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Kenneth B




Location: United States
Joined: 26 Oct 2013

Posts: 7

PostPosted: Sun 27 Oct, 2013 4:52 pm    Post subject: Medieval Knives of the huntsmen         Reply with quote

Hello all!

I hope that you can help point me in the correct direction...

I am interested in making myself a knife.....it will be used to initially gut and split up game in the field....anything from a squirrel to an American Elk.....but.....I would also like it to be large enough to handle wrist thick wood for shelter building and batoning of dry firewood.....

I have seen bauernwehr that might fit the bill and large knives in a medieval trousse....but still I am a bit of a loss.....

Would a bauernwher have had a wide (spine to edge) blade? The repros I see tend to only be 1-1 1/8" wide.....

Ideas? thoughts? musings??? I had a hunk o' 5160 steel here at home that needs to be made into a (for lack of better knowledge) medieval camp knife???

Only chasing our dreams are we truly set free....it has always been thus and always thus shall be...
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Mark Moore




Location: East backwoods-assed Texas
Joined: 01 Oct 2003
Likes: 6 pages
Reading list: 1 book

Posts: 2,290

PostPosted: Sun 27 Oct, 2013 7:41 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Here in Texas, we have such a nifty multi-purpose knife............it's just called 'Bowie'............. Big Grin ...........McM
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G Ezell
Industry Professional



Location: North Alabama
Joined: 22 Dec 2003

Posts: 232

PostPosted: Sun 27 Oct, 2013 9:11 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Knowing which culture and time period ('Medieval' covers a 10 century spread) you are interested in would narrow down the possibilities. The first thing that comes to mind is a brokeback seax, but that could be because I'm a bit obsessed with them...

Anything between a squirrel and an elk can be skinned with a 3-4 inch blade, much more blade than that and it can be cumbersome. Anything with a blade under 9 inches does not chop wood effectively, you really want a 10 inch plus length blade for that. This means that a knife hefty enough for shelter building will be too large to skin with, and one small enough to comfortably skin with will not be up to the task of shelter building... then there is always the 5 through 8 inch blade, which can be used for both but is not ideal for either. Perhaps you should consider two knives...

http://i665.photobucket.com/albums/vv18/GHEzell/DSCN0045.jpg

" I have found that it is very often the case that if you state some absolute rule of history, there will be an example, however extremely unusual, to break it."
Gabriel Lebec

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Baard H




Location: Norway
Joined: 13 Mar 2013

Posts: 102

PostPosted: Mon 28 Oct, 2013 1:43 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Actually, you don't need a 10+ inch knife to make a shelter or chop wood. If the knife has the weight distribution it required it will chop just fine even if it's just 7-9 inches.

In scandinavia we have just this knife, the sami-knife:
http://www.samekniv.no/index.php?option=com_c...;Itemid=75

This knife is so utilitarian that it is standard-issue in multiple parts of the Norwegian Army.


Unfortunately I don't know when this particular design came along, I just wanted to show that it's not impossible to make a single-bladed "swiss-army knife".

At kveldi skal dag leyfa,
konu, er brennd er,
mki, er reyndr er,
mey, er gefin er,
s, er yfir kemr,
l, er drukkit er.
-Hvaml, vsa 81
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Bjorn Hagstrom




Location: Hr, Skane
Joined: 25 Oct 2007
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Posts: 336

PostPosted: Mon 28 Oct, 2013 2:19 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Still, field dressing a squirrel as was mentioned in the original post would be a challenge with that sami-knife I think.

I would go for a small blade for the gutting, and a hatchet/tomahawk/small axe for firewood.
Chopping and cutting are different things. And an edge honed for cutting can easily be ruined by wood-chopping.

There is nothing quite as sad as a one man conga-line...
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Luka Borscak




Location: Croatia
Joined: 11 Jun 2007
Likes: 7 pages

Posts: 2,254

PostPosted: Mon 28 Oct, 2013 5:25 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Kenneth, make yourself a big knife for camp making and buy yourself a little skinning knife. They are not expensive and you can found some very generic looking that would fit into historical types...
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Kenneth B




Location: United States
Joined: 26 Oct 2013

Posts: 7

PostPosted: Mon 28 Oct, 2013 5:40 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I should have added.....this is a big knife for a pair....I already have the smaller knife for the more delicate tasks....

This is for heavier tasks.....

Time period: say late-ish 1500s Germany....

Were there wide bladed bauernwehr?

Only chasing our dreams are we truly set free....it has always been thus and always thus shall be...
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Radovan Geist




Location: Slovakia
Joined: 19 Aug 2010
Likes: 5 pages

Posts: 367

PostPosted: Mon 28 Oct, 2013 6:41 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Kenneth, try to search online auctions such as Hermann Historica - when I was working on my bauerwehr some time back it really helped me. For your time period youd find blades that are 5+ cm wide. Just as an example - the one Ive attached is 47 cm long and 5 cm wide.

Also, check this article (I have already linked it in another thread): http://www.arsmaiorum.eu/Texty/Petr/Tesaky_s_...i_trny.pdf
Its in Czech, so you probably wouldnt understand, but it has some nice pictures. See page 4 - blades pictured there are 55 and 50 mm wide.



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Alex Indman




Location: NYC
Joined: 13 Sep 2012

Posts: 121

PostPosted: Thu 31 Oct, 2013 3:49 pm    Post subject: Re: Medieval Knives of the huntsmen         Reply with quote

You know Kenneth, your requirements can't be covered by one knife - and this is why starting late Middle Ages (if not earlier) there were so many big knives or short swords carried with a by-knife (or more than one) in the same scabbard!
Various bauernwehr, wood knives, hunting swords, hangers, etc.

I made one that is later than Medieval, though (more like XVIIIc) - see attached picture. Posted a long post about it on this forum last year, but it was lost in the site crash.

Alex.



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Mark Moore




Location: East backwoods-assed Texas
Joined: 01 Oct 2003
Likes: 6 pages
Reading list: 1 book

Posts: 2,290

PostPosted: Thu 31 Oct, 2013 5:29 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I still love that, Alex. That is way, way sweet.............McM
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