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Langes messer wip

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Now this is both a project I wanted to do because I want to practice more with making scabbards with by knives and also an experiment for me with different techniques.




The first one being making the blade completely by stock removal instead of forging. And so far I am not seeing any obvious advantages to it :lol:


Started with 6.2mm thick bar of 80crv2 and after profiling it weighs a whopping 1695grams so we are talking about at least a kilo of steel getting turned into dust :blink:


Started with grinding in the fullers, planning on having two on each side and leaving about 1.5mm of steel between them. 



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Got the scabbard dyed and greased so next up is the suspension. Still haven't completely decided wether to go with a baldric or a belt

Today I finished shaping the handle scales and decided to add some washers to the pins for that little extra bling.   Gluing them on a piece of steel rod make filing them so so much easier 

Been sanding a bit on the blade. Got the fullers mostly cleaned up and thinned down the bevels. But going to wait with final hand sanding until all the pieces are closer to shape.

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Realized that starting on the fullers was dumb as they would wander off when grinding in the distal taper and happy I caught myself before doing the second set.


Have the non linear taper rough ground in now and in the process of draw filing the sides true. I really like draw filing with a good bastard file as I can removal almost as much material as the grinder albeit it being quite a workout.


Looking at it now and guestimating how much material bevels and fullers will take I might actually be able to end up closer to 550 gram bare blade weight.


Lower numbers are thickness as is in mm and upper are suggestions for final thicknesses from James Elmslie






Edited by Bjorn Gylfason
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Yes I have tried the full stock removal method for large knives. Never anything this large. It just doesn't seem efficient. Even if only doing the trick some factory knives that are "hand forged" do and just forge the distal tapers and call it done, then doing stock removal on the little hour-glass blob/sheet of metal that is produced by squashing both ends of a bar with a thickening toward the center. Even that is far easier than grinding in a good distal taper. For me.


So... great work to achieve results that way. Trying that way is good. Now, you are sure as to why you like to forge :).

I think the messer will be beautiful, when you are done. I love to see messers.



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Fullers are ground in and now I'm hand sanding to refine them. It was a good thing I modified calipers to gauge the thickness as there is still around 1.5mm of thickness left between the lower fullers.


Next up is to grind the bevels in and forge out the crossguard and contemplating going a little fancy with it





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Got the guard rough forged and fitted to the blade. It slides down from the tip as it should and seats firmly. Now I really have to practice more forging things like this closer to shape but nothing a quick trip to the grinder won't fix followed by hours with files :lol:


One thing I did learn this time is that it isn't the best idea to start on the slot as it deformed quite a bit while drawing the spurs out and had to be refitted.


On a side note I decided to use the heat and see if I couldn't make something useful out of a small off cut. This is what I do love about forging, so much better use of materials.





But now that I look at the pictures I think I should bring the knuckle bow a lot closer to the grip. Oh well, that's tomorrows work

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Milled a slot into a big chunk of brass for the pommel that will eventually be silver soldered onto the tang. I might drill a hole through it for good measures for attaching the overlays on it.


And because I don't like turning too much of it into dust I drilled a few pilot holes and am now in the process of hacksawing it to shape




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Some hacksawing and grinding later and I have the basic form of the pommel.


I really should get off my ass and invest in the rest of tools needed to cast non ferrous metals :lol:


With the overweight pommel and guard mounted the knife doesn't feel awkward but definitely heavy and this is always going to be a strong mans chopper


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The guard is now roughly filed to shape and lightened substantially.


And using foresight I have decided to start on the scabbard before assembly as it was quite inconvenient on the last one to work around the hilt :lol:


After going through some books and inspired by the fantastic sheath Peter Johnson made for a big bollock daggers the plan is to try out a maybe strange composite core. Innermost layer against the blade will be hard pressed veg tanned leather, followed by stiffening layers on each side from modelling plywood, wrapped in linen and then very thin veg tanned leather covering.


I have yet to fully decide on suspension style but will get a better idea for that once the scabbards core and by knife sheaths are ready




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The blade is 62cm in front of the guard and 5cm wide.


It's well into the broadest end of the messer spectrum and that makes scaling everything else to kind of fit both in overall look but also be weildable a little bit of a trial and error

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Cut the leather roughly to size, skived the edges that will overlap and let it soak while I prepped the blade.


Blade oiled and wrapped in film and two layers of electrical tape as I want the slight oversize while the leather dries.


Laid out and started with clamps to hold it while I wrapped string tightly around taking care to have the lower edge of the leather overlapping so that the blade won't accidentally slide into the seam while being holstered.


And now I play the waiting game for the leather to dry and started looking at some late 15th century knives for inspiration for the by knives








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By knives cut out, heat treated and are now tempering.


The pommel profiled was way too heavy at 360grams. So chucked it on my mill again and shaved off both sides leaving a proud area on the front face which I'm hoping to manage some kind of flower motive on. Then back to the belt grinder to give it some three dimensional shape. As it is now it's still at 290 grams so might yet deepen the tang slot to remove a little bit more weight and as I'm thinking of rope filework on the tang I might extend it all around the pommel as well. Every gram counts :lol:


Will also grind in fullers on the tang itself which should remove somewhere between 30 and 40 grams





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You can never own to many clamps :lol:


Glued and clamped the front plywood sheaths today and will leave them clamped until morning and then put the back ones on.


After much thinking and fitting I think I'm only going with one by knife and pricker as having a second knife would make the scabbard feel a little bit cluttered 


Milled a short slot on some scrap brass for the pommels and then a small hole to peen them in place. Might even go overboard and solder them in place as well.


I don't want to spend too much time on them but they will still have to look relatively nice









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Glued and clamped the backside plyw on the scabbard this morning and got the by knife close enough to finished to make a sheath for it so next is the pricker.


As the current plan is for a relatively high status kit I went with faux ivory for the scales




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I agree. The pinned bolster and piened butt are very unique.


Excellent work.

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