Jump to content

ULFBERHT sword, from hearth-refined bloom steel.


Recommended Posts

Hi Gang,

So, now that my ULFBERHT copy has survived heat treating, I will post a WIP, on my Picasa site.
This has been a fun project, that my skills/forge had to catch up to do.


This is a Viking age sword, made from high carbon, hearth-refined bloom.
I will add pics as I progress. :)

https://picasaweb.google.com/106800196895572422821/HearthRefinedBloomSteelULFBERHTMARC

 

 



002.JPG

007.JPG

Link to post
Share on other sites

Yup, that, and a half dozen other project. Plus, my SCA schedule, and my day job. ;)
I have like 4 blades at this stage, that I'm making hilt fitting for. And about 10 bars of bloom steel at stages of folding's.
After mid Oct., things slow down a bit at my day job, and the SCA, So, I hope to finish all this up before this year ends. Maybe. :)



I've been dreaming of making this one for about 4 years now. I just needed to let my skills catch up to my dreams.
Getting closer I guess. ;)


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mark, that a killer accomplishment! excellent.

kc

Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice! Sorry to see your inlay didn't really go as planned, but I still like it! I would love to see what you have in mind for the hilt.

My theory has always been that the "ULFBERHT" inlay was a system of classification. For instance, in modern knives we often mark "5160" or "S30V" etc. I've thought this because of the fact that only the swords marked, "+VLFBERH+T" were crucible steel, and swords marked, "+VLFBERHT+" were bloom steel.
The common accepted theory is that the bloom steel swords, "+VLFBERHT+" were fakes and copies. I find it hard to believe that there were hundreds of, "fakes" made from bloom steel, and not a single one of them got the freaking inlay correct. If I were going to make a copy of a Ferrari, would I put a ton of work into making it look exactly like a real authentic Ferrari, and then carelessly inscribe, "Farreri" into the car instead of, "Ferrari"? I know the fake sword theory says that the smiths were illiterate, but why then would they be so consistent?

Sorry for rambling, just thought of that and wondered if any of you guys had any theories as well. ;)

Link to post
Share on other sites

The historical record would disagree with you on this.

I was waiting for that. :lol:

I know there are tons of combinations of the letters and everything, but what I meant was that only swords marked, "+VLFBERH+T" were of crucible steel. At least, that's what I've heard...

There's also the Ingelrii swords, which I haven't researched much.

 

Do know anything you could share on this? I'm all for being proven wrong for the sake of learning.

Edited by Collin Miller
Link to post
Share on other sites

That is just it, they were not very consistent.
I have never been sold on the crucible steel theory that much. At most, only a couple swords that they have found, seem to be crucible steel. Anything is possible, but having made, and worked with crucible steel, I know how hard it is to work with, unless you have had lots of training and or experience.
Crucible steel was an unknown technology in Viking age Europe. But, hearth-refining had been around form the early days of iron production.
It is a technology that is a natural progression of the skills of making good weapon steel.
I feel, that some people were just better then others at making steel. History seems to prove this.
This sword that I made, is made of hypereutectoid steel, ranging from .79 to 1.2 C.. It is very low slag. It is not homogeneous, because it is 7 small HC bars, stacked welded together to 3 bars, then stacked again, and welded, and folded twice..
Samples from the center cut of the last fold were still very HC.
One day, and I'm getting close to that, I hope to make a sword size billet from one good size melt, of good HC hearth-refined bloom steel. If it is high carbon enough, that could look just like crucible steel.

Many of the swords in William's book, could very easily have been made of simple steely bloom.

Edited by Mark Green
Link to post
Share on other sites

I can't wait to see this one done, Mark! If all goes well those type S fittings will be with you in time to hilt it up if you so choose ;)

Really inspiring work all around, I cannot wait to add some of the bloom iron you gave me to some pieces :)

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

Hi gang,

I finally decided on the hilt fittings.
I forged up some nice soft bloom iron, with a few folds, and rough shaped out some type K's for this sword.
This type was found on at least two known ULF's. In those cases, the fittings were covered with silver on lay, and then the design was carved through the silver to the iron below.
The Vine design in mine will be, silver inlay, into the iron, with a dark patina.
Still thinking about the grip material. I'm leaning towards bone. I just love the feel.

003.JPG

001.JPG

002.JPG

Edited by Mark Green
Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Gang,

Well got the hilt fitting close to size, all but the pommel lobes. Soon.

I got the slots drilled and cut, and picked a bone handle to play with, and started the silver inlay on the guard.


005.JPG

009.JPG

012.JPG

013.JPG

Link to post
Share on other sites

Mark,

 

This is a wonderful thread..your steel making (bloom refining ) skills are amazing. The layers of steel visible in the sword look great..it is that look ( visible in older iron objects every where) which helped draw me to blooming. I tried the plastic ties in my forge welding tests, but could not get them to work..I will try again at a later time.

Jan

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...