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Brock H




Location: West Central ND, USA
Joined: 17 Dec 2003

Posts: 58

PostPosted: Sun 28 Aug, 2005 11:20 am    Post subject: ArmArt Sword         Reply with quote

ArmArt has been as slow as a glacier and very bad at communicating. However, it looks like I'll be getting the bronze leaf blade I commissioned from them before its 4th anniversary. Today I received several pictures of close-ups of the blade. They wanted to know if I was okay with some minor casting flaws before they began engraving it. I have no problem with the flaws. I can polish them out to some extent and any left will add character.

Unfortunately, there won't be any silver wire inlaid into the hilt's engravings like I wanted. ArmArt reported they tried some expirements with that and they weren't very successful. So I'll be getting a partial refund instead. Well, the originals probably didn't have any inlay, so that will make it more accurate.

I'm attaching some of the pictures I got. I do like the looks of the midrib.



 Attachment: 47.76 KB
ArmArt 2.jpg

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Brock H




Location: West Central ND, USA
Joined: 17 Dec 2003

Posts: 58

PostPosted: Sun 28 Aug, 2005 11:21 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Picture #2


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ArmArt 4.jpg

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Brock H




Location: West Central ND, USA
Joined: 17 Dec 2003

Posts: 58

PostPosted: Sun 28 Aug, 2005 11:21 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Picture #3


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ArmArt 3.jpg

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Patrick Kelly




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

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PostPosted: Sun 28 Aug, 2005 11:36 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

My reaction: given ArmArt's mistakes during this process, and the level of frustration you've had to endure, I would settle for nothing less than perfection in this piece. I'd ask for a full refund.
"In valor there is hope.".................. Tacitus
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Brock H




Location: West Central ND, USA
Joined: 17 Dec 2003

Posts: 58

PostPosted: Sun 28 Aug, 2005 12:40 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

To what are you referring when you speak of perfection, Patrick? The presence of minor casting flaws? While I haven't cast any bronze myself (yet--will next weekend), I understand from those who have that such are to be expected. I can polish them out or leave them to add character.

Or is it the lack of silver inlay? I had been rethinking that over the last year anyway since I haven't found anything saying the originals had such. I just wanted it originally because I thought it'd look cool and provide a contrast to the bronze. An earlier picture I got from ArmArt shows that the silver does not show up well against the bronze. The plain engravings might show up better.

Maybe I'm more forgiving than you and I do really want this sword. However, I'll never do business with ArmArt again and I'll tell anyone who'll listen to stay far, far away from them.
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Patrick Kelly




Location: Wichita, Kansas
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Reading list: 42 books

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PostPosted: Sun 28 Aug, 2005 12:55 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'm referring to principle Brock, something that's worth more to me than any sword.

If I had been jerked around by a company like this I wouldn't accept a product from them with these kinds of flaws. Then again, I would have cancelled the order long ago and gotten my money back so this is really all moot. There are numerous deep casting flaws there, the center rib is poorly defined and appears to be off-center. I don't consider those "minor" flaws. To remove some of those pits would require significantly altering the geometry of the piece. I might forgive these things if the maker had exercised some form of customer service during the process, and chalked them up to 'hand-made character' as we all often do. However, they haven't been accommodating so I wouldn't see any reason to reciprocate.

If these things are acceptable to you then I'm sure you'll be happy with your sword when it finally arrives. If you really want it than you're the only one who can decide what you're willing to put up with. I wouldn't have put up with what you have on this project, but I'd still like to see some photos of the completed sword.

Do you know if they intend to work harden the bronze in order to make it a functional sword, or are they making this a cast-bronze decorator piece? Any scabbard with it? This would like great with an enamelled bronze scabbard.

"In valor there is hope.".................. Tacitus
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Brock H




Location: West Central ND, USA
Joined: 17 Dec 2003

Posts: 58

PostPosted: Sun 28 Aug, 2005 4:50 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Getting a refund out of ArmArt isn't a given either. I was supposed to have the sword or a full refund by the end of the first quarter of this year. You notice how neither one happened. I dunned them about it and finally got a reply they were working on it. Then nothing. About a month ago I e-mailed that I no longer expected to get either the sword or a refund considering how they'd been.

Then today these pictures. I'm not sure it's as poorly cast as you think. No telling what angle the camera may have been held at or if it was fully in focus (but it probably was). Those who have gotten swords from ArmArt have always said the workmanship was of high quality. I'm depending that that part of their reputation they'll still uphold. I was at their shop in 2002 and their work is very good. There's supposed to be a scabbard, but wood, and a leather baldric included.

Basically, I would still like to have this sword and I'm getting what I can out of ArmArt. It seems obvious by now that's the best I can hope for.
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Patrick Kelly




Location: Wichita, Kansas
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PostPosted: Sun 28 Aug, 2005 5:26 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I'd agree. Given your last statement I think you'd better take what you can get.
"In valor there is hope.".................. Tacitus
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Brock H




Location: West Central ND, USA
Joined: 17 Dec 2003

Posts: 58

PostPosted: Sun 28 Aug, 2005 8:35 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

I don't know how serious it is, but I've already had an offer over on SFI to buy it off me for what I paid if I'm unhappy with it. Since I haven't mentioned what I paid (and don't know how much of a refund if any I'll get), I don't know if the offer will still stand should I contact him to sell it.
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Roger Hooper




Location: Northern California
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PostPosted: Mon 29 Aug, 2005 7:37 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Here's to the day when you are actually holding that sword in your hand.
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Russ Ellis
Industry Professional




Joined: 20 Aug 2003
Reading list: 42 books

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PostPosted: Mon 29 Aug, 2005 8:17 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Well, there must be some honor to them. At this point all the PR damage that can be done to them has been done so I can only assume that they are finishing the job out of some sense of responsibility. Good luck!
TRITONWORKS Custom Scabbards
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Brock H




Location: West Central ND, USA
Joined: 17 Dec 2003

Posts: 58

PostPosted: Mon 29 Aug, 2005 12:24 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Roger Hooper wrote:
Here's to the day when you are actually holding that sword in your hand.


Thank you, Roger. Please don't hold your breath waiting to hear I have it!
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Jean Thibodeau




Location: Montreal,Quebec,Canada
Joined: 15 Mar 2004
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PostPosted: Mon 29 Aug, 2005 2:49 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Brock;

I really feel bad for you as this seems to have been the custom order process from hell !

I guess they wanted to be paid the full amount up front or is there a balance due to keep them at least minimally motivated.

I agree with Patrick that the lines in the centre ridge look flawed as if the carved model used for the casting had badly cut ridges that ended up being in the casting and not just a flaw in the casting process.

If you wanted as close to original feeling to this piece any " flaw " should be deliberate, not accidental so as to reflex the technical limits and attention to detail that would have been typical of the time: This might include some casting flaws not caused by sloppy work.

Your dilemma is that you are hanging on to the " dream " of your original design and I understand trying to salvage something acceptable from them. What annoys me the most is not a long delay as much as broken promises to the point that anything new they promise becomes more sources of stress rather than reassuring..

If I was rich and could afford the lawyers I would be making life for them as difficult as possible.
If I was rich I would have given the project to someone else a long time ago Mad Laughing Out Loud

In any case I understand being at the point of in for a penny in for a pound and being stubborn enough to want them to finish the job and hopefully in an acceptable way.

In any case my best wishes and good luck.

You can easily give up your freedom. You have to fight hard to get it back!
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Steve Grisetti




Location: Orlando metro area, Florida, USA
Joined: 01 Mar 2004
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Reading list: 28 books

Posts: 1,810

PostPosted: Mon 29 Aug, 2005 4:55 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Jean Thibodeau wrote:
...If I was rich and could afford the lawyers I would be making life for them as difficult as possible. If I was rich I would have given the project to someone else a long time ago Mad Laughing Out Loud ....

If I was rich enough to get lawyers involved in a situation like this, I would probably have sought a fine antique.
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Brock H




Location: West Central ND, USA
Joined: 17 Dec 2003

Posts: 58

PostPosted: Mon 29 Aug, 2005 7:20 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thank you, Jean. It was payment up front. You're right that all the broken promises as to when it would be done and that they were working on it and no communication was more frustrating than the actual wait of close to four years. At this point I'm just going to get what I can to salvage what I can from this.
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Roger Hooper




Location: Northern California
Joined: 18 Aug 2003
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PostPosted: Tue 30 Aug, 2005 7:21 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Brock H wrote:
Thank you, Jean. It was payment up front. You're right that all the broken promises as to when it would be done and that they were working on it and no communication was more frustrating than the actual wait of close to four years. At this point I'm just going to get what I can to salvage what I can from this.


Very true. When I've been given a completion date and it isn't met, that's OK, things happen. Then the second estimated day of completion passes without even the courtesy of communication, and I start worrying. When the fifth promise is broken.....
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