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Jeroen Zuiderwijk

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Jeroen Zuiderwijk last won the day on March 26

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    Bronze age, iron age, early medieval.

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  1. Jeroen Zuiderwijk


    With regards to forging in the tang, I ways at the step from spine to tang first, even before I start beveling the blade. The step from the edge to the tang is added after most of the beveling is done. This is because you then have a lot of thickness on the spine side, while forging down little thickness on the edge side, so that the spine side barely gets affected by the forging. If you'd do the reverse: forge down the step from spine to tang while the edge side is thin already, you're just forging down the edge rather then the spine.
  2. Jeroen Zuiderwijk


    I've heard of him lately I cancelled my webhost subscription, as costs were going through the roof, and my own cash to spare on hobbies gone to practically zero. Same with free time. That's what starting a family can do to you I've updated my signature, so only the facebook link is still in there.
  3. Jeroen Zuiderwijk

    Copper plating steel

    With regards to plating steel and rust prevention, mind that there are two ways to do it: plating with a more noble (cathodic) metal then steel, and a less noble (anodic) metal. A less noble metal like zinc will protect steel as a sacrificial metal. Even if the steel gets exposed, it is protected by the zinc, because the oxygen will react with the anode (positive charge). Copper is more noble then steel, which means that copper on it's own will not corrode as fast as steel. But when copper plated steel gets exposed, then the steel will become the anode, and the reverse will happen: the steel will protect the copper by rusting away, and rusting faster then if it weren't copper plated. That's why protective plating is done with chrome, which is very hard and wear resistant, so it doesn't get damaged easily. However, chrome doesn't attach well to steel. Cheap chrome plating will flake off and rust underneath, because it's just chrome straight on top of steel. A good chrome plating has a copper base, followed by nickle, and finished with chrome.
  4. Jeroen Zuiderwijk

    What did you do in your shop today?

    Having a girlfriend already limits free time a lot, but that's nothing compared to a little one. So last 6 months I've barely done any metalwork whatsoever. However once in a while I get a few hours, and it looks like I'm getting another piece finished soon. Last Sunday I got all of the file work done, and polishing in the first grid of sandpaper. One or two more weekends like that, and this one is done.
  5. Jeroen Zuiderwijk

    Problems with pewter casting

    The fact that you get a ton of slag probably indicates that you are getting it way too hot. You're burning up the metal, and what you call slag is probably oxides. This may also be much of what you are casting into the mould. The surface of the metal should look clean and shiny of the molten metal before you cast. I don't have much experience with pewter, mostly just pure tin, so I don't know all of the things that can happen in your case. However, f.e. zinc is also very brittle when cast. And also keep in mind that alloys in varying percentages can have a really big influence on castability and the material properties of the cast. So just mixing in various percentages can have all sorts of weird results. It's better to stick to an exact alloy that is suitable for the kind of casts that you want to make.
  6. Jeroen Zuiderwijk

    Bronze hardness/tooling (Wrong forum?)

    Ah, I should update my signature. I've cancelled my websites due to rising costs, so I now only use my facebook page.
  7. Jeroen Zuiderwijk

    This can't be right, right?

    No, the carbon can not move through the iron at cold temperatures. It's firmly fixed in place. You need to get to at least normalizing temperatures to get the carbon to be able to move as I understand it. With regards to when they started to harden steel, that was at least 500BC in Europe, from which the oldest firesteels are found. The point isn't when did they start to harden steel, but when did they find out how to temper it. I've not seen any evidence of hardened steel swords at least until the late iron age, eventhough various swords with high enough carbon contents are found. I haven't read all available analyses yet (which is still limited) though. Having forge welded stuff, I know just how easy it is to get the edge material on the wrong side of the blade. It's a mistake very easily made. Aside from that, a smith may also have been unaware that some of the iron he had was actually higher in carbon. While he may have had steel made specially for hardenable edges, for lower quality swords he may have been using random material that can have any amount of carbon in it, or a large variation throughout.
  8. Jeroen Zuiderwijk

    Broken back seax... Tear it apart fellas!

    Handles for these saxes were over 20cm in length for blades of at least that length. This is based on the hunting knife of Charlemagne (22cm hilt) , and sax sheats, where leather part covering the hilt usually is already about 20cm. And also handles of other types usually are over 20cm in length. For broken back style saxes with blades shorter then 20cm I don't really have a reference (all complete sheaths are in general for blades >20cm). For these in general I keep the handle as long as the blade, with a minimum handle length to make it usuable.
  9. Jeroen Zuiderwijk

    Broken back seax... Tear it apart fellas!

    Yup. The fuller is down the center, and when in combination with grooves, the grooves are in the part above the fuller. N.b. with the Heusden sax, above the fuller were at least 3 lines of inlaid counter twisted brass/silver wire. Only small sections of that wire survive. On top of that may have been grooves, or more wire inlay.
  10. Jeroen Zuiderwijk

    Broken back seax... Tear it apart fellas!

    With broken back style saxes, the fullers and grooves DO frequently run off the tip (but not always). However, they occur on longsaxes, not the shorter ones. There are very few short broken back style saxes with grooves, none with fullers that I'm aware of. Also the arrangement is different: grooves in the top part of the blade and fuller, if present, in the centerline. Examples: Heusden, Little Bealings, Beagnoth. A single fuller surrounded by grooves, where the grooves come together before the end of the blade is a typical 7th century feature, mostly applied to continental broadsaxes, though also on some longsaxes, including anglo-saxon ones (but not broken back style).
  11. Jeroen Zuiderwijk

    Bronze hardness/tooling (Wrong forum?)

    Worth noting is that I didn't experiment any further after that. I just didn't see any advantage over planishing by hammer(stone) and further polishing with stones and other compounds.
  12. Jeroen Zuiderwijk

    Bronze hardness/tooling (Wrong forum?)

    In theory maybe. I've used a 20% tin bronze scraper once. With 20% tin, the bronze is very hard and brittle in as cast state. It can't be work hardened, only made more tough by annealing. However after one or two small scrapes it lost it's edge, so it had to be resharpened. So it's just not practical in use. Alteratively you can do the same with flint. Two problems there however, is that every edge of a flint flake has a different shape edge, and it will dull nearly as quickly as the bronze.
  13. Jeroen Zuiderwijk

    Bronze hardness/tooling (Wrong forum?)

    They did. And the answer to the question how is: nobody knows One alternative way rather then drilling is punching. Take a punch, and strike a small dimpel. Then anneal and do it again. As soon as the material on the opposite face starts to bulge, grind that off. Keep on doing that until you're all the way through. I've done this, and it works, sort off, if you are careful and not crack the piece. The real trick is the large holes in thin sections. One method proposed is to use a bronze tube along with an abbrasive, such as fine sand. That would be similar to how they drilled through stone, except there they either used bone or hollow hardwood tubes.
  14. Jeroen Zuiderwijk

    Bronze hardness/tooling (Wrong forum?)

    Meteoric iron can not be hardened, and was only available in extremely small amounts in the near east. And there it was valued much higher then gold. What they used in the bronze age was stones, simple polishing compounds (f.e. clay), and occasionally bronze hammers and possibly burnishing tools (stone or bronze). Not even the finest polishing stones, just whatever you could find locally. Smooth stones were also frequently used as hammers/anvils. It's all very laborous, but it does work. But the most important thing was to get a good casting in the first place. The oldest metal tools for finishing metal objects that I know are files at the very end of the iron age. It's quite possible that steel scrapers were already in use for some time. However, hardened steel isn't really common until the end of the iron age. Most iron was just soft iron until then.
  15. Jeroen Zuiderwijk

    An interesting sword...

    Having seen quite a few examples of none matching blades and hilts on pieces sold through antiques sealer, I strongly suspect this is another case of a complete sword sells for more then a loose blade and hilt, so let's assemble them together.