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JackBarry

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  • Gender
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    Greensboro, NC
  • Interests
    Bagpiping, sports, bourbon...

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  1. JackBarry

    First Scottish Dirk

    Again, thank you all for the kind complementary comments.
  2. JackBarry

    First Scottish Dirk

    Thank you all for the kind comments. AndyB, the handle was turned on a mini-lathe and then flattened with rasps and files. The knot work was carved by hand with mini-chisels.
  3. JackBarry

    First Scottish Dirk

    Hello all. This knife represents many firsts for me; first time making a blade this long, first time doing the majority of the work by draw filing, first time scraping a fuller, first time fabricating hardware from sheet metal, first time making a scabbard, etc. To date, I have made 4 sgian dubhs and a couple of small kitchen knives. As you can imagine, this one stretched my abilities, or lack there of, greatly. The blade is 11-3/4" long and and made of 80CrV2 quenched in warmed canola oil. At the handle, it is 1-3/8" wide and 5/16" thick. The blade was originally 12-1/2" long but because I was draw filing it, I took the edge thinner than I would've normally before quenching in hopes of being able to finish it by hand with a diamond lapping stone after hardening. As you might guess however, with the thick spine, and the thinner cutting edge, the blade took quite the nose dive during the quench. I had to either be content with what looked like a Scottish kukri (a dirk-ri?) or re-profile the blade on the grinder. The re-profiling took the extra length. The blade is still not perfectly symmetrical but I didn't want to take any more of the length. The overall length of the dirk is 17-1/2". The handle is black walnut and all of the fittings are made of 20 gauge silver soldered sheet copper. The scabbard is bass wood covered in book binding goat skin. As you may have guessed, this dirk was very heavily influenced by Vince Evans and our own Jake Cleland. I would like to personally thank them, as well as everyone else on this forum who is so willing to share their knowledge. Please let me know your thoughts. Thank you, Jack Barry
  4. JackBarry

    17th Century Highland Dirk

    +1 on if the pommel cap is 2 pieces. It looks like it's crying for a piece of a redcoat to be showing through. Beautiful work!
  5. JackBarry

    Highland Dirk Dimension Clarification

    Thank you for your reply George. I have somewhat of a habit of over-thinking/over-planning things so I have no doubt that you're right. I see what you mean about the distal taper and variable grind. To paraphrase a comment on another thread about dirks, this would make the blade more "stabby". I think it would also pay homage to its ballock dagger roots. After drawing up a design however, I may actually go with straight sides for the majority of the profile taper but then put a slight spear point at the tip like is shown in the image above. With no spear point the blade gets really narrow towards the tip and even with less distal taper I would worry about the strength. I guess at this point I just need to get forging and see if I can make something that resembles anything we have talked about. Thanks again for your help.
  6. JackBarry

    Highland Dirk Dimension Clarification

    Just wondering if anyone had any thoughts on this.
  7. Hello all, I am fairly new to bladesmithing (in experience/output) and I have never posted on the forum before however I have been a member for a few years and would like to take a moment to thank you all for your willingness to share so much information so freely. Up to this point I have only produced a number of sgian dubhs and a couple of medium sized kitchen knives, but I have decided it’s time to graduate to a Scottish dirk. I would like for the blade to be representative of a classic highland dirk from around the time of “the ‘45” (as opposed to a cut down sword or the later dress or regimental dirks). I have tried to find all I can about blade dimensions of these weapons both on this forum and on other sites but I have found that the descriptions are sometimes contradictory or incomplete. As many of you have both researched these blades, and have produced them, I was wondering if you could offer some clarification. My plan is to have the blade be 12” to 14” long with a straight triangular profile starting at 1.5” wide at the handle. The spine will be approximately 3/8” at the handle but I’m unsure as to how much distal taper to forge. Most of the references I have seen mention around 50% to 70% distal taper, but I have also seen mentions of up to 90% to 100% taper. What would be considered the historical norm? Also, the attached image appears to show both a fuller and a false edge. I have read that both of these features were fairly common on dirks of the period. Is this in fact true, and if so, are there any guidelines for the length of either or both? In the picture it looks like the false edge comes approximately 40% to 45% of the way up from the tip. Is this historically accurate? Also, the fuller comes down to just past the end of the false edge. Again, was this typical? Any and all information/help will be greatly appreciated. Thank you! Jack
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