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Forging a Ukrainian Kozak saber/Turkish Kilij


Alex Jemetz

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  • 1 month later...

Ukrainian Kozak saber/kilij update.  The blade has been heat-treated and is now hard and straight.  Next step is to temper it.  I have the handles/scales cut out from what looks to be red oak, will start to shape to fit the saber.  The cross-guard voids I filled with molten brass and it appears to be bonded well.  I did some more file work on the guard getting it closer to the final shape.  I hope to make a mold in two halves out of hydroperm from the guard to make another saber after this one is complete.

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  • 4 weeks later...

I finally tempered the saber, had to use a BBQ grill because it would not fit into any oven I have access to.  Did two one hour cycles at 410 F.  Meanwhile I have been working on the handle fitting and cross-guard.  I decided I will try to do add brass trim around the handle using 1mm x 10 mm brass strip and will solder it to the grip like I have seen done on other Turkish/Cossack and Hungarian sabers.  The weight of the blade is down to 2.63 pounds from a starting point of 4.6 lbs...  Still some more to go...    

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  • 4 weeks later...

Happy New Year!  Finally got into the workshop and got some sanding of the heat treated saber done, lots more to go...  Also, to change things up a little I started to fit the grip/pommel pieces which I decided to change to oak from maple (maple was actually just a trial run on the fitment).  I decided to use the cross-guard with all the imperfections as I want the saber to look a little aged, beaten-up and a little primitive.  The weight of the blade is now down to 2.63 pounds, hoping to lose a little more.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Short update...  Still hand-sanding.  The larger scratches on the blade are mostly gone and the I've evened out the bevels after using the grinder to get a distal taper to the saber.  Still lots of finishing work to complete, the grips are getting fitted and I will be drilling a hole into the steel for the brass pin next.  The weight of just the blade is down to 2.42 lbs, close to the level of similar historic blades (started with 4.60 lbs). 

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