1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

New Project - Sabers

Discussion in 'Sword Discussion' started by Fiddleback, Aug 1, 2018.

  1. Fiddleback

    Fiddleback Knifemaker Moderator

    Oct 19, 2005
    I have decided to make a few swords and sabers. I'd also like to learn how to fight with a saber, which was a childhood dream. I'm having trouble finding measured drawings of the various model of sabers. Especially measured drawings for patterns such as the 1796 light cavalry saber or the 1860 us civil war saber, etc. Really I'd like to make a lighter infantry saber rather than a cavalry saber. Two issues finding anything useful about sabers on the internet are star wars, and modern dress sabers. I bought a book on polish sabers, but I'm really just not finding much specific information on individual models.

    Any help and advice y'all have would be appreciated.

    (To get myself started I'm going to make a straight bladed sword based on an old Cark Eikhorn Prussian Officers Dress sword that I have. Mainly just because the straight blade will make it easier to do.)

    I can post pics if y'all are interested in seeing this at all.
     
  2. DocJD

    DocJD

    Jan 29, 2016
    Yes , please post pics !:)
     
  3. BitingSarcasm

    BitingSarcasm

    756
    Feb 25, 2014
    Sieving the whole internet is a chore thanks to the garbage hits; when I was a teacher, the students would try to google me with no success because I have the same name as a famous comedian. But I have seen some measured diagrams come up in posts over at myarmoury.com. I think you would get a lot more information over there.
     
  4. horseclover

    horseclover Basic Member Basic Member

    Nov 21, 2000
    Go to shows and get friendly with museum curators. Start collecting antique sabres.

    Technically, there was no m1860 American Civil War sword. Little trivia bits such as that might lead you to studying French 1822 light cavalry swords (vs the heavy) which was the basis for both the US m1840 "wristbreaker" and the light ("1860") ACW sabres.

    There was a wide range of specifications for both the British p1796 light cavalry sabre and the Prussian Blucher counterparts. Some have some extreme concave distal properties that are difficult to map for general consumption but in brief, 10mm or greater thickness at the guard, reducing by almost half by the center of gravity. Then a fairly steady and linear taper from about the cog to the end of the fuller 5mm-3mm. Then 2mm to wafer thick by the time you get to the wide point. Later swords emulating the look of the p1796 generally lack most of those characteristics.

    Interestingly or not, one can find the same radical distal properties on many swords back to the 14th century and even earlier.

    There is no real shortcut in developing swords from scratch and no downloadable blueprints that I am aware of. I am at approximately six dozen antique swords and while there are trends, aside from siblings from a single company, you are going to encounter a fair range of general specifications.

    For sword fighting, scroll down here
    http://www.fioredeiliberi.org/phpBB3/index.php?sid=9918d4123cdbd01e09a8d2557b7ddb01

    Cheers
    GC
     
    JJHollowman likes this.
  5. Fiddleback

    Fiddleback Knifemaker Moderator

    Oct 19, 2005
    This is great. New resources. Thanks.

    Had not seen any distal taper numbers before. I checked the gras bayonet and it is about a 50% taper in the first 30% of length. Neat.

    I have two old french swords on the way. Parts swords really, but should allow me to learn a lot. I think they are real based on the markings I have on my bayonet.
     
  6. Fiddleback

    Fiddleback Knifemaker Moderator

    Oct 19, 2005
    @horseclover Is that thickness at the ricasso and radical distal taper evident on infantry sabers as well to your knowledge?
     
  7. horseclover

    horseclover Basic Member Basic Member

    Nov 21, 2000
    It depends but the formula is fairly common, adjusting thicknesses a bit. Once we get to the 19th century, a lot of mass production of sword blades lends to a more linear distal taper. There are fairly few absolutes as well. One might regard British (and other) naval cutlasses that are dead straight, quite stiff and used throughout the 19th century. They had a more linear distal. Whereas say a British 1803 infantry sabre will typically show a more concave distal taper. The French made patterns, by and large, continued with refined distal properties suited to use. Sabres continuing to display more mass towards the hilt. One of the buzz words a decade or so ago was "low polar moment" which really just translates to a very neutral feel in handling a weapon (or designing a car).

    Cheers
    GC
     
    Fiddleback likes this.
  8. BladeMan

    BladeMan

    507
    Feb 12, 1999
    I have an Austrian M1889 saber (antique one, no replica) that i can measure for you if that helps.
     
    Fiddleback likes this.
  9. J W Bensinger

    J W Bensinger

    Mar 26, 2009
    I have a Blücher artillery saber I can pull some measurements from as well. It's been arsenal shortened to late 19th cent. specs but it's a really stellar handling piece.
    Matt Easton (scholagladiatoria on youtube) has some pretty good videos on basic Euro saber drills, as does Richard Marsden on Polish/Hussar saber stuff. RM also put out a book on Polish saber training and technique but it's dang expensive.
     
    Legendary_Jarl and Fiddleback like this.
  10. J W Bensinger

    J W Bensinger

    Mar 26, 2009
    I have been getting the saber bug for about 25 years now, on and off: (top one is the Blücher, third one down is my first one from about 1995-cleaned up the fullers last winter because they were hilariously bad)
    [​IMG]
    The more you make the easier they get- I've been gettin the urge to make them more these days so i've started working up power hammer tooling for fullers, etc
     
    Mecha and LEGION 12 like this.
  11. xrgong

    xrgong

    32
    Jun 9, 2008
    SBG sword forums> general discussions>renaissance and military sword forum, anything by Pino (pinotte18141), Dave Kelly, Uhlan... (removed stuff already mentioned, my bad.)
     
  12. Fiddleback

    Fiddleback Knifemaker Moderator

    Oct 19, 2005
    So I am starting with a straight bladed sword based on this Eickhorn Prussian officers sword.

    [​IMG]

    This is the first blade blank after profiling. This blank is made from 1084 high carbon steel. At this point the blank weighed 1.42lbs.

    [​IMG]

    Next step is the surface grinder where I ground down the first 2/3 of the bade to get the distal taper started. This grinding step took off another .3 lbs, leaving the blank at 1.12lbs.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The remainder of the distal tapering will be done by hand at the grinder. Then it is fullering time, I´ll use a 1"wheel to grind the fuller. Then off to Peters for HT. Shooting for 55Rc.

    I bought copper for the guard and metalic handle fitting components. I have an idea for a design and a strategy for making the guard. This is going to be a challenge for me because metal guard have never been my thing in knives, so this part will be fairly new to me. My handle will be made from micarta more than likely.
     
  13. J W Bensinger

    J W Bensinger

    Mar 26, 2009
    I didn't know Peters could do oil quenched steel over 20something inches-that's good news if they can. I haaaaate hardening sword blades.
    I've taken to running single edged swords pretty hard, and then going back and drawing the spine to spring with a mapp torch and heat sinks in the vise. Provides a very sharp, very supple saber
     
    Mecha likes this.
  14. Fiddleback

    Fiddleback Knifemaker Moderator

    Oct 19, 2005
    ooo. I don't know. I have used them before for small knives, and hadn't thought to ask if they have size limits. Hmmmm.

    Neat information. You're just mounting the sword in a vise with wet paper towels at the edge and torching the spine to straw?
     
  15. J W Bensinger

    J W Bensinger

    Mar 26, 2009
    I believe they can only do long stuff if it's air-hardening. I think I know some folks that do longer stuff.
    I temper the whole sword to 59-60 (ish) and then clamp the blade in my vise with aluminum angle, and draw the spine to purple. Fullers make this a lot easier
     
    Mecha likes this.
  16. T. Erdelyi

    T. Erdelyi Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 3, 2001
    Subscribed Andy, this is gonna be interesting sir and I don't wanna Miss out on the project or the adjacent education that follows. :)
     
    Mecha and Fiddleback like this.
  17. Fiddleback

    Fiddleback Knifemaker Moderator

    Oct 19, 2005
    Hopefully you mean to be educated by my ignorance my friend. I come into this fixation as a newborn baby with a shop. I didn't even know Peters had a length limit for high carbon steels. LOL. I'm confident on grinding the bevels, but little of the rest is in my realm of expertise. Its kinda fun. I'm feeling around in the dark like a blind alcoholic who set his beer down somewhere.
     
    Mecha and DocJD like this.
  18. T. Erdelyi

    T. Erdelyi Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 3, 2001
    We’ll learn together.
     
    Mecha and Fiddleback like this.
  19. Steely_Gunz

    Steely_Gunz Got the Khukuri fevah Moderator

    May 9, 2002
    Well I'll be watching this one for sure:)
     
    Fiddleback likes this.
  20. Legendary_Jarl

    Legendary_Jarl

    398
    Feb 8, 2010
    Indeed! I've watched a few videos of scholagladiatoria and he talks a lot about XVIII & XIX swords. I think he has a special fascination for the 1796 pattern sword. He has several videos on it and its variants.
     

Share This Page