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Patrick Kelly




Location: Wichita, Kansas
Joined: 17 Aug 2003
Reading list: 42 books

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PostPosted: Mon 24 Jul, 2006 10:53 pm    Post subject: MRLs Soldiers Dagger         Reply with quote

Here's a new one from Museum Replicas Ltd. They're calling this one the Soldiers Dagger.





I purchased this item through Kult of Athena:
http://www.kultofathena.com/

Some time ago I decided to purchase any MRL related items through Ryan Whittaker at KofA. I have found KofA to be prompt and reliable, exactly the opposite of MRL. If their website states an item is in stock it is, if it states the item ships in a week it does. I've also found their prices to be lower than MRL themselves. This dagger is an example: MRL lists it at $90.00. KofA sells it for $70.00, not a bad savings.

When I enquired about this dagger Ryan didn't have any in stock since MRL hadn't started shipping them, in spite of listing it in their latest catalog. About two months after the order was placed the dagger arrived, far sooner than I'd anticipated given my past experience with MRL.

I don't know if MRL based this one on any specific historical example. However, I liked its overall size and design, and the cost wasn't significant, so I decided to check it out thinking it might make a decent project piece. The pommel is fairly substantial and places the point of balance directly at the grips ferrule. The blade came nearly sharp and it didn't take much effort to put a fine edge on it. The finish was a bit scuffed here and there so I used some grey scotchbrite and oil to even out the finish. This also removed the black "Made in India" located at the blades base. The dagger itself is solidly assembled. I couldn't detect any evidence of peening on the pommel face, so I'm assuming the tang is threaded. However, the pommel wouldn't budge and I decided not to force the issue. The grip is bound with fine cloth cord, not the leather cord as stated in MRLs sales pitch. The cord is tightly bound but was a bit 'fuzzy' upon arrival, something that neccesitated a bit of clean-up.


Given the price point I have few complaints with this dagger. My only one lies with its scabbard, which I neglected to photograph. The scabbard is the typical MRL affair of a leather body with steel fittings. However, MRL doesn't dye their scabbards, they paint them and this is very obvious with the brown paint on the scabbard. In short, it's N-A-S-T-Y. I'm going to attempt to remove the paint and use leather dye to improve its appearance.

Overall the dagger is a nicely sized piece. Nothing particularly jaw dropping or unique but it does seem solid and useable. A bit on the larger size as befits its name but still handy. I can't really comment on its suitability as an accessory for living history work due to my inability to site a similar original. However, larger daggers like this are illustrated in the Maciejowski Bible. All in all, not bad for $70.00
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David Etienne




Location: Ittre, Belgium
Joined: 17 Jan 2005
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Reading list: 8 books

Posts: 154

PostPosted: Tue 25 Jul, 2006 3:48 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks for this review, Patrick. That's a nice addition to your collection. I might be tempted but daggers are definitively illegal in my country (though single-edged knives are not... go figure).

Cheers,

David

P.S. By the way, glad to read something from you again Wink
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Jonathan Blair




Location: Hanover, PA
Joined: 15 Aug 2005
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Reading list: 2 books

Posts: 479

PostPosted: Tue 25 Jul, 2006 6:24 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hey Patrick, it's good to see you back here.

I like that dagger, but I was wondering if it was patterned off an existing dagger or if this is one of MRL's fantasy blades.

"Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword." - The Lord Jesus Christ, from The Gospel According to Saint Matthew, chapter x, verse 34, Authorized Version of 1611
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Greyson Brown




Location: Windsor, Colorado
Joined: 22 Nov 2004
Reading list: 15 books

Posts: 790

PostPosted: Tue 25 Jul, 2006 6:42 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I like the file work; it lends some elegance to the piece without being too distracting. It also looks like the grip on that one is a bit nicer than of old.

Good to see you're around again, Patrick.

-Grey

"So long as I can keep the path of honor I am well content."
-Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, The White Company
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Patrick Kelly




Location: Wichita, Kansas
Joined: 17 Aug 2003
Reading list: 42 books

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Posts: 5,682

PostPosted: Tue 25 Jul, 2006 7:25 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thank you gentlemen.

Johnathon,

I don't know if MRL based this one on an existing original. At a guess I'd say no, but not for sure. When they base a piece on an original they usually mention it in their catalog. If anyone knows of an original similar to this I'd love to see it. Cross-hilted daggers like this seem to be somewhat rare, at least things like the ballock and rondel are far more common in period art so I haven't seen a lot of data on them.

I purchased this piece mainly because I like daggers of this general size and design, regardless of historical parameters. I'm also renewing my interest in things that aren't neccesarily historic in their absolute sense, but rather show a bit of creative flair without sacrificing function.

Greyson,

Yes, MRL does seem to be improving their grips. This one needed a bit of clean-up on the 'fuzz' issue but overall it's one of the nicer grip jobs I've seen from MRL.
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Jonathan Blair




Location: Hanover, PA
Joined: 15 Aug 2005
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Reading list: 2 books

Posts: 479

PostPosted: Tue 25 Jul, 2006 8:43 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Patrick Kelly wrote:
When they base a piece on an original they usually mention it in their catalog.


The thing is even MRL's stated copies of original pieces often only superficially approximate the actual piece with sometimes significant differences in length, weight, balance, decoration, etc.

Too bad it's not a dagger-length baselard. I need a decently made and accurate baselard for my late 14th/early 15th c. LH kit. Actually, I need just about everything still for my late 14th/early 15th c. LH kit.

"Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword." - The Lord Jesus Christ, from The Gospel According to Saint Matthew, chapter x, verse 34, Authorized Version of 1611
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Michael G. Myers




Location: El Paso, Texas
Joined: 23 Aug 2003

Posts: 112

PostPosted: Fri 28 Jul, 2006 11:30 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thanks for the heads-up, Patrick.



Michael

"In the fight between you and the world, back the world." - Kafka

"Neither flesh, nor fowl, nor good red-herring..."
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Patrick Kelly




Location: Wichita, Kansas
Joined: 17 Aug 2003
Reading list: 42 books

Spotlight topics: 2
Posts: 5,682

PostPosted: Fri 28 Jul, 2006 1:06 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Michael G. Myers wrote:
Thanks for the heads-up, Patrick.

Michael


You're welcome Michael. I really see this one more as an accessory for a ren faire outfit or fantasy costume. Something where an accessory might be needed but absolute historical accuracy isn't a priority. I might revise that if I could find a few historic sources for something similar in the medieval period. In a lot of ways it reminds me more of some 16th cent. parrying daggers I've seen.
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Roger Hooper




Location: Northern California
Joined: 18 Aug 2003
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PostPosted: Wed 09 Dec, 2015 11:26 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'm resurrecting this thread from 2006, because I'm interested in getting this dagger, mainly to use as a stage prop. It says something that the dagger should still be in production after almost 10 years. Most Windlass products are available for only a couple of years. Patrick, do you still have this item? If anyone else has one, what do you think of it?

http://www.kultofathena.com/product.asp?item=...27s+Dagger

$70.00 back in 2006, now $89.10 at KOA



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