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MLenaghan

The Lake sword

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Hey guys, starting a new project and it's somewhere lost between bronze age/iron age La Tene style swords. I have some idea's for the handle but there still evolving at the moment, But the blades well on it's way to being forged to life!

 

Started out late this summer when I had my parents cabin to myself, ran a couple great little orishagane smelts by the lake using old rusty nails and old files and anything else that had been around before my time. The furnace ran better then ever and ended up with some pretty solid chunks of high carbon steel...

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Then the long process of working the material, I tried taking my time with it more then in the past, always rushing... drawing the bar out to fast or folding the steel less then it needed. got 7 folds later I was happy with the steel and how it was forging. Two of the blooms where used and forged together for this

 

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Now here's the fun part, and something I've never done before! I needed more material for my goal of a sword, and the steel was still really high carbon and wanted to bring it a bit lower so I grabbed some of the really low carbon wrought iron I had which would be perfect material for the core of the sword. But the sword I wanted would be double edged and how to keep the wrought iron just to the inside of the sword was something that I had to think about for a bit. There was something I always wanted to try for awhile and Sam Salvati had posted it before... THE HOT DOG WELD! haha which proved to be interesting to say the least. Now I know what your thinking is that type of weld will leave the core material exposed, so now I drew the bar out into a sqaure and folded it back onto itself leaving all the steel on the outside and wrought iron inside the blade! Now I'm left with a piece of steel that looks nothing like a sword but it's ready to be forged to shape.

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Ooo I will be following this with interest!

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Also polish a small window into the blade with a light etch, it's 1150 layers with little contrast so I see alot of polishing in my future!

 

 

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Oh yeah! Love the look of that material. Nice job Michael!

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Gotta love this stuff! Nice job on the material making Michael.

That's two buttons for me to click! :D

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Yeah dude! You know I love this material and the way you tackle historical work!

 

I really like your take on the hot dog in the bun method, and I'll be interested to see how it looks when forged and ground and etched, it is an interesting way to end up with an iron core! The folding on itself was especially ingenious.

 

You didn't happen to measure your material in and out from the hearth furnace did you? I've been doing a bunch of these and I'm getting about 80% yield from the initial remelt and then another half lost to the refining, so I end up with maybe 40-50% of the initial material weight in steel when all is said and done.

 

Anyway, I'll be interested to see where this goes. great work so far :D

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I LOVE it. I plan on doing some hearth melting to start some of my daos and jians in the future.

 

the chracter of the steel can be so great.

 

Plus, I want to combine that with the hamon (shuangxue) and hada (???) techniques. They were created in China, and then about 800 years late the Chinese began copying the Japanese (who were, ironically, copying older Chinese work that the Chinese had forgotten about to a large degree).

 

OK, back to the matter at hand... this is going to be a wonderful build. I am excited to see hat ou do ith this. Rock on...

kc

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If you really want to bridge the bronze/iron age, make an early iron age scythian akinakes. The start of the iron age had them made with iron blades but cast bronze handles. Not a terribly large number of examples of these transitional blades are out there with intact blades, but they were iconic in history, and the bronze handles survive quite well.

 

 

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thanks guys! I wish I had the free time to get right back in the forge with this, but real life in the way at the moment.

 

Emiliano, I never measured what I put into the hearth, but each of the two blooms was around 2 lbs, so 4 lbs turned into 2lbs of solid bar by 5 folds... then by 8 folds, hotdog weld and fold it back unto it's self was still at 2 lbs with the added wrought iron.

 

Justin that's awesome, I'm still not sure where I'm going with this but it's gonna blur timelines and culture into something mythical I thinking

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Awesome! Looking forward to seeing this shape up, really nice look to the steel!

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This is too cool man! Really clever idea with that lamination process, I'll be watching this one very closely.

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I'm eagerly awaiting the next installment of this thread too. We need one of those eating popcorn emogies...

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Justin - thanks for the info.

 

I just want to be able to walk around saying, "akinakes," and not appearing too crazy.

 

looking forward to more. This is great.

I went to the British Museum, and they have a great display of Celtic swords over time:

 

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La Tene III

 

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Anyway, these are in order from Bronze Age through the 3 La Tene periods. This may be good inspiration. Hope the pics are useful.

 

take care,

kc

 

ps - if anyone goes to my FB page there are pics of the swords, spears, pole arms, knives, and armor from the British Museum and the Wallace Collection there for all to see. Enjoy browsing if you want. I got the Chinese ones, too (like all 4 of them...)

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Oddly enough one of the reasons we have so many well preserved celtic swords and fewer in the periods following it is because of the bronze sheathes they made, copper salts being a decent preservative. The celtic ones have a period where they had bronze handles with iron blades as well (i believe both of the short dagger Hallstat D ones in Kevin's photos are of this type, both still in the sheathes too)

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Well got some forging done, trying to really forge this as close to shape so I don't grind into the core steel later on.

 

As I was drawing the blade out I cut off the very end where the welds didn't look the greatest, also had the thinnest jacket material. Forged it to general shape so to give some idea of the cross section of this material might look, There are some weld flaws and the contrast isn't the greatest but you can make out the rough iron and the very edge joints also the center has some of the cleaner steel to. I tried to harden the steel while I was at it... Water seems good, oil went kinda hard... not sure how I feel about a full water quench just yet :wacko: so might still try oil first

 

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Also this steel keeps me on my toes! Luckly only one spot was this bad and never went that deep.

 

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The rest are just some forging pic's, I've always loved went some pattern shows through the scale

 

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Edited by MLenaghan
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You're killing it man! Looking awesome!

 

I especially like the close forging, that's how they woulda done it back then! How did the material react with water quenching? I've taken to forging a 1 or 2 inch blade from the edge material of whatever I am hardening when it's home made and quenching that in water with rounded edges to see how viable the quench is, then crossed fingers!

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Looking great! Love that cross-section, looks pretty darned original Celtic. B)

 

As for bronze and iron in the ground, well, here in good ol' East Tennessee acidic wet red clay you get an electrolytic effect wherein you find the bronze/brass preserved and the steel completely eaten away due to galvanic differential. Just like those sacrificial zinc anodes you put on steel-hulled boats in salt water. Only takes 100 years or so. The copper will preserve the organics, though.

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Looking great man, I like where yoirwent with that core idea.

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Well I've refined the profile of the blade a bit but nothing to show, However I am happy to be able to show the hilt design!!! I could be more excited that David DelaGardelle of Cedarlore Forge is super kind and has let me use one of his designs for this sword, only hope I'll be able to do it justice! :D

 

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Edited by MLenaghan

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Oh man Dave's hilt design is going to work perfectly with your blade. What materials are you going to use? I can see this looking really good with a mixture of since antler, dark wood, iron, and bronze in there.

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