish I had not passed over these swords when I had a chance quite so quick, but that's the trouble with only limited visits to collections, there is always something tantalizing just ahead so you go to fast.

Once again the design sense and depth of knowing what they where about in making weapons, impresses upon my mind when I work on items. Even though it is one of my talking points when I lecture, I slip and expect some how that my insight might be ahead of where they were at Eek!, its really important to not do that Happy

I personally cannot take credit for the file strokes on this, as that was Greg my genius hilt guy. The key for that kind of detail is the depth of the detail. It needs to look like it’s more than it is. I probably wasted a couple of years of time in the early days of doing this trying to over complicate and do more than they would have to make the sword. They had an efficiency that is often lost on us today. Our world’s first answer is to mechanize to reduce the cost. That only works on certain scales of production and with the ability to have an absolute consistent design.

These swords while they look quite similar had several different variations and ones that seem to even have come from the same workshop vary. Number of holes in the plate and even the shape of the main bars are not absolute. As some one mentioned above layout is the key in this type of thing. At one point we had 699 piercings in the plates and then realized we where a half row off on the small detail holes. Had to fill a couple to make it right for the one we where using as a model but also did not use the overlapping double hole that was on one of the original plates.

Once again it’s that "how close to an original do you want to be" question that we have discussed other places. Its fun to decide what to keep, what to get anal about and what to lose, But it can also kill your time estimates when you realize you spent a long time getting some detail just so then back away and realize probably no one will notice at all.

I will try to get some glamour shots to Roger and comment on other aspects as I have time.

Glad you guys like the sword.

Be well
Craig
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Craig Johnson
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Aug, 2011 1:31 pm    Post subject: Hi Jonathan         Reply with quote

Jonathan Hopkins wrote:
Are we sure they were filed? Also, the inside ring appears to be smaller, so therefore fewer holes?


You are right Jonathan. There is some filing but Sean is being pretty generous in his estimate Happy Other wise at ten strokes a point, and say at a touch less than a second a stroke one would be around seven hours of filing on the points alone. It would be a very time intensive process.

That is one of the most interesting aspects, for me, of studying how the original swords are made. The process is labor intensive but they did all they could to do it with efficiency and the tools they had to hand. While it sometimes can be daunting to look at it as a new person to producing a craft like this, after some study and looking to other crafts to learn from, one can see the many ways they did things that made their jobs easier. In fact often the most difficult part of learning how to do this stuff is to get your modern brain out of the way. They would often do things that today many sword buyers and makers might consider as not "the way" one should make a sword.

Best
Craig
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Thu 04 Aug, 2011 1:39 pm    Post subject: Re: Hi Jonathan         Reply with quote

Craig Johnson wrote:
Jonathan Hopkins wrote:
Are we sure they were filed? Also, the inside ring appears to be smaller, so therefore fewer holes?


You are right Jonathan. There is some filing but Sean is being pretty generous in his estimate Happy...In fact often the most difficult part of learning how to do this stuff is to get your modern brain out of the way. They would often do things that today many sword buyers and makers might consider as not "the way" one should make a sword.


Ohhhh...your point prompted me to look again and think about how this could be done without 7 hours of filework and I had a "duh" moment Idea Big Grin ....

-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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Roger Hooper




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PostPosted: Thu 04 Aug, 2011 2:46 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I sent Craig and company photos of a number of Walloons showing some variations. Looking at the sword they made, it most closely resembles this one from the Armemuseum in Sweden. For instance, look at the slight flattening on the knuckleguard, as opposed to the more extreme flatness on some other originals. Overall, the quillon is rounder and more robust than on some of the other examples.

One thing that puzzles me about photos of many Walloon originals - the hilts often have a brassy appearance. Does this men the hilts were made of brass, does the finish give them that appearance, or is it just a trick of the light when they were photographed? It looks well, but I prefer the steel look.
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Sean Flynt
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PostPosted: Fri 05 Aug, 2011 7:44 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Roger Hooper wrote:
One thing that puzzles me about photos of many Walloon originals - the hilts often have a brassy appearance. Does this men the hilts were made of brass, does the finish give them that appearance, or is it just a trick of the light when they were photographed? It looks well, but I prefer the steel look.


Probably a combination of patina and photographing under incandescent lighting, without later correction of the warm tone.

-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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