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Artur Zima




Location: UK
Joined: 11 Apr 2016

Posts: 11

PostPosted: Thu 02 Feb, 2017 11:39 am    Post subject: Sword polishing while preserving clean lines         Reply with quote

Hey everyone,

I've been on the forum for a while now, however this is my first post. I am fairly new to sword collecting so please excuse me if my question is perhaps silly.

Recently I purchased my first sword - a gladius replica. The sword has a few minor scratches and I'm planning on polishing it up a little bit in the near future when replacing the hilt for my own construction.

I was wondering whether you can dull the central ridge by polishing the sword? If so, are there any special techniques for polishing a sword with a central ridge?

Sorry if there's a topic about this already but I couldn't find it. Thanks for your help!
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Timo Nieminen




Location: Brisbane, Australia
Joined: 08 May 2009
Likes: 1 page
Reading list: 1 book

Posts: 1,491

PostPosted: Thu 02 Feb, 2017 8:12 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Yes, you can smooth out ridges, corners, etc. polishing a sword.

If you're polishing it with a polishing paste like Autosol or Mother's Mag or a liquid polish like Brasso, you remove very little steel, and I don't think it's something to worry about. But these kinds of polishes also don't remove significant scratches, for the same reason: they remove very little steel.

If you're polishing with a stone or with sandpaper (i.e., silicon carbide wet-and-dry), then you need to be careful. With a stone, it's a question of (a) keeping the correct angle (i.e., keep the flat surface of the blade against the stone, and not the ridge alone - this will smooth out the ridge quite quickly) and (b) not wearing a groove into your stone. With sandpaper, use a hard backing (like a block of wood), and as with a stone, keep the flat of the blade against the sandpaper wrapped block.

A diamond section blade isn't too traumatic, as long as you keep the angles right. Even convex blades with ridges are OK - again, it's a matter of not having the ridge alone against the stone/sandpaper. Hollow-ground is harder (sometimes you can make a rounded block that fits the surface).

If the ridge is already somewhat rounded, then either a stone or sandpaper + block as above, or just sandpaper with no backing (other than your fingers). Unbacked sandpaper will tend to round off sharp ridges a little, but if it's already rounded, you won't change things much.

"In addition to being efficient, all pole arms were quite nice to look at." - Cherney Berg, A hideous history of weapons, Collier 1963.
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J.D. Crawford




Location: Toronto
Joined: 25 Dec 2006

Spotlight topics: 1
Posts: 1,581

PostPosted: Fri 03 Feb, 2017 5:08 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

For general info on sword polishing, see here: http://myArmoury.com/feature_care.html
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Artur Zima




Location: UK
Joined: 11 Apr 2016

Posts: 11

PostPosted: Sat 04 Feb, 2017 3:42 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Cool, I'll try a sandpaper with a block then. Thank you for the tips!
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