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D. S. Smith




Location: Central CA
Joined: 02 Oct 2011

Posts: 221

PostPosted: Sat 05 Nov, 2011 12:50 pm    Post subject: Scabbard picture thread         Reply with quote

Hello all, in researching the options available for my new scabbard I have on order through Brian at DBK Custom, I came across a thread on SBG that I thought had great potential here (with a slight twist). The thread was actually started by Paul, one of our members here, and he was asking for advice on his new Albion Crecy. I too, am anxiously awaiting my first sword purchase (also the Crecy), and came up with this idea.

I'd love to see a thread where we could include photos of scabbards (swords in them of course), but more importantly, of them being worn. Brian pointed out in that other thread that swords hang/ ride differently on people of different sizes and body styles. If people could list their height when they put up pictures it would be benefitial. I'm hoping to see comparisons of integrated belts, double belts, 2, 2.5, and 3 point attachment systems, etc.

If people are shy about putting up photos of themselves online I can totally undertsand that. You could simply crop the photo so that it only shows from chest down, or even take photos of a photogenic friend wearing it. Laughing Out Loud I searched a little bit and it doesn't seem like this thread has been done before. I think it could become a great resource for people who were in the market for scabbards and overwhelmed with the options out there.

Thanks in advance!

Lo, they do call to me.
They bid me take my place among them,
In the halls of Valhalla!
Where the brave may live forever!
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Johan Gemvik




Location: Stockholm, Sweden
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PostPosted: Sat 05 Nov, 2011 6:06 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Great topic!

Why would people be shy, all you need to show is the hip and scabbard?

I'll get a pic of my brothers's scabbard and intergrated belt that I made showing how it's worn. It sits tight to the hip and feels like an extension of the body.
I haven't finished the sword belt for my own Dybeck yet as I keep changing the design. Maybe this thread will help me make up my mind.

"The Dwarf sees farther than the Giant when he has the giant's shoulder to mount on" -Coleridge
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D. S. Smith




Location: Central CA
Joined: 02 Oct 2011

Posts: 221

PostPosted: Sat 05 Nov, 2011 6:29 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Johan Gemvik wrote:
Great topic!



Thanks Johan! I'm hoping it gets some good feedback. I'm certain I can't have been the only person who had trouble deciding which suspension style to go with. This has good potential to help a lot of folks out if people are willing to post pictures.

Lo, they do call to me.
They bid me take my place among them,
In the halls of Valhalla!
Where the brave may live forever!
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Andrew W




Location: Florida, USA
Joined: 14 Oct 2010

Posts: 78

PostPosted: Sat 05 Nov, 2011 10:53 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I gave my Hanwei Tinker Norman a new scabbard with a simple baldric so it hangs straight at my side. It's really convenient for wearing at reenactment events, as it stays close enough to my person to not get in anyone else's way. I'm 5'7" (107cm).





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D. S. Smith




Location: Central CA
Joined: 02 Oct 2011

Posts: 221

PostPosted: Sat 05 Nov, 2011 11:40 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks for starting us off Andrew! I'd forgotten about baldrics when I made the list of suspension systems but they do have some things going for them it seems. If you were doing much athletic activity it seems like they would swing all over the place. But I guess it would also be very simple to just ditch the thing if you got in a tight spot and then you'd have one less thing to trip yourself up on.
Lo, they do call to me.
They bid me take my place among them,
In the halls of Valhalla!
Where the brave may live forever!
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Jeffrey Faulk




Location: Georgia
Joined: 01 Jan 2011

Posts: 578

PostPosted: Mon 07 Nov, 2011 10:58 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Another thing about baldrics, you can also hang the baldric on your body and then wrap a belt around your hips, over the baldric. This will help hold the baldric down from flapping about the place, but if you want to remove the sword without taking off the belt (say if you've got money in a pouch on the belt), then all you have to do is pull the baldric over your head and then slide it down under the belt.

Not sure how historically accurate this would be, but it seems like a practical solution to keeping the baldric from swinging around, also to allow easier one-handed drawing if you're holding something else in your off hand...
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Johan Gemvik




Location: Stockholm, Sweden
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PostPosted: Tue 08 Nov, 2011 2:17 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Me wearing my brothers sword and scabard that I made for him. Pretty neat christmas present.



No swinging as we see in a baldrick, this one's like wearing a western revolver holster.

"The Dwarf sees farther than the Giant when he has the giant's shoulder to mount on" -Coleridge
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Pauli Vennervirta





Joined: 12 Mar 2009
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PostPosted: Wed 09 Nov, 2011 11:47 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

What was the original function of the "bridge" like in Andrews pictures? Would it be historical just to wrap a belt twice around the scabbard with the belt going through the bridge to get the sword hanging in an angle when worn? I kind of like the bridge as a decorative item.

Does anyone know what kind of decorations were used in the late viking age scabbards, what kind of symbolism?
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Andrew W




Location: Florida, USA
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Posts: 78

PostPosted: Thu 10 Nov, 2011 12:02 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

From the scabbards found in the UK from the Viking Age (a small sample, mostly from York), there's not much decoration, just simple raised lines like the one I used. One scabbard had sun-ray lines similar to those common in the earlier possibly pre-Christian finds, which the author suggests might have had some kind of sun imagery. There wasn't much to go on.

Source: http://www.amazon.com/Sheaths-Scabbards-Engla...1841710652
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Pauli Vennervirta





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PostPosted: Thu 10 Nov, 2011 1:23 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

So the decorated scabbards of high-end reproductions might not be historical? Interesting.

My question conserning the historical way of carrying these swords might be answered in other threads, like this one: http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=18104 Still, suggestions are wellcome. My sword is a Hanwei-Tinker Norman.
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Matthew Bunker




Location: Somerset UK
Joined: 02 Apr 2009

Posts: 483

PostPosted: Thu 10 Nov, 2011 1:53 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Pauli Vennervirta wrote:
What was the original function of the "bridge" like in Andrews pictures? Would it be historical just to wrap a belt twice around the scabbard with the belt going through the bridge to get the sword hanging in an angle when worn? I kind of like the bridge as a decorative item.

Does anyone know what kind of decorations were used in the late viking age scabbards, what kind of symbolism?



Not all early medieval scabbard suspension systems utilised a bridge (or slide) but where they are used, depictions usually show them with the belt or baldric passing through them once. You do see some depictions of belts wrapped twice around the scabbard, but usually without a slide.

Late Roman and MIgration era slides are often beautiful bits of work especially the multiple slides of gold and garnet work found on Frankish and Merovingian scabbards but finds of post 7th century slides are rare (no sign of one on the Sutton Hoo scabbard, nor in the Staffordshire Hoard). However, evidence from surviving scabbard leathers shows that belts were running through slits in the leather covering, presumably through a slide mounted on the wooden core under the leather (or carved into the face of the core itself), and the limited pictorial evidence bears this out. These were presumably made of organic material and undecorated. The very well preserved 10th century scabbard leather from Gloucester retains the legacy mark of such a slider, which was clearly a very thin 'hour glass' shape, with a flat top and bottom. I'm not aware of any evidence to support the re-enactorism that sliders were decorative items mounted on the outside of the scabbard after the 9th century (in North Western Europe. There are, I think, some Russian or Eastern European examples)

Early medieval scabbards themselves (based on the physical evidence of surviving scabbards and pictorial depictions) were never as ornately decorated as the interlace covered works of art much favoured by Viking re-enactors. The really complex decoration was restricted to the metal fittings. The re-enactor argument goes 'well, the knife sheaths were highly decorated, so the sword sheaths must have been, which ignores the fact that decorated knife/seax sheaths were probably worn every day and, as such, the elaborate decoration of these common items acted as a visible indicator of status and/or wealth.

The most intricate scabbard decoration is to be found on the 4th/5th century Danish bog scabbards, some of which are beautifully carved, but the decoration is carved into the wood of the scabbard, not tooled into leather (the design shown on the scabbard I made in the Vendel madness thread is based on one of these).
Most surviving scabbard leathers of the post migration period are very plain and where there is some decoration, it is usually in the form of a few incised lines or simple straight line designs executed in cordwork under the leather.

There are some exceptions ot this. The 'Viking' Cronk Moar scabbard from the Isle of Mann still preserves it's cordwork decoration which, whilst simple, is still a design rather than just a few lines (see my reconstruction below). One chap I know argues that this foundation cordwork acted as a 'ground' for a more elaborate painted design but there's no actual evidence for it.
Same with the scabbard from Lapwing HIll in England, which is covered with a cordwork diamond pattern. The Stuttgart Psalter also depicts simple yet extensive patterns, also probably executed in cordwork.

I think that the best surviving decoration on a Viking Age scabbard is to be found on one of the finds from Hathabu/Hedeby (which, annoyingly, is not on display in the otherwise excellent museum). It was covered in green leather which had diamond shapes cut out of it on the front. Under this was a panel of red leather which showed through the cutouts, held in place by hundreds of copper alloy pins which surrounded each diamond cut out. I've been waiting ages for someone to ask me to make one of those for them.



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"If a Greek can do it, two Englishman certainly can !"


Last edited by Matthew Bunker on Thu 10 Nov, 2011 3:31 am; edited 2 times in total
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Pauli Vennervirta





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PostPosted: Thu 10 Nov, 2011 3:05 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thank you very much, a most informative post. My original idea was to cut the seam of the Hanwei scabbard, peel back the leather and then glue some decorations cut of leather on the core. I could also glue a slide on this core now and make cut-outs to the leather to pass a belt trough, or glue and tie the slide on the leather afterwards. When the leather is glued and seam stiched back, the decorations will show as raised lines on the leather. I will wet the leather slighly and tool it round the edges of these raised decorations.

Most likely I will use old Finnish or nordic symbols, like those used in present day reproductions like Kalevala-koru. If you are not familiar with this maker of jevelry, here is a link: http://www.kalevalakoru.com/shop and here is their jevelry based on grave finds etc. http://www.kalevalakoru.com/jewelry/catalog/Finland%20at%20heart

My idea is to get something that a wealthy finnish man would have just before the crusades. Therefore the Norman sword is not too far off considering that similar swords have been found in Finland.
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Matthew Bunker




Location: Somerset UK
Joined: 02 Apr 2009

Posts: 483

PostPosted: Thu 10 Nov, 2011 3:22 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Pauli Vennervirta wrote:
I will wet the leather slighly and tool it round the edges of these raised decorations.

.


Unless it's veg tanned leather (which I've yet to see on a stock Hanwei scabbard), wetting it won't make any difference. Chemical/chrome tanned leathers do not mould well, if at all.

You might be better off just stripping it to the core and starting again?

"If a Greek can do it, two Englishman certainly can !"
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Pauli Vennervirta





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PostPosted: Thu 10 Nov, 2011 3:41 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Could be that a complete rewrap might be a good idea, but I'll try this first. What you said about the moulding, I have a Hanwei-Tinker longsword and I pulled the leather off the handle and glued it back again because it was badly glued and started to come off. I wetted the leather and wrapped it with cord while it was drying. Got a cord pattern on the leather this way.
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D. S. Smith




Location: Central CA
Joined: 02 Oct 2011

Posts: 221

PostPosted: Tue 24 Jan, 2012 11:13 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I started this thread a couple months back and I'm hoping to breath new life into it because I think it could be a great resource for new sword/ scabbard buyers. I'll be getting my first sword this Friday (Albion Crecy) and my first scabbard next Monday (from Brian @ DBK Custom). I'll put up some pictures of me (or a photogenic friend) Laughing Out Loud wearing it. Stay tuned...
Lo, they do call to me.
They bid me take my place among them,
In the halls of Valhalla!
Where the brave may live forever!
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Paul B.G




Location: Victoria, Australia
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PostPosted: Wed 25 Jan, 2012 1:57 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Wish I’d seen this thread when it was 1st posted Wink ok I'm just home from the office and I've put my scabbard & Crecy on and had my wife take a few pics, much to her amusement. Duel belt suspension is definitely the way to go, once you get both belts done up it sits and wears much better, and I'm 6ft 3&1/2in.



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D. S. Smith




Location: Central CA
Joined: 02 Oct 2011

Posts: 221

PostPosted: Wed 25 Jan, 2012 1:08 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hey Paul, where were you when I first needed advice on dual-belt suspensions??? Laughing Out Loud Just kidding, but these pictures are exactly what I think folks need to see to make informed descisions. You did a great job of giving your size, plus different views of how the scabbard wears. Thank your wife for the excellent pictures.

I appreciate all the replies and information so far. But for those wondering, Andrew and Paul's posts are exactly what I had in mind and should be used as a template for anyone else who would like to put up pictures. As for whether or not Paul's wife will be willing to take the photos for everyone else, that might be a different story. Wink

Lo, they do call to me.
They bid me take my place among them,
In the halls of Valhalla!
Where the brave may live forever!
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D. S. Smith




Location: Central CA
Joined: 02 Oct 2011

Posts: 221

PostPosted: Mon 30 Jan, 2012 11:44 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

OK, so here are a few pictures that my coworker snapped of my new scabbard being worn. The first pic is one I took a couple days ago showing the scabbard outdoors. The remainder are from tonight:





My four legged partner kept trying to get in the way. He's very photogenic. Laughing Out Loud







This is Brian Kunz (DBK Custom Swords) double belt suspension system.

For reference, I'm 5'10" and roughly 170 lbs (the vest makes me look fat Razz Laughing Out Loud ).

Gratuitous photo of my four legged partner.

Lo, they do call to me.
They bid me take my place among them,
In the halls of Valhalla!
Where the brave may live forever!
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D. S. Smith




Location: Central CA
Joined: 02 Oct 2011

Posts: 221

PostPosted: Mon 13 Aug, 2012 5:10 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Figured I'd bump this thread and see if anybody else has new scabbard photos they wanted to share. I'm starting my second scabbard order from Brian Kunz, at DBK Custom. Here's a more recent photo I took of the Albion Crecy scabbard he built for me. Photo was taken using only candlelight (4 candles):



When my new scabbard gets completed I'll add photos of it of course. Happy

Lo, they do call to me.
They bid me take my place among them,
In the halls of Valhalla!
Where the brave may live forever!
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Harry Marinakis




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PostPosted: Thu 27 Jun, 2013 11:13 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Albion Ritter sword
Solingen scabbard by Chistian Fletcher



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