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David Lewis Smith




Location: NC
Joined: 26 Aug 2003
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PostPosted: Sat 07 Dec, 2013 10:45 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I wounder if the term 'spit and polish' reflects a dry powder mixed to a paste.

by the way, I was a paratrooper, dont spit shine boots, spit breaks down the wax and it does not 'shine'

I have a very old book of formulas from the late 1800s here some where. I will look up and start a new thread with some of the polishing compounds they have in there

David L Smith
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Aaron Hoard




Location: Seattle, WA
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PostPosted: Sat 07 Dec, 2013 11:28 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I've been using a silicon cloth to wipe down my Albions - no rust so far. Occasionally, I'll wipe them down with BreakFree.
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David Lewis Smith




Location: NC
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PostPosted: Sat 07 Dec, 2013 11:44 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Speaking of Coji oil I make my own for Cheep

Go to GNC or a similar store where you can buy 2 OZ clove oil, go next door to the drug store or super market and buy 32 oz of light mineral oil.

You can be a lot more precise in measuring but I put a third of the clove oil in 32 oz of mineral oil. total cost is around 15 bucks for 32 OZ of Coji

David L Smith
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Mikko Kuusirati




Location: Finland
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PostPosted: Sat 07 Dec, 2013 11:51 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

David Lewis Smith wrote:
Speaking of Coji oil I make my own for Cheep

Go to GNC or a similar store where you can buy 2 OZ clove oil, go next door to the drug store or super market and buy 32 oz of light mineral oil.

You can be a lot more precise in measuring but I put a third of the clove oil in 32 oz of mineral oil. total cost is around 15 bucks for 32 OZ of Coji

Well, yeah, that's what choji oil is - light mineral oil with a little clove oil mixed in for the scent - makes it harder to mistake it for cooking oil, I hear. Happy Although I think historically they would have used camelia oil (these days it seems to be used mostly as a hair care product) as mineral oil hasn't been available for very long.

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Greg E




Location: Nebraska
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PostPosted: Sat 07 Dec, 2013 1:41 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

BreakFree CLP or G96 oils. I have had a Windlass axe and Viking sword and a KC Viking sword for many years under not so constant care that were treated with these and they still look good.
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David Lewis Smith




Location: NC
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PostPosted: Sat 07 Dec, 2013 2:15 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Mikko Kuusirati wrote:
David Lewis Smith wrote:
Speaking of Coji oil I make my own for Cheep

Go to GNC or a similar store where you can buy 2 OZ clove oil, go next door to the drug store or super market and buy 32 oz of light mineral oil.

You can be a lot more precise in measuring but I put a third of the clove oil in 32 oz of mineral oil. total cost is around 15 bucks for 32 OZ of Coji

Well, yeah, that's what choji oil is - light mineral oil with a little clove oil mixed in for the scent - makes it harder to mistake it for cooking oil, I hear. Happy Although I think historically they would have used camelia oil (these days it seems to be used mostly as a hair care product) as mineral oil hasn't been available for very long.


this way it does not cost 10Bucks an oz

David L Smith
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Ben Coomer




Location: Colorado
Joined: 06 Sep 2011

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PostPosted: Sat 07 Dec, 2013 4:34 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Maybe its just you. I have a similar problem, though being in a dry environment, its not bad, but my skin oil is much more acidic than most people's. So regular handling can be a problem, and a full on session of florishes means a session of scotchbright and oil. And I know its me because wife doesn't have the same problems.

Nothing for it unless you use gloves.

As for what medieval people used, i'd guess various sedimentary rock. Fine sandstones, limestones, etc, have a variety of grains which could easily be used as sanding stones.
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Victor R.




Location: Klein, Texas
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PostPosted: Sat 07 Dec, 2013 7:35 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'm in ultra-humid Houston, TX and have 8 Albions (my oldest a pre-owned Landgraf acquired in early 2008, most recent a pre-owned Munich I got in early 2012), all with steel hilt furniture, and have never had a spot of rust. I don't handle them often, but when I have, I've simply wiped them with a clean, soft cloth to remove any skin oil or sweat. I'm guessing it may be more a matter of the overall environment and frequency of use than an inherent issue with the steel.
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Christopher B Lellis




Location: Houston, Texas
Joined: 01 Dec 2012

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PostPosted: Sat 07 Dec, 2013 8:00 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Hartoyo Barlian wrote:
Out of curiosity...

How do the people in the middle age prevent rust in the pommel like this? I don't think they don't have ren wax at that time yet Happy
Did they oil it (if they did, what kind of oil was it?) Or just let it build a patina on the pommel, maybe?

Japanese uses choji oil for ages; but mostly for blade protection, not koshira if I'm not mistaken.


Good question, I have never come across sword maintenance from the medieval era.

I wonder how they did do it...
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Christopher B Lellis




Location: Houston, Texas
Joined: 01 Dec 2012

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PostPosted: Sat 07 Dec, 2013 8:07 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Victor R. wrote:
I'm in ultra-humid Houston, TX and have 8 Albions (my oldest a pre-owned Landgraf acquired in early 2008, most recent a pre-owned Munich I got in early 2012), all with steel hilt furniture, and have never had a spot of rust. I don't handle them often, but when I have, I've simply wiped them with a clean, soft cloth to remove any skin oil or sweat. I'm guessing it may be more a matter of the overall environment and frequency of use than an inherent issue with the steel.


Im in San Antonio right now but I am from Houston which isn't too far away as you know. I handle my swords a lot, every time I am home actually. I have never let my swords sit there without touching or handling them if I am there. I probably wipe down each one I handle twice a day average.

If I don't leave a greasy coat of CLP gun oil on the pommels, guaranteed little specs of rust the next day. I also wipe down steel with Hoppes Silicone cloth "another gun cleaning item" pretty regularly, I don't like even finger prints on the swords when I am finished handling them.

Some sort of condition is making the hilts on my swords rush quickly. Strangely though, others here say their swords don't rust and are in as humid or more humid environments than me.

Something else too, the blades of my swords very rarely get any rust, it's the quillons and pommels that get the vast majority of it.
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William Swiger




Location: Reston, VA
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PostPosted: Sun 08 Dec, 2013 12:04 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Was thinking about this thread and I think some buyers do not really bother with doing anything to the hilts. I have bought some pre-owned Albion swords that had pristine blades but the hilts looked as if they had never had any preventive maintenance ever done. Guess some folks like the aged/patina look.
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Jason Daub




Location: Peace River, Alberta
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PostPosted: Sun 08 Dec, 2013 10:17 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Plus, body chemistry will make a huge difference, I can handle swords and rust blued firearms and not have to wipe them down more than once every four or five times I handle them. My next door neighbour has to hose down every gun he touches with Rem Oil or he will have perfect fingerprints rusted into them.
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To turn and wind a fiery Pegasus,
And witch the world with noble horsemanship.'
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Addison C. de Lisle




Location: South Carolina
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PostPosted: Sun 08 Dec, 2013 10:30 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I agree with climate and body chemistry making a significant difference. I live on the coast of Maine minutes from the ocean; often on an island. So it's very humid with lots of salt air, and as someone who has to clean up a metalsmithing studio at this location I am very familiar with the damage that can happen even just from leaving the windows open in the studio. Then we have this wonderful thing I call "salt fog"...everything in the studio can get coated with a film of rust literally overnight. Makes for a fun morning :\
If this is what was happening to my Albions I would understand the problem, and likewise with the skin oil rust issue. However, my newest Albion is the only one that has the problem of just the pommel rusting, and mostly around where the tang is peened over. It's not from fingerprints, and it's not an even coating from salt air. It could be some variance in the steel alloy being used by the foundry (even just variance within a batch of the same steel and not them changing steel alloys completely) I suppose, or it could be that I am repetitively missing just one area on just the Principe when I oil it (using Ballistol these days though I have used TufCloth and BreakFree CLP as well). I just sanded off the rust and re-oiled everything today, so I will be keeping an eye on it and see how it goes.
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Christopher B Lellis




Location: Houston, Texas
Joined: 01 Dec 2012

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PostPosted: Sun 08 Dec, 2013 1:14 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

It might be my body chemistry. I'm the guy who leaves puddles of sweat behind every station at the gym, I have to carry a towel on me to mop up.

I probably just sweat more than most.
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Robert Frey




Location: Wausau, WI
Joined: 19 Nov 2013

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PostPosted: Sun 08 Dec, 2013 4:05 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I used to work as a Gunsmith and a product I used for rust prevention was Birchwood Casey "Barricade". It used to be called Sheath, but they changed the name for some reason. You might be able to find it at your local sporting goods store.
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Ben Coomer




Location: Colorado
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PostPosted: Sun 08 Dec, 2013 10:08 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Well it might be just a chemical reaction. Differences in the oxidation number, possibly in the steels being different enough alloys or a trace element, causing a reaction at the point of contact, probably in conjuncture with skin oil.

Seen more bizzare oxidations in the lab.
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Jeremy V. Krause




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PostPosted: Mon 09 Dec, 2013 6:44 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Robin Smith wrote:
Patrick Kelly wrote:
Use a paste such as Renaissance Wax and you won't have that problem.

Do you know if Renn Wax is safe on swords with silver inlay? I've been looking for something to help retard the rate of tarnishing. I find myself polishing swords that haven't been used at all, just to keep the silver inlays looking decent.


I use it on a seax with copper and silver inlay and haven't had any problems.

In any event I really don't pay as much attention to my pommels as to the blades. I am sure some of them aren't even treated. I guess I should start paying more attention.
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Jeffrey Faulk




Location: Georgia
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PostPosted: Mon 09 Dec, 2013 7:20 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

As far as medieval polishing techniques go, I believe the most common was simply a fine sand, coarse burlap, water and elbow grease... the latter being something they had in profusion! Oiling pieces to keep them from rusting is not impossible as a medieval technique, but I think it somewhat more likely that a.) they avoided it by using swords with gloves on-- this was probably a lot more common then than it is now-- and b.) they probably just didn't care too much about a little rust in between polishings. If they really didn't want it to rust, they would have it gilded or silvered.

For my part I've never really had a problem with rust except on one sword, an old Hanwei. The Hanwei/Tinker that hangs right by it is pretty much pristine still. So I think at least in this individual case it's the one piece being somehow 'off'... with the Albions, I suspect it may be individual circumstances (perhaps the room he stores them in is more humid than the rest of the house? perhaps he's got acidic body chemistry? who knows?) rather than the composition of the pommels.
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Christine Munro




Location: Oxford
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PostPosted: Mon 09 Dec, 2013 11:10 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Christopher B Lellis wrote:
Good question, I have never come across sword maintenance from the medieval era.

I wonder how they did do it...

I guess I imagined that they probably used grease, tallow or something to protect the blades when not in use. Dunno how they'd perform minor maintenance, though.

Christopher B Lellis wrote:
It might be my body chemistry. I'm the guy who leaves puddles of sweat behind every station at the gym, I have to carry a towel on me to mop up.

I probably just sweat more than most.

I'll counter your TMI with my tendency to sneeze quite a lot. My Albions aren't the worst affected by my toxic emissions.
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Dean F. Marino




Location: Midland MI USA
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PostPosted: Mon 09 Dec, 2013 2:00 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I also use CLP (the commercial name of this is "Breakfree" - available at just about any good gun shop). I'm in the US - Michigan. My swords actually stay in their scabbards (poplar) on my wall.

In a good 6+ years? I have had not ONE spot of rust on blades, guards, pommels, or chapes. This, with a very LIGHT coat of CLP.

Worth noting: with time (couple of weeks), CLP gets "greasy" - it seems to thicken a bit. There is also STILL some debate as to whether or not it should be applied to chemically blued steel... some folks claim that it actually goes after THIS form of oxidation.

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