And if we should die tonight, We should all die together, Raise a glass of wine for the last time
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"For as surely as night follows day, there comes a time when even gods must die."
Hmmm.... that's actually quite disappointing.
I had somewhat hoped it would be the traditional methods of creation, rather than a modern replication of the procedure. not to say it's not impressive, the end product, (though I know very little about WSA), it doesn't really give the feeling of what it would've been like to forge a sword in those days.
Still, it is kinda cool to see modern methods of forging
"Traditional Martial arts are not so exciting, as there is no title match. Only pain. Pain and patience. They need a long time until mastery" -Fumio "Unsui" Manaka-Sensei
However, mass production of high-quality swords was in place quite early in Europe. You wouldn't go to a smith for a sword, you'd likely go to a cutler, who would have the components in stock to assemble a weapon to your specifications... so it would be "I want that blade, that pommel... no, the other one, yeah that one, and that crossguard. I want the scabbard to be covered in green leather, with a point on the chape. I'll be back in two weeks."
"Who despises me and my praiseworthy craft, I'll hit on the head that it resounds in his heart."
-Augustin Staidt, Federfechter
I'd wager that the "traditional" smiths would have gladly accepted modern equpiment and techniques had they been available....
"Let he who hath no sword sell his cloak and buy one" Luke 22:36
Only a fool would hammer iron oxide sand into a usable steel, beating it by hand, then having someone polish it by hand. That was all done because that was what they had to work with, but I'm sure would have almost killed for a couple of lengths of 1095 steel. Throw in a modern grinder and polisher....and their eyes would pop out of their heads
Impressive swords, true. But assuming that the steels they're using are somewhat close to those used in period, it must be said that stock remove techniques will never yield as much quality in the end product as forging.
The major issue is that the forging process compresses and aligns the matrix of the metal, resulting in a denser, stronger metal.
That's not to say you can't make outstanding blades with stock removal methods. You can, obviously. Especially if you give up period accuracy by using more modern compounds.
But forged blades will always be king.
Worn out, tired old fat man. Please be gentle.
I could be wrong, but, it's my understanding that most steel billets are forged to that shape once they come out of the furnacing process... and the matrix/grain structure is largely remade anyway in the tempering process. About the only time you don't forge it, at some level, is when you're doing net shape powder metallurgy.
I'd also bet that a skilled smith of the 15th century would have wet himself over AISI standard carbon steels, let alone the more impressive things we have now.