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Forum Index > Off-topic Talk > Sword manufacturers. Reply to topic
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Roberto E.




Location: Texas
Joined: 01 Oct 2014

Posts: 68

PostPosted: Tue 21 Oct, 2014 7:49 pm    Post subject: Sword manufacturers.         Reply with quote

So since i'm relatively new to collecting, I have been researching the most popular manufacturers.
It seems as though most of them are respected while some are absolutely hated.

Which are the best brands and why?
And which should be completely avoided at all costs?

I hope this thread helps not only me, but anyone else with this same question.
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Chad Arnow
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Location: Cincinnati, OH
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PostPosted: Tue 21 Oct, 2014 8:13 pm    Post subject: Re: Sword manufacturers.         Reply with quote

Roberto E. wrote:
So since i'm relatively new to collecting, I have been researching the most popular manufacturers.
It seems as though most of them are respected while some are absolutely hated.

Which are the best brands and why?
And which should be completely avoided at all costs?

I hope this thread helps not only me, but anyone else with this same question.


Take time to check out our reviews. Our formal reviews are here. Informal reviews are here.

Those two sources will cover hundreds of different products and you'll see some makers consistently come up with good products (and some which don't).

Happy

ChadA

http://chadarnow.com/
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Roberto E.




Location: Texas
Joined: 01 Oct 2014

Posts: 68

PostPosted: Tue 21 Oct, 2014 9:11 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I have been through the reviews a few times, but ive noticed some manufacturers are missing,
Like legacy arms.

Also i just found out that Albion swords are not completely hand made, and wanted to see what peoples opinions were on this.
As well as to what swords are the best historically accurate swords, and which brands are good beaters while not being historically accurate C:

Although what i have found on the review section has been very helpful.
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Edward Lee




Location: New York
Joined: 05 Jul 2013

Posts: 313

PostPosted: Tue 21 Oct, 2014 9:27 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Legacy arms used to be Generation 2 swords if I'm not mistaken. Kult of Athena deemed those swords "soft tempered". In my opinion they are over sized and too heavy.
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Chad Arnow
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PostPosted: Wed 22 Oct, 2014 8:16 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Roberto E. wrote:
Also i just found out that Albion swords are not completely hand made, and wanted to see what peoples opinions were on this.
As well as to what swords are the best historically accurate swords, and which brands are good beaters while not being historically accurate C:


It's going to be hard to find a lot of production (not custom) shops that make things entirely by hand. Albion uses casting and CNC machining plus hand grinding. A&A uses casting, and their blade blanks are often laser cut from stock, but ground by hand. Atrim uses milling and CNC machining. Del Tin uses casting for hilts, too. I'm sure the vast majority of production makers, from Museum Replicas to Valiant Armoury use castings for their hilts.

Even if casting/milling/machining are used, there is always hand finishing.

Typically, the only companies that totally hand make things are located deep in the third world and are cheap/low quality or are custom shops with high price tag/high quality items.

Happy

ChadA

http://chadarnow.com/
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Craig Johnson
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Location: Minneapolis, MN, USA
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PostPosted: Thu 23 Oct, 2014 6:46 am    Post subject: Hand Made         Reply with quote

I would say Chad has covered it pretty well. (one adjustment to his comment not a big thing but just want to be accurate for folks at A&A we now use a water cutter to do our profile cuts on most stock items.)

In the use of the term "hand made" it can incorporate a huge range of processes and actions. There is a great difference in making a sword with only a forge, tongs, hammer and files to having some form of stock shaping powered by electricity, though still hand held, to a piece that it locked into a CnC and shaped to the thousands of an inch to meet spec.

Once the only way to make a piece was limited to simple tools and a fire. Each advancement in materials, tools and technique take one away from the earliest ways of doing the construction of any item made this way. Where we decide to draw a line between hand made and machine made will fall differently depending on our perceptions and context.

As an example lets ask, Does some one who does not make there own files for finishing get to still be a hand maker of an item? If so do they still get to be a hand maker if they start to use a hand cranked wheel for polishing? Do they still work by hand if the wheel is water powered? What happens when the belt that drives the wheel is attached to a motor as opposed to a water wheel? Some would say as long as the blade is held in the hand as it is worked thats what counts. What happens when you attach a locking tangs to help hold the blade? Or if you start to use a rest to steady the blade?

You can see the process for making the piece is fraught with choices for the smith. In our shop we use these all at different points in our craft. This week we finished a sword forged and ground by hand as well as some that where profiled by a water cutter and rough machined to remove unwanted material. Then they where shaped by hand to meet the need of the finished piece. Hand making can have a lot of meanings in the world of craft and there are many craftspeople capable of meeting your needs but the more time and care needed to do the piece the more it will cost. The lower end of the market is not going to have the careful hand work of the upper end of the scale. As in so much of life you get what you pay for :-)

Best
Craig
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Stephen Curtin




Location: Cork, Ireland
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PostPosted: Thu 23 Oct, 2014 7:02 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Well said Craig.
Éirinn go Brách
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Roberto E.




Location: Texas
Joined: 01 Oct 2014

Posts: 68

PostPosted: Thu 23 Oct, 2014 9:29 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

This clears up a lot of things concerning albion and arms and armor.
Which is nice. I am glad to know it does not affect quality of the blade.

Can anybody tell me about depeeka, legacy arms, and windlass? how historically accurate are they? How good is the quality on each?
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Jeffrey Faulk




Location: Georgia
Joined: 01 Jan 2011

Posts: 578

PostPosted: Thu 23 Oct, 2014 10:04 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Deepeeka: They *look* semi-okay to pretty good. Their product is much more about appearance than actual functionality. A large portion of their market is re-enactors, not backyard cutters. Even their Roman stuff, which is fairly decent for the price, is not particularly great. They have some newer pieces that are a little more accurate, but still, in general avoid this brand unless you HAVE to have a sword and don't have much money. Better to save your money until you can get something more worth it.

Legacy Arms is a re-branded Generation 2. They sell largely the same product at about the same quality. It's fine but not terribly wonderful. The swords are functional enough.

Windlass has a broad range but some pieces will be out of stock on occasion. Historic accuracy is hit and miss, but in general they look fine until you get down to the details. They are, however, splendid pieces for customization-- they don't cost so much that if you mess something up you lose out significantly. Functionality is pretty good. They come unsharpened as standard, but generally most retailers are happy to sharpen them up for you. Most of their pieces could stand a little work to make them better, but out of the box, they work fine. As beginner to mid level pieces, they're well worth acquiring. It is also notable that they have/had the licenses to produce quite a number of film swords, so if that's your thing, there you go.

Part of the reason there are not so many manufacturers listed on the review page is because this website has a fairly strict standard for reviews, mostly in terms of photography. Nathan has spoken upon that before and you can search for that if you like.
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Craig Johnson
Industry Professional



Location: Minneapolis, MN, USA
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PostPosted: Thu 23 Oct, 2014 10:30 am    Post subject: Compare and contrast         Reply with quote

Roberto E. wrote:
This clears up a lot of things concerning albion and arms and armor.
Which is nice. I am glad to know it does not affect quality of the blade.


Hi Roberto

It would be best to contact each company to find out the specifics of what they do. Some are more open about it than others. You should take my comments above in a general sense about the industry. The items I addressed specifically to A&A above are specific to us. There are many ways to skin a cat, forge a nail and craft a sword. Each will find a balance that can meet their needs and talents.

I have often told folks I make swords, I do not make swords for everyone. Some customers are looking for something different than what we do. That is fine and I always try to help them to find the best answer to their needs that I think will be of good quality, but it always comes down to what will make you happy.

If I can answer any questions you may have about our items just drop me an email and I will be happy to help.

Best
Craig
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