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I've started my fourth project, a Mainz Gladius.

 

I am using 1084 this time and I'm pumped about my introduction into legitimate blade steel. I started with a 24" x 2.5" x .125 piece of steel. I have had to do a lot of compression on this one to get the blade into the right form due to the starting width. I've got to work up the sides to edge them and I'm trying to figure out if I should continue to bring in the width before I form the edges since I'm already at full width and I don't want to add to the length. I could just grind them in, but I just love using the hammer! I'm stoked about this project. It's the sword that initially peaked my interest in making swords in the first place, so I'm taking my time and trying to do this one well.

 

Would love your thoughts and suggestions along the way.

 

To keep the thread load time down I will have more images available here: http://rashystreakers.tumblr.com/tagged/elysium

elysium_03.jpg

elysium_02.jpg

elysium_01.jpg

Edited by Josh A Weston
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It looks like you're off to a pretty good start and very ambitious for only your fourth project! I'm not sure if you are all done forging and are just going to start grinding now or what. But if you aren't done forging you're going to end up with more length then in your design; if on the other hand you are all done I hope you have a big grinder because it looks like there is tons of mass on those edges, without any bevels that I can discern. But over all you're off to an excellent start...can't wait to see it all done!

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It looks like you're off to a pretty good start and very ambitious for only your fourth project! I'm not sure if you are all done forging and are just going to start grinding now or what. But if you aren't done forging you're going to end up with more length then in your design; if on the other hand you are all done I hope you have a big grinder because it looks like there is tons of mass on those edges, without any bevels that I can discern. But over all you're off to an excellent start...can't wait to see it all done!

 

I did decide to hammer down some more before going to the grind. I kept looking at that chunk of steel and then looking at my 6" belt sander and then not doing anything. Then your post sealed the deal, thank you! I got some bevels in and widened out the blade to 2.5" which will come back down to around 2.25" after grinding.

 

Follow my progress here: http://rashystreakers.tumblr.com/tagged/elysium

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 1 month later...

That's looking good, I really like your forge design too...very interesting... :)

I don't recommend the forge I have. It's not horrible but I lose a lot of heat. I'm going to do some modifications to it hopefully this summer. I had started with armour so I got a set-up that allowed me to put in various size shapes but it's not real efficient for blades.

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I've made a bunch more progress. Going to load a few pics here but check out the link to see more:

 

http://rashystreakers.tumblr.com/tagged/elysium

 

tumblr_mm5c0euQ531qz9mvno4_500.jpg

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It's really coming along. I went back over the blade and re-measured the balance from the center line and did some more grinding to get it symmetrical. It's amazing how much better it feels to hold and more around from trimming off 2ish mm from the right side. Also, I can't say enough about actually cutting out my patterns and using them to guide my shaping. I've been able to keep it much closer to my plans than my previous swords. I should be sending the blade in for heat treating this week and finishing up a few details in the pommel.

Edited by Josh A Weston
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Looks good so far. I like the deliberation you put into layout, fit, and finish on the hilt elements, you're ahead of the game already that way.

 

My only question is why the Greek on a Roman blade?

 

I ask only because my Greek is so rusty I was interpreting the capital Lambda as an Alpha and the Ypsilon as a gamma (got my lower and upper case mixed up) and couldn't figure out what the heck an "hagsion" was... :lol: Eta being one of those funny letters and all, you know. :unsure: Should that not have been an Epsilon? I am not criticizing, for all I know the eta is correct!

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Looks good so far. I like the deliberation you put into layout, fit, and finish on the hilt elements, you're ahead of the game already that way.

 

My only question is why the Greek on a Roman blade?

 

I ask only because my Greek is so rusty I was interpreting the capital Lambda as an Alpha and the Ypsilon as a gamma (got my lower and upper case mixed up) and couldn't figure out what the heck an "hagsion" was... :lol: Eta being one of those funny letters and all, you know. :unsure: Should that not have been an Epsilon? I am not criticizing, for all I know the eta is correct!

I was going for "Elysium". The sword is for my Uncle who is fighting cancer and he takes a lot of inspiration from the Elysium story with Julius Caesar. I used greek thinking that this sword might be a sword one of the Romans who fought at Elysium might have commissioned after the battle to remember it. When they commissioned it they inscribed "Elysium" in the language of the origin, which I believe is Greek. However, I was nervous about engraving it because I don't know any Greek so I went off of information I found in some wikipedia articles and it may not be accurate but I hope it will do for my Uncle. So, it's kind of a totally made up scenario based a little historically.

 

I made some newbie mistakes on this part. I got flustered during the engraving and should have taken a break but I rushed through the reverse side and put it on upside down. And I didn't even realize that till I put it on the hilt and flipped it over. But I was out of copper so it will have to do. Grrrr. What I'm going to go with though is that in your hand one side is readable to you the other is readable to your opponent when thrust through his throat. "Happy little mistakes."

 

Other than the engraving mistakes and some deep pits on one side of the blade I am pretty happy with it though. I've been watching through the Arctic Fire videos a lot and they are really helping me progress my skill beyond where I thought I would be at this point. But the biggest thing I learn every time I make a blade is to slow down, take your time and pay attention to the details and tedium. Which is the most difficult thing for me still.

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  • 1 month later...

Looks like I forgot to post final pics. Here they are:

 

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I delivered the sword to the owner last week and he was very pleased. He's been showing it off to his buddies so maybe I will get another commission soon!

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You did a really great job. For what it's worth, the Greek is right and I feel right for a Roman sword (the Roman elite all spoke Greek--it's "kai su, teknon--and you, child?", not "Et tu, Brute").

Tyler, thanks for the educational post. I thought there had to be a good reason I could only find Greek for this.

 

Turned out great

Thanks, Rob!

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