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Dan K. F.




Location: Calgary, Alberta
Joined: 12 Aug 2013
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PostPosted: Tue 20 Aug, 2013 11:06 pm    Post subject: Albion wire wrap grips         Reply with quote

I've noticed that Albion offers a half-wire wrap grip option on a number of swords on their website but I don't think I've ever seen one on this site or elsewhere. I was just wondering why this is. All of the Albion reviews on this site seem to have been posted before 2011 so I'm wondering if Albion just didn't offer this option until recently. If anyone has pictures of an Albion with a wire grip I'd love to see them.
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Craig Peters




PostPosted: Tue 20 Aug, 2013 11:36 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Have you looked at Albion Europe's Photostream? Part way down page three, you can start to see examples:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/albioneurope/page3/
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T. Kew




Location: Cambridge, UK
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PostPosted: Wed 21 Aug, 2013 2:57 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

http://www.myArmoury.com/review_alb_munich.html

Here's a review on this site of one of Albion's part-wire wraps.

Instructor and scholar, Cambridge HEMA
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Dan K. F.




Location: Calgary, Alberta
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PostPosted: Wed 21 Aug, 2013 6:43 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Ah sorry, I've never been interested in the swords with the really long handles so I've never noticed the Munich. I know some other manufacturers have had issues with the durability of their wire wraps before. Anyone have experience with Albion's? Any idea why they only do the half grip?
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Chad Arnow
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PostPosted: Wed 21 Aug, 2013 7:30 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Dan K. F. wrote:
Ah sorry, I've never been interested in the swords with the really long handles so I've never noticed the Munich. I know some other manufacturers have had issues with the durability of their wire wraps before. Anyone have experience with Albion's? Any idea why they only do the half grip?


It's not an option they've always offered. The half wire wrap style they do is appropriate only for certain swords, not for all of them. It's a specifically "Gothic" treatment and works well with Germanic swords of a certain era.

Happy

ChadA

http://chadarnow.com/
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Matthew P. Adams




Location: Cape Cod, MA
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PostPosted: Wed 21 Aug, 2013 9:16 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I have a Fiore with a waisted half wire grip. It's will done. Multiple pins and its wrapped over some kind of epoxy. I don't think its going anywhere.

http://www.albion-europe.com/swords/swords-by...x?model=99
From the albion europe site

"We do not rise to the level of our expectations. We fall to the level of our training" Archilochus, Greek Soldier, Poet, c. 650 BC
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Sam Barris




Location: San Diego, California
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PostPosted: Wed 21 Aug, 2013 9:34 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

They started offering this after some very clever person decided that the Munich would be even more epic with a Gothic hilt. It then expanded to other appropriate weapons. The wire wrap is very well executed, and uses very fine wire with a very tight twist and secured with tacks whose heads are very round and comfortable.
Pax,
Sam Barris

"Any nation that draws too great a distinction between its scholars and its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards, and its fighting done by fools." —Thucydides
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Bryan Heff




Location: Philadelphia
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PostPosted: Wed 21 Aug, 2013 10:47 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Is the Albion wire wrap OVER the leather or in place of the leather on that section of grip? It appears to be over (on top) of the leather but I can't be sure. Since we are talking about this subject, I figured I would ask those who may know.

Thanks
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Peter Johnsson
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Location: Storvreta, Sweden
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PostPosted: Wed 21 Aug, 2013 12:15 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi guys!

About the wire grips: they are done with a specially thin iron wire that is twisted in shop to proper tightness. For shorter wraps this pose little challenge. For longer grips it sometimes gets interesting as you have to keep the two wires to be twisted properly stretched during the twisting. I know Eric will have to go diagonally across the room to get the longest sections done.

The wire is then wrapped *over* the leather that covers the complete grip. This is according to how I have seen it done on originals with this kind of grip surviving. The ends are fastened and held down with small domes tacks that are driven into the hard wood of the grip core. They will not loosen or let go of the wire any time soon.
The leather also helps in increasing the grip for the wire.

I use exactly the same method when I make wire wrapped grips for late gothic swords. As has been remarked, it is a style that is appropriate for certain types of swords and belongs most securely to the 15th century. There may be earlier examples, but I think the evidence for that is mostly in depictions in art. I cannot now remember seeing a single surviving original with this kind of partial wire wrap earlier than the 15th century.

Full wire wraps are of course in use for both earlier and later types of swords. We have not yet developed a good durable solution for this kind of grip yet. I find it an interesting option and would like to use it on some swords. We will see if we can offer a full wire wrap on some swords in the future.

Thanks for showing interest in this particular type of grip treatment. I personally like it very much.

I did use it on a long sword i made earlier this year.



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Henrik Granlid




Location: Sweden
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PostPosted: Wed 21 Aug, 2013 12:30 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I saw that sword today, amazing work and the wiregrip was nothing short of fantastic. If one likes the look of wiregrips, I can highly recommend them.
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Dan K. F.




Location: Calgary, Alberta
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PostPosted: Wed 21 Aug, 2013 1:18 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks for the info guys. That's a beautiful sword btw, Peter. After seeing pictures I do like the look but I'm just wondering why someone would only wrap half the grip. If the original swordsmiths had a method to make durable full wraps it doesn't seem like it would be that much more expensive in either time or materials compared to a half wrap.
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Henrik Granlid




Location: Sweden
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PostPosted: Wed 21 Aug, 2013 1:27 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Fashion would be one part of it.
Another would be fashion combined with wanting to be able to use it without gloves, the longswords can be one-handed (in which case you would hold the area that is leathered) or two-handed (using the pommel as part of the grip if the wire becomes too grating).

My thoughts on the matter.
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Luka Borscak




Location: Croatia
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PostPosted: Wed 21 Aug, 2013 1:59 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

If anyone wonders how Albion Gaddhjalt looks with a wire wrapped grip, here is mine, done by Alojz Krišto Wink :

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Bryan Heff




Location: Philadelphia
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PostPosted: Wed 21 Aug, 2013 2:05 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Luka Borscak wrote:
If anyone wonders how Albion Gaddhjalt looks with a wire wrapped grip, here is mine, done by Alojz Krišto Wink :



Pretty cool Luka, looks great. Pretty rare to see a customized Albion NG and yours is looking good.
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Peter Johnsson
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PostPosted: Wed 21 Aug, 2013 2:25 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Dan K. F. wrote:
Thanks for the info guys. That's a beautiful sword btw, Peter. After seeing pictures I do like the look but I'm just wondering why someone would only wrap half the grip. If the original swordsmiths had a method to make durable full wraps it doesn't seem like it would be that much more expensive in either time or materials compared to a half wrap.



Perhaps there is a good reason to keep the thicker part of the grip without wire, to allow the leading hand to shift position more effortlessly. You grip the sword in a different manner with your left hand (partly gripping the pommel more or less often) while you shift your grip more actively with your leading hand as you go from guard to guard and when adjusting to deliver different types of cuts.

However, ergonomics might not be the prime reason for a wire wrap, even if it does make for a more grippy surface.

Wire wrap is also a good way to reinforce a grip. The narrow part of a long grip may possibly benefit from this.

These are just hypotheses.

You also see long swords with waisted grips having full wire wraps depicted in 15th century art. Especially Memling showed swords with this kind of grip. The waisting on the swords he depicted are typically less wasted and more towards "cigar shaped" however. I cannot now remember seeing a surviving 15th century sword with this kind of grip. -Perhaps someone on this forum knows about one?
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Matthew P. Adams




Location: Cape Cod, MA
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PostPosted: Wed 21 Aug, 2013 10:50 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

In the Fiore tradition (and I would imagine the Lichtenaur as well?) there are a couple disarms where you grab the apponents sword handle with your left hand and control his blade with the lower part of your grip. I always assumed that was the reason for the wire, to make the handle cut resistant.

Third and fourth from the last picture:

http://www.aemma.org/onlineResources/liberi/w...tion5.html

As for not wrapping the whole grip, I figured it wasn't needed there so better to save weight and material.

Just my personal observations of course, your mileage may vary.

"We do not rise to the level of our expectations. We fall to the level of our training" Archilochus, Greek Soldier, Poet, c. 650 BC
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Dan K. F.




Location: Calgary, Alberta
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PostPosted: Thu 22 Aug, 2013 9:36 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Matthew P. Adams wrote:

As for not wrapping the whole grip, I figured it wasn't needed there so better to save weight and material.

.


This is an interesting point. Does anyone know if the additional weight of wire wraps noticeably changes the balance and handling of a sword? I realize the weight gain is probably minimal but from what I've read in the reviews and on these forums even small changes in weight can make a difference. Given that a wire wrap is relatively close to one end of the sword, I imagine the difference would be greater than a change in the guard since that would be closer to the POB.
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