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Reagh Greenleaf Jr.




Location: Vermont, USA
Joined: 10 Jun 2005

Posts: 30

PostPosted: Tue 22 Oct, 2019 8:01 am    Post subject: My quasi-historical Irish bastard sword commission         Reply with quote

Hi Folks,
I recently commissioned a sword from Sterling Armory, based in Florida, USA.
I haven't seen too much information about them on forums, etc.; but liked their designs and decided to give it a go.
Posting here for anyone who's curious about 'my journey'. I'll update as I receive progress reports from them.

Maker: Sterling Armory.
I've been in touch mostly with Chris via Facebook messenger and email. He's been very responsive and open to my input on the design - while making useful suggestions from his perspective as the fabricator.
They don't have much of a web presence, and most of their available info/pictures is on their Facebook page.
They seem to do most of their sales at Renaissance Faires and the like.
Their designs range from historical to fantasy/custom. I'd say their pieces mostly have a crisp/machined look, which is fine for my purposes. They have some really nice lines/proportions.

Design (see sketch): Quasi-historical Irish 'ring-pommel' bastard sword.
General parameters:
OAL: 41-42"
Blade length: 32" from shoulder to tip.
Going for an Oakeshott type XVIII(a) style blade.
Bronze pommel and guard.
Grip: Leather over wood core w/cord risers, pressed with cord wrap.
Blade steel: 5160, treatment, hardness, geometry, etc. similar to Atrim or Tinker swords.
Suitable stiffness for it's type (not 'whippy').
Peened construction.
Note: Chris estimated a weight of 2.75-3 lbs. for these parameters.

Inspired by pics of two previous 'Irish ring-pommel' swords they've made (see attached pics).

More of a Ren-Faire piece than any kind of actual HEMA configuration.
I'd call it 'historically-plausible'; shameless Irish/Celtic self-gratification.
Short-in-the-blade for a long sword, and long-in-the-grip for an arming sword. Not very wide cross guard.
I'm certainly biased towards 'katana-like' proportions from my Korean/Japanese martial arts background.

Price: Very reasonable.
I'll be in about $600 USD for this piece (no scabbard), with a 50% deposit via PayPal.
They may have quoted me lower than usual, as I provided extensive details and sketches about what I'm looking for.
Depending on how this goes, I'd say Sterling Armory will be a good option for someone when they can't quite find the dimensions/proportions/features they want in a production model (i.e. Hanwei/Tinker line), but can't quite do Arms & Armour, Albion, ATrim, etc.

Fire away with any questions about my experience with this maker, and I'll post updates as I'm able.



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Faugh a ballagh!
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Tyler Jordan





Joined: 15 Mar 2004

Posts: 97

PostPosted: Thu 24 Oct, 2019 6:16 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Very cool, did not know there was such a custom shop local to me.

Seems like they could use a web-presence guy though, huh?

Very interested to see how this goes.
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