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Forum Index > Historical Arms Talk > Regarding flanged maces... Reply to topic
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Danilo J




Location: Pirot, Serbia
Joined: 28 Feb 2018

Posts: 12

PostPosted: Mon 10 Feb, 2020 11:00 am    Post subject: Regarding flanged maces...         Reply with quote

Hello everyone,

Im interested to know a few things about these beautiful weapons so I can try and make a replica for myself...


Firstly, were flanged maces made out of high carbon steel, or not?

If so, were they hardened and to what degree?

What was their typical weight range if we suppose the handles were hollow hexagonal tubes?

How many mm of wall thickness did they have?

And what is the typical thickness of the flanges?


I have a few nice examples on kultofathena, but they do not specify tube thickness nor diameter, only general measurements, which simply wont do me any good.
They do however weigh all their maces, which is great, considering they got the weight right Big Grin


Ive made 3d models of the mace I want to build, and the most weight is shaved off by changing the tube(handle) thickness, so I guess, I would like the know the minimal thickness pipe I can use to make a functional replica...

Thank you to anyone who can spare the time to educate me a bit on these matters, it would be greatly appreciated, cheers!
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Dan Howard




Location: Maitland, NSW, Australia
Joined: 08 Dec 2004

Spotlight topics: 2
Posts: 3,394

PostPosted: Mon 10 Feb, 2020 2:27 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Shawn Caza has a good collection. His medieval ones are here.
http://otlichnik.tripod.com/medmace2.html
http://otlichnik.tripod.com/medmace3.html

One thing is clear is that they were a lot lighter than many assume. Around 2.0-2.5 lbs seems typical.
http://myArmoury.com/talk/viewtopic.15182.html

Author: Bronze Age Military Equipment, Pen and Sword Books
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Danilo J




Location: Pirot, Serbia
Joined: 28 Feb 2018

Posts: 12

PostPosted: Mon 10 Feb, 2020 3:11 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I am familiar with that topic, thank you.

But there is no mention of how thick the handles are anywhere Worried

Sean Flynt commented that he would try to track down an image showing wall thicknesses, but I guess he never did Sad

Ive scoured the internet myself with no avail...

Cant find anything even remotely related to what Im after.

I guess Ill just have to figure out the wall thicknesses by using the known weights and 3d software Laughing Out Loud
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Dan Howard




Location: Maitland, NSW, Australia
Joined: 08 Dec 2004

Spotlight topics: 2
Posts: 3,394

PostPosted: Mon 10 Feb, 2020 4:16 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

You have the diameter of the hole in the mace-head, which gives you the outer diameter of the handle. Make the handle from wood (which is what the majority of historical maces were made from) and you won't have to worry about the thickness of the walls of a a metal tube. Don't use dowels from a hardware shop, they are too weak. Use a sapling or a coppiced branch so you get intact growth rings.
Author: Bronze Age Military Equipment, Pen and Sword Books
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Tyler C.




Location: Canada
Joined: 20 Aug 2019
Reading list: 2 books

Posts: 19

PostPosted: Mon 10 Feb, 2020 9:00 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

This sounds like a really fun project! I would love to see some pictures as you progress.

Regarding your questions on material I would imagine that there was a full spread of iron and steel used in the ferrous category flanged maces. I am not aware of any surveys done on maces nor am in an expert on the subject, but based on the range of iron/steels that we see used in swords, I would imagine it must be similar for maces. Perhaps the quality range may be weighted more toward the lower end of the scale since the material choice is not as much of a concern with a mace as it is with a sword.

Something that I think often gets glossed over when selecting correct materials for period reproductions is "high carbon steel" or any steel really is vastly different now compared to what it was in the medieval period. It becomes a question of how correct you want to be with your material choice. If you really want to have something fully authentic then you could find a piece of wrought iron to make your components from which would likely be very similar to medium quality material of the day. If you want something that is closer to the higher end then try to find some blister steel (the springs of old wagons are a good source). Blister steel is a high carbon steel made by carburizing wrought iron. It would be very similar to what you would see in a higher end product from the medieval period, or at least more similar than any modern steel would be regardless of carbon content. If you are looking to make something that can be used, then make it out of a modern high allow spring steel, and harden and temper it.

As for hardening in originals, again, I am no expert and I have no data, but if I had to guess I would imagine that the best maces were hardened and the lower end stuff was not.

Just out curiosity, what kind of thicknesses are you currently considering for the tubing wall thickness?
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Graham Shearlaw





Joined: 24 Oct 2011
Likes: 1 page

Posts: 97

PostPosted: Tue 11 Feb, 2020 2:22 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

If you planing on mounting a mace head, Tod has a great video on it.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zlnwRT9w2l8
As for harding, on most maces there no edge to hold and often the flanges have a distinct tappering that makes them wider at the impact area.
A softer an less brittle tempter is idea for them in that it lets them dent and bend rather then chip or lose flanges.
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Danilo J




Location: Pirot, Serbia
Joined: 28 Feb 2018

Posts: 12

PostPosted: Tue 11 Feb, 2020 4:16 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

"Dan Howard"
Yeah, I know, that would be way easier, but I specifically want to make a full metal one, like this one you linked on your post:
http://myArmoury.com/review_mrl_gmace.html

It might even be the one which gave me the idea in the first place Big Grin



"Tyler C."
Ive experimented with carburizing mild steel for spring making before. It has worked fine so far. Ive been delaying trying the same process for blade making, but I dont see why it wouldnt work there aswell...
I was planing to use mild steel for the handle and leaf spring for the flanges, then get those welded together and normalized and heat treated later. Not very period friendly I know, but to be honest, who would notice Laughing Out Loud

As for pipe thickness, I have some seamless tubes lying around, outer diameter is 21.3mm and that is the only correct measurement I can give you. The inside is rough as hell with thickness ranging for 4+ to 3+mm, averaging I guess at 3.73mm which is written along the length of the pipe. I used 4mm for my 3d model, which puts the thinnest part of the hexagon at 2.57mm.
I opted for a length of 50cm overall, since my current mass is around 1200gram which is 2.65lb.
I might however use a bit thinner pipe and then just insert a wood core to compensate for strength.



"Graham Shearlaw"

Yeah, I follow Tods workshop a lot Big Grin
The job seems pretty similar to hafting axe heads, so I am familiar with it. Will come in handy when I decide to make a pernarch Happy

Regarding HT, I will keep it the purple range for sure, some hardness is good even if it wont bash any armor in its lifetime Laughing Out Loud
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