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Dear All, These Anglo Saxon inspired seaxes are finally finished for my wedding two months hence! Some of the WIP (before I broke my camera and had to push onwards) is on this thread: Enjoy! Comments and Criticism gratefully received. I have learnt a heck of a lot on this build, if I were to be making just one I am sure I could have done a much better job of it. However, since there were ten.... yes ten.... with a definite deadline I struggled to spend the extra hundred hours on the sheath required per piece! All in all, I'm happy with them and I'm sure their new owners will be too. A huge amount of thanks must go to Sam Ecroyd, without whom this would not have been possible! Cheers, James P.S. Sorry about the bits of stuff on the blades, didn't realise there was dust on them until I was editing!
Dear Blade Brethren, Mr Ecroyd and I have been working on a project now for some time and we have finally got to the stage that we have something to show you for our toil, blood and tears. I am getting married next year (Mr Loose is making my ring ) and I decided all the best men, ushers and fathers needed wedding knives. We sat down and, true to form, we decided to attempt something ridiculous. This is obviously very similar to the flame edge patterning Dave Stevens showed on Arctic fire and Mick Maxen's explosion mosaics. The plan: Blades: Serpented two bar interrupted twist spine, Flame edge with 'Brownian motion' smoke above it Fittings: Cast bronze chape and pommel, celtic/norse love-themed knotwork Handles: Choice of wood made by the receiver of the knife (Likely wild mango/bubinga/cocobolo/coolibah burr) Sheathes: Veg tan leather with electroetched makers mark and bronze/brass fittings This was the plan for the blade patterning: I have made a few videos of the process thus far which will be linked at the bottom of this post. I started with 18 layers of 15N20 and 1095, then a massive block of 20 layers of 1095 with a strip of EN42J in the middle, welded on top of the stack. This was welded and elongated, resulting in this pattern on the end of the bar: This was then stacked at 90 degrees to the original orientation and re-welded, resulting in this pattern on the end of the bar: This was then again stacked and welded, resulting in much tighter flames: Finally, this was stacked three times and welded. After this, the billet was allowed to cool very slowly from critical temperature to make it as soft as possible, allowing it to be cut into slices. Another billet was then prepared, 18 layers of 15N20 and 1095, welded and elongated, then twisted alternately one way and then the next. This was split into two and then welded together inside two bars of EN8 plain carbon steel. The resulting bar was cut into a zig-zag and forged back to bar stock, causing undulation of the central two alternating twist bars. The slices of the flame edge bar were then forged into 1cm thick bars: These were then married up to their serpent bar and welded, then drawn out to the correct thickness for forging the knives. It was attempted to elongate them as little as possible, to avoid elongating the twist too far, however the flame edge bar needed elongating to unbunch the pattern. A compromise had to be made. These bars were then forged into two knives each and normalised before grinding. After a huge amount of grinding, normalising, quenching, grinding again and then polishing, the knives were etched and taken to a final polish at 1200 grit. I made a machine I named the 'Hand-sand-o-matic 2000' to assist with polishing but I think it will be more useful when time is not such an issue as most of these were polished with A45 trizact belts, as there was no plunge line. Thank you for looking, any comments and criticisms are as always welcomed. Video links to follow to some horrifically amateurishly edited videos! I will post more as we progress with the casting, handling and sheathing. Cheers, James and Sam