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Collin Miller

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Collin Miller last won the day on October 6 2018

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About Collin Miller

  • Birthday 08/30/2000

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    Bladesmithing, Norse mythology, knives, woodcarving, bow making, blacksmithing, Finnish mythology, Scandinavian history, whittling, good books, leather working, guns, ancient history, Celtic knotwork, drawing, archery, animals, hunting, shooting, making jewelry, swords of all kinds.

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  1. Thanks Do it man! Swords are a blast, the first few are pretty rough but it gets smoother after that. Thanks man! Gotta keep the beard burning nice and bright, wouldn't want it to fizzle out and yeah, all that time spent with Peter definitely altered my course for the better. Thanks! This piece was definitely an exercise in trying to perfect basic techniques. This philosophy reminds me of how in martial arts (say boxing, for example) there are guys who don't use fancy high level techniques, but they win fights because maybe they have an absolutely flawless jab. The fundamentals are fundamental for a reason Thank you! Thanks dude! Appreciate it The edge bars are kind of a funny story, when I cut the bar down the center, I did so sloppily with a crappy angle grinder. As such, the bars on the edges had thick spots and thin spots, but when we heat treated it, the blade took a slight S curved Sabre leaving the high spots EXACTLY where the thick points in the edge bars were! After grinding straight, everything ended up pretty well centered and straight my theory is that when Peter quenched it, his magic touch automatically fixed the issue. Thanks! Didn't feel easy fiddling with little alignment pins and crap for hours on end, but as long as I look cool. That's the important thing in the end Thanks man! The pattern was actually my attempt to capture the spirit of the pattern in an original blade. This one in particular (though this was a common pattern in the period) I went about it incorrectly come to find out, but I'm happy with the way it looks after all Thanks man! I think it takes longer and longer because I keep trying to do more complex patterns! Haha Thanks dude! It really does feel like the kind of blade that should be worn through an epic journey, the grip really locks your hand in comfortably as if it grips you back. And I wouldn't say it's out of the realm of possibility that you could handle this sword at some point! In fact, I'd be a bit surprised if we never crossed paths, so we'll see!
  2. I apologize again for my relative absence, I try to remember to post here but since I know so many of you outside the forum now, I tend to forget I'm sure many of you have already read this and seen the pictures, but for my friends here who aren't on Facebook or Instagram, here you go I've taken the time to focus on improving my knowledge and skills this past month of September, trying to achieve some things I've never been able to do before. This started by spending an entire week in New Hampshire at Zack Jonas's shop as a student of the one and only Peter Johnsson. That week, I took a sip of knowledge from a fire hydrant of information. Peter was an insanely great teacher and was able to get some valuable ideas through even my thick skull, and I got to experience some things that will stick with me for the rest of my career, such as handling 2000+ year old swords, knives, and scabbards, staying up at night having philosophical discussions around a fire... This has all been tied up into a bow with the completion of this sword. It's a British style middle La Tène era sword I've named Epona, after the Celtic goddess of horses, who undoubtedly would have been important to warfare and calvary. It's a happy coincidence that I chose the British style, since through a convoluted string of events, I recently discovered that pretty much all of my heritage comes from the British isles. The blade is a lenticular cross section pattern welded blade, made from a mix of high carbon steel and old wrought iron in the core, and high layer Damascus edges forge welded to the softer core. The hilt is made from ancient bog oak graciously given to me by my good friends Dave Delagardelle and Tony Greenly, and the spacers are bronze in a stacked construction, just like the ancient British swords. During the finishing phase of this project, I spent about as much time wearing an optiviser as I spent without one. I put more skill and attention to detail into this piece than I have on anything I've ever made, and I feel that it marks a new era in the quality of my work. Thanks for reading everyone! If you've read this far, thanks a lot! Let me know if you've got any questions, critiques, comments, etc!
  3. Thanks man! The thing is, I thought I did forge the pommel from wrought iron. I usually test everything I get, but I got a 30lb bar from an experienced blacksmith I have known for years, he said it was wrought and I went to town with it. Nothing was showing up in the etch though, and after a break test, it became obvious that what I was given was just really old steel. I did my best to make the texture and tone work with guard since I didn't have time to make another pommel before Blade with all the other stuff I'd got to finish, and I'm really happy with how the finish came out so I guess you live and you learn... It's been said that the mark of a good artist isn't how you rarely screw up, but how well you can improvise when you do screw up
  4. 80crv2 is pretty much better in every way from 5160. Similar in use, but it's like the difference between 1095 and W2. 80crv2 is great for swords and big choppy things
  5. Thanks! I'm actually going to be phasing out all of my 80crv2 in favor Crucible L6 for monosteel swords. Harder to work with, but it has performance advantages, and I'm all about performance advantages.
  6. My momma stopped dressing me recently, but I do agree, I hard to look at Blade steel is 80crv2, heat treated by myself and tempered in a hot oil bath to approximately 56-58HRC. Thank you!
  7. Hi guys! I've had my nose held firmly against the grindstone in the weeks leading up to Blade show, I thought you all would like to see thjs Oakeshotte type XVIII I've been working on over the past week or two. This is the first sword I've made as a part Longship Armoury The blade is 31" long, and 2" wide at the guard. I designed it to be a light weight arming sword with a considerable amount of cutting power, so the blade has a 35% distal taper from the base of the blade, which is 3.7mm (0.145") tapering down to 0.100“ at the tip. This blade presence gives it a very powerful, but very fast feel in the hand. Weight of the entire piece is 1.99lbs. It's much more stiff than you'd think, most of the blades I make that are less than about 3/16" at the base I have to toss, because they end up too floppy. But not so with this one. Speaking of the handling, the hilt node is pretty much between the guard and the grip, right on that little copper piece where it should be. Forward pivot point is on the blade node, or center of percussion. The point isn't really reinforced, but the geometry changes to a very sharp and sturdy "awl" shape. Great for ripping cuts with the point or thrusting. Crossguard was forged from old wrought iron, etched deeply to give it the dark woodgrainy pattern. The pommel I forged from antique steel, and gave it a unique "cosmic dark" finish. The pommel is a modified version of a fishtail pommel, more comfortable than a wheel pommel in my opinion. The grip was crafted from African blackwood, with copper accents to add a little color and bling to the hilt while keeping the aesthetic of the dark neutral tones in this piece. Hope you guys like it! If you've got any critique, questions, insults, or comments, let me know!
  8. Absolutely! It's an awesome piece of equipment, the quality and consistency of my heat treat has gone through the roof since switching to the barrel and professional quenchants, as opposed to the forge and canola oil.
  9. Thanks! My customer talked about having a scabbard made, so I guess we will see
  10. Thanks so much guys! I know! I need to hang out here more often, like I used to. So busy making swords that it's hard to find time to talk about them. Breaking my collarbone wasn't bladesmithing related I had a pretty bad skateboard wreck and got scratched up a bit, but after three weeks the doctor told me I could work again. Bit of a time crunch finishing up commissions and getting ready for BLADE at this point, but I'll figure it out
  11. Hey guys! Just shipped this Gladius off to its new owner this afternoon. Been working on it on and off for a few months. The first blade I made was a bit too thin and I had so start over. About halfway through the finish grinding on the second blade, I broke my collarbone and had to take a few weeks off. It was hard staying out of the shop, but after that three weeks, the doctor said I could work again, so I eased back into it, and finished up the blade and hilt over the past couple of weeks. This is my first Gladius, first leaf blade. 21" blade, a little over 2" wide at the base, 1.3lbs overall. Thickness is about 0.210" at the base, hollow distal taper so that it's very fast, but very powerful and stiff. Hilt node is right behind the guard, a dog the blade node is right in the "sweet spot", where the leaf flares out again. 80crv2 blade, antique American walnut for the guard and pommel, 16ga hammered copper guard and peen plate, maple grip (freehand grinding all 32 of those facets on my non variable sleek grinder was a buttcheek clenching few hours). Hope you all like it! Let me know if you have any questions and I'll do my best to answer.
  12. Beautiful! Also thanks for going into so much detail, I'm sure I'll be coming back to this thread again and again.
  13. Great job, dude! Looks like you even got the plunge cut sanded out nicely. I always hate that part
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