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Radovan Geist




Location: Slovakia
Joined: 19 Aug 2010
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Posts: 358

PostPosted: Mon 10 Feb, 2014 12:57 am    Post subject: DIY: Short 16th cent. Swiss sword         Reply with quote

Ive started to work on the blades Ive made last autumn ( http://www.myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.php?t=29410 ). They were all sent to a professional company for normalization, hardening and tempering, and Ive received them back last week.
So, the first one is a short 16th century Swiss sword - at least I thought so, as it comes with a story. I was very intrigued by a piece Id found on one online auction (pic.). I like the simple functional design of these swords and an unusually broad, short blade made it even more interesting. I could not find more info on it, beside a blade length, so I calculated it from the picture as much as I could.
Now, after finishing the blade in the autumn, ive found exactly the same sword on another auction (this time it was Hermann Historica), with the description saying that it is "in the style of 16th cent. Swiss sword"... Well, I tend to believe descriptions on HH, so now I knew that "my sword" is probably a replica (19th cent.?). However, I still liked it and as it was not completely off-mark for a proper period weapon, Ive decided to continue with the project.



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Radovan Geist




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

Posts: 358

PostPosted: Mon 10 Feb, 2014 1:18 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Now, for the project itself:
The blade was cut from a spring steel, 6.5 cm in width, 58 cm in length overall, with 45 cm for blade itself. Ive decided not to use the flat diamond cross-section, but a lenticular one (I did it purely as my personal preference, plus lenticular profile has been used on historical pieces). It is 5 mm thick close to the hilt, thinning down to some 3 mm in the last third. It is made blunt as it will be used for stage-fencing. At that point it weighted slightly above 500 g (picture 1 - the longer blade)

When I received it from heat-treatment, it had some dents from hammer. Ive removed them on a belt-grinder, working super-slow and cooling the blade regularly, and then polished it with send-papers. Ive managed to remove most of those marks, except for a handful of deeper ones near the hilt. Now the weight has lost some 50g (picture 2).

With the blade nearly finished (it will be polished further before the final assembly), I started to work on the cross-guard. It was cut from an old piece of soft steel and bended to a crescent shape (picture 3).

I drilled a hole for the tang and enlarged it with files (picture 4), and filed a recess for a handle (picture 5). Then the crossguard was cleaned on the belt grinder and fitted to the blade (picture 6).

Next came the handle. I had a piece of wood I always wanted to use on this project - it was a piece from some 50 years old plank. Originally it formed a deck of a barn in our old house. The plank was nearly all rotten, except for some 30 cm in the middle, which I kept when I was reconstructing the house two years back. I have no clue what type of wood it is, but it has an interesting deep-orange/red colour, and it is very hard (picture 7).

With a hand-saw, Ive cut a plank of it, and marked the future handle (picture 8). Then I drilled the hole for the tang, cleaned it with rasp, rough-shaped the handle and fitted it to the blade. Ive also made a thin spacer from a copper sheet, as it could be often seen on swords from that period (picture 9).

Next steps: a pommel sheet, lots of shaping and cleaning on the handle, polishing, and the final assembly.
As always, Im very interested in your comments, remarks, advices...



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Radovan Geist




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

Posts: 358

PostPosted: Mon 10 Feb, 2014 1:19 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

...and the last picture which was not added to the previous post.


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Radovan Geist




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

Posts: 358

PostPosted: Sun 23 Feb, 2014 11:35 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Ive managed to find few hours to work on my projects, so here are some progress pictures.
First, the original handle cracked:( I was really pissed because I did not have enough wood left from the piece I wanted to use, so I had to make a new one from another wood. I took a nice piece of dry oak and shaped a new handle (Pic.1).

Next came the chape at the end of the handle: I have cut a strip of 4mm thick mild steel, drilled the hole for a tang and bent it to shape (Pic. 2). Then it was gridded to lenticular shape, polished, and two additional holes were drilled for securing rivets (pic. 3).

So, thats as far as I got for now. If things go well, I shall finish it in a week or two.



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Radovan Geist




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

Posts: 358

PostPosted: Sun 06 Apr, 2014 10:59 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

this weekend ive managed to put everything together, clean it and peen the "pommel". Here is it, so the only thing missing is the scabbard. Any ideas about a proper suspension method? Ill check some period artwork, but any advice would be really appreciated.


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Shahril Dzulkifli




Location: Malaysia
Joined: 13 Dec 2007
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Posts: 1,265

PostPosted: Sun 27 Apr, 2014 6:57 am    Post subject: DIY: Short 16th cent. Swiss sword         Reply with quote


What a nice sword! Big Grin

You have power over your mind - not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength

- Marcus Aurelius
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Radovan Geist




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

Posts: 358

PostPosted: Sun 27 Jul, 2014 10:56 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I did not have much time to spend in my workshop lately, but I have used that little I had on finishing some older projects, working mostly on scabbards, final polishing, etc. Here is the scabbard Ive made for a short Swiss sword. At the end, I did cnot want anything very elaborate, so I went for a simple wooden core scabbard, covered with black leather, with some simple linear risers.
Now, this project is closed:)



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