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Rich Knack




Location: Charlevoix, MI
Joined: 14 Apr 2008
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PostPosted: Sun 26 Aug, 2012 12:59 pm    Post subject: Modifying scabbard fittings?         Reply with quote

My newest sword is a Strongblade "Crusader" arming sword, which I have modified slightly by swapping out the brass-studded octagonal pommel for a wheel-pommel from their "Knight Protector" arming sword:



The blade is unsharpened (I plan to rectify that as soon as I can), but is properly tempered and can flex quite a ways out of true and still snap back straight. When I swapped the pommel, the weight dropped from 3 pounds 2.4 ounces to 2 pounds 14 ounces, while the P.O.B. shifted forwards slightly from 5-3/4" from the cross to 6-1/4" - still within historically accurate limits (if at the upper end) for a sword of this size and type. It was a great deal, as I got it for a scratch-'n'-dent price (minor flaw in scabbard leather, on the back where it isn't noticeable) of $89 plus shipping.

One of my very few complaints about this sword is the scabbard fittings. The locket came with the rather anachronistic stud for a belt frog (from what I have heard, they did not become available until the late 17th century at the earliest). I got the stud off - it was ridiculously easy, to the point where i would not have wanted to rely on it for combat use. The locket is only a tight friction fit, so I was able to tap it off and turn it around to hide the hole where the stud had been.

What I would like to know is, could the locket and chape on this scabbard be modified to look at least somewhat more "period correct" for, say, a 15th century footsoldier? Nothing fancy, of course - I am not trying to portray a nobleman - but better and more correct than what is on there? I have seen so few pictures of original fittings from that period. Most of what I have seen are Viking era.

Could someone please help me out here?

"Those who 'beat their swords into plows', will plow for those who don't."
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Scott Woodruff





Joined: 30 Nov 2005
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Posts: 601

PostPosted: Sun 26 Aug, 2012 1:23 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Your sword seems to fit better in an earlier period, though not totally anachronistic for 15th century. I would suggest getting rid of the locket and going for a knotted belt. Here is a link to the appropriate thread: http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t...ht=knotted

Last edited by Scott Woodruff on Mon 27 Aug, 2012 3:47 am; edited 1 time in total
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Rich Knack




Location: Charlevoix, MI
Joined: 14 Apr 2008
Likes: 3 pages
Reading list: 2 books

Posts: 86

PostPosted: Sun 26 Aug, 2012 1:31 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Scott Woodruff wrote:
Your sword seems gto fit better in an earlier period, though not totally anachronistic for 15th century. I would suggest getting rid of the locket and going for a knotted belt. Here is a link to the appropriate thread: http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t...ht=knotted


Thanks! I was planning on making a knotted suspension anyway. As for the sword being an earlier style, I figure a lower-status footsoldier might well use an older sword (figure, my armor will be nothing more than a padded jack with jack chains on the sleeves, supplemented by a steel buckler and open sallet or skull-cap type helmet).

Now, what about the chape? Is it okay for the period as-is? Or could it be easily modified to be so?

"Those who 'beat their swords into plows', will plow for those who don't."
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Scott Woodruff





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PostPosted: Sun 26 Aug, 2012 1:38 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I recently refitted a scabbard with laced style belt fittings and I left the chape on. Maybe not ideal, but it doesn't look too bad. Some sanding, bluing or some sort of chemical treatment might be used to cover up the stainless look, or a little light planishing with a hammer might give it a more hand-made look. You could always paint it black to make it a liitle less noticeable.
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Rich Knack




Location: Charlevoix, MI
Joined: 14 Apr 2008
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Reading list: 2 books

Posts: 86

PostPosted: Sun 26 Aug, 2012 1:50 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Got any photos of that refit?
"Those who 'beat their swords into plows', will plow for those who don't."
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Scott Woodruff





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PostPosted: Sun 26 Aug, 2012 3:10 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Here are some pics. The longer scabbard is a Hanwei Great Sword of War scabbard with locket removed, fiberglass core cut back slightly, leather folded into mouth and glued and strapping interlaced through schnitts in the leather. Second scabbard is a Hanwei blunt viking scabbard stripped to the fiberglass core, wool glued inside, wrapped in linen with a antler bridge held on by handspun Dinē wool yarn and a naalbound wool cross-gartering and finally the original chape friction fit over all.


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Rich Knack




Location: Charlevoix, MI
Joined: 14 Apr 2008
Likes: 3 pages
Reading list: 2 books

Posts: 86

PostPosted: Tue 28 Aug, 2012 10:08 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Nice! I think that I will be going with a sort of hybrid belt - the belt itself will be in two pieces, with a large brass ring (1-3/4" diameter) joining the two. I will have two knotted 1/2" straps on the scabbard itself, with rings on them through which will be looped two more 1/2" straps (which will be attached to the 1-3/4" ring on the belt), along with buckles, so that I can adjust the angle of the sword. Don't know how authentic the buckle adjustment would be, but the belt with the large ring supporting two suspension straps is shown in a period Flemish painting I saw elsewhere on the web.
"Those who 'beat their swords into plows', will plow for those who don't."
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Scott Woodruff





Joined: 30 Nov 2005
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Posts: 601

PostPosted: Wed 29 Aug, 2012 3:13 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I have seen a set-up like you describe depicted in late 15th/early 16th century art from Scandinavia and Italy. A similar suspension system was used for Baltic antennae swords in the 11th century except with chains instead of straps and buckles. I look forward to seeing the result. Edit: Actually, here is an example from 15th/16th century with chains: http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t...p;start=22 Edit: Scanning throught longsword suspension example on other threads, I couldn't fin any with adjustment buckles. I am sure I seen some that used them somewhere. I know that a lot of reconstructions of Viking Age suspensions use them. Here is a link to some that Peter Johnson designed for the Arn, Templeridderen movie: http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t...t=scabbard
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