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Neues aus der Gotik Messerertisch


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The Viennese bloggers at https://neuesausdergotik.blogspot.com/p/messerertisch.html have a series of posts on their replica knife projects.  They concentrate on Austria in the 13th and early 14th century and on the style of knife most associated with that place and time: whittle tang / hidden tang / Griffangel knives with the handle assembled from many discs of different materials (Griffplättchentechnik).  If you read German, the knifemaker has a good post on the development of the Griffplättchentechnik which is clearer and more complete on this style of knife than some of the academic studies I have read.  If you don't, you can enjoy projects like a big stabbing knife and this knife with a carved handle.

Edited by Sean Manning
Fixed link to article on stack-of-discs-handles
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Es ist nicht schwer! Ein biβchen, aber nicht so schwer als anderen. ;) ( I know that sucked, but you get the idea.  It's been years since I practiced)  Plus, Google Translate is pretty good on that site.  

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Enjoy!  I don't see a lot of modern knives with that grip construction, it could be a fun way to use up some scraps of brass sheet and bone / horn (or something from the local gem and stone show).

 

I fixed the link to the 'theory' article with diagrams.

 

Edit: here is a link to the photoblog on how he makes those many-part grips.  He cuts the holes for the tang in all the grip elements and stacks them, inserts the blade, peens it if it has a full-length tang and glues it if it has a short tang, then files the handle to shape.

Edited by Sean Manning
Added link to photoblog
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I enjoyed seeing the shots of his peened handles. I see on some the peen is flat and others the peen has been with a very very small fuller to give a design element. Was wondering how else it was done back in the day.

 

T

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9 hours ago, Taylor Hendrix said:

I enjoyed seeing the shots of his peened handles. I see on some the peen is flat and others the peen has been with a very very small fuller to give a design element. Was wondering how else it was done back in the day.

 

T

Now that I can't rightly say, usually photos and museums give a 'side on' view so it can be hard to see details like that.  I have seen medieval knives where the end of the tang was just bent over the butt of the handle, and occasionally a full-length whittle tang / hidden tang is peened over a button or an end plate for a little extra decoration.

 

Wade Allen has a selection of originals from the Thames and the Netherlands here (link) but he's more of an armour person.  The Met has this one with a snazzy rock crystal handle (link).  The fun thing with European knives from this period is that there are so many blade shapes and handle constructions and types of decoration, you can usually find something you like to inspire a project.

Edited by Sean Manning
Fixed link, added last sentence
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