Friday, February 18, 2011

Other fairly pertinent things that have happened

Thanks to Greg in the art barn, I've been experimenting with carving machinable wax, which can be used in the "lost wax" casting process. It's used extensively by some swordsmiths for hilt pieces such as pommels, guards, and ferrules on the ends of grips. An example is the masterful Jake Powning, with whom I will be studying next month. I just wanted to get a feel for the material in case I ever gained access to the facilities in which to cast bronze.

Also, my friend Jack from Worcester State came to visit and to use the shop. He is a much, much more experienced bladesmith than I and had several beautiful blades with him, entirely of his own making. One is for a late Roman-era "spatha" sword: a broad, double-edged blade longer than the traditional Roman gladius but shorter than later Germanic swords, even though it was lengthened for cavalry use. This type of sword generally had two parallel fullers running down the middle of the blade, and I welded together a tool for him to forge these fullers in with.

Here we are forging in the fullers:

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