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Joel Whitmore




Location: Simmesport, LA
Joined: 25 Aug 2003

Posts: 342

PostPosted: Wed 05 Jan, 2005 4:43 am    Post subject: Possible custom project.         Reply with quote

It's been quite a while since I thought about a custom sword and the bug seems to be tugging at me again. The 2-hander pictured below has been on my mind for some years and I think that I am ready to proceed. Large blades are tough for any smith as mnay do not have the appropriate sized heat treating faciilities for such a long blade. Anyways, I am looking at a blade of about 40-something inches long. I dont' want to give a specific length as the smith will have a lot to say about this in the end. However, I like the overal shape of the blade and hope to get this one done with the next couple of years. Feel free to chime in any thoughts you have.

Joel



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Jeremy Scott Steimel




Location: Champaign, IL
Joined: 24 Jan 2004

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PostPosted: Wed 05 Jan, 2005 5:35 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Is that shading supposed to represent a hollow-ground blade?

From the different custom smiths I've worked with / spoken with, getting them to do a hollow ground blade would be more of a challenge than finding someone who can do a 40" blade (which I don't think would actually would be that big of an isssue).

I do like the design, by the way. Whoever you work with in the end, I imagine they'll be pleased -- I've seen a lot of the images these guys get when people contact them saying they've already made their own design. They tend to be pretty far out of left field. I think your design obviously shows you've done your homework, and it's of course a blade that can be very realistically made.

I'd only make two changes: thicken the guard a bit, and design a matching scabbard. Happy

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Gordon Clark




Location: Purcellville, VA
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PostPosted: Wed 05 Jan, 2005 5:49 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

For a sword that size - maybe a slightly wider guard?
What are you thinking of for the thickness of the blade?
A deeply hollow ground thick blade (rather like the Sture sword) would be really cool - probably really expensive as well.

Looks nice!

Gordon
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Joel Whitmore




Location: Simmesport, LA
Joined: 25 Aug 2003

Posts: 342

PostPosted: Wed 05 Jan, 2005 6:36 am    Post subject: Blade         Reply with quote

Gordon Clark wrote:
For a sword that size - maybe a slightly wider guard?
What are you thinking of for the thickness of the blade?
A deeply hollow ground thick blade (rather like the Sture sword) would be really cool - probably really expensive as well.

Looks nice!

Gordon


The shading is supposed to represent some hollow grinding. However, I will leave this up to the smith as a hollow grind might not be the best way to go for such a large blade. As far as thickness is concerned, I intentionally left that out becuase I really feel that the maker would dictate such things since this is not based on any historical example. A wider guard might look better, but those are paremeters I can play around with. Thanks for the comments guys. I hope to get this puppy done. I have several smiths in mind and I have already contacted one who has shown some interest.I have always liked big two-handers, but, as we have seen, they need not be heavy cumbersome things. I'll keep everyone aprised of what's going on as this project gets off the ground ( hopefully it will).

Joel
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Russ Ellis
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PostPosted: Wed 05 Jan, 2005 10:47 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'm wondering why that rounded narrowing of the blade where it reaches the cross? I notice that it is basically the same thing as your Anduril so you obviously have an affinity for it. Just wondering why...
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Joel Whitmore




Location: Simmesport, LA
Joined: 25 Aug 2003

Posts: 342

PostPosted: Wed 05 Jan, 2005 11:35 am    Post subject: Hehe Russ you got me.         Reply with quote

Russ Ellis wrote:
I'm wondering why that rounded narrowing of the blade where it reaches the cross? I notice that it is basically the same thing as your Anduril so you obviously have an affinity for it. Just wondering why...


You hit the nail on the head Russ....I just like the way it looks Happy I'd like to say I was being original, but I'm nto that creative lol. I don't know why I like those curves on the shoulders, I just do Laughing Out Loud

Joel
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Roger Hooper




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PostPosted: Wed 05 Jan, 2005 11:47 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Very nice. I bet Arms and Armor could do a great job with that design.
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Nathan Robinson
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PostPosted: Wed 05 Jan, 2005 11:54 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'd contact John Lundemo about it. Have you seen some of his stuff lately? Good work.
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Joel Whitmore




Location: Simmesport, LA
Joined: 25 Aug 2003

Posts: 342

PostPosted: Wed 05 Jan, 2005 12:21 pm    Post subject: Yes there are some great smiths around.         Reply with quote

Nathan Robinson wrote:
I'd contact John Lundemo about it. Have you seen some of his stuff lately? Good work.


Yes i very much like what I see from John. I know that my man Craig over at A&A would do a first-rate job too. It still amazes me that today there are(relatively speaking) so many choices for one to go custom. When I had Anduril made, there were very few choices out there for people who could do this kind of quality work. Of course much depends on time schedules, work loads and of course price. I wish I coudl say that price was no object, but everyone who is working knows that's not true. So it'll be fun to see how this all turns out.

Joel
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Russ Ellis
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PostPosted: Wed 05 Jan, 2005 1:28 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I can't help wondering if those severely radiused shoulders might be a weak spot especially if that blade is bent with the cross being the fulcrum. You've test cut with your Anduril correct?
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Joel Whitmore




Location: Simmesport, LA
Joined: 25 Aug 2003

Posts: 342

PostPosted: Wed 05 Jan, 2005 3:46 pm    Post subject: Tang/shoulder area.         Reply with quote

Russ Ellis wrote:
I can't help wondering if those severely radiused shoulders might be a weak spot especially if that blade is bent with the cross being the fulcrum. You've test cut with your Anduril correct?


Ya know Russ I never thought about that but apparently Kevin had when he did the blade for Anduril. That blade cuts like a beast and I never had any trouble with it bending. I can't find the pic at the moment, but I did a quick drawing of what Kevin figured out for the tang/shoulder melding. It seems he made square shulders just above the rounded ones where the tang is. This is hidden by the cross guard so you never see it unless you dismount the hilt. I am fairly confident that if Kevin was ok with this concept then the tang/shoulder area is probably strong.

Joel



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Russ Ellis
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PostPosted: Wed 05 Jan, 2005 8:11 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I see that he has kept some metal in place there before he narrowed it down to the tang as well. I think that's probably a good idea. Did he ever try to talk you out of the radiusing at all?
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Bill Grandy
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PostPosted: Wed 05 Jan, 2005 9:24 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'd thought the same thing about the radiusing at first, but then I thought about all the swords that have ricassos which don't have problems with stress. Assuming the smith knows what he's doing, I doubt it'd be an issue.
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Robert W. Betten




Location: Brisbane, Australia
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PostPosted: Wed 05 Jan, 2005 11:38 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Nathan Robinson wrote:
I'd contact John Lundemo about it. Have you seen some of his stuff lately? Good work.


I was gonna recommend the same guy, I've seen his ridged blades and semi hollow ground and they're awesome. My custom towards the fuller has a hollow grind leading into a flat before the edge, his skill since he made my sword though has astonished me. I gotta order a new sword from him myself after seeing his more historical stuff...

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Joel Whitmore




Location: Simmesport, LA
Joined: 25 Aug 2003

Posts: 342

PostPosted: Thu 06 Jan, 2005 5:12 am    Post subject: Conversations with Kevin         Reply with quote

Russ Ellis wrote:
I see that he has kept some metal in place there before he narrowed it down to the tang as well. I think that's probably a good idea. Did he ever try to talk you out of the radiusing at all?


If I remember rightly the only thing I told Kevin was "I'd like to keep those rounded shoulders if possible" . He never said they would be a problem as I recall. You can see from the actual photo below that the area around the tang is pretty beefy. Again, if Kevin Cashen did not feel it was a problem, I am not the least bit worried about it.

Joel



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Russ Ellis
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PostPosted: Thu 06 Jan, 2005 6:37 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Oh I don't blame you I would be inclined to take his word for it as well.

Bill, I was trying to think why the ricasso could potentially be the same issue. The only thing I could come up with is the narrowed sort of ricasso on the XVIIIe which might cause the same concerns... except that the narrowing there is usually rather small. Was that what you were referring too? Or is there other properties of the ricasso on say a XIV or bidenhander which I'm not thinking of?

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Bill Grandy
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PostPosted: Thu 06 Jan, 2005 8:16 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Yeah, I meant the narrowed ricassos on XVIIIe's and on sideswords and such. On some sideswords it is practically an exposed area of the tang.
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Jean Thibodeau




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PostPosted: Thu 06 Jan, 2005 8:44 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Joel;

Nice design, I don't see that rounding being a problem as a more conventionnal square shoulder touching the guard fully does not add a bit to the strenght of the blade: The transition to the actual tang looks well radiused and this is where good or bad design would impact durability.

As to the radiused shoulder it is a question of personnal taste and although not my first choice it is sort of growing on me.

As to the blade a very thick blade with a deep hollow grind combined with a radical distal taper is the way I would be tempted to go as long as the smith I would be using was up to making it work i.e. Not making it into a boat anchor ....LOL.

Hmmmmmm 1/2" thick tapering to just under 1/8" near the point with the deep hollow grinding becoming flat ground near the point for a reinforce armour piercing point. The transition could be subtle or very defined.

The deep hollow grind might almost be like a double fullers fading into a very slightly thicker apple seed sword edge.

Anyway, just what I might ask the smith about. I would imagine that this would probably multiply the fair price by a factor of 3

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Joel Whitmore




Location: Simmesport, LA
Joined: 25 Aug 2003

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PostPosted: Thu 06 Jan, 2005 9:37 am    Post subject: Hollow Grinding         Reply with quote

Jean Thibodeau wrote:
Joel;

Nice design, I don't see that rounding being a problem as a more conventionnal square shoulder touching the guard fully does not add a bit to the strenght of the blade: The transition to the actual tang looks well radiused and this is where good or bad design would impact durability.

As to the radiused shoulder it is a question of personnal taste and although not my first choice it is sort of growing on me.

As to the blade a very thick blade with a deep hollow grind combined with a radical distal taper is the way I would be tempted to go as long as the smith I would be using was up to making it work i.e. Not making it into a boat anchor ....LOL.

Hmmmmmm 1/2" thick tapering to just under 1/8" near the point with the deep hollow grinding becoming flat ground near the point for a reinforce armour piercing point. The transition could be subtle or very defined.

The deep hollow grind might almost be like a double fullers fading into a very slightly thicker apple seed sword edge.

Anyway, just what I might ask the smith about. I would imagine that this would probably multiply the fair price by a factor of 3


It'd be nice to have some of our resident smiths chime in here, but from what I have gathered, hollow grinding is not all that easy to do well. I think this would add to the cost of the blade as opposed to a straight lenticular crossection or diamond crossection. How much I think would depend ont he smith himeself. In the case of Anduril you have a blade that is 37" long , a little over 2" wide at the shoulders and weighs in at just over 4 lbs for the entire sword. Kevin told me he may have been able to make teh sword come in somewhat lighter, but Patrick Hastings was making the pommel and he didn't know the final pommel weight until it arrived at his shop. It's simply amazing how well this sword handles and it looks much larger in real life than in photos.

Joel
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Jean Thibodeau




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PostPosted: Thu 06 Jan, 2005 1:25 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Joel;

I have two Tom Maringer swords that I designed and had made in and around 1980 that both have deep hollow ground blades with arrow strait grind lines. (He may have used mechanical guides of support or freehand when grinding the blades.)

I think he worked originally from a custom knife making tradittion were hollow grinding was / is more the norm than the exception.
I have no doupt that hollow grinding a 40" blade is a whole order of magnitude more difficult than a 8" knife.

On the other hand a perfect flat grind is no easy thing either.

By the way if I could go back in time to when I was designing these swords the main thing I would change is adding a distal taper as even deep hollow grinding is not enough to avoid the boat anchor feel when using thick 1/4" or 5/16" thick steel.

By the way my design became, with my permission, his Skysword design. (Better to have others enjoy the design in a very limited production number than have a unique piece that no one knows about.)

Unfortunatly Tom decided to quit making knives and swords after one of his pieces was misused in a violent way. (Don't have any details about that.)

Getting back to your design, if hollow grinding is something you consider as important to the design, then you should have it made that way even if the cost is higher ! It all depends on what you think is important to your design. If you the type of grind is not one of your priorities you could leave it up to the smith to decide.

The whole point of commissioning the production of your own design is for it to suit your desires: Be sure of what you want it to be, then go for it.

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