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Sam Arwas




Location: Australia
Joined: 02 Dec 2015

Posts: 92

PostPosted: Sun 30 Dec, 2018 10:53 pm    Post subject: Advice for my first longsword?         Reply with quote

I've decided my first longsword will either be the Ringeck, Sempach or Baron. I find the Sempach to be the most interesting but it's also the most expensive of the three. The Baron best fits the time period I'm most interested in and as someone who loves XII blades it's like a big brother to my Knight. The Ringeck is very handsome and is the most affordable of the three. It will be a while before I save up the cash and then then the long wait time so there's plenty of time. What do you guys advise I go for?
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Henry R. Gower




Location: United States
Joined: 09 Dec 2013
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PostPosted: Sun 30 Dec, 2018 11:41 pm    Post subject: Which sword to buy.         Reply with quote

My two cents would be, go for the Baron. I always got the greatest satisfaction out of the Norman sword I bought when I first started, in the 80's. I know it was from Catalog # 1 of Museum Replicas, and the choices were far, far more limited than today. Ever since I was a child and got the National Geographic issue about the Battle of Hastings (I still have it) I was interested in the Norman period. I also loved the Hesston film: Warlord for that reason, it represented the era I was most interested in at the time. For the same reason I wanted to go see the Bayeux Tapestry and loved Romanesque Architecture. It all ties in you see. The period you most love. When I first visited the Cloisters, it was, once again, immersion in the period that most interested me. Of course, I am giving you a very personal point of view, in the hope you may feel as I do. Possibly. Anyway, my two pennies worth, to be more accurate.
Henry
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Sam Barris




Location: San Diego, California
Joined: 29 Apr 2004
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PostPosted: Mon 31 Dec, 2018 12:41 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi, fellow Sam!

With me it always starts with what period or fechtbuch I'm interested in at the moment. That generally lets me narrow it down by Oakeshott type, at which point I can start to nitpick about aesthetics and whatnot. I find I get more satisfaction out of a sword if it fits into a larger pattern of study rather than something that takes up space in my collection in isolation from those things. That would seem to be a vote in favor of the Baron, in this case.

Pax,
Sam Barris

"Any nation that draws too great a distinction between its scholars and its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards, and its fighting done by fools." —Thucydides
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Sam Arwas




Location: Australia
Joined: 02 Dec 2015

Posts: 92

PostPosted: Mon 31 Dec, 2018 1:38 am    Post subject: Re: Which sword to buy.         Reply with quote

Henry R. Gower wrote:
My two cents would be, go for the Baron. I always got the greatest satisfaction out of the Norman sword I bought when I first started, in the 80's. I know it was from Catalog # 1 of Museum Replicas, and the choices were far, far more limited than today. Ever since I was a child and got the National Geographic issue about the Battle of Hastings (I still have it) I was interested in the Norman period. I also loved the Hesston film: Warlord for that reason, it represented the era I was most interested in at the time. For the same reason I wanted to go see the Bayeux Tapestry and loved Romanesque Architecture. It all ties in you see. The period you most love. When I first visited the Cloisters, it was, once again, immersion in the period that most interested me. Of course, I am giving you a very personal point of view, in the hope you may feel as I do. Possibly. Anyway, my two pennies worth, to be more accurate.
Henry
Yep, I feel the same way for the mid to late 13th century as you do for the Norman period and have for close to half my life.
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Craig Peters




PostPosted: Mon 31 Dec, 2018 4:13 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Also take into consideration what sort of handling you enjoy in a sword. The Baron is a big sword with a fair degree of blade presence. I personally found I liked the handling of the Duke much more, and if you compare the weights, you will see the Duke is substantially lighter.

That having been said, my vote goes to the Sempach. It's an elegant sword with a lovely pommel. The blade makes it a classic sword for harnischfechten, yet don't be fooled: it can still hew open an opponent. If you go with the idea that Liechtenauer was a 14th century master, this type of sword would be classic for his time period, and good for Fiore, too.
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Sam Arwas




Location: Australia
Joined: 02 Dec 2015

Posts: 92

PostPosted: Mon 31 Dec, 2018 5:54 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Craig Peters wrote:
Also take into consideration what sort of handling you enjoy in a sword. The Baron is a big sword with a fair degree of blade presence. I personally found I liked the handling of the Duke much more, and if you compare the weights, you will see the Duke is substantially lighter.

That having been said, my vote goes to the Sempach. It's an elegant sword with a lovely pommel. The blade makes it a classic sword for harnischfechten, yet don't be fooled: it can still hew open an opponent. If you go with the idea that Liechtenauer was a 14th century master, this type of sword would be classic for his time period, and good for Fiore, too.
I'm guessing the rather chunky cross-section of the Sempach provides sufficient heft to overcome it's relatively wide edge angle.
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Roger Hooper




Location: Northern California
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PostPosted: Mon 31 Dec, 2018 8:18 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

If you want a heavier grete sword, get the Baron. For something lighter with more finesse, get the Sempach.
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Christian Short




Location: New Orleans
Joined: 21 Jan 2017

Posts: 173

PostPosted: Mon 31 Dec, 2018 8:36 am    Post subject: Advice for my first longsword         Reply with quote

I’d have to say the Baron would be my first choice followed by the Sempach and then the Ringneck. I own all 3 and those are some of my favorites
Christian
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Joe Fults




Location: Midwest
Joined: 02 Sep 2003

Posts: 3,528

PostPosted: Mon 31 Dec, 2018 11:35 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Ringeck is one of the best there is. Period. Full stop. Done.
"Our life is what our thoughts make it"
-Marcus Aurelius

"Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable."
-John F. Kennedy
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Patrick Kelly




Location: Wichita, Kansas
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PostPosted: Mon 31 Dec, 2018 1:38 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I've owned the Sempach and the Baron. The Sempach is a great sword and very indicative of its era, lots of interesting details. That said, I'd go with the Baron. It's an awesome sword and while I don't regret selling the one I had, I can definitely see myself getting another one in the future.
"In valor there is hope.".................. Tacitus
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Michael Beeching





Joined: 22 Jan 2014
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Posts: 201

PostPosted: Wed 02 Jan, 2019 5:03 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

My opinion is that you need to hone in your own opinion! Here thus are my opinions in that regard:

1. As others have suggested, you should ground yourself with the time period your martial interests fall into, should you fancy yourself a practitioner rather than a collector. I personally work with Liechtenauer according to Ringeck and "Dobringer," so a Type XV longsword is what I choose (other sword types are also applicable here as well). Type XVs are jacks-of-all-trades and masters of one: they fence well and have excellent points for exploiting gaps in armor. My opinion given your picks is thus that you should get a Ringeck. Alternately, if you are very tight on your budget and you need a longsword sooner than later, you can get Albion's Type XV Squire Line sword for much cheaper than your other options, though you will need to do your own sharpening. This one would also fit the bill of a "bastard sword;" the sharp version is the "Mercenary."

2. If you like a sword, regardless of your areas of martial study, then you should get that sword. If you like cutting swords, then you should get a cutting sword. As per the lines of my previous comments, Albion offers a Squire Line "Grete Swerde" as well, for far less than the Baron. Of course, you would again have to do your own sharpening.

3. I noted some cheaper alternatives to your choices, and I could have even suggested another manufacturer (my first sword was NOT an Albion, because I wanted information they would not give me at the time). This again, is merely an opinion, which you ask for because you're trying to hone in on your own. The last bit of advice is this: if you want a particular sword, do not settle for something else. If you must save, then save. If you must set a budget limit, make sure you are don't end up disappointing yourself because of that limit. Give no room for remorse, regardless of what you do!
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Jimi Edmonds




Location: Dunedin, New Zealand
Joined: 25 May 2009
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PostPosted: Sat 05 Jan, 2019 11:35 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'll echo some of what is said above.

Comes down to where in the use of longswords that you stand.

If you happen to practice Liechtenauer's art or even Fiore's, all three swords that you are looking at will work, though here I have to say that the Ringeck (and Fiore, which in my opinion is nicer than the Ringeck) will be the better sword, performance wise.

The Ringeck is slightly longer than the Sempach and heavier and here I speculate that the Baron lags behind the swift speed of the Ringeck.

The Sempach is quite capable of both Fiore and Liechtenauer, though the way the pommel is (I find that I must 'palm' the pommel, similar to how I hold a viking style sword) makes it somewhat awkward in some motions and positions for the German tradition, here I found Fiore works well with this sword. This sword is handy in one hand due to it's low weight, though I do find I like a heavier sword.

The Ringeck, having a slightly longer grip and scent stopper pommel makes for easy transition and flow. It's a very nimble sword. The weight is good. It works well for both German and Italian.

As for the Baron, I can't comment, though by the looks it may fight against you if you must make quick changes and flicks, but if you want to be like the dude out of Ironclad, this sword is similar.

If I was to get another Albion, it'd be a Fiore.

Really it comes down to what you like best or what the intended use for what ever reason.
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Jeremiah Swanger




Location: Hershey, PA
Joined: 20 Feb 2004
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PostPosted: Sun 06 Jan, 2019 8:05 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hi Sam,

You didn't include it on your list, but since you're already looking at the Baron, might I humbly suggest the Crecy?

Having handled a Baron, I very much agree with Craig's assessment-- despite its elegant profile taper and defined point, the Baron is VERY MUCH A GREAT/WAR SWORD! Can it be used in Liechtenauer? Sure. But there are other swords in Albion's lineup that are, perhaps, more suitable to that system, IMHO.

The Crecy has a similar overall aesthetic, is a quarter-pound lighter, and has a CoB closer to the cross. The only downside I see is that the grip is also a bit shorter, so you might be placing your off-hand ring and pinky fingers over the wheel pommel. Now, I have never really felt uncomfortable doing this, but I still prefer extra grip length if I can get it. I also have rather large, meaty hands, so I run into this scenario more often than not.

Now, in full disclosure, the Crecy is one of the few models in Albion's second or third crop of Next Generation swords that I haven't handled, so I'm going strictly off of the stats on paper for my assessment. Take that for what it's worth.

My fascination lies with Talhoffer and the Codex Wallerstein, so I would probably gravitate toward The Regent or Earl. I also think those models feature the most perfectly-proportioned blade profile I've ever seen on a longsword, so I have to admit that my preferences are NOT purely pragmatic!

Let us know what you decide on, and good luck in your decision! Whatever you decide, I'm sure the folks at Albion will make something you'll be delighted with!

"Rhaegar fought nobly.
Rhaegar fought valiantly.
Rhaegar fought honorably.
And Rhaegar died."

- G.R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire
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Sam Arwas




Location: Australia
Joined: 02 Dec 2015

Posts: 92

PostPosted: Mon 07 Jan, 2019 11:20 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Jeremiah Swanger wrote:
Having handled a Baron, I very much agree with Craig's assessment-- despite its elegant profile taper and defined point, the Baron is VERY MUCH A GREAT/WAR SWORD! Can it be used in Liechtenauer? Sure. But there are other swords in Albion's lineup that are, perhaps, more suitable to that system, IMHO.
Yeh that heft is what I want in an XIIa and it's the reason I'm not getting the Lockwood one.
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Michael P. Smith




Location: Muncie, Indiana
Joined: 11 Jul 2018
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PostPosted: Wed 16 Jan, 2019 8:21 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Craig Peters wrote:
Also take into consideration what sort of handling you enjoy in a sword. The Baron is a big sword with a fair degree of blade presence. I personally found I liked the handling of the Duke much more, and if you compare the weights, you will see the Duke is substantially lighter.

That having been said, my vote goes to the Sempach. It's an elegant sword with a lovely pommel. The blade makes it a classic sword for harnischfechten, yet don't be fooled: it can still hew open an opponent. If you go with the idea that Liechtenauer was a 14th century master, this type of sword would be classic for his time period, and good for Fiore, too.


I bought a Sempach last year mainly because of my interest in the late 14th/early 15th century. But no lie, it has become my favorite sword. Not only is it real looker (IMHO), but it feels alive in the hand.
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Jeremy V. Krause




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PostPosted: Fri 18 Jan, 2019 8:21 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I base my collection on my period of interest so I would say get the Baron or the Duke.

I have handled the Baron and Sempach and both are great representations of their period.

I think if is good to have a focus for collecting. I focus on a particular period or else my collection would be all over the place- but for some this may be OK.
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