Medieval adventures

Sword making #1

I (Penda) have always wanted to make a full-sized sword. I finally got sick of sitting around waiting for spring to arrive and headed out to the workshop to make one. Working in the shop in the winter can be difficult with regard to blacksmithing. The anvil will be whatever temperature it is outside, so in this case right around 0 Celcius. My hope was that it would heat up a bit once I started working metal on it.

This whole guard process may seem very confusing at this point. Here’s what I was thinking. The tang ended up being thicker than the blade, and I had an idea that I would just leave it that way and fit the hilt around the blade rather than sliding it on. I ended up changing my mind on that and ground the tang down to the same width of the blade. That’s the way swords are normally made. I still like the two-piece idea for the guard though. That way you don’t need to drill holes and file the slot.

Things to consider for the next sword.

  • Make sure the tang is the same thickness as the blade to save grinding later.
  • Start with a 1″ wide bar and taper the edges on the forge rather than grinding it down so much.
  • Don’t taper the blade edges so much before heat-treating. Had they been 3mm thick the warping wouldn’t have been so bad.