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Ok, so I'm all stoked to make a sword. My first inspiration came while I was on a walk, and found an antler that had a very inspirational branch-off that I immediately imagined as a sword grip. My second came from seeing a lot of pictures of the Ulfberht style blades and I'm considering doing something longer like that. The thing is, I'm not sure if the antler section will be thick enough to hold up to a sword blade of a little over a foot long, which is what I'm planning. The antler is about 3/4ths of an inch across the shortest point and 1 inch across the widest. I'm suspecting getting a bit o' 1084 from Aldo's for Christmas, so I'll wait until after then to begin, or order the steel. So, details about my two options. Antler Handled Blade. Blade will be a little over a foot long, similar in shape and size to the 2013 Arctic Fire blade, though the style of the antler makes me think of an arrow shaft, and so I'm considering a hint of an arrow's barb at the corners near the guard. A part problem will be balancing it out; antler is not very heavy and I do not really have ideas for additions to add to pommel weight, without destroying the pointy ends of the antler. For both blades I'll probably (unless I figger a way to cast bronze copper or pewter) forge the guard from steel, or copper if I can find enough. Width of the blade in front of the hilt about 4", while most of the blade is about 1.5" Ulfberht Style Blade. Most of my inspiration comes from the Bragi sword that was recently finished and the sword currently under construction by Rob Toneguzzo. I'm planning on forging the guard and pommel, either cocobolo or bubinga wood handle with mebbe a bit of carving. The blade would be 2 feet long, 2 inches wide at the hilt and slowly tapering to 1 inch where the point is then rounded. The length of the wood handle would be 4.5", the guard also 4.5" So, which one should I do? I plan on keeping at this, though it'll probably take a few months. Any tips or suggestions before I start out? Design tips? This is a big project and maybe too big for my britches, but it'll be fun (hopefully), stressful (almost definitely), and I'll learn a thing or two. I have to get the photos off of an Ipad so I may not have them up immediately.