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R. Kolick

Joined: 04 Feb 2012

Posts: 138

PostPosted: Thu 14 Jun, 2012 3:27 pm    Post subject: why monosteel blades in euope         Reply with quote

why is it that in euope that swords went from pattern welded blades to monosteel where as in the middle and far east they went from monosteel to damascus and folded steel im almost possitive that the people of the middle east espetialy had access to swords from europe and the ability to make swords of the same quality yet prefered damascus swords better so my question is why is euope the only culture that did this was it do to monotary and a need for more swords to equip there armies or what
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Robin Smith

Location: Louisiana
Joined: 23 Dec 2006
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PostPosted: Thu 14 Jun, 2012 3:39 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

They didn't really use "Monosteel". That is a misconception. There is not really such a thing as "monosteel", in the modern sense, prior to the invention of the Bessemer process.

European swords were made using a variety of construction methods. Some were iron cores with a welded on steel cutting edge, some were "piled" which refers to a metallurgical structure were bands of different steels are present, and some were case carburised iron which is a process where an iron bar has the outer skin absorb carbon (usually from charcoal) in order to bring the outer skin up to hard steel.

The reason they use these processes is the same reason that all smiths pre-Bessemer faced: How to make a big blade out of small heterogeneous blooms of iron. The bloomery process in use in Europe in the Middle Ages necessitated that that they use these processes.

I suggest looking for some of the metallurgical research of Dr. Alan Williams. Start with: "Methods of Manufacture of Swords in Medieval Europe" and "Some Early Medieval Swords in the Wallace Collection and Elsewhere" both by Alan Williams. Those should get you started.

A furore Normannorum libera nos, Domine
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Luka Borscak

Location: Croatia
Joined: 11 Jun 2007
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PostPosted: Fri 15 Jun, 2012 4:43 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Everyone used process with which you can get best blade you can. middle east used damascus/wootz because it was available to them. You need a special ore with special elements from India to make wootz, europeans couldn't make it from the ores they had available. Pattern welding was used anywhere and anytime when as good or even better blade couldn't be made with a more simple process. And Japan is special, they had to use their complicated folding and welding techniques because their ore was crappy. They wouldn't do that if they had available better ore or a better refining technique...
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